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In pursuit of happiness

DEVONSHIRE: Empowering people to find personal fulfilment

FOR TOO long our economic prosperity has been fuelled by our seemingly insatiable demands for goods and services .

Consumers jut want ‘more, more, more.’ But with overstuffed pantries, closets and stomachs no longer able to make us content there is a rising number of people in ‘pursuit of happiness’ during these challenging times.

Marilyn Devonshire is the founder of Trance Formations, a training, consultancy and coaching company committed to improving and transforming the lives and performance of individuals and organisations. She specialises in what is known as accelerative learning, and transformational coaching.  Her background is diverse, and her plethora of qualifications and experience includes: Certified Trainer of NLP (Neuro Linguistic Programming), Certified PhotoReading Instructor, Certified Trainer of Hypnosis, Certified Trainer of Time Line Therapy, a Life and Executive Coach, Huna Practitioner and Management Consultant. 

“Today, people are suffering from different types of stress” says Marilyn. “Whether it’s in their relationships, career, business, finances or health, people are finding that they are no longer able to just be resilient and carry on. I work around changing people’s mindset about improving their wellbeing and outlook and I also provide leadership and change management for large organisations.”

According to Marilyn, many people have developed a tough persona to survive in their personal and professional lives and this type of mindset does not allow them to be perceived as weak or soft. “This type of mindset or attitude believes that struggle, strife and stress is the natural order” she explains. “If you look at many of the older generation who came to the UK in the 1960s, they had to overcome so many challenges and obstacles and because they felt they had no options they were very resilient in their determination to fulfil their aspirations. Without realising it, these parents expected their children to have the same attitude and outlook, but today we know we have more choices to improve our life and condition.”

After leaving Wolverhampton University, Marilyn found herself in a number of management positions for investment companies in the City but always felt that she was more of a glorified secretary that someone making a difference in their career. “This was having a massive effect on my confidence and self esteem so I felt it was time to take a new direction in my career” she recalls.

The decision to change direction came in the middle of a difficult relationship breakdown and failing health which saw her lose her hair. She was diagnosed with thyroid problems and put on a large amount of weight.

“I was miserable. I then decided if I retrained and became an accountant my life would dramatically improve. I’d become super confident and my world would be perfect”she says. “But upon doing the course, I quickly realised that this was never going to happen, so on the recommendation of a friend, I signed up for a NLP course.”

At first she was sceptical but by the end of the programme she realised for the first time that she could take responsibility for creating her own happiness and that she had a choice about how she could live her life. This was a transformational breakthrough for Marilyn and by the end of the training she realised that she wanted to help other people experience these exciting breakthroughs.

“The first workshop cost me £4000 at the time but looking back, I realise this was my start up costs for my business” says Marilyn. “I have spent a lot more on my development over the years, but I have been able to reap that investment back from my business over the years.”

Marilyn never received financial aid from Business Link or a bank loan for Trance Formations. “It didn’t occur to me to look for funding and help from the Government. I just focussed on my marketing strategy” explains Marilyn. “I believe marketing is paramount and that is the reason why any business is successful. You need to have a clear idea, a sense of purpose and then a route to market. It’s no good being a legend in your front room!”
These days Marilyn works with a number of professional men and women from the corporate world, who have reached a plateau in their career and are self sabotaging their success through their behaviour. “Having so many choices does not necessarily make you happier” continues Marilyn. “Many of my clients have emotional issues that are now impacting on their career and relationships. They come to me to find clarity and develop strategies to remove the baggage of the past so they do not keep repeating self destructive patterns of behaviour that inhibits their ability to experience healthier relationships and live more fulfilled lives.”

When working with her clients, Marilyn gets them to understand that whatever they are focusing their intentions on, they will attract more of that in their life. “I work to empower clients to make decisions with confidence, to regain control in every aspect of their life, business, personal and career to achieve realistic results in their life” she says “Simply put, you have to take personal responsibility for how you are feeling and what is going on inside if you are in pursuit of happiness, or you will never find it. In the words of William Arthur Ward, ‘happiness is an inside job’”

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