Inspire us. Sharing is such a powerful thing. The social media explosion is pretty good proof. Now, let’s go further. Let’s inspire and empower each other. 

When I started sharing my experiences with other women, I was surprised it actually resonated. I’ll always remember the first time someone told me that by sharing one of my stories, it helped her stand up and that now, she feels better, stronger. 

Never underestimate the power of sharing your experiences. That’s why at WondHer, we encourage every women to share their story. It can be personal or professional. Just know that your story never is meaningless. 

It’s not an easy thing to do because it asks us to share what we perceive as weaknesses. But trust me, you’ll feel stronger. I like to answer those questions myself regularly though. It really helped to write things down. To get them out of your head. Let’s do it. 

What’s on your mind right now? 

Time to go and do some sport, you lazy koala! (Don’t worry I use this kind of motivational speak only for myself!) 

Describe yourself in one sentence

A bit of a crazy woman, who has just become an entrepreneur, who’s willing to make a change.

How would you describe the glass ceiling you had?

Easy: WondHer. I have had this project in mind for a couple of years. I’ve been running a French feminist association for a while now. Nevertheless, I’m not one of the co-founders. My role is to implement a strategy for a mission that’s been defined by others. 

WondHer represents one of things I think should be done to empower women and break gender gaps. But, eh, why should my vision of it matter? Who am I to launch such a project? I don’t even have enough spare money to work on it full time. In my mind, it sounded like a dead end. 

How did it affect you? How did you feel at the time?

I felt stuck, with all those ideas coming back regularly in my head. The more they came back, the more I saw how awesome it could be. All the features that would help women around the world to finally do whatever they truly want to. I dreamt about it so many times, it drove me a bit crazier.

And then, my job started seeming meaningless. I felt unaccomplished. I felt undervalued and it was so unfair on me. I became somehow arrogant and contemptuous. I wasn’t myself anymore. And soon enough came the anxiety attacks. I couldn’t make any decisions anymore, not even about what to wear. At some point, I couldn’t go out anymore, not even for groceries or to see my friends. The sparkles inside me were slowly dying.

How did you realize you had a glass ceiling?

I saw a psychotherapist. She helped me understand how my mind works and how it reacts. And I realised that if I felt miserable, I had to change my life. I learnt that I’m stronger than all of this. 

I also realised that working a bit on WondHer makes me happy. I was always so excited. 

Finally, I remembered something a friend told me a while ago: “You’ll always have a glass ceiling above your head. It just gets easier to break.”

How did you break this glass ceiling? 

Actually I realized I was already thinking about how to break it for a while. The first thing I did was to apply to Elevation-W, an accelerator based in Israel. To be honest, when I was filling the application form I was so sure it wouldn’t work. Still writing things down felt good and helped me to see more clearly. 

When they told me I was accepted I said to myself: “Ok, let’s do this now”. And it was such an amazing experience. 

I also learnt that when I talk about my projects, they start to feel concrete and at some point I just can’t reverse. I just have to do it. Not try. Do.

I kind of trick my own fears this way. 

How do you feel about where you are today, after breaking your ceiling?

I feel super proud of WondHer being online, especially because it’s just the beginning and there are so much features coming. I also feel scared every 5 days or so. And it’s completely normal. I know I’m not gonna freak out, I’m not gonna give up. Because today I feel stronger than ever. I’m gonna do it come what may. 

I have an ideal, it’s symbolised by the WondHer logo and it’s now tattooed on my wrist. I want to spend my days, my years working for this ideal. The How will change. Not the Why. I am finally working on what’s meaningful to me… and damn it feels awesome! 

What advice would you give to someone going through the glass ceiling? 

Write down whatever scares you, makes you anxious. Now write down the worst case scenario. Most of the time, your next reaction will be “Oh well, ok. No big deal.” So just do it.

What are your upcoming projects? 

I’m thrilled to start a new project I had in mind for a while now. It’s something really big and it’s really important to me. It’s also testing one of my main areas of expertise: innovation management. I’m less scared than I was before launching WondHer and I feel more confident. I guess that’s what you get when you break glass ceilings, one after another. 

Tell us something, like a quote, that inspires you.

Well basically everything in the Inspiration section of WondHer. But if I have to pick up just one quote right now it would be this one : “We gain strength, and courage, and confidence by each experience in which we really stop to look fear in the face... we must do that which we think we cannot.” - Eleanor Roosevelt

 

 

2015/09/01


Marine Aubin

Entrepreneur and innovation management specialist, Founder of WondHer, Co President of Girlz In Web 

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