Lisa LaMaitre has called Canberra home for over 25 years after arriving in 1991 to study at ANU, and meeting the man of her dreams. Lisa and her husband have been in business in Canberra for over 20 years and have owned four businesses during this time, each in different industries.
Over the last 10 years, Lisa has well and truly built her resilience capabilities.
In late 2006 they took over a third business when a business partnership ended. From 2006 to 2010 they worked 7 days a week to keep up with the demand of having three businesses in separate locations and industries. In early 2007 they experienced a large home burglary that then opened the floodgates on a further 17 incidents requiring ACT Policing. In total they experienced 18 incidents in 3.5 years when the third business became targeted for crime. They faced dishonest staff, vandalism, graffiti, break ins, and four armed robberies in a 12 month period.
They made the difficult decision to close the third business in mid 2010 and closed the business down by year’s end.
At the start of 2011 Lisa contacted ACT Victim Support to seek support and counselling. At the time Lisa was told by her case officer that they were the people who had experienced the most amount of crime, in the shortest amount of time that Victim Support had ever assisted.
Lisa was assigned a wonderful psychologist and given 20 hours of counselling. She went on to have counselling for Post Traumatic Stress for 18 months.
“The stress that we faced during this period tested all of our boundaries and saw us emotionally, physically, financially and spiritually changed.” Lisa said, “What I realised during the healing process was that if I wanted to move forward I needed to become empowered, change my mindset, and focus on the positive.”
Then in August 2013 Lisa’s older sister died suddenly. Lisa quickly came to realise that what they had faced with with the business, had prepared her to deal with her sister’s unexpected and unusual death.
“I see the world in a very different way, because of what we have faced.” Explains Lisa, “I also know that difficulties and challenges often stop other people in their tracks. That the way we dealt with, what we’ve been through, isn’t the common response. I see my role now as an Inspirer and Connector. It’s easy for people to become stuck when life throws them a challenge. By providing avenues for people to connect and be inspired, we open up the opportunity for them to move through whatever is currently holding them.”
“My aim is to help women and men - reflect on their own experiences, and recognise their strengths. My hope is that they will be inspired to leave their comfort zone, and to move towards a life that is deeply meaningful to them,” concludes Lisa.