"You are not the first one sitting in my office with this problem," revealed my boss. "Be careful what you share. People will judge you."
I was a well-regarded top management consultant until that time of my life, and suddenly I could not even sort my laundry. Instead of investment opportunities, I saw random numbers scattered across Excel. I was a star extinguished. I planned to be no more.
I heard it many times: Don't talk. Don't share. Don't show.
A black cab picked me up from a mental health hospital gate to catch a flight to my HBS interview. The driver admitted: "I was afraid I was picking up a patient!" Hiding the truth behind my tailored suit aggravated my despair.
During the first year at HBS I found the courage to share my story of darkness. My hands were shaking, my head was spinning. And then it came: standing ovation, tears and hugs. Empowerment. I realized that sharing the darkness made my star shine bright. I finally feel comfortable in my own skin. I connect better with people. I radiate an inner light.
With my second chance, I will share and help others understand the power of their starlight.