Leonor Carvalho
Life Coach and Hypnotherapist

Once upon a time, there was a girl named Leonor. The little girl wanted to become a crazy scientist. In Portugal where she was born and from where Vasco da Gama sailed to discover the world centuries ago, people used to believe in “fado”, the fate you cannot escape from. Believing that becoming a scientist is her fado, Leonor chose bioinformatics as her subject to study. She was good at it and won the opportunity to study at a prestigious university far away from her sunny country: University of Turku.

Illustration: Barbara Kaucher

She arrived in January, crisp and cold month of snow and ice. It seemed to Leonor that the locals have a superpower: they can walk on the ice!

A few years later she decided to move more permanently to Turku. She liked the beautiful snowy landscape. She continued her degree course in bioinformatics followed by a PhD in biochemistry. She was happily in a circle of fellow international academics who came to Turku to study or do research.  

But one by one, the circle started to grow smaller. Her university friends graduated from the university and most of them left the country. Leonor continued her research and started looking for a job, without success. Deep down, she started to wonder what her place in this town is.

Uncharted territories

Something started to shift as she questioned her fado, feeling an inner void that was pushing her to find new interests.  Out of curiosity, Leonor started to explore the world of coaching as a tool of self-assessment and improvement. She took courses in applied psychology and NLP. She has achieved many certificates.  

She pretended to be the crazy scientist she was supposed to be and talked to a magic mirror: Mirror, mirror, is this what I really like to do? Instead of studying biochemical compounds, studying people’s minds and help them change their life for the better? 

While she was expecting her second child Leonor got a boost of energy and studied hypnotherapy. All this self-research has convinced her that there are other people like her in this town and that she can help them as she has helped herself.  

Soon after she has founded “Leonor Coaching”, where she offers individual and group life coaching and hypnotherapy sessions. Her mission is to help people to achieve better well-being in life. Her first clients were Portuguese where she offered the sessions online, but now she is gaining local clients too.  

She gave workshops in Entrepreneurs in Turku events, giving tips in setting goals and achieving them. With each workshop and new client she has gained more self-confidence as a coach and hypnotherapist.

On a new path

Now Leonor thinks that those times of uncertainty were meant to guide her to find and follow her true passion. Maybe she has been following her fado all along: her love for research has never faded. It just shifted from the biochemical research to that of human mind, emotions and behaviours.  

Since she moved to Turku on that cold winter day many years ago, Leonor has seen her new hometown evolving and becoming more international. She has found her place and is happy to grow her children here. Born in Turku, her children have that superpower of walking on the ice and Leonor is learning, too.  

To newcomers, she always recommends paying attention to successful stories and surrounding themselves with positive people that can support their emotional and mental well-being. We all need beacons of light, especially during dark winters!

Text: Lucia Vuillermin
Illustration: Barbara Kaucher


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