Becoming a Mind Warrior...
Hi. I'm Scheherzade. I was named after the Queen who crafted 1001 stories that guided the King into clearly seeing into his heart and mind to make better leadership decisions. I am inspired by her insight and wisdom. I am also descended from the Rajput warriors of India. I am inspired by their courage. I grew up across four continents (and went to 7 schools). I have had life threatening cancer, a debilitating brain injury and struggled under chronic workplace stress. Through my own lived experience I have learnt that at the heart of resilience, success and happiness is your capacity to turn inward.
I first turned to mindfulness meditation when I started approaching burn-out at work. I was on autopilot and knew that if I didn't take charge of my own well- being, I was in trouble. As a "busy" person sitting in silence was uncomfortable but within weeks I started to notice some major shifts. I was less stressed and more connected as a parent, more focussed and energized at work, and less judgemental of myself and others. In typical Type A fashion I went "all in" with mindfulness meditation - learning from the masters, attending a 10 day Vipassana silent meditation retreat and training to become a certified teacher two months after my last chemotherapy session.
My own mindfulness practise has carried me through many inevitable setbacks and failures. It has kept me anchored in the present, clear on the action that I needed to take, laughing in the moments of deep pain, staying connected with my community, and offering myself and others more compassion. It has helped me build the mental strength and grit, and the capacity to rise again and again, better each time with more insight, wisdom and courage. It has also made me ok with being vulnerable enough to say that these skills have probably saved my life on a few occasions.
Mindfulness meditation has made me a different kind of warrior... a Mind Warrior.... because it takes courage to go inwards and get aware of what is uncomfortable, to get unstuck and get intentional about your life and how you lead it.
...and Getting Unfiltered ...
Exploring my own inner space has transformed my life in many ways. Mostly it has given me a deep sense of freedom that comes with being more of yourself. This is what I call "getting unfiltered". It is about connecting with your deeper truth, your values, your strengths and purpose. It is about having the courage to live in alignment with who you are.
Getting unfiltered led to me leaving a career with the Government of Canada to become a mindfulness coach, keynote speaker and unlikely meditation teacher. I have taught thousands of high performers proven transformative mindfulness-based skills to build their mental strength, leadership, emotional intelligence and resilience. These are the must-have skills for sustained well-being and performance.
It is deeply rewarding to see people discover their own capacity to become mind warriors, get unfiltered and rise.
I am a trained teacher in Mindful Self-Compassion from the University of California (San Diego) Centre for Mindfulness (in the School of Medicine). I am also Ottawa's only certified teacher through the Google-born Search Inside Yourself Leadership Institute (San Francisco California). This involved rigorous study in neuroscience, mindfulness, emotional intelligence and positive psychology I am also a member of the Institute for Mindfulness in Organizations.
I love connecting with people as a keynote speaker at many high impact events and conferences. Once I even spoke right after the Clerk of Canada's Government! I was Mindfulness Expert to the Advisory Group for the APEX Leadership Summit (for public sector executives) where I was also a speaker for several years. I helped bring mindfulness and meditation to politicians in the Canadian Parliament and to hundreds of senior executives. You can hear some of the nice things my clients sayabout me here.
In community I hosted Canada's largest mass mindfulness meditation (with 1500 people) on Parliament Hill (Ottawa) which was featured on front page of the national Globe and Mail newspaper. I was cited in the Canadian House of Commons by Minister Filomeena Tassi for my work. I offer pro-bono mindfulness coaching and programs to marginalized communities, cancer patients, and kids, who are our future leaders.