What is the best thing that I love about my work?
I love that my work touches people in a very deep place, and that each time I help somebody grow in this way I too feel touched and deeply moved by their life story.
What is my idea of perfect happiness?
I think perfect happiness is a fantasy. I’ve learned to enjoy the wonderful moments life brings without judgment, and in that way they are perfect. But if they were only happy they would be flat. Often these moments have so many different emotions attached to them that I can never forget them, and I can’t even explain them. They are beyond words. And in that way they are pure – even divine!- perfection at play. They are movements full of beauty.
What is my greatest fear?
I’ve been through such a rough life journey that I’ve reached a place where I no longer fear anything. In a way I think my whole life journey has been about conquering a terrible, irrational and sometimes inexplicable fear. But slowly, as I faced and overcame one fear after another, I came to understand that the fear of experiencing fear is worse than the actual fear itself because it freezes you in inaction or denial. Once I learned to tolerate my own fear until it subsided, life became a fearless adventure of discovery.
What is the trait that I most deplore in myself?
It’s taken me my whole life to learn to love myself exactly the way I am. No deplorable traits left in me. It’s all part of who I am, and learning to love it all has been a humbling and enlightening journey. For a long time I wished my body was skinnier, for example. I felt very ashamed of my full curves and chunky architecture. I walked out the door recently with my 3 jack russell dogs for a walk, swaying my hips from side to side with recently found pride. And I saw a man practically fall off his motor bike staring at me. At that moment I understood the true power of my curves!
Which living persons in my profession do i most admire?
My profession – executive coaching – is full of con artists and super inflated egos convinced they are bringing divine solutions to needy little mortals, so it’s hard for me to find people I admire. I think the simplest, most humble shamans in far away villages would probably be my favourite characters. Having said that, I have great respect and gratitude for Bert Hellinger, father of Family Constellations, David Berceli, creator of TRE Method, and Buck Brannaman the horse whisperer. All three have influenced my work enormously, as have Emilie Conrad, creator of Continuum, Alexander Lowen father of bioenergetic therapy, or Wilhelm Reich, Carl Jung and Freud.
What is my greatest extravagance?
To practice what I preach to its fullest consequences no matter what: I embrace the wild in myself and around me with every step I take. I trust my body and its feelings wherever they take me because I’ve been lost in a very long tunnel of uncertainty for a a very long time, and though everybody told me to do this or that, I learned to stick to my perception of events and stay true to my heart. Until I was proven right!
On what occasion would I lie?
I don’t lie. I don’t like to. But I may remain quiet about certain facts to make things easier for everybody and for myself. Working with clients, for example, I might intervene as coach with two parties in conflict. Naturally I can’t tell A anything that B told me, or viceversa.
Or when someone is always fishing for praise I might give in from time to time and offer some pretty words I don’t really feel, but it seems to be the only way to get some peace from them!!! It feels uncomfortable and I’m sure it shows on my face!! Good thing such fishermen and women are too busy getting what they want to notice!
What is the thing that I dislike the most in my work?
Accounting and paperwork. Ugghh!!! Organizing papers, bills, receipts … anything that requires attention to lots of little disconnected details is NOT my cup of tea.
When and where was I the happiest, in my work?
Here and Now. Without a doubt. I’ve found an approach to leadership and personal growth that fascinates me, keeps me curious and connects me to Nature and to people in their most honest versions of themselves. I love everything I do now, from one to one coaching with private clients at my new home, to coaching executives with horses at the farm, to hosting and coaching executive teams on mountain treks, or in programs where we swim with Tuna fish in the sea.
If I could, what would I change about myself?
I’ve changed a long list of things about myself. What I’m still working on now is total trust in life to bring me what I need before I know I need it. It’s about thinking less, planning less, and falling into “here and now” on a way deeper and more instinctive level.
It’s also about opening myself up completely to romantic love. That’s been a hard thing for me in the past: just falling into love (without trying to hold on to anything for safety!)
What is my greatest achievement in work?
My current level of expertise in coaching. Today I did a session for an executive where we touched on her entire family history, her past romantic life, her present focus on learning to ask for help and accept it, and even on a 3 year long denial of blossoming romance with her boss. All in 2 hours. It was mesmerizing. And I have no idea how I do it. I just see it happen in amazement. Getting to this place and this way of working is without a doubt my most cherished achievement.
Where would I most like to live? What is my most treasured possession?
I happen to be moving next week to a new home in the center of Madrid where I wanted to live since I discovered it 10 years ago. It’s called Fuente del Berro, and is right under the “Pirulí”, a tall TV antena building everybody recognizes in Madrid. It’s a small community of little houses inmersed in a wonderful tranquility and silence that seems impossible in the center of a city like Madrid.
My most treasured possessions are my dog Peca and my horse Pangolín. They make me laugh, they help me learn lessons of life, and I think that they both helped me learn how to be a better person. Everything else I can do without.
What is my most marked characteristic?
I thinks it’s courage. Sometimes people tell me I have been very brave. I feel strange because it doesn’t feel different or special to me. If I had not developed courage I would be dead. So I guess I am braver than average.
I also laugh often and heartily. I am told my laughter is an easily recognized trademark. It’s the Irish in me. We know how to find humour and irony in the darkest of circumstances.
What is my most inspirational location, in my city?
The Yeguada Olmaz, where I ride twice a week. It’s 40 mins outside Madrid. It’s my Meca. It grounds me, it helps me confront my inner monsters, it trains me to find new steps of growth as a rider and as a person. And the open fields around it with mountain ranges all around and lots of birds stopping there on their migrations …it’s Heaven on Earth to me!
What is my favourite place to eat and drink, in my city?
At home or at friends’ homes!!! Restaurants tire me out. They are super noisy in Madrid, and often they are more about the decor and the see-and-be-seen than anything else. In Madrid we have wonderful food everywhere because for Spanish people eating well is culturally a prime necessity. But I prefer the intimacy and complicity of home made meals.
What books influenced my life and how?
Wow. This list is long. The Great Cosmic Mother by Monica Sjoo is a biggie. So is The Wind is My Mother by Bear Heart. Patria, the novel by Fernando Aramburu about the emotional consequences of terrorism on two families, is also a major beauty and inspiration.
Most of Alexander Lowen’s and Bert Hellinger’s books, as professors and mentors, of course.
Who are my favorite writers?
Fernando Aramburu, for Patria, and “Peces de amargura” .. amazing talent to tell complex emotional stories with the simple language of simple people.
Didier Van Cauwelart and David Foenkinos have a hilarious talent for making tragic comedy out of everyday experiences.
You Only Die Once. What music would I listen on my last day?
I have a playlist! My absolute favourite is “Coinleagh Glás an Fhomair” (On the Green Stubble Fields of Autumn) performed by Clannad. Followed by “On Raglan Road” sung by The Villagers. Those are two traditional Irish songs that play me like a violin. I can’t help reacting with every cell of my body to the long history of people who have felt moved by them, and the true, honest feelings they enclose.
“Angel” and “Mariposas en el cielo” by Elefante, a mexican group. Also romantic, beautiful lyrics, full of sentiment.
Who is my hero or heroine in fiction?
All the people who sacrificed themselves in the series Chernobyl (and in real life). I was so impacted by what they each did to protect everybody else from the horror of the accident. Anybody who consciously encounters death for the wellbeing of others is admirable.
Who are my heroes and heroines in real life?
My parents, my grandparents and ancestors. Everything I have conquered or enjoyed in my life is thanks to everything they failed to achieve and every sacrifice they made for their children.
And Javier, the love of my life. He is my hero. And he helped me uncover the heroine I didn’t know I could be.
Which movie would i recommend to see once in a lifetime?
Avatar. It is full of lessons on the wisdom of the wild versus the ignorance of “civilization”.
What role plays art in my life and work?
Art is a vehicle of emotion. It is present in a lot of what I do. Many people use art to express the deeper feelings they can’t put into words, and often art is a safe space to express who we really are. I am not especially artistic, but I feel quickly drawn to the art pieces that adorn other peoples’ lives. The music they love helps be understand them better. The paintings they admire help me connect emotionally to them. Art is always striking and moving.
Who is my greatest fan, sponsor, partner in crime?
My 7-year-old niece Ana followed me to the door this morning and asked me where I was going. I said I was off to “sell coaching services”, and she replied “To sell??? What is coaching?”.
“It’s helping other people to think better” I replied, and she exclaimed “I LOVE your work!”
I guess my best sponsors are my clients. They have experienced what I bring to them. To other people it’s not so easy to understand. All this business of “Embrace The Wild!” and “I help people and their organizations grow, not it size, but in depth” is not very tangible or easy to grasp for many.
Whom would I like to work with in 2019?
I would love to work with Rosalía, the Spanish singer. She is amazing. So young and so articulate. So sophisticated when she describes her work and the brainy conceptualizations behind her songs.
I’d also love to work with H.R.H. Queen Letizia. She is a super intelligent woman who giver her job everything she’s got and still gets hammered in the press quite often. I would love to help her apply her intelligence to the dimension of emotions, instincts and sensations … and watch her blossom as she embraced the wild …
Which people in my profession would i love to meet in 2019?
I’m going to love meeting a lot of people. Today I saw Carlos Barrabés, a Spanish entrepeneur who retains humility and curiosity despite all that he has already achieved. And a generous soul.
Last week I met Juan Vila, another fascinating entrepreneur in Spain.
I get to meet a lot of truly admirable business people in Spain through my Club, “Club Comprometidos”, to promote the practice of personal growth in Spanish companies.
What project, in 2019, am I looking forward to work on?
I want to develop more animal experience programs to train leadership and teambuilding, and I want to continue to grow the Club Comprometidos, develop an income model and push it to maturity.
And there’s probably a fifth book on the horizon … this one will be “Embrace The Wild!” pure and simple.
Where can you see me or my work in 2019?
What do the words “Passion Never Retires” mean to me?
Passion is the natural fuel of the human body. As long as we are alive, we are ready to respond with passion to life. Anything that makes our heart sing will drive us to overcome superhuman obstacles because that unique feeling of connection and our heart singing in pace with another person, or a place, or a project is irresistible and perfect in itself.
To follow our passion makes us feel young and full of life.
Which creative heroines should Peter invite to tell their story?
I think most of the members in my Club Comprometidos are fascinating people who always tried to be the best person they could be. You can check out their profiles here:http://www.pinobethencourt.com/socios
How can you contact me? On social networks or at this email: email@example.com.
Here follows a message of Peter de Kuster, founder of the Heroine’s Journey
The Heroine’s Journey is a private tour in story rich venues of world cities with Peter de Kuster, to rewrite the story you tell yourself about yourself and your creative work and in the process transform your life and business.
What is your Story?
“Your story is your life,” says Peter. As human beings, we continually tell ourselves stories — of success or failure; of power or victimhood; stories that endure for an hour, or a day, or an entire lifetime. We have stories about ourselves, our creative business, our customers ; about what we want and what we’re capable of achieving. Yet, while our stories profoundly affect how others see us and we see ourselves, too few of us even recognize that we’re telling stories, or what they are, or that we can change them — and, in turn, transform our very destinies.
Telling ourselves stories provides structure and direction as we navigate life’s challenges and opportunities, and helps us interpret our goals and skills. Stories make sense of chaos; they organize our many divergent experiences into a coherent thread; they shape our entire reality. And far too many of our stories, says Peter, are dysfunctional, in need of serious editing. First, he asks you to answer the question, “In which areas of my life is it clear that I cannot achieve my goals with the story I’ve got?” He then shows you how to create new, reality-based stories that inspire you to action, and take you where you want to go both in your work and personal life.
Our capacity to tell stories is one of our profoundest gifts. Peter’s approach to creating deeply engaging stories will give you the tools to wield the power of storytelling and forever change your business and personal life.
- The Power of your Story
- Are you even trying to tell a Story?
- Old Stories (stories about you, your art, your clients, your money, your self promotion, your happiness, your health)
- Tell your current Story
- Is this Really Your Story?
YOUR NEW STORY
- The Premise of your Story. The Purpose of your Life and Art
- The words on your tombstone
- You ultimate mission, out loud
- The Seven Great Plots
- The Twelve Archetypal Heroes
- The One Great Story
- Purpose is Never Forgettable
- Questioning the Premise
- Lining up
- Flawed Alignment, Tragic Ending
- The Three Rules in Storytelling
- Write Your New Story
TURNING STORY INTO ACTION
- Turning your story into action
- Story Ritualizing
- The Storyteller and the art of story
- The Power of Your Story
- Storyboarding your creative process
- They Created and Lived Happily Ever After.
About Peter de Kuster
Peter de Kuster is the founder of The Heroine’s Journey & Hero’s Journey project, a storytelling firm which helps creative professionals to create careers and lives based on whatever story is most integral to their lifes and careers (values, traits, skills and experiences). Peter’s approach combines in-depth storytelling and marketing expertise, and for over 20 years clients have found it effective with a wide range of creative business issues.
Peter is writer of the series The Heroine’s Journey and Hero’s Journey books, he has an MBA in Marketing, MBA in Financial Economics and graduated at university in Sociology and Communication Sciences.
Become a great Storyteller
That’s why I set up The Heroine’s Journey in the great cities of the world. A new way to use the power of your story. To guide you to life-changing, eye-opening movies, art, literature that truly have the power to enchant, enrich and inspire.
In this journey with Peter de Kuster you’ll explore your relationship with stories so far and your unique story identity will be sketched. You will be guided to movies, art, literature, myths that can put their finger on what you want to rewrite in your story, the feelings that you may often have had but perhaps never understood so clearly before; movies that open new perspectives and re-enchant the world for you.
You will be asked to complete a questionnaire in advance of your session and you’ll be given an instant story advice and movies to see to take away. Your full story advice and movies to see list will follow within a couple of days.
Book your private story coaching tour
You can choose from three options:
- The Heroine’s Journey Short and Powerful. This is a 8 hours – private story coaching, one day, one – on – one with Peter de Kuster. The price is Euro 2500 excluding VAT including lunch and drinks. You can bring a maximum of three (business) partners to the private tour if you choose to.
- The Heroine’s Journey Intensive. This is a 16 hours – private story coaching, two days one – on – one with Peter de Kuster. The price is 5000 excluding VAT including lunch and drinks. You can bring a maximum of three (business) partners to the private tour if you choose to.
- The Heroine’s Journey Impact. This is a 24 hours – private story coaching, three days one – on – one with Peter de Kuster. The price is 7500 excluding VAT including lunch and drinks. You can bring a maximum of three (business) partners to the private tour if you choose to.
Please note the private tours Short and Powerful can take place in Amsterdam, Antwerp, Berlin, Barcelona, Bruxelles, Florence, London, Malaga, Madrid, Milan, München, Paris, Rome, Rotterdam, Sevilla and Venice at the moment.
The private tours Intensive and the private tours Impact are offered in Amsterdam, Antwerp, Berlin, Barcelona, Bruxelles, Copenhagen, Florence, London, Los Angeles, Malaga, Madrid, Melbourne, Milan, München, New York, Oslo, Paris, Rome, Rotterdam, Sevilla, Sydney, Venice and Vienna.
You can book Peter by mailing him at firstname.lastname@example.org
- Once you have purchased a private tour you will be given information to get in touch and arrange a date and time for your private tour.
- Private tours will take place at any given day of the week. The private tour will take place in a story rich city.
- Please note that once your appointment time and date have been confirmed, we have a forty-eight hour cancellation policy. Any cancellations less than 48 hours prior to an appointment, or any no-shows will be charged. Any requests to reschedule less than 48 hours prior to an appointment, cannot be guaranteed and the original appointment will be charged for other than in exceptional circumstances.