Linda Neville on Women's Awards 2023 stage winning awards
What a rollercoaster of emotions on Friday evening, followed by a weekend of stunned reflection and today I am feeling blessed, grateful and delighted beyond words. Let me tell you why….I am sharing this as a shy introvert, so please bear with me. 
Three months ago I was so chuffed to be nominated for not one but two of the prestigious The Women's Awards. One was Outstanding Women in Care Services for East Midlands, an industry I have worked in for 35 years and the other was Outstanding Female Entrepreneur for East Midlands, an area that does not naturally resonate with my view of myself. You can imagine my delight when I was shortlisted, the last accolade I received was in primary school so this felt huge. Those close to me know that the last year has been challenging personally, losing my sister to cancer followed by my own surgery. I over-estimated my ability to bounce back and the journey has been much tougher than I anticipated. 
I turned up on Friday evening happy to have been shortlisted, looking forward to spending the time with lovely ladies that I know and admire and curious to see who would win. I was all set to cheer for the other finalists and was excited for them. It felt like it was all going as I had imagined it and as a control freak this felt ok. 
When they announced that I'd won the Outstanding Woman in Care Services for the East Midlands, I was shocked, thrilled and a bit emotional. I noticed my legs shaking as I made my way to the stage, my voice shook and I felt reassured as Sue Grogan handed me the award. Then it was off for photos and back to my table….. fantastic, I thought, great stuff and this will be so good for business, I can relax a bit now!  
Next, was Outstanding Female Entrepreneur for the East Midlands, to be announced as a finalist in this category was an amazing achievement and beyond my wildest dreams. Congratulations to Bhumika Parmar, so very well-deserved.  
Then came the shock of my life, the Inspirational Female Leader Award was being introduced, I had no idea of this category so I was busy wondering who it would be. I had a couple of possibilities in my head so when my name was announced for the East Midlands …. I could not be more astounded! If I thought my legs were shaking earlier… my whole body was shaking now and I was at serious risk of properly crying! 
I would like you to know that these awards mean such a lot to me for a number of reasons, professional and personal. Professionally I feel validated, I have always strived to do my best for clients and people I work with from a therapeutic / care perspective, people deserve their care to be personalised, effective and kind. That is what I and my team strive for with each person we work with. Entrepreneur finalist, well what can I say, I am heading in the right direction, our innovative approach is getting some traction and our results speak for themselves. 
Lastly, the Inspirational Female Leader accolade has blown me away, I started this by confessing to being a shy introvert, so this idea is outside how I could ever imagine myself. The fact that a group of judges has decided that I meet these criteria, with such amazing competition means so much to me. I love what I do, I find people fascinating, personal problems are there to be solved and emotions are there to guide us. I believe we all move forward through compassion and collaboration. Personally, these awards have come at a time when my confidence and energy needed a wee boost so I am so grateful. 
There are so many people to thank for their ongoing patience and support, congratulate and thank for the event. Please find these in my Linkedin Article. 
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