Fri, Jul 29, 2022 5:07 PM

Soul searching success


Tessa Jaine

Success and freedom are two words that govern all those in some form of employment. Often, these two words are not synonymous with one another. Success and freedom are regarded by most as something that very few incredibly wealthy or famous people get to enjoy. However, individuals such as local business owner Kate David from Marlborough Employment Solutions are driving the new era of success and freedom to live the way you choose.

All clothing and accessories : Thomas’s

Styled by: Michelle Bradley

Hair: Style Sisters

Photographer: David James

In a recent podcast hosted by the director of Entrepreneurial Women with Purpose, Catherine van der Meulen, Kate explains that being independent is what she describes as being her most authentic self. The ability to be financially independent, having the liberty to choose, and being with those she wants to be with is the most fundamental part of living her life harmoniously, rooted in her since childhood.

Standard Issue sweater, Taylor Extension tank, Unreal Fur Raven coat, Szade Mabo sunglasses

Kate, who hails from Wellington, grew up with her two brothers and mother in a household she describes as having an absent father. "Seeing my mother unable to make the decisions she could have due to the lack of financial and educational abilities was the driving force behind me knowing what I did not want my life to look like! It became clear that if I wanted the future I had imagined, focusing on education and financial freedom would be my main goals."

Kate did not believe herself to be a good student because her time at Wellington Girls College was restrictive. When the time came to pursue her tertiary education, Kate soared and took to studying sociology and psychology.

Kate sees herself as successful but is sure to explain that success comes in stages. It is intrinsic to remember that you can experience several successes daily or over significant periods of your life and career. It depends solely on your will and forwards momentum. "When I reflect on my 20s and 30s, my goals never changed, but how I obtained them did," says Kate.

At 21, she obtained her degree, but Kate was perplexed at what to do next. So, she fell into work at a liquor wholesaler and retailer. Her not-yet-then husband took up the original job she wanted. A short while after that, Kate was working at Mitsubishi Motors when her career skyrocketed, and she was well on her way to being a general manager. At 25, she was already seated behind a desk negotiating collective employment agreements with over 13 unions.


When her 30s came about, Kate began raising a family and juggling a demanding career. Once again, it was time to make decisions that would deliver what she wanted. "I realized that becoming a general manager guaranteed me the financial security, but it would eat away at my freedom and being there for my family. At that time, I quit and started my own consulting company. This allowed me to work from home, be there for all the parental commitments of school runs, ballet practice, and drama classes, and see monetary stability. This idea to strike out on my own was one of the greatest decisions I have made in my life," says Kate.

There is so much meaning to be discovered when reading about Kates's succession plan for herself. One would ask, is there room for a meaningful life amongst all the other commitments life dishes out? Kate expressed that she believes in living a meaningful life. For her, it means being happy with the goals you have achieved thus far, even if they are as simple as doing the laundry or cooking dinner. "I am a positive person and believe that you should not live life anchored in your past but aim for living in the present. Sure, I have made mistakes, but I have also learnt and grown from them," says Kate.

Is there a secret to achieving this equilibrium? Kate relies on her key micro-moments that she tries to practice each day. These include daily meditations, tapping into her creativity, connecting with family, and learning something new. "I regularly make use of Dr Joe Dispenza's guided meditations, which address all areas of a person's life, I draw great inspiration from these sessions, and I know I am better for it. In terms of creativity, I am not a painter or artist but tap into a version of creativity by gardening or writing. Creativity is an expression of self, and however that translates is worth pursuing daily. The learning aspect is instrumental. I do this by watching YouTube videos or following podcasts (currently listening to Peter Zeihan) while I cook, garden, or sew."

Taylor Oblique top, Sills Torpedo Cuffed Hepburn pant

Kate says the approach to success needs to be redefined and reshaped away from its rigid past. "There is room for a holistic approach to what we perceive as success, and that is realizing that none of us shares the same ideas about life or what success looks or feels like. We may not share the same journey but stopping ourselves from judging and taking a stance of support for others' goals is essential. Exuding positive energy inwards and outwards makes a dramatic impact, not only on you but the person alongside you!"

For full story, listen to Kates podcast with Catherine van der Meulen

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