Henrique Silva is a personal coach and entrepreneur based in Nazaré, Portugal, passionate about helping people. Professionaly, he is the men and the heart behind the scenes of Looking You and SURF4 You, the companies he created to fuel his passion. Unlike many, there was not a moment when Henrique felt people were his passion; he was born into it. It was not something he understood straight away, but a succession of events he only realised at a later stage.
This is Henrique’s story
At the age of 5, on his first day of school, Henrique noticed a young girl from a very poor family of Nazaré who had nits and carried with her everything else that came with the label of poverty. The seat next to her was free, no one wanted to sit beside her. He decided to take that seat, for two reasons. Reason number one: Henrique did not want the girl to sit alone. Number two, he felt in his heart what his colleagues were doing was wrong. His school years carried on like this, in and out of the playground.
When Henrique turned 17, he decided that through helping people and the places where they worked the world would become a better place. He decided to study health and safety in the workplace. When he finished the course, at the age of 20, Henrique decided to carry on his premise by enrolling in a Management course at University. However, after a year and half of university life, he decided to quit.
“To live your passion, your values have to be part of it. When we live our values, the magic happens.”
The system was broken. The grading system was broken. Henrique had enrolled thirsty of knowledge, but the teachers did not quench his thirst. His colleagues cheated and glorified themselves over the amazing fake results they obtained. Henrique was trapped in a world that went against his core values: honesty, knowledge, and freedom.
Straight away, Henrique decided to put to good use his health and safety qualification and applied for a series of jobs in that field. He got a job, observed what he felt that could be improved, waited a few months, and feeling hopeful contacted the director with his suggestions. Nothing changed. He quit.
A new company promised to do all the things the other did not, but the sun did not shine long. Henrique accepted the job offer, worked four months and got paid for two. A little bit lost, 23-year-old Henrique started doing a web design course, and learned about the world of digital marketing. There was hope! By accident Henrique found a job that allowed him to help others selling their services to people who needed them, drink knowledge and work from anywhere in the world. A new path, a new opportunity, and the same old dream. He felt excited and spent as many nights figuring google out as he could.
The following year, Henrique found out about this project in Portugal called “Empresa na hora” where entrepreneurs could choose a company name and straight away they would own a registered company. Out of the hundreds of names available “Looking for direction” caught his eye. His first digital marketing company was born. A company that would, later on, dive into the world of personal coaching. He hired five people, but at times he had over 100 working with him.
For the first time, earning money was only a consequence of doing something that was useful for the others. And that same money was a tool which allowed Henrique to participate in projects he believed in.
“Something great is not always a big thing. There is greatness in small things.”
During the following years, Henrique opened and closed several companies until he created “Looking You”. A company which specialises in personal branding and in helping people becoming the leaders of their life, to live their passions, to put into practice their core values and turning them into their personal brand. On the side as a good Nazareno, a surfer eternally connected to the sea, he opened his own surf school to join two of his passions: personal coaching and surfing.
For Henrique, surfing is a therapy. When you surf you need balance, you need to be accepting. Sometimes you head to the beach thinking, the sun will shine, the sky will be blue, the sea will be at 20c, the surf will be amazing and you find rain, small waves and a strong current. Which gives you two choices, you feel upset because things are not as you envisioned, or you accept to control the only thing you can, your own ability to react to things, just like in life. The water is part of the dance. And surfing obliges you to be in the moment, exactly where you are.
During his path, his biggest challenge was awakening his own light. After all, who the hell was he to want to help others? How presumptuous and arrogant was that? He was not the Messiah. As many Henrique was taught that someone else is that divine light, not that we are all light and we are divine. No one told him that by awakening his own light, others would awake too. Even if by doing so helped others, there might be personal attacks. At the end of the day, “If we do not change, the world will not change.”