About Vanessa May

About Vanessa May

Welcome to Courage Unfolding!

Hello, I am Vanessa and I have a passion for empowering women to embrace fear and step into courage so they can shine at work and in life.  

I understand the journey to authentic leadership can be challenging, particularly for those who identify as highly sensitive people (HSP's) and may grapple with anxiety.  I spent the first half of my career unintentionally holding back my leadership, adapting to fit in, self-silencing and pushing hard to meet others' expectations.  

As a highly sensitive person, I found myself pleasing, saying "yes" when I really wanted to say "no," living by an unwritten rulebook in my head that convinced me success meant constant improvement and pushing myself beyond my limits.  This internal struggle, lead to a feeling of being stuck - working hard but not being fully seen or heard, and ultimately burning out in the process. 

My turning point came when I had to choose between continuing to listen to the never-ending mind chatter, urging me to "be better" and "do more," or trusting myself, advocating for my quirkiness and strengths, and owning my authenticity.  

This transformative decision paved the way for my journey to help amazing women like you break free and rise up in your leadership at work. 

It's not just about climbing the corporate ladder; it's about finding the courage to be seen, heard, and to lead authentically - from the very essence of your soul.

I intimately understand the struggle of wanting to make a difference but feeling held back.  That's why I founded Courage Unfolding. I want my experiences and qualifications to create a space for a community of strong, capable women who are ready to break free through those invisible barriers and lead the lives they desire both at home and in their professional journeys.

So, if you're ready to stop holding back, to be seen, heard and rise up in your leadership at work, join me at Courage Unfolding. Let's embark on this transformative journey together, where courage is our compass and authenticity is our strength.

Welcome to a community where you can truly shine, embracing both your strength and sensitivity.

My Clients Say...


Working with Vanessa was like having the shades pulled up on my life so the light could flood in – and it’s stayed in.

I recommend her without reservation.

Amy, Business Owner


  • 2023

    Leadership Circle Profile 360 Certification

  • 2020

    The Power of Embodied Transformation

  • 2019

    Emotional Freedom Technique and Matrix Reimprinting Practitioner (EFTMRA)
    Organisation Relationship Systems Certified Coach (ORSC) Certification
    Human Synergistics Certification of Accreditation

  • 2018

    Kilmann Diagnostics Advanced Training in Conflict Management
    Mental Health First Aider Training, MHFA
    Organisation Relationship Systems Coaching (ORSC) Training Series

  • 2017

    Breathwork Practitioner
    Vinyasa Flow Yoga RYT 200 Hours

  • 2016

    Licensed Heartmath Coach

  • 2015

    Shamanic Practitioner

  • 2013

    Professional Certified Coach

  • 2012

    Associate Certified Coach ICF
    Realise 2 Accreditation Practitioner Programme

  • 2011

    Co-active Leadership Programme

  • 2009

    Certified Professional Co-active Coach

  • 2007

    NLP Business Practitioner Programme
    EQI Accreditation Programme
    Advanced Coaching Supervision

  • 2004

    Certificate in Coaching and Mentoring OSCM Oxford Brookes University

  • 1999

    MSc Organisational Behaviour Birkbeck University

  • 1994

    MA Managing Human Resources Kingston University