“What should I do with my life?” and other FAQs
Who are you?
When you enjoy your work and your life, things are better. It’s easier to deal with challenges. Work is more fun and you get more done.
You deserve to enjoy your life so let’s work on making that a reality for you.
I’m Jennifer Shinkai. I run group workshops and individual coaching for people who want to enjoy their work more.
Have you ever had that feeling when you are totally immersed in a task? When time passes in a blink of an eye? When you finish you might be tired, but you feel satisfied? And you can’t wait to do it again it?Maybe you felt it when you were out on a run? Playing the piano? Or painting a picture?
It’s what Mihály Csíkszentmihályi calls “Flow”. It is the secret sauce for employee engagement and enjoying your work.
How often do you feel that sense of flow at work? Have you ever been in a workplace where everyone around you is buzzing, excited about a project, getting into flow and really working together?
Yes? Lucky, lucky you! You hit the jackpot!I am sooooo happy for you!
I’ve had this feeling several times at different times in my career and it is just the best thing ever. Looking forward to going to work, excited about the challenge and the camaraderie. Really feeling like you are part of a team. It’s priceless and truly magical!
Or perhaps you are like a lot of people when I start working with them…Avoiding eye contact, feeling a little bit embarrassed before finally admitting… “erm, actually, never. I seem to work with a lot of people who don’t actually like being at work that much. I try to motivate them, get them engaged, but it feels like an uphill battle.
There are maybe one or two bright sparks but the rest of them are just sucking the life out of me… and sometimes I just want to throw in the towel myself.”
What’s your story?
I get it. I’ve been there too. When I was a first-time manager, I lost 5kg from stress. I used to imagine punching a certain team member’s head when I was doing Billy’s Boot Camp (Don’t judge me – this both ages me and makes me look like a psychopath. I’m trying to model vulnerability here!)
Fast forward to 2015, I developed a hernia. I was laid up in bed for months. And this hernia “happened” to come along at the time when I was regularly crying in the toilets and work between meetings. It was the first time in my career I had worked with people that I really did not understand. There was passive aggressive bullying, feeling sidelined, ignored and undervalued… and yet on the face of it, by the typical measurements of society I was a “success”. Good stable job, comfortable salary, nice house, family, overseas travel every year etc .A comfortable life. Why was I so bloody miserable all the time? #firstworldproblems and all that.
Was this slipped disc a coincidence or a message from the universe? Oh yeah, I said that …“the universe”. Be warned that when you work with me there is going to be a healthy amount of “listening to your body” and a smattering of woo-woo talk too, so buckle up!
I started working with a coach. I learned about my skills, understood my passions and strengths and what I wanted my life to look and feel like. It was decision time.
With all this insight at hand, I tried to find a way to align my goals with those of the company that I loved. I had been part of an amazing growth story for 12 years. When I joined in a Sales role, we were 25 people, a hungry underdog with one office in Tokyo. When I left in 2016, I was running APAC Marketing from our Tokyo HQ under the umbrella of a Japanese listed company. I’d reinvented my role 5 times through the Lehman Shock, 2 pregnancies, an acquisition and a rebrand but suddenly I was at a loss.
I had a very clear vision of what I needed to be doing to get into flow and enjoy my work more. I tried all the creative ways I could to make that happen but it just didn’t work out.
And with a huge leap of faith, I took the plunge to set up my own training company. (You can read my whole Ikigai story here)
And now? I loooooove what I do (apart from my expenses…so I hired a book keeper). I get to spend time with interesting people who want to be a bit better, who think that they deserve more than lives of quiet desperation. I get to feel the thrill of a breakthrough, the sharing of a truth, the lightness of a new way to look at an old problem.
And I get to see how people in teams support each other, help their colleagues to find new ways to work together. I get to choose my projects, do work that makes my heart sing, see my kids, travel a bit but not too much.
It was terrifying launching in 2016 but I’ve never looked back. I hope that you can feel the same way too and enjoy bringing your unique talents and energy to your work.
What can you do for me?
3 main things
Customised in-house workshops
I have a whole box of tricks to work with to get your team talking. You tell me what your main issues are, what you would like to cover and I work out the best way to reach those objectives. I can draw on a host of resources to find just the right way to plan the session as an ICF Associate Certified Coach, a Points of You® Master Trainer (Japan), and Certified in Saville Wave Psychometric Assessment.
(Non) Executive Coaching
Let’s call it executive coaching because it works better for SEO but you don’t need to be an executive. You don’t even want to be an executive! I’ve coached first time managers, entrepreneurs, parents, Directors and CEOs.
We’ll have a 30-minute online discover session where we can both get a feel for how we can work together. I’ll ask you about what you want to get out of coaching and you can ask me all your questions about process, style and what to expect.
If we feel we can work together, then we’ll finalise the coaching agreement and get started.
Random and sporadic but I do run open courses for Ikigai and Points of You®. Feeling frustrated but don’t know where to get started? Then the discover your Ikigai X Points of You® is a great place to start.
Want to up your coaching and facilitation skills as well as learn a bit more about yourself? The Points of You® Academy programme could work for you – you get your own set of Points of You tools, workshop and coaching ideas you can use straight away, CCEUs for your SHRM or ICF certification plus a cute tote bag and some random coloured dots… I still don’t know what they are for, but they look nice!
Nothing on the events page? Drop me a line and we can try to set something up for you and your
How is your Japanese?
I have facilitated numerous workshops in Japanese and am happy to facilitate yours. Is my Japanese perfect? Nope! But my facilitation is rumored to be (just kidding – what kind of coach believe there is nothing more to polish?!)
Random Fact: I’m a massive Potterhead
Yes, I regularly say “10 points to Gryffindor” in group workshops (even though I am a Ravenclaw, the much forgotten but wisest house). I love a hero’s journey, and, of course, spells. But mostly, I’m all about the sense of wonder. I want to always approach my life like Harry when he first discovers the wizarding world. WTF is that?! Wow! How cool!
I’m struggling right now with the discussion in the fandom around JK Rowling and her views on transgender. With my English Language and Literature degree from Oxford University, I’m ok with holding the paradox of loving the work but disagreeing with the authors world view.
I’ve also recently linked my love of running with the fandom and in 2020 will be a Perfect Prefect for the Potterhead Running Club.