Who is Elma?
I’m a Life coach ACC (ICF), Psychologist Msc, NLP-Practitioner and parent of two from The Netherlands. I have a Dutch-Philippine cultural background and live in Northern Ireland. For over 23 years, I’ve been helping professionals and students in their personal and professional development, focusing on being calm, competent and confident communicators in their work, becoming who they truly are.
I’ve always embraced life as an adventure wherein we can grow and find ourselves, connecting inwardly with ourselves and connecting outwardly with others, while sometimes being really scared doing either of the two. My adventure has had magical, heart-warming highs, as well as painful, heart-wrenching lows, both in which a deep sense of shame, or the absence of it, has been a determining factor.
Coming to terms with my own upbringing’s deep impact on my life, work and parenting, has helped me grow my awareness of both my own inner blocks and my strengths. Learning how to transform that old programming into personal strength to start a different path to a better future for myself, my family and the world is what deeply motivates me to do this work.
I became a parent myself 11 years ago, and man, did my learning curve grew a lot steeper and deeper, in so many ways! My own experience of becoming and being a parent brought up a deep need for me to refocus my work on helping parents feeling calm, confident and competent being true to who they are as they build a nurturing relationship with their children. I feel parenting is one of the most wonderful and also most challenging adventures of life. It’s where old and new relationships come together. And if any old wounds hadn’t been healed yet, it’s likely they will come to the surface when building the new relationships.
I find the difference that compassionate, clear and -obviously!- imperfect parenting is making- to not only my children’s life but also my own- so powerful and so nurturing, that I want to help make that possible for others too. For me, being a parent is not only about parenting your child in the best possible way to help them grow into happy, confident, resilient people. It’s also about re-parenting yourself, healing old wounds, being kind to yourself and them along the way, and discovering a new way of living this life, together, filled with connection, meaning and fun.
For the last 5 years, I’ve been living in Northern Ireland, with my Irish husband and our two kids; an 11 year old boy and a 6 year old girl. To stay connected with myself, look after my emotional health and have fun, I swim in the Irish sea, sing in the Irish pubs, do Iyengar yoga, walk through the beautiful Irish nature and connect with friends for some great craic!