About Me

I don’t merely coach my clients. I partner with them on their journey to discovering and actualizing their most profound dreams and their highest goal. Shoulder to shoulder, I’m with them as they free themselves of underlying fears, limiting beliefs and emotions, connect with their Authentic Self and lead their lives and careers with courage.

For the past 30 years, I have been honored to work with world-class business, political, entertainment, and spiritual leaders who were game changers as they fought against the Mafia, led the European Union, won Oscars and Grammy Awards, and bridged differences among people of all faiths, ideologies, and walks of life.

I've spent the last 20 years of my life focusing on my personal development and spiritual growth. 

I had to recognize and embrace my shadow, overcome deep-rooted fears such as not being good enough, and transcend disempowering emotions such as guilt and shame.

My adolescence was a nightmare. In high school, I was bullied by some of my teachers. I didn’t find a way to communicate that experience to my parents. I concluded that I lacked intelligence. I lost my self-esteem. I was crushed.

For a long time, I couldn’t stand up for myself. I folded before anyone I perceived being better than me and in authority. I became a pleaser in the hope of being accepted and avoiding being bullied.

But this experience also became the stepping stone for my personal development and my spiritual growth. 

I discovered that an inner core exists within us that is pure and has integrity and that nothing and nobody can harm, no matter what. 

Living from my core has given me a life of abundance, a life that today I live on my terms.

Whether it is writing a book or a column, teaching at Columbia University, coaching a Fortune 500 executive, or advising a Grammy award-winning artist, my career has allowed me to contribute to the life of individuals, organizations, and communities.

More importantly, what I do and who I am is a reflection of my life purpose.

Throughout my career, I had the honor to advise world leaders such as Bill Clinton, Hillary Clinton, Romano Prodi and business leaders such as Carlos Slim and Carlo De Benedetti; award-winning artists such as Forest Whitaker and Juanes, and dozens of CEOs, and executives; several are leading Fortune 500 companies. I’ve been coaching clients from Hong Kong to London, from Dubai to New York, and from Miami to several countries in Latin America. I've served on the board of the philanthropic organizations of Abigail Disney, Juanes, and soccer champion James Rodriguez.

My career started at 22, when I left the home where I grew up in Trento, Italy, to move to Palermo. There, I joined the anti-mafia social movement and worked as a senior advisor to the Mayor of Palermo, Leoluca Orlando, who has become a dear mentor and close friend.

While I was the director of the Center for International Conflict Resolution at Columbia University, I facilitated ceasefire negotiations in Colombia, advised community leaders from Syria, monitored UN peacebuilding efforts in the Western Balkans, advised national and local leaders on urban violence in several Latin American countries, and the reintegration of former combatants. 

These experiences allowed me to explore the dark side and the resilience of human nature.

I have written four books and authored hundreds of columns for Psychology Today (where more than a million readers have read my posts so far) and newspapers in Europe and Latin America. I have been lecturing at Columbia University and have given talks to the most prestigious universities in the world, from Oxford University and the London School of Economics to Harvard University, Princeton University, and Georgetown University. 

I’ve been interviewed by several media outlets, including The Wall Street Journal, The New York Times, The Washington Post, Bloomberg News, The Associated Press, Univision, Rai, and others.  

I consider life as one reality that expresses itself in different ways and areas.

I’m surrounded by authentic and loyal friends, who are ready to help me when I need it, and who don’t mind giving me honest feedback when I deserve it.

I love to travel, and I travel often. Having lived in different countries has allowed me to appreciate the richness of different cultures and lifestyles, and it expanded the boundaries of my life. Today, I live between Miami and Medellín in Colombia.

I genuinely believe that a fulfilling life is one in which you permanently grow. I nourish my spirit and mind through meditation and the reading of great spiritual authors. I regularly participate in seminars around the world.

From personal experience, I know how coaching can make a lasting impact on the life of individuals who are committed to their growth, change, and success.

Other things about me:

  • I’m 53
  • There are days when I am sad, nostalgic, and bored.
  • I’m not into sports.
  • There are days when I don’t meditate, and that’s ok.
  • My biggest temptation is pizza, and sometimes I give in.
  • I love to cook.
  • My current favorite restaurant is ElCielo by chef Juan Manuel Barrientos
  • Once I walked in the death of night through the streets of Rome with Bill Clinton.
  • So far, I have lived in 21 different apartments, in 10 different cities, in 5 different countries.
  • I hate snakes.
  • I love horses, and I integrate them into my coaching process.
  • I own a horse whose name is Oporto.
  • My favorite color is blue.
  • I spend most of my money on books, trainings, and electronics.
  • When I was 14 years old, I created in Italy a Fan Club for Luis Miguel, which my parents shut down as soon as they found out.
  • Pope John Paul II invited me a few times to have mass in his private chapel.
  • One of the most amazing experiences I had in my life was an afternoon I spent interviewing Giulietta Masina, the Italian actress and wife of late Federico Fellini, in their home in Rome.
  • My spiritual teacher and mentor was the late Chiara Lubich. She instilled in me a passion for unity.
  • Being at Tony Robbins’ Date with Destiny has been one of the most powerful experiences in my life. It was the right event at the right time in my life.
  • I started my Ph.D. in anthropology at Columbia University because my mentor Andrea Bartoli told me to do so. I didn’t know what I was going into. And I absolutely loved it. Forever grateful.
  • I didn’t get tenure at Rutgers University, where I was an assistant professor in anthropology for six years. Eternally grateful for that “failure.”
  • I love watching TV series when I need to wind down, especially Merlí, House of Cards, Shameless, Homeland, Billions, and The Wire.