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Heather Howley, Chief Pilot & CEO, on the Journey of Independent Helicopters

By Alicia Biggs, Times Union

April 27, 20189

Heather Howley was honest about how she sees herself: Bullheaded.

The CEO and lead pilot for Independent Helicopters LLC admitted as much when she spoke to a packed crowd as part of the Changemakers series presented by Bank of America, particularly when revisiting a conversation she had with her mother years back about wanting to become a flight instructor despite Howley having a degree in biology. Her mother feared for her safety and Howley replied, "Either you cosign my loan or you don't."

Advice Howley shared with the audience:

• Own who you are. Give yourself credit and remember to reflect and forgive yourself. For every person who says you can't, let it fuel you. Find the people who love and support you and treat others the way you want to be treated (yes, even the ones you don't like).

• Create a time and space where you can just be present and regroup. Having a few minutes of silence with your eyes closed and breathing will propel you further.

• Life is only as hard as you make it. Perspective is a powerful tool to have. Listen. Really listen. Not everyone needs advice or an opinion. They just want to be heard. It will make you a better communicator.

• Make a habit of reflecting on your week and preparing for the week ahead. Write down five things you're grateful for and five things you acknowledge yourself for. Take responsibility for yourself. Everyone and everything that annoys you is showing you something in yourself that you can forgive or change.

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