Erica Hansen, Founder
Who am I?
An important question to ask when considering to work with me and one that is best answered by sharing a story:
I am like many of you in that I wanted to belong. What that means to each of us is different. For me, a daughter of hippies, belonging meant being one of the masses. I wanted to be an architect. I wanted to be in the business world. I wasn’t allowed coloring books as a kid and darn it all - I wanted to go to the store and buy all the coloring books. I believed that if there are laws and rules, they were meant to be followed to the letter. I drove my parents up the wall and was opposite of my older sister who would have painted the kitchen walls with her hands in bright colors if allowed.
However, ultimately like many kids - I wanted to make my parents proud and after getting a bachelor of music in piano performance, I ended up in the classical music industry. (The business side of the industry.)
Fast forward a decade and many life experiences… I decided to reach for my ‘dream’ and was finally where I felt I should be: in business school. In fact, I was not only getting an MBA, but a Masters of Science in Information Systems - I was in my version of heaven! I was finally living ‘in-the-box’ and part of the masses; like ‘everyone’ else.
It was in business school that I grew frustrated with the definition of in-the-box. As much as I wanted, I was not in-the-box. My resume did not speak to the corporate world. All the coaching at school encouraged in-the-box careers. All the career workshops showed us how to be ‘on the path.’ Yet, almost every single leader we were taught to revere, almost every single guest speaker with packed audiences… almost every single one of them was NOT in-the-box. It got me thinking.
I loved grad school. Every part of it. I was frustrated, but the frustration grew out of still not being in-the-box. Something didn’t sit right with me though — the contrariness of what they taught us to believe in versus what they coached us to practice. After experiencing Corporate America, I realized that by trying to fit in, I strayed from my strengths and when I embraced my strengths, it was difficult to find a place to land. Once I became physically uncomfortable every day, I realized that it was time to focus on who I am and why I’m here on this earth.
Life Integrated Coaching was born during my time in Corporate America as an outlet for my passions and beliefs, but never held enough of a priority in my schedule to take off. Once I cut the corporate cord, I began focusing on Life Integrated full time. It’s scary doing that - cutting a financial stability cord, but when I finally made the decision I realized that doing anything else would be wrong for me.
The biggest Ah-Ha moment for me in this journey: My parents not allowing coloring books when I was little — it was a belief in the limiting factor of coloring books that caused them to say no. My father was an artist and my maternal grandmother was an artist. We were an artistic family that lived in creativity. We might not have had coloring books, but my father built a huge long easel where we, and a number of friends, could all sit and paint all day on large sheets of blank paper. Later, that paper would be on display and celebrated.
My parents didn’t teach us to paint in the box; My parents didn’t teach us to paint out of the box; My parents gave us large sheets of blank paper and allowed us to create.
My mission is to show people that life is about creating. It is about taking our ‘paper’ and changing the look and feel and creating the outcome that our soul deserves. Life is not about being in a box or out of a box. LIFE IS NOT A BOX AT ALL! Life is a landscape that is constantly changing and we hold all the paint colors.
For those curious to read what a mix of colors looks like on paper (and in the order received): I hold a Bachelor of Music in Piano Performance from Western Michigan University; Second Degree in Authentic Reiki; Six Sigma Green Belt; MBA in Marketing and Masters of Science in Information Systems from Boston University; Advanced/Professional Clairvoyant Training program certificate from the International School of Clairvoyance; certified Integrative Wellness and Life Coach from Integrative Wellness Academy; certified SAFe Aglist 4 in Scaled Agile; certified Master Practitioner in Career and Finance Coaching from Integrative Wellness Academy; and certified Emergenetics Associate.