Wendela Elsen

Life and Career Coach


I have provided life coaching services to many individuals who were at a point in their lives where they had lost focus and needed to rethink the direction in which they were going. I have worked with men and women who wanted to overcome their anxieties and find the confidence to follow their dreams and aspirations. Originally from the Netherlands, I have 25 years of international corporate experience as an HR professional (UK, Netherlands, Taiwan, Japan). As an HR Director for a global professional services firm I provided business coaching and career coaching to professionals at all levels and advised many on finding the right work-life balance.


Education and training

I have a Master’s degree in sociology from the University of Amsterdam. In addition to coaching training at the international firms I worked with I was trained by the Coaches Training Institute in 2007.


Apart from my background in business I am also a mother of three teenagers. Over the years there were occasions when I felt that I had to change direction, refocus and find a new purpose. I have always found it very useful to seek the help of a professional coach to guide me towards that next step. I can recommend it!

OpenRabbit, why the name and logo?

When my twin daughters were about four years old they used to come to our bedroom on a lazy Sunday morning and offered to open the curtains. They were speaking in Dutch and instead of saying ‘curtains’ (gordijnen) they said ‘rabbits’ (konijnen). Just a few letters’ difference but not quite the same meaning, as I explained to my husband who does not speak Dutch. From then onwards we talk about ‘open the rabbits’ when we open our curtains. From this I took OpenRabbit as a memorable name for my work activities.

For my logo my Japanese mother-in-law, who was a very creative person, drew the picture of a rabbit opening curtains. I wanted to embed my experiences in Japan in the presentation of OpenRabbit and I decided to use the style of a Japanese seal (hanko). Every Japanese adult owns a hanko and it is used as a formal personal signature. Whenever I look at my logo I remember the very special life and work experiences that I gained during my time in Japan.

The Surrey Hills, area of outstanding natural beauty

The photos that you see on this website are all made in the Surrey Hills. This is the place where I find my peace and calm, alone with the dog or with my rambling friends. After having lived in busy mega cities in the far east for 15 years, the move to Surrey brought me what I had missed in all these years; green space, stunning views, endless foot paths and beautiful flowers and wildlife. It gives me ample opportunity for mindfulness. I try to go for a walk in the Surrey Hills at least once a week, rain or shine. One of my rambling friends, Orande Mensink, is a fantastic photographer and these are her photos.

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