‘I’d rather have 5 minutes of wonderful than a lifetime of regret’. Cheryl Chapman
If you were earning a 6 figure salary, would you give it up? With more than 30 years’ experience of the retail industry and all the trappings and enviable lifestyle that come with big bucks corporate jobs – nice house, flashy car, 5 star holidays, my Page 1 Woman of the Week lived a life that other people wanted her to have. But in 2011, she ditched the 80 hour days, backstabbing and negativity – the unspoken reality of her megabucks job - and decided to live her newly found life purpose. She walked her talk away from it all. She became a professional speaker, author and life ranger. So please welcome my Page 1 Woman of the Week, Cheryl Chapman.
Cheryl Chapman? Without doubt, she’s a decisive action taker – how else could you account for the big turnaround of her life, just 3 months after discovering her life purpose. But not only that, she’s a dynamic, smart, determined and strong-minded Yorkshire woman with a ready wit. And as I experienced her commanding stage presence, from my seat in the audience, I was sucked into her story and mesmerised by the power of her message. Now, it’s not uncommon for people to discover their life purpose in a crisis – perhaps due to serious illness or a bereavement . And in that respect, Cheryl Chapman is no different from most of us. However, that purpose didn’t become crystal clear until after she signed up for Andy Harrington’s Public Speakers University, ostensibly to improve her corporate speaking. But standing there on the stage she knew that there was a bigger reason for her being there; there was a message she was meant to share. And what she discovered was that ‘it wasn’t really my message’, but a message left by her ‘Kylie look-alike’ cousin Lynsey who had died aged 27, 10 years previously. And the message? ‘Live the life you want. Take control and make the most of every minute of it. And hang what others think of you’.
It’s a simple message; it makes good sense, and it’s definitely not new. You’ve heard it before, right? But many of us nod our heads in agreement, yet continue living a life we hate, giving control to others -our boss, our family, our partner. And how many of us make the most of every minute? Not many, I bet. Too many of us, live a life of fear – scared of the unknown; scared we might get it wrong; scared about what others think of us. And when people die ‘their number one regret is that they didn’t live the life they wanted to’, said Cheryl Chapman. Yet Cheryl’s cousin Lynsey lived her short life to the full. Having suffered from Cystic Fibrosis since childhood, she knew, said Cheryl, ‘if it’s not right, I haven’t got time to put up with it’.
Having uncovered her life purpose, Cheryl Chapman has transformed her life. The knot in her stomach and the nausea she would feel as she drove to work in her showy company car has been replaced with a ‘kindness of mind and a calmness of body’. She not only broadcasts her message from the stage, but in book form too – ‘The Devil The Angel and YOU’ and ‘The Devil The Angel and You Journey Journal’. The latter is started by the author and finished by the reader charting his/her journey to the life he/she wants. She also works alongside women aged 45+, helping them to lead a full and happy midlife. And if that’s not all, Cheryl Chapman has recently started a sponsored slim, the aim being to lose 4 stones and raise £1,000 for the ‘Cystic Fibrosis Trust’. And making good use of affirmations, visualisations and her Journey Journal, she’s well on target to achieving her goal.
So where next for Cheryl Chapman?
Her aim is to continue spreading her message and deliver 2 day seminars that will kick people into doing more than just nodding in agreement with her message. She wants to enable them to experience breakthroughs that shift them from a life they hate to one they love. And she may well develop something for children too. And does she miss the 6 figure salary and the accompanying life-style? According to Cheryl, “It’s amazing how little I’ve missed spending all that money…… I can’t think of the last time I felt really miserable. I can think of the times I was driving down the motorway at something like 6 in the morning and I was looking at a green field. It didn’t have anything exciting in it, but I just thought, ‘Oh my God, that’s fantastic! The sun’s coming up!’”
Who is your Page 1 Woman of the Week? Contact Claudia here for a chat about featuring her soon.