The Success Story
An Inspiring Canadian Success Story
Today we sit with Stephane Moraille, an accomplished lawyer and talented musician with a dedication to using her considerable vocal chops to uplift. As anyone who has witnessed her perform can attest, she is part of the diva power vocal tradition. Stephane is also an intellectual who understood, early on, the value of creative thinking, and the necessity to bring forth, from a higher level of thinking, solutions to problems that were created from lack thereof.
This past summer, she released a solo album, Daïva, and performed at the Montreal Jazz Festival. When she’s not creating and performing, she’s helping others bring their creative vision to life through her work as Director of Commercial and Legal Affairs for the Phi Centre, an organization dedicated to cultivating and supporting art in all its forms, and bringing the Montreal art scene onto the global stage. She also sits on the Board of directors of the Conseil des arts et des Lettres du Québec, and proffers strategic advice on arts policy and funding for performing arts, multidisciplinary arts, circus arts, visual arts, media arts, architectural research, arts and crafts, and literature; thereby, challenging the limiting left brain-right brain myth by firing at life with all her neurons.
A self-made renaissance woman, Stephane believes that empowerment has its root in the little things. Focusing on what one can do right now, with what one has, can lead to unexpected avenues. Nevertheless, we asked her a few big questions.
This past summer, she released a solo album, Daïva, and performed at the Montreal Jazz Festival.
An accomplished lawyer and talented musician with a dedication to using her considerable vocal chops to uplift.
When asked “what is the ideal vision you would like to contribute to the world?”
In my view, a dream community is composed of woke individuals; of people who have found their center and who have a level of consciousness above reactivity. If you simply rearrange the “c”, you get creativity. See?
People from strong families form strong communities, strong workplaces and so forth. From the inside out. My stint in politics showed me that real change happens from within, and away from a constant oppositional environment aimed at taking down your political rival. Right now, more than ever, we need a curriculum that teaches kids how to cope with the present world. A curriculum where relational brain skills, arts and culture are valued just as much as a classic curriculum centered on IQ. This will translate in a transformed workplace and, hopefully, a transformed society, where creativity is no longer a rare talent, but a sought-after and nurtured skill.
What is the message you would like to spread?
Free will. Free mind.
Follow your heart, you can never be rid of it, but take your brain with you. Not everyone is born with the same opportunities and skillset. That’s just the way life is. However, everyone is free to make choices. All we really have in this life are free will and a free mind. You get a free mind by asking the right questions. Answers are useless if you don’t ask the right questions.
Make sure that the thoughts you entertain are your own and of high quality. I try to control my emotions because, when I don’t, they litter my life and reduce me to a switch that anyone can flip. If you can do that, you can answer life’s challenges by making good choices.
Dare to look into your life with lucidity. Stop comparing your life to others’. Focus on making choices based on your own data. A lot of the time, we miss out on our great questions because we are looking at other people’s answers. Things might look great on the outside, but we each carry our own burden. It is in the choices that we make that we either lift the burden or pile more on. That’s everyone’s challenge in life: to lift up their own burden and become free. If you can, make powerful choices. Those feel awesome.
What is your superpower?
I am humble and I am constantly learning.
Oftentimes, we become set in our ways. I have been able to renew myself because I listen. Even when I think that I already know what a person is saying, there is always one new bit, a novel nugget of precious information revealed. This is invaluable when you want to grow. Listen twice as much as you speak. It takes humility to learn. At any age and any stage of life.
I also admit my faults. I try to never be wrong and strong. There is valour in recognizing your faults. It means you can do better because you know where you didn’t. Because you admitted your flaws.
That, and I fail well. I came back from incredibly hard knocks and kept going. After I am blown to pieces, I pick myself up. Forward with a broken heart. It’s a double-edged sword because, if you don’t take time to take in your failure, you don’t take time to celebrate your wins either. I also know how to move on when I feel I need to move towards a new learning experience. I have changed lives over and over. I went from a professional dancer, to a teacher, to an academic, to politics, to a performer, to a working mother. My law career began in music, expanded through movies and television to technology and digital arts. There is always more to learn, from the heart, the most.