For three decades, Founder and CEO of Be Inspired! Coaching & Consulting, Laurel Marshall has lived, navigated, and walked the miles in the shoes of thousands of clients, across industries, economic environments, countries and cultures.
She creates positive sustained change in the lives of those she works with, through her rich and diverse collection of experiences: global executive leadership in multi-national companies across science and technology industries; boots on the ground expatriate leadership with deep expertise in Asian markets; accelerating performance of inspired individuals through to C-suite executives; and leading effective and sustained positive transformation and change across complex and diverse globally distributed teams and organizations.
She’s also a multiple Swell Retreat Alumni and host of our co-ed Swell Retreats. Here’s more about her and the story behind Be Inspired! Coaching & Consulting:
What’s the story behind you and your business?
From early childhood, I’ve always been a dreamer, and a believer that I could accomplish my dreams, no matter how crazy they may sound, if I had a strategy, a plan, worked hard enough to make those dreams come true. Landlocked in Upstate NY, I grew up with a vision of moving to California and learning how to surf. Once landing my first job in San Diego, that dream quickly became how could I live around world and surf, and was able to creatively leverage job choices as a means to the end; living and surfing throughout the South Pacific, South East Asia, Central & South America. Along the way, I discovered my passion to help others discover their own dreams and turn them into reality.
Throughout 30 years in an international Human Resources career, I’ve seen my share of people tied to a job and feeling stuck, dissatisfied, not fully living their dreams and the life they truly desire. Many of us are afraid to take a leap, leave behind the false security of a paycheck and benefits, only to wake up one day not satisfied, failing health, or tossed out on the street by an employer we were so committed to. While I focused on building my coaching skills in the corporate environment, I knew working for myself, and being able to do what I love from wherever in the world was my desire.
For my 50th birthday I found my way to SwellWomen’s surf/coaching retreat in the Mentawais in 2019. I wanted to explore how this world of surfing, yoga, and coaching blended together. That was the catalyst I needed to ignite a Neuroleadership Coaching business. I was able to put into practice the neuroscience of a “Blue Mind,” as written so eloquently by Wallace J. Nicolas: “the surprising science that shows how being near, in, on, or under water can make you happier, healthier, more connected and better at what you do.” Whether I’m coaching corporate executives, inspired individuals, or small groups on retreat, it is my mission to inspire you to dream big, discover your path, and empower you to do amazing. Today I am truly living my dream; I get to coach and learn from inspiring individuals and teams professionally, personally, and lead a retreat or two once post-pandemic travels open back up.
What keeps you inspired and gives you bliss?
The adventure of travel to far off places, continuously learning from new experiences, cultures, people, and empowering those around me develop, thrive, and shine their brightest is what inspires me each day. I must admit, doing all of this whilst being in tropical, warm waters, surfing my heart out each day, grounded in a yoga practice, and stretching myself beyond my comfort zone really fuels my bliss. While it’s been a tumultuous year, and traveling off the table for most of it, I’ve embraced a fork in the road, and a bit of a detour to get myself back to Asia once borders open up, doing what I love – coaching, supporting growth of others, and while simultaneously building out international capabilities for a business that is helping to serve patients worldwide.
Do you have a favorite travel and/or retreat memory? What was it?
Well, besides the SwellWomen Mentawais retreat that gave me the burst of creativity and courage to leave security of a 30-year corporate life and start up my coaching business… I’d have to say the most memorable and impactful was a transformative 18 month around-the-world trip I took with my husband. 5 continents, 23 countries, on a shoestring budget and a boatload of crazy experiences, pleased to say our marriage not only survived but thrived through that time.
It was when we were still in our 30’s, and caught up in the swirl of corporate jobs, and expectations that we thought we needed to live up to; unplugging, selling all our belongings (except the house which we rented out), and throwing ourselves free into the world was the most humbling, centering, freeing, and jolting life changing experience we could have ever imagined. A large part of our trip was spent zigzagging across borders, using local modes of transportation through Asia, India, Nepal, Central and South America.
Talk about leaving a safe secure environment and trading it in for the unknown, unscheduled, and unpredictable – I’ve never been more challenged, nor grown so much as an individual, and have learned so much that can be applied personally and professionally. I love that I get to use the lessons from the road, on breaking free to be the person I was meant to be, to inspire every individual I coach to live their best self and best life.
Check out her business at: www.beinspiredcoach.com
Here are more photos of Laurel on her adventures: