She lost everything but then discovered a hidden talent and has now created a multi-million dollar empire and still had time to have twins!
I am an author (e.g. of the 4 ingredients cook-book), a speaker, business entrepreneur and VERY proud mum from the Sunshine Coast.
I am 39 and soooooo looking forward to my BIG 40th this year!
My parents married young after my father returned from conscripted service in Vietnam. I was the firstborn in Stanthorpe on Queensland's Darling Downs.
We lived there till I was in grade 7 then we moved to the Sunshine Coast which is where I grew up.
I am an ambassador for Bravehearts.
Bravehearts is an organisation that raises awareness and helps reduce child sexual assault through education.
This year I have raised over $5000 for them which has paid for almost 50 sessions for little angels aged between 3-5 years of age who were on a waiting list to get help.
I have an absolutely beautiful 5 year old son, Jaxson, who is the apple of my eye. I am expecting twin baby boys any moment as I chat to you as well!
Being a step-mum ...
I have been married for 10 years to Paul. Being a step mum to his 2 daughters for the past 14 years was, to say the least, incredibly challenging. In the beginning it was terrifying. I was young and didn't want children, (in fact, I didn't understand children). I found it hard to be that perfect role model for them but did my best for Paul.
I floundered and mostly winged my way through their teenage years by making 'fairness' my guidepost and hoping for the best. It was incredibly challenging. We all made it through, however, and have lived to tell the tale!
They're both gorgeous girls. Lee, his oldest daughter, is about to turn 21. Now we're all gearing up for the big bash after I give birth to our twins which everyone is VERY excited about.
We are an adventurous outdoors type of family so the more action the better. At 8 months pregnant I was still jetskiing and riding motorbikes - you have to live it!
To wind down I read a thriller. It has to be captivating otherwise I click back into work mode.
My working life ...
My 1st job out of school was as a hairdresser. I opened my first hairdressing salon at the age of 19 and sold it for a profit a year later.
I then headed to the Gold Coast for a working stint at Movieworld before coming back up to the Sunny Coast to work at Underwater World. I was fortunate enough to be trained as only one of three women in Australia to be qualified to feed sharks.
After 3 years of diving I couldn't see myself as a 60 year old woman pulling on a wetsuit at 5 in the morning so I changed careers and became a travel agent.
After 5 years working for Flight Centre I opened my own agency. Little did I know at the time it would be a BIG turning point in my career.
We opened the agency 3 months prior to Sept 11 and lost everything we had.
Financially and emotionally it was devastating. After we closed the agency we had debts up to $280,000 and no income to pay them off. I lived on 1 bra for 6 months and remember scrounging around to find the extra 5 cents to buy a loaf of bread - it was hard going but not impossible.
Then I worked out that within every adversity lies an opportunity.
For me, it was in learning how to market and use publicity as a way of not just increasing business, but in building a brand and turning small turnovers into MASSIVE multi-million dollar empires!
I had NO idea I had this hidden talent - but I'm really glad I discovered it as it's been the vital ingredient to all of my future successes. Without it there would be NO way I would have written any books, and been as successful in business as I have been.
I have now written 5 books: "4 Ingredients", "4 Ingredients 2", "4 Ingredients Gluten Free", "Read My Lips", and "How to write your own book and make it a bestseller". You may have seen me cooking and being interviewed on shows such as the Kerri-Ann Show, The Today Show and Irish TV's Afternoon Show.
I took a big gamble on myself and my marketing talent. However, after 4 years of marketing other people's businesses and writing my books we paid off all the debts. Now THAT was a great feeling!
I believe that "Life isn’t about finding yourself. Life is about creating yourself".
I lost my confidence when we lost everything we had. It knocked the wind out of my sails and I felt like a business failure - but it was through that adversity that other talents emerged which helped me to achieve what I have now.
I don't mind a bit of self-doubt creeping in every now and then. I think it's a trigger for us to explore ourselves further by asking ourselves are we happy with where we're at. It also helps fine tune our direction and clarify the things that are important in our lives.
The hardest times for me to stay confident are when I'm tired.
I have overcome a loss of confidence by focusing on the good things about myself - the things I AM great at - this helps me move forward.
What has helped me build my confidence is positive thinking, having a plan, keeping focused and asking questions of others to learn more and more. Knowledge helps eliminate uncertainty.
It’s good to be confident because it ENABLES me to achieve what I want in life.
I stay confident by knowing that the universe works with me to achieve what I want to achieve. If my head is in the right place things will happen easily for me. If it's not I become negative and things just don't work out for me.
My advice to others is listen to yourself, forget what others say and play your own game by clearly defining your goals and making out the path YOU wish to travel along.
Be the best you that you can be and you'll be FAR happier.
Visit Rachael's website: Rachael Bermingham.