Vanessa May

My name is Vanessa May.

For the first half of my life, I had a complicated relationship with my leadership.

And I’m not talking about leadership as some role on the corporate ladder. I’m talking about leadership as the very essence of your soul – the way you consciously choose to live in relationship with yourself and others.

I tried hard to do everything right. I thought if I pushed myself to strive for perfection and pleased everyone around me, I’d feel good enough.

I was stuck, frustrated, and burnt out from pushing myself past my limits both professionally and personally. And I was bored. I wanted to do more meaningful work, but I thought the quality of my work should speak for itself and waited for some kind of permission to move in the direction I wanted.

I had to make a decision. I could continue living this way and shove my wants and needs away forever, or I could decide to be move through my fear and doubt trusting that something better would unfold on the other side.

And that’s what I did. I chose courage. I chose to invest in myself.

Now, I’m on a path of living an authentic life that aligns with my values. Instead of measuring my worth based on others’ opinions of me and my usefulness to them,
I’m learning to be fulfilled by my own integrity.

I have become more skillful in using my intuition, instincts and sensitivity to guide me toward what I want. And perhaps the hardest part, I have had to build a loving relationship with myself.

My self-leadership journey is exactly what led me to create Courage Unfolding. It is my passion to use my lived experience and qualifications to help a community of strong, capable women get out of their own way and live the lives they want at home and at work.

I have an intuition for supporting clients to uncover core truths.

I have an intuition for supporting clients to uncover core truths. To awaken positivity and possibility in women who have been made to feel small, because I know how it feels.

I help women see the issues underneath the surface and inspire them to change the thoughts and behaviours that limit them so that they can have greater professional and personal success and fulfillment.

I am living proof that although it can feel scary and hard, change is possible, and I’m here to walk with you on your own journey of unfolding your courage.

If you’ve seen yourself in any of these words, I invite you to read more about how I can help you.


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