"Have nothing in your house that you do not know to be useful or believe to be beautiful."
–William Morris

#7 - Nadja Cereghetti - scientist, podcaster, organising expert

by Saskia de Feijter on December 17, 2020

We welcome my friend Nadja on the show. Quite the multipontentialist, Nadja is a scientist working in Public Health, she owns her own organizing business, and she recently started her own podcast called “Unleash Monday, after discovering why her brain does what it does. Her show is about why adults are sometimes late in discovering they are gifted and why that word (in Nederlands ‘hoogbegaafd’) has a bad image.

We talk about this and how gifted people often feel the need to battle inequality and make the world healthier and better place resulting in a life that is full of conscious decisions and focus on the GOOD in the world. Clearing your mind and your home will bring more focus on the things that really matter. 

If you resonate with what you hear and if you are curious about the topic of giftedness and/ or transforming your life through tidying magic, You can find Nadja at...

Tidytothrive.com

Unleashmonday.com (podcast)

instagram.com/unleash.monday

With this podcast I want to take you with me on my journey to discover the answers to these questions: What do we buy, Where do we buy, Who do we buy from… Or don’t we buy at all but use what we already have? And how relevant is my job as a yarn shop owner selling people stuff when we already have more than we need? How can I make my life as an entrepreneur and textile crafter smaller and more relevant to these times?

Have a question? Want to leave a message? Click the voicemail tab on the right, or scroll down to leave a text message. I'd love to hear from you!
Find me at www.ja-wol.com and @jawolrotterdam on instagram.
This podcast is so much fun to make but it isn't free. Support the podcast via my Patreon page. You'll get all sorts of extra's, like mini behind the scenes podcasts. You can become a sponsor and get your name on the podcast and much more! 

Click and Become a Patron! 

In order to make the podcast available to as many people as possible, here's the
transcription:




Saskia de Feijter  

Nadia Cereghetti is a Swiss scientific project manager, tidying expert and gifted adult lifestyle podcaster. These topics might seem totally different, but she's recently learned something about herself, and is figuratively knitting a form-fitting, red sweater out of this new red thread in her life and she's connecting all the different stitches. As a multipotentialist, a non-neurotypical business owner and/or textile lover, you might hear things that resonate with you. So listen to Nadja's amazing story, and enjoy. 


Saskia de Feijter  

Hi, Nadia. Welcome to my podcast. I'm so excited to have you.


Nadja Cereghetti  

Hi, Saskia. Thank you for having me. I'm excited, too.


Saskia de Feijter  

Ooh. So we have a lot in common... But we will start our conversation and people will find out throughout. Why don't we start at the beginning. What were you like as a child? 


Nadja Cereghetti  

Oh [laughing]


Saskia de Feijter  

Right at the beginning. 


Nadja Cereghetti  

Yeah, right at the beginning! So I think I was very happy child and I was very outgoing. I've been told I was bossy. And from an early age, I was told being bossy is a bad trait. So I tried to suppress that throughout my life later on and always kind of held back on this. But I grew up with two boys in my life. So my parents moved into a building where another family lived who were friends of the family. They had two boys; one was similar in age, he was nine months older than me, and the older brother was like three years older. So the one that was closer to my age, we were inseparable. We grew up from like, three to seven years old, inseparable. So I was always one of the boys, and I was really integrated in that household as well. I was never treated as, you know, the girly girl, I was always a tomboy. Gender was never an issue; I could do anything and everything I wanted, because of my abilities and not because of gender, or I was, like, held back by gender. So that was really great. And I only realized that looking backwards later. So I live in Switzerland and we grew up a little bit outside of the main city; it's kind of a village, like a suburb of a city, but in Switzerland, kids from a young age are very independent. I would say I think in the US people always drive their kids to kindergarten and to school. In Switzerland, you basically walk to kindergarten by yourself.


Saskia de Feijter  

Yeah, yeah. It's almost the same here. We obviously bike because we do things on the bike everywhere.


Nadja Cereghetti  

And this has happened here, too. Now everybody bikes and I actually have two baskets on my bike, one in the front and one in the back. So I can transport all of my stuff.


Saskia de Feijter  

And but you have like, the Netherlands is like really flat country, but you have mountains. So on a bike, that's, that's a different thing. 


Nadja Cereghetti  

Well, that's the stereotype, right? I don't live in the mountains. I live in a city called Basel and we are actually five minutes from the border to Germany and five minutes to the border to France, and so we live by the river Rhine and it's quite flat here. There's some hills with the bike, but it's not that bad.


Saskia de Feijter  

It's fine. Okay, cool. So was nature a big part of your life when you were growing up? Or did you venture out a lot in the weekends or? 


Nadja Cereghetti  

Yeah, more like suburban nature, I would say, there's some patches of woods. And I was, do you know YMCA? 


Saskia de Feijter  

Yes. 


Nadja Cereghetti  

So it's kind of like the Boy and Girl Scouts but the YCMA also has something like that. So every Saturday afternoon, I joined that group. It wasn't because of faith, it was really because all of my friends from school were there. So from the age of like, seven to maybe 12, a lot of the afternoons were spent with them on Saturdays, and we would go into the woods and make fires, so yeah, we were quite outdoorsy.


Saskia de Feijter  

Yeah. Because when I think of Switzerland, I immediately think of woods and snow and outdoors and all of that. But it sounds like you had a very similar childhood compared to mine, where I went to Girl Scouts, and did the same things. But we basically... when it was raining, we were outside and when it was nice weather, we were inside and it didn't make a lot of sense. So I didn't stay there for a long time. I remember learning how to make some knots and ropes and not much more. [laughs]


Nadja Cereghetti  

Oh no, no. Ours was the opposite; they always adjusted the program according to the weather. So yeah, they always had like a backup plan for when it was raining. Because it was like associated with the church just this, like, community center and whenever it was raining, we're inside this community center. But yeah, obviously I grew up skiing, but again, like going skiing for where I live, it takes like two hours by car, so it's not something you do in the afternoon after school.


Saskia de Feijter  

No, no. Um, if you had the choice, would you rather live more in an natural environment in nature, and then go to the city every once in a while or live in a city and get your battery charged in nature? 


Nadja Cereghetti  

Oh, that's a really tough one.


Saskia de Feijter  

I know. [hehe]


Nadja Cereghetti  

I really like cities where you have some sort of nature. So for example, Barcelona is so great. You have the beach right inside the city. I love it. And I really like the size of Basel. The city has like, I think like a quarter of a million inhabitants. So it's not a metropolitan city, but it's quaint and it's big enough. So you have like cafes, and you can sit outside and there's always like, a good crowd. Not at the moment, but I think I could never live in a countryside, like country mentality I think is the issue here.


Saskia de Feijter  

Okay, yeah. I think I would be a little bit lonely. But then the way we live now is not much different, is it? So... yeah. Lately, I've been changing my views. 


Nadja Cereghetti  

Me too, me too. 


Saskia de Feijter  

I've been dreaming about moving to Sweden or whatever. [laughs] 


Nadja Cereghetti  

So the older I get, the more I think like, you know, a cabin by the lake in Finland sounds amazing.


Saskia de Feijter  

Oh, yeah, definitely. Definitely. And we can keep in touch online anyways.


Nadja Cereghetti  

Exactly. Exactly.


Saskia de Feijter  

So after your childhood, what kind of education did you get?


Nadja Cereghetti  

So my education went all over the place, my CV is a bit *unintelligble*. As a child, I always loved school. I loved going to school, I really wanted to learn from early age on. I was very disappointed if I didn't have any homework, because I was told just to finish up what we've been doing in school, and I was just fast. So I never had homework. And by the time I was supposed to do homework, when I was like 14 or something, I didn't want to do homework, and I didn't know how to like, sit down and study. So my grades actually dropped. I did go to high school and my grades got even worse. I dropped out and I had to do a different school. So I went to like, some sort of commercial school when I was around 18, and then I realized that I really wanted to go and study biology because I was fascinated by it. So I took all these extra classes. Imagine, I was like 20 years old, everybody went partying on a Friday night, Saturday night and I went and took chemistry and physics on Saturday morning. And like, this school was empty. It was just the class of these people that wanted to go on this track to go, you know, to university, so we were like five people in a whole school building. And I remember the other people, sometimes they didn't show up and I think I was the only one like, showing up every. single. Saturday. (If I want something I really am diligent and I go for it.) I managed to get enough good grades to go back on the track to go to university, and my major was in economics. When I finally graduated from this high school and went to university, my major in biology was completely different. So I was lacking skills in biology, chemistry, physics, math, because all the hours I spent in school was mostly on economics subjects, right? So I really had a hard time during my undergrad. But I somehow managed and started doing my masters. So I have a master's degree in epidemiology and infection biology, and-- 


Saskia de Feijter  

Fitting. 


Nadja Cereghetti  

Fitting. And then, after my master's, I was like, "Okay, what, what's next?" Like, I saw that a lot of people just go and do a PhD. But I wasn't really sure where that's gonna lead me, because once you do a PhD, you're very specialized. And I just felt like, I have so many different interests and going on a professor track, like the academic trail, it didn't really appeal to me. Plus, I like the research. I like the environment of research. I'm really curious about what's going on in research, but I don't like being the one doing the research. [both laughing] I like to tell other people. I like telling other people what to do. So for a year, I went and worked at a bank. They offered me a permanent position after a year, and they said, "Oh, you grasp concepts so fast, like, would you like to stay on as a product manager and pension services?" But after 11 months, I was like, "Thank you, but no thank you." I didn't spend like five years at University studying biology to now work at the bank where I could have gone right after this commercial school. So I went back into an academic setting. I now work at the Swiss Tropical and Public Health Institute. But I work as a project manager, so I'm still kind of surrounded by scientists, but I'm more involved in budgeting and controlling and contracts, and just making sure the projects are moving along. On time.


Saskia de Feijter  

Cool. And what would you say, the traits that you are good at? Which of those find their happy place in this job? Where do you light up?


Nadja Cereghetti  

Oh I think... I like to network, and I like to connect, and I understand different fields because I worked with mathematicians, I worked, you know, with biologists, I worked with people from accounting and economic backgrounds, so they all speak a different language. And literally, we all speak different languages, but we also speak different languages with the background that we bring to the table, so when somebody from controlling says to the professor, who's a mathematician, like, "Can you please, you know, fill out this, this controlling sheet?" There's a lot of misunderstanding and misinterpretation. So I tried to kind of like... I'm the translator between the subjects, I guess. 


Saskia de Feijter  

Yeah that makes a lot of sense. But something-- was there something missing in your life? Because then you started your own business? Can you tell us a little bit about how that happened and... what kind of business did you start?


Nadja Cereghetti  

Yeah. So I think from a very young age, I always had this urge to be self employed. I always wanted to start my own company, I don't know why. And studying biology is maybe not the best subject if you want to do that, unless you become some sort of scientific consultant. So I always had this passion of entrepreneurship, but I just didn't have this idea of, you know, the next great Facebook or the next great anything. So I just went on my track and I thought, okay, at some point, I will have an idea and then everything will fall into place. I just trusted the process, I guess. Sometimes I was a little bit impatient. And I also... once I started working, I did an additional course at the University of St. Gallen in advanced general management? And it was targeted for women and this is really where things got interesting for me because I was, for the first time, surrounded by a lot of very bright and smart women. Well at the University, of course you are as well. But these women, they took action in their careers and their passion and really driving their own career forward and bringing to the table all these tools that I didn't know existed, like strengthsfinder assessments, for example. This is where I learned about coaching, business coaching and life coaching. And in one of these group coaching sessions, again, this trade of like, me being this entrepreneur came out. I just had this always in the back of my mind that at some point, I want to start my own business. Like a lot of things in life, it was by chance. I was once sick, I had bronchitis. And I was ordered by the doctor to stay at home for like, two weeks. Because it was a viral disease, it was like, highly contagious. So I just was in my home, and didn't want to see anybody , I just isolated myself. That was 2018, way before Corona. [laughs]


Saskia de Feijter  

Yeah, it sounds like it was yesterday. 


Nadja Cereghetti  

[laughing] But no, it wasn't. So yeah, I had this bronchitis, and my mom has severe asthma, so I didn't want her to get  sick. I didn't even want them to come visit me, like, my parents. So yeah, I was really isolated at home for like two weeks. And I, what I left out until now is I was a very messy person, all my life that was just part of my identity, I was just messy, and things were lying around. And it just couldn't keep my- in the beginning, my room and later on, my apartment -tidy. I always thought that there's two types of people. There's the tidy people, and then there's me.


Saskia de Feijter  

[giggles]


Nadja Cereghetti  

You know, the untidy people.


Saskia de Feijter  

And me.


Nadja Cereghetti  

I only later found out that this is actually a limiting belief. But so yeah, I grew up messy. And I just embraced it. I was like, well, this is just me. But when you're at home for two weeks - I guess people now during Corona realize - and you don't, you know, regularly tidy up, and you also don't have the energy to tidy up... You know, it was never dirty, but clothes pile up. You do the laundry, but then you just pick up the laundry from the rack and you put it right back onto your body and then on the floor, and it never really gets put on a hanger or into a drawer.


Saskia de Feijter  

Yes. So you're describing my life. [laughs] Still. For a large part.


Nadja Cereghetti  

Yeah, I know. [laughs] I was so happy- my step dad, he once took a picture when I was around 14 years old. And they really tried to get me to be a tidy child. Like, every Saturday, I had to clean up my room and vacuum clean it, so it's not that my parents didn't care. It was really- it just didn't stick. I would tidy up my room and two hours later, it looked the same as before. And he took a picture because he said like some sort of proof or "I'm going to show this to your boyfriend and then you know, you're gonna be embarrassed and that's gonna make you tidy up" and obviously it didn't, but I still have this photograph. So then I stumbled across Marie Kondo. And for the people that don't know her, she's a Japanese tidying guru. She came up with her own method of like, how you tidy up your house, once and for all?


Saskia de Feijter  

Yes. And let's talk about the difference between tidying and cleaning. Before we go on. Could you explain a little bit?


Nadja Cereghetti  

Yes. So tidying is really confronting yourself within your own belongings. Whereas cleaning is really confronting yourself with nature. So cleaning is really that dirt and debris and the dust and tidying is really your your items, your belongings, your stuff.


Saskia de Feijter  

Wow, I never heard it said like that. That is really interesting. That it's not my words. It's morikami. Yeah, but it makes so much sense though. It makes so much sense. And


Nadja Cereghetti  

-This is also why her method and her books suddenly makes so much sense. You know, when I heard all these tips and tricks of like, well tidy one drawer a week or get rid of one item a day, it never really made sense, or it never really stuck. And when I discovered her method, it made so much sense. Because she's Japanese, there's a lot of Japanese philosophy behind the method, which is interesting and it really makes you evaluate each and every single item in your household and you choose really consciously what you keep in your life.


Saskia de Feijter  

Yes, so you were at home with bronchitis and then... how did you go from being sick at home in your messy home to becoming like the biggest Marie Kondo fan? 


Nadja Cereghetti  

I sat there in my mess. And I stumbled across a video, I guess, on Facebook or somewhere, I was already on the way to recovery. And I just saw this video of how she folded clothes and stuck them upright. And I started decluttering my sock drawer because I bought so many socks and some of them I never wore and some of them had holes. And I had a huge sock drawer, just full of socks-


Saskia de Feijter  

[laughing] I can just see you covered in socks. I'm sorry, I'm getting a visual.


Nadja Cereghetti  

Yeah, and this is totally how it looked, probably even bigger! 


Saskia de Feijter  

[laughing] Oh, my gosh.


Nadja Cereghetti  

So I started decluttering this sock drawer and up to this day, my socks literally stand upright. When you open the drawer, you can see every single pair of socks in one glance, and it's just... life changing.


Saskia de Feijter  

Oh, I have the same sock drawer. But for me, it came from knitting my own socks and wanting to present them every day nicely. And it gives you- I know how that sounds, but I totally understand, it gives you- Every morning when you grab a pair of socks, you get a little bit of happiness by just grabbing the pair of socks. And I just wanted to say that in Holland, I'm not sure how that is in Switzerland, but when a piece of clothing can stand up right by itself, it usually means that it's really, really dirty.


Nadja Cereghetti  

[laughing] Yes, we say the same.


Saskia de Feijter  

[laughs] So just to be clear, it's a matter of how you fold it. It's a special technique of folding. It's not hard, by the way, and how you put them in little boxes. And so you can see everything in one glance. 


Nadja Cereghetti  

Right, exactly. So the folding method, it doesn't take longer. A lot of people say like, oh, it takes so much longer, it's much more effort. It's the same amount of time, the same amount of effort to fold your clothes, the way Marie Kondo folds, the basic thing is to get it into a square. So whatever kind of shape of clothing you have, just try to fold it in a square and unfold it smaller until it stands up right. And there's no right and wrong. It's just.... make it into a square and fold it until it stands.


Saskia de Feijter  

No, the whole philosophy just kind of makes sense. I read the book a couple of years ago, when it just came out, I did part of the work, it was hard for me to do it according to her steps. And I'm going to ask you about them in a bit. But I'm coming back to it as  I move - I'm moving now - and I still love it so much. This is now on Netflix, there's a show, The Home Edit, and they have a different way of decluttering and organizing. And I'm sure everybody has their own specific things that they like doing that work for them, but the whole philosophy of Marie Kondo, though, is just... it just works. It absolutely works. And can you tell us a little bit about the general philosophy and then talk to us about why you decided to start a business?


Nadja Cereghetti  

Yes, so her philosophy is really reflecting and doing the work yourself. So there's, as you said, The Home Edit, and there's a lot of other professional organizers out there. So you can hire somebody to come to your house and basically tidy it up for you. But it's not going to be a long lasting transformational experience. So what the Marie Kondo method really forces you to do is do the work yourself. So even though I'm a certified konmari consultant, I'm not going to come to your house and tidy for you. I'm coaching you so you can do the work yourself. As I said, it's really to confront yourself with your own values and your own belief system and your dreams and goals through the method of tidying. So tidying is actually only a tool. It's just a tool.


Saskia de Feijter  

And like for me with knitting, knitting holds up a mirror for you the way you work. If you are a perfectionist, you will learn through the process of knitting that it's impossible to do everything perfect. If you want to have everything perfect then you will never finish a project. The other way around is when you are very messy and you don't care what it looks like you probably won't wear things you make. So without konmari methods, you are essentially looking at yourself not only from a tidying perspective, but also looking at yourself, the way your brain works, what makes you happy, what works for you... Am I right? If I make that comparison?


Nadja Cereghetti  

Yes, you're totally right. And it really is a reflection on yourself. And by creating space in your physical environment, you also create space in your brain. And this is really where the method is so life changing. I really went into this method because I thought, Oh, I need to tidy up my house. I was quite naive when I started this journey. I didn't even read the book at the time. I only ordered a book while I started the process. And I actually went through all these emotions. And then I read the book. And she talks about these emotions and then I was like, "Oh, now it makes sense. Yeah." And so yeah, I went to this transformation that she calls the Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up. 


Saskia de Feijter  

Yes. 


Nadja Cereghetti  

And when I saw the book titles, I thought, [sarcastically] "Oh, yeah. Right." You know, like,


Saskia de Feijter  

Yeah, and it's always with a trend after you hear it so many times on your social media and on TV, and whatever. You're like, yeah, yeah, there we go. Again, Marie Kondo. But that's why I invited you. I have this personal experience. I think the way it works, just really helps me as a person to find more focus. And as this is what the podcast is about, like, making your life in business and personal life less overwhelming, finding more focus, going from bigger to smaller. I met you on this business course that we did for 12 weeks. And we were actually in like a homework part together. And so I've gotten to know you. And then you turned out to have this Marie Kondo business, and it was so funny, because I'm... I really, really resonate with the idea of how she works. So how did you decide you wanted to make a business out of it?


Nadja Cereghetti  

It was all just coincidence, at this point. So I found the method, I did my transformation at home. And then I saw on her website that she offers these in-person seminars and it was the first time she ever came to Europe, it was in London. And it was a coincidence that I had to be in London the day before. So I talked to my boss, and I said, "Well, I want to stay the weekend." And so I went to her seminar. And it was really a gut decision. Like it doesn't make sense as a biologist, you know, with my career in project management, to now go and get trained as a tidying coach, but at the moment, I was like, "Yeah, this is so great. This is life changing. It helped me so much. And I know that so many other people out there are suffering, probably in silence, and they're like afraid to to show this side of them." Sometimes people would spontaneously ring my doorbell and I would pretend I wasn't home because I was so embarrassed about the messiness. Yeah, so I really understand the struggle. And this method really helped me get an organized life. But as you said, it's so much more than just a tidying method. It really helped me focus on what I want to do in life in general. And everything I do now I evaluate, like, "Where do I want to go?" Because the first step in her method is really to create like, your own vision of your ideal lifestyle. And every decision I take today is always: "Does this fit into the bigger picture? Will this make me happy? Does this spark joy, you know?" and since I found this so inspiring, I decided to do the seminar. And then you have to go and do some tidying consultancies with clients. And this is where I just started my journey I just asked my friends, you know, "Who wants to be a guinea pig, and I come and help you tidy your house?" 


Nadja Cereghetti  

Lucky friends. 


Nadja Cereghetti  

Then I was like, "Oh, this is in line with my entrepreneurship. So I created my business. I started doing my website, and I wanted to do everything by myself because I just loved the experience and yeah, that's how I started doing this. On the side. I started coaching people in how to tidy on the weekends, and in the evenings. During the day, I still have my day job.


Saskia de Feijter  

Yeah, it's so funny because it kind of it looks weird, like, what you do for a living and then the combination with this, but things are starting to make a lot more sense. Right, because you recently found out something about yourself. And you are now actually making a podcast on the topic. Will you please explain a little bit more about that part?


Nadja Cereghetti  

Yes. So, as I told you, I went to this business course and I met all these inspiring women and all these tools and techniques of how you really can be the best version of yourself. Marie Kondo is one part. But there's other, you know, techniques and just self development, which I before didn't really focus on. And I joined all these networking groups and mentoring programs. And I was like, "Wow, I want to tell all my friends, especially the ones in science about this." So how can I curate all of this information and bring it out there? And maybe I can sneak this in?-- I would never write a blog because I suffer from self diagnosed dyslexia and writing was always difficult for me.  But hey, a podcast sounds amazing, because I love to talk. So I was like, "Okay, I want to do a podcast." And my first guest that I interviewed is a friend of mine, and she has this incredible story that at the age of 30, as she found out, she's a gifted adult. And it never occurred to her because she was never the best in school. She was never the one that you know, can learn poems by heart. She also struggled through school like I did. And when I interviewed her for my podcast, I was like, "Oh, my God, this makes so much sense," and, "I can relate," and, "What does that mean? Giftedness?" Like, you know, these nerdy, math people I work with?


Saskia de Feijter  

Can we just say for the Dutch listeners, and maybe the German language listeners as well, we call it hoogbegaafd, or hoog- gifted?


Nadja Cereghetti  

Hoogbegaafd.


Saskia de Feijter  

[repeats] Okay, so that's the translation for gifted?


Nadja Cereghetti  

Yes. And they also in French, they call it like, high potential.


Saskia de Feijter  

But that sounds better. You know, like, the term we use, I think, gifted and hoogbegaafd, it doesn't have like, the best reputation, right? As a term?


Nadja Cereghetti  

None of these terms have. And this is where all these taboo and misunderstanding comes in. Like, as I later found out, high potential, I learned that this is also used in companies, they identify people as high potential, and they put them on like a career track.


Saskia de Feijter  

So it has a double meaning, which is not ideal, as well.


Nadja Cereghetti  

And also, there's a lot of pressure. You hear a lot of like, "Oh, if you're so smart, why don't you figure it out?" Or you have the responsibility of you know, you're gifted, you're this high potential person, you have to save the world. 


Saskia de Feijter  

Yeah because that's what most of us think, right? We imagine gifted people as being  nerdy. They might be somewhere on the spectrum. They make drawings of cities from their heads, you know, that kind of thing. 


Nadja Cereghetti  

Yeah, exactly. But it's a lot different, there's a lot more to it. So the more I dug into this topic, the more I realized, well, first of all, a lot more research needs to be done. A lot of research has been done on children and in the education sector. And in psychology, not a lot has been done on gifted adults. There's some research out there and I'm trying to collect it and now basically pivoted my podcast into using it as a platform for exactly exploring this topic and inviting guests, experts, and also people that aren't gifted, people that think they might be gifted, and just having a conversation and start, you know, breaking down these stereotypes. Because when you hear the word gifted, most people think of like Einstein and Beethoven and, you know, Sheldon Cooper from the Big Bang Theory, but the only female person, people think of off top of their head is Marie Curie. 


Saskia de Feijter  

Yeah. 


Nadja Cereghetti  

But 2% of the population apparently fall into this category of gifted.


Saskia de Feijter  

2%. That's a lot. A lot more than I thought.


Nadja Cereghetti  

Yeah it sounds like a small amount, but in absolute numbers, it's quite a lot. And even though I've been identified as gifted my, like, calculation in my brain, I cannot do math in my brain, like I need a calculator. [laughing] So yeah, but 2% is a lot.


Saskia de Feijter  

Yeah. [laughing] Well I can really relate to the journey you're on with the podcast. So I think it's very important that you're doing this work because there's a lot of people that have a limiting idea of what giftedness is, and if people can relate to your stories and relate to your guests, then it's really important work. They can become better functioning people and in essence, that is also like bringing it back to your tidying business, functioning well on a day to day basis as a non neurotypical person...? A unique, kind of...


Nadja Cereghetti  

-- Most... most gifted people... apparently they suffer from imposter syndrome. And I'm one of them. Like, "Who am I to do this podcast? Who am I to talk about this subject? Like, I have no clue. I'm not a psychologist. I'm not trained in this field. So who am I and even now when you interview me here?" I'm really... hesitant to say something wrong? So I rather not give too much information. If you ask me, so what is giftedness like... I don't know!


Saskia de Feijter  

[laughing] "Finding out!"


Nadja Cereghetti  

Finding out! Listen to my podcast, listen to the expert. No, but apparently gifted people have a different internal different experience of the outside world. And growing up,  everybody feels the way they experienced the world is how everybody experienced it. Yeah, but apparently this is not true. So for me, the tell-tale signs were really, when my friend shared her story. She told me that she had dyslexia, she had difficulties doing simple math, but if you give her a calculator she can totally manage very advanced math. And by the way, she's an accountant now,


Saskia de Feijter  

okay.


Nadja Cereghetti  

So the same goes for a lot of things and people. Gifted people suffer from imposter syndrome. As I said, they suffer from this pain of the world, and they feel they're responsible to really help heal the world and make it a better place. And they feel so strongly about inequality. And I think this is also where I see you working, you know, making conscious decision because you want to make the world a better place. And this is also where I realized, like, I really tried to buy consciously and make good decisions for the environment, not just for myself, for my own wallet, or for my own well being, but it's really, on a global scale. This is where it's important for people that are unidentified gifted adults, that they learn that they are gifted, so they can go on their journey, stop suffering and start using their potential for something meaningful. It doesn't mean that they need to save the world, but it helps them also see themselves in a much more positive light. And when you are, you know, grounded in who you are, you can also contribute better, and you're a better friend, you're a better spouse, you're a better parent.


Saskia de Feijter  

Yeah, and finding those tools to make your life better. And one of those tools can be tidying up your life, because if there's less clutter in your house, there's less clutter in your brain. And I am not sure, but I think that if your brain is active the whole time, it really makes a difference, tidying up your place.


Nadja Cereghetti  

It does. And this is exactly where I'm at now. I'm 37 years old now and I have such a messy CV. I did that and I did this and I was ashamed even like-- If I apply for a job, I'm like, "Oh, God, like what do what? What are they gonna think?"


Saskia de Feijter  

The thing is that you just have so many interests and you're very curious about everything. And that's, that's actually not so much messy as it is just-- you get inspired about a lot of things, and it's a different way of looking at it. 


Nadja Cereghetti  

Right, exactly. So now that I know that there's this underlying cause of giftedness. First, I thought this is like a puzzle piece. But it's not. It's really the red thread throughout my life. Looking back from early childhood, going to the school that I chose, and also the career choices that I made, and now the place that I work, you know, being surrounded by all these scientists. It's not just Scientific Research Center, it's also an institution that really wants to bring the best science to all the people in the world, especially low and middle income countries. And I'm really struggling to move away from this environment because it really resonates so much with my personal values. I was thinking to myself, "Why can I not be happy in a corporate job, make six figures a year and just travel the world and just be happy? Why do I struggle financially?" That's because this way I can, you know, have a meaningful career, in a sense. 


Saskia de Feijter 

But now you've knitted... [ha ha ha] You've knitted all these little pieces of your life together with that red thread, and you're fulfilling your different interests, and you're making the podcast, you're doing something good for the world, you're helping people tidy, you have this own practice in your life for keeping your life tidy... So you're essentially like, knitting a red sweater that fits you really well with all these different things. And I think that sounds so great and cozy, and I can keep this metaphor going forever. [laughing] But, and it also really resonates with me, and I see a lot of parallels in my life as well. And so I think it's so important that people check out your podcast, and if they even hear something that slightly resonates, just let your curiosity win and have a listen. I'm gonna ask you about all your details, and we're definitely going to mention them in the show notes, but first I just wanted to ask you... You also mentioned that in your life, you make conscious decisions when it comes to nature and our world. My question that I ask everybody is, what do you find really hard to give up when it comes to living an eco conscious lifestyle? So what do you do that, you know, that isn't helping our Earth? But you would have a hard time giving that up? What is that?


Nadja Cereghetti 

There's two things that come to mind. So first is really- it's traveling by plane. I really love traveling, and going somewhere without a plane is really difficult for me. I hate flying, but it gets me places. Yeah. And I think the second one is all these disposable plastic cups. I'm a huge fan of takeaway coffee. And I have my own mugs, but I don't bring them in the morning. 


Saskia de Feijter 

It's a hard habit to shake, isn't it? Water bottles, I've gotten used to, but takeaway coffee is still like, it's still hard to get hold of the habits. 


Nadja Cereghetti 

It is, it's so hard. The other day I bought a coffee and it was in this plastic cup, you know, plastic cup and plastic cover, and then they gave you a cardboard straw. So they're now like, "Oh, let's save the planet!" but no, you know,--


Saskia de Feijter 

--By not taking the straw. [chuckling]


Nadja Cereghetti 

[Laughing] And I'm like, "Yeah, that's really making a point."


Saskia de Feijter 

"Can you just pour the drink in the straw and keep the plastic cup?" [laughing] 


Nadja Cereghetti 

Oh, and then you know, you suck it through this cardboard straw and it just dissolves. And you're like, "I wish the plastic straw was back." 


Saskia de Feijter 

So I recently got metal straws for at home. And they're pretty cool. I love them. And I've also used the bamboo straws. But they're very chunky, I don't really like them. But we do have the coffee shop around the corner that has this eco plastic and they're okay too. I guess so. I really like that. I think in the holiday they're working on banning all the plastic straws. I'm really happy about that. And we just have to get used to it, right? Yeah. OK, so now I'm going to do the "or" questions, and you have to choose, right? So I mention two things and you have to choose. So would you rather make all your clothes yourself from now on or buy everything secondhand?


Nadja Cereghetti 

If I have to make them all myself, I will go around naked. [both laughing] Let me buy secondhand.


Saskia de Feijter 

Like in this podcast where it's mainly textile based, this is actually a question that could go either way, but if you ask just a general person on the street, they would probably go for secondhand but--


Nadja Cereghetti 

Well I'm also a small knitter, let's just put it that way. I do like to knit and I like to, you know, make things with my hands. But yeah, I think I will only walk around in shawls and a beanie.


Saskia de Feijter 

[laughing] Just make a very big shawl. And then make another one and tie it around your waist, you'll be fine. [chuckling] So if you had to choose between Netflix for free for life, or a weekly free fruit basket for life, what would you choose?


Nadja Cereghetti 

Oh, living in Switzerland, this answer is easy. Because fruits are so expensive. 


Saskia de Feijter 

Really? 


Nadja Cereghetti 

Yeah, they are very expensive. Everything's expensive in Switzerland. 


Saskia de Feijter 

That's true. 


Nadja Cereghetti 

Apparently, even Netflix is more expensive. But it's on a smaller scale. So I definitely choose the fruits for free. I can pay for Netflix.


Saskia de Feijter 

Good for you. And if you had to choose, then we go back to the planes, I guess, would you choose lots of holidays close to home? Or just once every, let's say two years a little bit further away, where you might need a plane?


Nadja Cereghetti 

I... I'll prefer the smaller holidays sprinkled through the year. It gives you something to look forward to. And I--


Saskia de Feijter 

That's true. That's true. Break up your stress levels.


Nadja Cereghetti 

Yeah. And I love traveling. So if I have to wait two years, that's difficult. So even now, like that's the most difficult part at this time and age. 


Saskia de Feijter 

All right. Well, I loved talking to you, Nadja. And it's so fun to go actually go with you on this journey where you find out how all these different things are knitted together in your life. And I'm really looking forward to see how your podcast will evolve and what kind of guests you will have. And also your tidying business, because don't we all love a tidy house? Can you please share with us your information where people can find you?


Nadja Cereghetti 

Yes, absolutely. It was such a pleasure to talk to you. And I hope your listeners get something out of this. And if they want to find me, I have a website for my tidying business, which is tidytothrive.com. I'm also on Instagram, and on Facebook. And then my podcast, I call it Unleash Monday and you can find me on unleashmonday.com. And on Instagram, I'm @Unleash.Monday.


Saskia de Feijter 

And why did you call it Unleash Monday?


Nadja Cereghetti 

So I didn't want to bring that giftedness into the title. As we said there's so much trauma and negative association. So I kept it fairly general. I just want people to have an awesome start into the week and get a new like information so they can really use this and make their week the best week ever, so yeah, it's called Unleash Monday.


Saskia de Feijter 

[intro fades in] That's lovely. That's so cool. Good luck with everything you do. And thank you so much for being on my podcast. I really really enjoyed having you.


Nadja Cereghetti 

Thank you for having me. I had a really good time.


[music continues]

Saskia de Feijter 

I just loved talking to Nadja. It's so satisfying to hear a person's life come together through their personal journey, like picking up tools along the way that helped them find more focus and get away from overwhelm. And in the meantime, creating A Smaller Life! Find all the information about Nadja in the shownotes and also don't forget to subscribe to her newsletter. If you have any additional questions after this episode, don't hesitate to get in touch via the website at www.ja-wol.com. Ja, Wol!


Transcribed by https://otter.ai

AND ALISON MAGLAUGHLIN!


Leave a Comment

Please note, comments must be approved before they are published


BACK TO TOP