This month, we’re celebrating the successes of savvy expatriates and Singaporeans, as well as the setbacks they overcame, to make life better in Singapore in our Expatpreneur Awards 2017.
Having lived all over the world since childhood, you can trust that expat Maria Luedeke, Owner and Counsellor of Aspire Counselling, can empathize with her patients regarding not only expat stresses but also the myriad other issues in life.
Maria is a member of several professional organisations such as the American Counselling Association, the William Glasser Institute and the American Psychotherapy Association.
She opened Aspire Counselling in 2016, and works with all ages and genders, couples and families and even corporate clients.
Read more below (and find out how we picked the awardees here).
Colombian by birth, adopted at five weeks old and naturalised as a U.S. citizen, Maria resided in cities such as Rome, Toyko and Hong Kong during her childhood.
“I grew up as an expat kid,” she says. “I moved about every four years!”
Perhaps that’s what makes her so empathetic and effective as owner of Aspire Counselling.
Maria credits her husband for helping her make the leap into business ownership.
“Don’t let fear hold you back from doing what you really want. My husband challenged me by asking, ‘What would you do if you knew you couldn’t fail?’” she shares. “That has helped to spur me on when I begin to have any doubts.”
“The level of expectation of services provided is very high and pushes me to strive higher and work harder,” says Maria about Singapore.
However, she feels that Singapore supports women entrepreneurs, in particular. “Everyone from my bank to my office landlord to my contractor bent over backwards to help me when they heard it was my first start-up.”
“As a therapist, there are times when I am emotionally drained or unsettled by certain cases,” she confesses. “I use exercise, yoga and my friends and husband to ensure I am practicing good self-care.”
By Sara Lyle Bow, The Finder (Issue 280), March 2017
Like this? Read more expatpreneur stories here,