Hi! My name is Memnia Theodorou and among other things, I am a motivational speaker, a dentist, an adventurer and the creator of the “Courage to Lead” newsletter, which helps people to awaken their confidence, step out of their comfort zone, and lead the life they've always wanted!
To be honest, I never thought that the above could all be combined in one sentence. But life unfolds in ways we can never predict and can take us to paths we never thought we'd see ourselves on.
My story begins with a diagnosis. Not for myself, but for my younger sister: ovarian cancer at the age of 29. Her battle was unfair and unfortunately short. Within only a few months, we had to learn how to live without her.
In the same year, I also had to find the courage to walk away from an emotionally abusive relationship that brought my emotional state even lower. Also during the same time, my work as a dentist turned unbearable as a new, unsupportive manager came in to the practice where I worked, leaving me drained every day.
Then came the last blow of the year: the house deal I’d been patiently waiting to seal, failed.
I felt hopeless and helpless. Nothing I tried seemed to get me out of a downward spiral. I felt like things would never turn around. I was in a very dark place.
Fortunately, I chose not to give up on me. When I saw a poster in the London Underground, calling out for adventurers and everyday people alike to take part in a unique sailing race, I was intrigued. "Clipper Round the World Yacht Race" invites teams of amateurs to circumnavigate the globe and “Achieve Something Remarkable."
I had minimal sailing knowledge, but the Race promised to provide training, and what did I have to lose? I took a leap of faith and put my name forward for the Race. A huge adventure in an unfamiliar realm could be my chance to rebuild my shattered self-confidence, recalibrate, and figure out my next steps for a happier life.
The race was incredible.
My sailing team and I went through some of the most treacherous weather systems of the planet and sailed in some of its roughest seas.
Sheer survival demanded that I learn quickly, find faith in myself and my abilities, take initiative, develop leadership skills, tolerate other people’s foibles and meltdowns, and find ways to manage my fears while forging through wild seas, spotty sleep, and life-threatening storms.
After five months of sailing and over 18,000 nautical miles, I became THE FIRST CYPRIOT to sail from the UK to Australia. I returned as a changed person. A new, shining, confident me!
Upon my return to Cyprus, I was nominated for the Greek International Women’s’ Award in the sports category and I was invited to share my experience as a speaker at TEDxNicosia.
Speaking in public was once again new, uncharted territory for me. I had never been on a stage before and somehow this seemed scarier than sailing through the most dangerous oceans of the planet.
I took on the challenge though. The experience I went through not only rebuilt my self-confidence, it taught me many valuable life lessons that I felt I needed to pass on to others who needed to hear them. Maybe others could benefit from the inspiration.
As soon as I finished the talk and walked down the stage, I moved from bright lights to total darkness, I felt a lady's hand grabbing me and guiding me backstage. It was a staff member, responsible to bring the speakers backstage safely. As soon as we entered through the door, she fell in my arms and started weeping. She kept repeating "I too shall be brave, I shall not let fear define my decisions anymore!"
I still don't know who that lady was. But I had just helped someone take a decision to change their lives for the best. And there and then I decided that that would be my MISSION: to become a motivational guide for others who need it.
My message is this:
YOU CAN MAKE IT THROUGH THE WILDEST “SEAS” AND STILL COME OUT THE OTHER END A WINNER.
Since then, I have been honoured to speak at seminars and workshops and share my story with others, especially women and Cypriot youth. My aim is to inspire and empower people around the world to awaken their confidence, step out of their comfort zone and lead the life they've always wanted!
Alongside sharing my story on stage, I also have a full-length book in the works detailing the exciting (and often harrowing) details of my sailing voyage and how they bettered me as an evolving human being.
And I share a lot of the life lessons I learned, in my “Courage to Lead” newsletter, delivered straight in your inbox once month. Don’t forget to SIGN UP, to keep in touch and have more information as to when the book nears completion.
I would love to be of service to YOU and help you regain HOPE and CONFIDENCE in the decisions you make for your own life.
Don’t forget to join me on my Facebook community too!
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