Laila Tarraf was the Chief People Officer for Peet’s Coffee and Tea, the iconic Berkeley coffee roaster that launched the craft coffee movement in America, but she had a secret: she was failing in the most important relationships in her life. Yes, she was a strong and effective business leader, the successful daughter of immigrants, and the mother of a toddler, but she was disconnected from her own feelings and had little patience for the feelings of others.
All that changed when life handed her a trifecta of losses: her husband died of an accidental drug overdose, and her parents' deaths followed in quick succession. Laila had spent her life leading from the head, convinced that any display of vulnerability would make her soft.
And it did, but soft turned out to be strong. As she reconnected to her heart, one painful step at a time, something remarkable happened: she became a better leader, a better mother, and a better person. Her heart turned out to be the true source of her power, at home and at work.
Strong Like Water is a book about healing, about waking up, about learning who you are -- who you really, truly are at the core -- and reclaiming and embracing all the pieces of yourself you had long abandoned in the name of survival. For women longing for balance, this is a path to opening our hearts and infusing our leadership and relationships with love, compassion, and authenticity.
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