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Home > Special Interest > Listen Ladies

Listen Ladies

Ever want someone to just listen to you when you're not feeling 100%? We understand.

Sometimes in our expat life, we may experience anxiety, isolation, depression or other difficult mental and life challenges. But you're not alone. Come by our meeting. The Listen Ladies is a peer support group for the AWA to help you cope with problems we may not see on the outside. We have a compassionate group of Listen Ladies who will hear you out in a confidential and supportive monthly meeting. We also will have resources to share in terms of personal experience and peer advice, as well as referrals to professional support.

We meet once a month on Mondays from 1pm to 2 pm at the AWA offices at 15 Scotts Road. Please contact the chairperson, Andrea McKenna Brankin, at listenladies@awasingapore.org if you have any questions.

Listen Ladies will be here March 9, April 13 and June 8 to support you in the New Year. In the meantime, anyone in need of a listening ear can email Andrea at the email address above for personal support. 

Here’s an excerpt from Listen Lady Andrea’s “You’re Not Alone….” Column about embracing change in the Jan-Feb issue of AWA’s Bamboo Telegraph Magazine:

--Singapore confidence coach, Carol Gockel, faced massive changes as an expat in Germany. She felt very alone as an Asian lady in Europe, as well as the usual challenges expats face in dealing with language and cultural barriers and even how to get groceries.

“The first few weeks I was in tears wondering what I have gotten myself into. It was cold, I had no friends, no one to talk to, I’d spend my days staring out of the window and counting the minutes until my husband got home from work. It took me 3 months to finally move my buttocks to get connected to American International Women’s Club of Cologne e.V. (AIWCC) to meet trailing spouses and mums like myself and to be able to speak English to people other than my husband.”

She says she had to learn the hard way that change is what you make of it. The meaning and feelings she was attaching to the change were fear, uncertainty and insecurity. “My unwillingness to put my feelings out there to make real connection showed me I was afraid of the heartbreak when it was time to leave. I already had my wall up before I even moved! That prevented me from fully embracing the experience.”

Carol says she got “unstuck” by following a few rules to embrace change:

1.      Be interested. “It isn’t everyday someone is paying you for a life-changing experience,” she says. Being interested and open switches the mind to a child-like state of being curious, it opens up an avenue to uncover more of what is on the surface.

2.      Adopt a growth mindset. Be coachable. Be eager to learn and share experiences, too.

3.      Refer back to the reasons for making the change. Carol looked at why she had agreed to the move, why her family made the decision and what we want out of it.

She also suggests that most changes relate to health, wealth and relationships. Questions she says to ask yourself when faced with resistance on are:

1.      What good can come from this change?

2.      What will happen if I don’t make this change?

3.      What end results do I want to achieve?

Since returning to Singapore, Carol has started a business as transformation/confidence coach and speaker and has been featured in the Straits Times as well as the book, Break Through, published this year.