Rosie | Rosie Kaplan
0438 401 716 rosie@rosiekaplan.com

A lot more about me – just so you know who you’re collaborating with.

I have lived a full life. I started off in South Africa, arrived in England with my parents when I was very little & grew up and went to school there. School was not my most successful time in life. I’m also an art school ‘drop out’. That’s the early 70’s for you!

After art school, I worked at various menial and professional jobs, while also studying Astrology (I’m a Leo). I travelled to Ethiopia in 1974, just in time for the revolutionary overthrow of Haile Selassie – yes, he of Rastafarian fame. Four months of interesting and challenging travel through Ethiopia, Sudan, Egypt and Greece saw me grow up quite a bit.

I returned home to London and worked at the original Hard Rock Cafe and other trendy joints for a number of lost years as a (well-paid) waitress.

I met Australia for the first time in 1978 and fell in love with both the country and a lovely man…as happens. I returned to London to train as – wait for this, it’s left field – a traditional upholsterer.

I came back to Australia in 1980, to Murwillumbah, where I set up Rosy Applecheeks Upholstery. I ran that business successfully for about three years. Boy did I have strong hands and arms. Eventually the dust and dirt (and ‘farty’ cushions) got to me and I quit. Not before I learned how to set up a profitable business from scratch, bookkeeping, when we still did it in books, and how to create great customer service.

Pictures: Groovy art school student. Ethiopian travel. Upholstery days.

The good ship Neritan

Next incarnation was a hippy in the hills, living out the back of beyond in northern New South Wales, building a house with secondhand timber and feeling overwhelmed by the weeds. Eventually I left, both the land, and the aforementioned lovely man.

By this time I had gained my Graduate Diploma in Social Communication from what is now the University of Western Sydney. I’d also embarked on intensive personal growth with rebirthing and Insight Forums (with a couple of meditation retreats thrown in). I was working as the TAFE course co-ordinator for two programs, New Opportunities for Women and Youth Unemployment. I coached both mature women and youth – in those days it was in the guise of teaching communication skills and confidence building.

Then, as you do, I met another lovely man, who twenty-nine years later I am still with. This one had a self-built, 36ft ferro-cement yacht. So began four years of sailing and living on a boat. Not the natural environment for a Terra Firma freak who’s not a good swimmer. Still, as with all things, I gave it my best shot. My learnings from this adventure? Rowing, steering a fragile boat, hoisting sails and living in harmonious close quarters with a man who was a mirror for my stuff! I also learned flexibility, and aged thirty-nine, lost all work ego.  I had to take any job, including hemming sheets in a Cairns laundry. Yes, it was as bad as it sounds.

We cruised the East Coast of Australia, then sailed to Fiji from Sydney (Rosie Goes Sailing chapters 1 & 2 available on request!). We decided to go to New Zealand in 1990 for the summer season – away from cyclones – and one season turned into twenty-three glorious years.

In New Zealand I worked in the film industry. At the ripe old age of forty-two I worked my way up from set-runner, to Associate Producer of a network TV prime time documentary about rubbish and recycling, that I also pitched and researched. There were other research jobs and other adventures in the film industry. It was here I learned to write, discovered I loved research, managed a large budget, worked insanely long hours, worked productively with difficult people and followed my own dreams. Then I bought a glass slumping business. It’s a long story, but I lost the lot and learned even more. I learned how to bounce back, how to solve difficult technical issues (I still enjoy that), how to cold call, how to invent new products, cost them and produce them. And eventually, how to admit failure and move on.

From there I took another 180 degree turn and worked as the Hospice Co-ordinator on Waiheke Island, where I lived the whole time I was in New Zealand. I find death a fascinating subject and being with the dying a real privilege.

That job somehow morphed into creating my own profitable food production business called Attitude Foods. I learned even more about packaging, marketing, selling, promotion, employing, budgeting and all the other aspects of sole owner, small business living. I sold it after six years. During my Atittude Food days I started running Mastermind Groups. Over eight years I ran two long term and very successful ones. After Attitude Foods sold I added some one-on-one coaching while getting joyfully back into art. I developed a new technique that I used for a sadly unpublished, Affirmation ABC book for kids and I still use it to make Glow Lights.

During my time in New Zealand I became very involved in social change work and was part of a wonderful group of change-workers called Heart Politics. I studied the Enneagram system (I’m an eight), did Isaac Shapiro Eyes Work, learned Soulcollage® and discovered The Work of Byron Katie. The Work was life-changing.

Spirit Art Lights

We returned to Australia in 2013, where I have been working as a funeral celebrant, intimate and meaningful work. A coach, intimate and meaningful work and a Mastermind Facilitator ditto. Art is still in my life. I create one of a kind painted lampshades Woven Art and joyfully play with Spirit Inks. If you click on the picture to the left, you can scroll through a bit of my art. 

I’m currently learning about Positive Psychology and Appreciative Inquiry. I love both as ways of being in the world. I’ve identified my top strength as the capacity to love and be loved, and my second as honesty, authenticity and genuineness. Knowing my top strengths has changed how I am in the world, for the better I hope! 

I recently became aware I am a positive energiser – a person who helps others flourish and feel good about themselves. Research shows positive energy is four times more important for predicting performance than just plain leadership or being the person who knows the most. It shows that if you hang out with positive energisers your performance goes up. As a positive energiser I’m dedicated to helping others flourish with – and because of – my positive energy – please join me. 

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