It’s time to introduce myself
Helen Dos Santos is a internationally accredited NLP Master Practitioner. She is qualified to Master Level as a Coach, Time Line Therapist and Hypnotherapist. Helen is also a Certified Havening Techniques® Practitioner and Belief Change Practitioner.
Combining over 30 years of experience of working with senior executives, directors and headteachers, with her project and change management skills, Helen has an excellent understanding of the business environment across both private and public sectors and has worked for local, national and international organisations within the United Kingdom and Africa. Helen’s coaching work has varied from working with sufferers of anxiety and depression to the point of coming off any anti-depressants, victims of abuse and suffers of trauma and PTSD, to increasing the confidence and self-belief of individuals to get the job they want.
This is my story
I grew up and got married in Zimbabwe, but Friday 18th April, 1980 changed the direction of my life forever, the day Zimbabwe gained independence.
Through school I had aspired to become a lawyer, wanting to make a difference and ensure justice was carried out fairly. In 1981 my parents shared some horrific news with me. I would not be going to university. Girls at the university in Harare were being raped, and the nearest university was in a neighbouring country, some 27 hours’ drive away, where I knew no-one. The decision was taken out of my hands. My goal, my dream to make a difference was shattered by political unrest in a corrupt country.
Instead, I trained as a secretary and at 22 found myself working for the managing director of an international company based in Harare, Zimbabwe’s capital city. For some years to follow I found myself supporting senior executives at board of director level, and this is where my fascination for human behaviour grew. Around the time my husband and I were planning our wedding we recognised the country we loved was falling into disarray and our safety was threatened on a daily basis. At the age of 26 we moved from Zimbabwe to the UK with only £200 each in our pockets. We were not poor, but that was all the Zimbabwe Government would grant us to emigrate. On arrival in the UK in 1990 (in the middle of a recession) I commenced a temporary secretarial role within 4 days, and over the next 5 years was made redundant 4 times. When I left Zimbabwe, I hardly knew what the word redundancy meant! I vowed to myself I was never going to let someone else control my life again. This the second time the situation within a country was affecting me.
It was in the mid 1990s I came across Neuro Linguistic Programming for the first time, and I realised how powerful the tools and techniques were, and I envied the woman I met who was a qualified NLP Master. I can recall thinking what an honour it would be to hold that title. I never thought I could not achieve it….but I could not see how I ever would either.
On qualifying as an NLP Master and Coach in 2012, my life changed. I have more drive, energy, vigour and determination than ever before. I have achieved all my business goals in shorter timescales than I had set myself. One of my goals was to lose half a stone and become fitter –with the focus and ability to coach myself I went on to lose 20 pounds.
I love helping others to get the best out of themselves and make a difference to their lives. And I feel I can do that because I understand what it feels like to be cheated of opportunity, have no drive, feel stuck in a rut, and to have no goals in sight. I have worked hard at being the best version of myself and I would now describe my life as brilliant living by my values and purpose and delivering the same goal I aspired to as that school girl –making a difference to people’s lives.