Hi, I’m your coach!

My name is Christel Vogels. As psychological coach, I’m here to help you manage, fight and overcome the darkness inside your mind, so you can reclaim control of your emotional well-being and enjoy life again!

A bit about me

People’s online bios typically tell you how old they are, where they live and how many pets they have. If you’re interested in this sort of thing, you’ll be pleased to learn I’m turning 40 this year, that I live in the Netherlands with my husband and son, and that our pet count is a solid zero.

But you’re not here for these basics.

You want to know why you should believe me when I say that I can help you make life easier for yourself.

The short answer: because I’ve walked the walk. The events in my life are likely different from yours, but the pain, the frustrations and the fear you suffer are also my long-time companions.

I was 8 years old when my severe depression and anxiety disorder first set in. Ten years later, I became suicidal and would continue to be so for almost 20 years.

On the outside, my life looked spic and span. I had a career, a loving family and a good income. On the inside, I was dying. Over the years I sought help from doctors and therapists. At least 15 different treatments. None of them worked.

“Hold Fast”

While treatment after treatment failed, I did my own research: observe people, study interactions, study behaviour. I read the theories, but mostly I did field research. I talked with people about how they interpreted the world around them. I collected data, tested and verified my observations and conclusions, then adjusted them when I had new findings and insights.

I am an academic at heart, so with this academic approach, I tried to find out what the doctors and therapists had missed. By then, I had lost my job and the small business I was trying to start was failing.

The risk that my son would lose his mum to suicide grew with each passing day. Despite my self-destructive tendencies, I’m also a tenacious little b****, so I told myself stories to distract myself.

I’ve always made up stories and written them down, ever since I was a kid. Yet out of all the tons of long and short tales I wrote for myself, it were the adventures of a ship and her estranged crew that struck a spark.

Her intelligent, determined captain whose emotional understanding rivalled that of an anvil. Her empathic, cheerful first mate whose warm smile served to hide his grievous injuries. And the black, withered thing in the hold that tried to sink the ship…

Suddenly I had something to hold on to. As sailors say: “Hold fast!”

That is how the Ship started.

The Ship Inside Our Mind

At first, I developed the concept of the Ship to make sense of myself – and indeed, I finally found the explanation that had eluded the medical professionals: my depression and anxieties were not the illnesses I suffered from. Rather they were symptoms of C-PTSD: complex post-traumatic stress disorder, in my case resulting from emotional neglect and abuse.

This changed everything! Now I knew what caused the pain, I could heal and solve the problems that had been plaguing me all my life!

As I explained the concept of the Ship to others, their response was not what I expected:

They recognised the Ship inside themselves. Their own Captain, First Mate and Deckhand, and how those three did – or did not – work together.

The Ship helped others find and resolve the cause of their pain, as it had done for me.

The next three years, I spent consolidating, testing and confirming what is now the Ship Psychology method: a fun yet effective way to get inside your own mind and untangle the mental processes that are hurting you.

In Practice

In 2019, I launched my coaching practice for local clients. Now, in 2020, I’m expanding the Ship’s horizon with webinars, books, online course and a podcast.

(Worth nothing: a fulltime job that I love, when my doctors said I’d never be fit to work again.)

If you’d like to learn more about the Ship and the Ship Psychology method, feel free to contact me!

P.S. Summary Resume

Because meticulous Captains always want to know this 😉

Education: I have two master degrees, one in business management and one in law, both from distinguished universities, as well as a technical bachelor’s degree. So you can safely say that I’m a pragmatic, down-to-earth, no-nonsense kind of person.

Corporate background: I have over 15 years experience working as quality manager, financial manager and legal consultant. My responsibilities involved people from all corners of the earth and all walks of life, often in order for me to mitigate and solve a variety of interpersonal conflicts. (What can I say? It came with the jobs.)

I have been self-employed since 2012 as a business consultant (activities terminated in 2017), author (2014-now) and coach.

In addition to years of study the human psyche in action, I have extensive experience with different therapies and treatments, including cognitive therapy, hypnotherapy, gestalttherapy, hapnotherapy, behavioural therapy, neurolinguistic programming, and psychosynthesis.

And on a quirky side note, I also write gothic horror fiction. For my novels and where to get hold of them, visit: www.chrischelser.com