How one woman used her creativity to improve the lives of those with autism.
Betina Carstens: CEO of Inhust ApS – ShowMyDay
Budding meets Danish entrepreneur, Betina Carstens, who has worked with people with autism and spectrum disorders for 13 years. Betina is a trained child educator and riding master. She tells us how she turned her personal interest into a successful business.
MY FAMILY WAS FALLING APART…
Betina’s own son, Baldur, began to develop difficulties at the age of 11 similar to those with autism. People with autism tend to need a lot of structure and often find it difficult to retain the information they need to give themselves this structure. For Baldur that meant that he couldn’t remember his timetables which made him extremely anxious - and being in this state of high-stress was negatively impacting upon his relationships with others.
As a consequence, Betina’s family life really suffered. “My family was simply falling apart”, she tells us. It was extremely hard and stressful for Betina to see her son struggle. She searched the market for a device that could help both her and her son. But when she couldn’t find what she needed, she decided to make it herself.
I HAD TO DO SOMETHING…
This led to the creation of the app ShowMyDay – a personalized structuring tool that helps people of all ages with special needs and their relatives to plan out their days. Structure is fundamental for people with autism in order to make room for learning and being social. Betina wanted to make it as easy as possible.
A conversation with Betina
What changed after Baldur started using the app? – After a while, Baldur really began to develop an understanding of his daily tasks as well as a sense of time. He now knows what to expect throughout the day, which makes a huge difference for him. Baldur can focus his energy on the tasks he is able to complete, instead of being overwhelmed by keeping track of his daily activities. I was able to help him much better and more effectively, which took a load of stress off the family.
Does Baldur still use ShowMyDay – The results from using the app were actually so positive that Baldur doesn’t even need to use the app at the moment. It helped him to develop and regain structure so now he is able to complete tasks to a larger degree by himself. It sounds contradictory, but structure was crucial in helping him learn flexibility.
What do you love about your job? – I love being able to meet and advise people on the product. We believe in providing a customised product to everyone. We always meet with users so we can provide the best possible experience and customise the app to them. We want to be able to teach, support and present the concept, because ShowMyDay is a lifestyle change and not just a link.
What is the hardest part about the job? – Every single day I find myself in situations I have never been in before. Starting a business is a huge challenge, but it is so rewarding to be able to make a difference and give the individual user a boost. I get to do what I love to do.
How Betina shines in her career
Everyday Betina gets to play on her strengths of leadership, courage, dedication, consideration, logical thinking, patience and responsiveness in her role as CEO and teacher for Inhust ApS.
Hard skills and knowledge
Betina is a trained child educator and riding master. Her background as an educator of children has developed her understanding of the needs of those with autism. Working as a riding master and being involved in competitive sport has developed her independence and business skills. Both backgrounds have been useful in order to develop ShowMyDay.
Betina has combined her interest of family relationships and love of children with her own personal story to create a fulfilling and viable business.
Betina describes herself as the Social type. She enjoys work that help others learn and grow. She also loves to solve social problems, which ShowMyDay is an example of.
Betina’s efforts to help make sure her son has the best possible chances in life, aligns with her natural essence as a ‘Healer’. Her new found entrepreneurial role has also allowed her ‘Creator’ to shine – someone who uses innovation and skills to make new things.