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Cathy Spaas

Cathy Spaas: Thriving in the Spotlight from Misfit to Superstar

The performing arts industry can be a very competitive and unforgiving place. There is a lot of pressure to conform to certain standards of beauty, talent and personality. This can be especially difficult for people who feel like they don’t fit in with the mainstream.

However, there is a growing community of misfits in the performing arts who are finding a place to belong. These misfits are often talented and creative, but they may not have the traditional look or personality that is often associated with success in the performing arts.

Amidst the bustling world of professional performers, artists and actors, there exists a guiding light-Cathy Spaas, a renowned Coach for Professional Misfits, Published Author and Public Speaker specializing in spotlight stress and empathetic leadership within the realm of Professional Training and Coaching.

Imagine the glitz and glamour of the entertainment industry, where success and fame are intertwined with immense pressure and scrutiny. Cathy understands this world intimately, having been a former elite international showjumper herself. She knows what it’s like to be in the spotlight, facing the unique challenges that come with ascending to the upper echelons of a highly-demanding creative profession.

Cathy Spaas Academy, founded by Cathy herself, offers a groundbreaking modality called “Claim Your Shine,” tailored to support highly sensitive and intuitive individuals in their pursuit of success within creative industries. With her expert guidance, Cathy helps her clients not only reach but sustain success amidst the demanding nature of their careers.

Over the years, Cathy has coached hundreds of highly sensitive clients, enabling them to make remarkable breakthroughs in both their personal and professional lives. Her coaching journeys are personalized, blending proven techniques, tools and exercises to align mindset, emotions and actions, resulting in transformative outcomes across work, relationships and health.

With her unparalleled understanding of the industry’s demands and her empathetic approach, Cathy is here to illuminate the path to greatness for the “misfits” of the professional world. Let’s delve into the insights she provided!

Briefly describe your professional journey up until now.

At 14 years old, I was jumping at international level as a horse rider. Due to the pressure that was being put on me, my survival brain took over and I messed up for the next 15 years.

At age 32, I ended up with burnout. I was in charge of Tourism, Information and Communication for my city. After months of bullying, I crashed. It became my personal turning point. I re-schooled myself to become a professional coach and expert for highly sensitive people (HSP, empaths).

After coaching full-time for five years, I started working with artists and performers. This led me to discover a widespread problem in today’s society-Spotlight Stress.

These days I love speaking about empathic empowerment and besides coaching professional misfits, I’m writing a self-help book to help you claim your shine. Spotlight Stress is my YouTube show; check it out and send some love if you appreciate it.

What challenges did you face along the way?

Putting yourself out there creates a whole range of brain noise. Combined with the pressure we’re all under, spotlight stress is real!

Two years ago, the birth of my second child threw me for a loop. I struggled for 1,5 years to rediscover myself entirely. It felt like an eternity, but my rebirth was worth the journey.

What significant impact did you bring to your industry?

I show people that HSP/empaths are badass. Yes, we can be sensitive and we have to learn how to handle the challenges that come with the deeper processing of information, but the gifts are actual superpowers.

When your senses are sensitive and the brain’s right hemisphere is stronger activated, you have a treasure of information and insights that others can’t even notice. It means:

  • Meticulously attentive to details.
  • Intuitively senses others’ needs.
  • Possesses a profound level of empathy.
  • Visionary in seeing the bigger picture.
  • Demonstrates creative thinking skills.
  • Engages in regular self-reflection.
  • Exhibits a strong sense of responsibility.

You are more evolved. You can compare us to the X-men. I teach fellow empaths how to cope with the challenges and own the (super)powers.

Tell us about your company and its foundation pillar.

The Cathy Spaas Academy is a community of professional misfits committed to working on themselves and claiming their shine.

With Cathy’s Claim Your Shine modality, she teaches you how to become an empowered empath. Foundation pillars include Taking Accountability, Badass mentality, Empathy, Integrity, and Fun Personality.

How does your company promote workforce flexibility and what is your role in it?

My tribe loves to give flexibility to others but doesn’t always know how to take that space for themselves. We live in a world of constant demand, shifting from one role to another and simultaneously keeping all the balls in the air.

You can handle anything when you understand how to create resilience and make your brain work for you instead of against you. My contribution is teaching empathic leaders how to hold the space for their teams to be flexible and for themselves. They are leading by example.

What is your take on technology’s importance and how are you leveraging it?

Working with clients overseas made us connect in the digital landscape-from speaking to doing interviews and providing coaching. Besides saving travel time (and costs), there is less overstimulation.

Coaching hundreds of clients online made me discover that you can get to the core so much faster this way because there are fewer distractions. Also, recorded sessions helped them a lot! It’s a win-win.

What will be the next significant change in your industry and how are you preparing for it?

Empathic leaders are the future. There is still much dominance in the world, but you can see people shifting from ego to care and rising by lifting others. Most of us are looking for coping strategies in this ever-demanding society. I teach empathetic leaders to shine at their best and lead by example.

The upcoming book and new season of Spotlight Stress are guidelines to find your superpowers and be inspirational for others while staying true to yourself. Rising by lifting yourself, so you can empower others to do the same.

What are your goals in the upcoming future?

  • Book launch of the self-help book Spotlight Stress – Claim your Shine with Beverly Hills Publishing
  • Recording and sharing season 3 of the YouTube show Spotlight Stress.
  • Engaging in public speaking on empathic empowerment.
  • Persistently coaching professional misfits/empaths.
  • Dedicated to building a supportive community.

What advice would you like to give the next generation of aspiring business leaders?

Have a clear focus, yet go with the flow when necessary and take accountability. Integrity is priceless and so is nurturing relations. The human asset is a company’s most significant value. As an empathic leader, you have the skills to retract the best in others. Show them the potential you see in them until they see it themselves.
Don’t doubt yourself. Believe in your (super)powers. You’ve got this! And when you feel the benefit from a like-minded sidekick, I’ve got you. Reach out for an inspirational discovery session and we’ll find out what it takes to work together on empathic empowerment.