60 minutes with Heather Yelland
Reporter Marjorie Cook tackles all the tough questions with business and life coach, Heather Yelland.
’’So why are you here?’’
Why indeed Heather Yelland? It is 5pm on a Friday, the sun is shining and I’m not with friends at the pub because I’ve deliberately bypassed them to spend them with you.
Crikey, but I’m surrounded by high achievers! You should see the shoes on some of them other women!
I digress. I am pondering a deep existential question, yet other challenges flood my brain. Why have I never ever stayed awake long enough to finish anything written by Richard Dawkins? Why can I only breathe to one side when I am swimming? Why don’t I wear high heels? Has anyone noticed my gym shoes? Will anyone miss me at the pub? Oh my god, what if they don’t miss me? Oops. Digressed again.
I won’t tell you all that happened during Yelland’s Be Your Best course, because she intends coming back to Wanaka in 2017 and you will have a chance to find out for yourself.
The first 60 minutes were the hardest. Not that they were a bad 60 minutes. It was just a really tough question for after work on a Friday. Why we here? In Wanaka? Anywhere?
I was there because course facilitator Danielle Nicholson, an enthusiastic endorser of Yelland’s Green Super Camps in Australia, had invited me. Yelland won Australia’s award for most Trusted Business Leader in 2015, so I was curious.
Yelland is a born entertainer and pretty smart. She leads from the heart. She’s funny.
She – and this is from me who never particularly thinks about what other people are wearing – was wearing a black and white dress covered in repetitive swirling geometric designs, just like something out of a mindfulness colouring book for grown ups. I briefly imagined what I could do with my colouring in pencils if she stood still long enough.
She ended up colouring her own self in pretty quickly. Yelland is a ‘‘fish slapping nutcase’’. That’s a love expression, by the way, and she said it about herself.
Her ‘‘why’’ is presence and true to her word, for two days, she was very present.
‘‘Ask why, why, why, why. No therapy, no story, just answer the question,’’ she demanded during our group’s first hour together.
So we buddied up and tortured our companions with ‘‘but why’’ until we sounded like three year olds.
What’s my why? Because I belong. It’s so easy to answer the question, now I know my why.
At the end of the first evening Yelland set some homework for discussion the next day.
‘‘How . . .’’ she said.
Have courage, dear readers. Go to Yelland’s course. She has lots of questions and you will find the answers are already in your heart.
A school holiday adventure camp in Australia for teens, focusing on life skills, emotional intelligence and academic results. About 40 Central Otago children have attended a camp. Go to greensupercamp.com.au.
Heather Yelland, left, with Wanaka journalist Marjorie Cook.