How To Accept Yourself

Over time I have observed points of similarity in my clients’ life journeys. Although the content of their story differs from person to person the process tends to be similar, one of gradual discovery.

They learn that they need to learn to love themselves – or, a term I prefer, to make friends with themselves – before they can create authentic relationships with others. They learn that they need to tell the truth to themselves first before they can even know what truths they need to tell others. 

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What does it mean to be authentic?

Have you noticed that a lot of people are using the word ‘authenticity’? It sounds like the Holy Grail to more meaningful and fulfilled relationships and, you know what?, it is.

Because I was intrigued by people’s increasing willingness to explore the idea of being authentic, I started conversations around this word and, it turned out, that people have different definitions.

For some people it means having personal boundaries – no ‘fuzzy edges’ is how a friend put it which makes sense because you can’t be authentic if your edges are blurry.  In my opinion, blurry edges go hand-in-hand with being a people-pleaser, a condition

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Do you want to change your life? Here’s how

Here’s an interesting idea:  your thoughts create your life experience.

How do you react to this statement?  With disbelief, scepticism, scorn?  I don’t blame you.  It is a rather provocative idea.  However, if you ever doubted the truth of this, all you have to do is think back to the Paralympics.  These athletes turned our prejudices towards people with disabilities upside down:  what is or is not possible to do, to be, to have.

So I say to you:  the quality of

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What does it mean to stand in your own way?

I’ve often heard people say “Get out of your own way!”  I used wonder, what does it mean?  How does one stand in one’s own way?

And then – I saw it, with such intense clarity, it felt like a bolt of lightening.

We stand in our own way when we play small which begs the next logical question, “How do we play small?”

I recently attended a group of potential entrepreneurs who had really powerful dreams and a clear idea of how they might make a contribution by starting their own business.  One young woman stood up to tell us all about hers.

Passion oozed out of her body and her eyes were shining.  We were

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What is your ‘Big Why’ and why do you need to know it?

As I was doing my morning exercises, feeling all the aches and pains that go with it, I started thinking, “why am I putting myself through this?”

For most of my life I have suffered from lower back pain due to a condition called scoliosis or curvature of the spine. I’m lucky it hardly shows in the shape of my body but, in the last year or so, the pain has become worse.  This means I

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What do you value the most in your life?

I have met very few women who knew at the outset of their working life what kind of work they would be passionate about; the kind of work that would give their life purpose and meaning.  Some people never find out and their lives are that much dimmer as a result.

As a young woman, I’d never given any thought about figuring out what really mattered to me.  I became a secretary because that was what my Dad decided I should become as I had a gift for languages.  I never cared one way or the other – at least not for a very long time.

I’d been a secretary for about 18 years when the circumstances of my life changed.  When my husband’s application

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Why do we resist compliments and positive feedback?

One of the curses most women suffer from is their inability to accept compliments and positive feedback.  Occasionally, men are plagued with this condition as well.  There’s even a term for it: ‘The Impostor Syndrome’ or ‘The Impostor Phenomenon’.

In my days as HR Manager I used to carry out the performance appraisals of my team.  We had been trained in the ‘sandwich’ approach to giving feedback, that is, start with a positive comment followed by an area for improvement and ending with another positive comment.

It used to puzzle me that most of my team didn’t seem to register my first compliment; instead they were waiting for the ‘but’.  Not only that,

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How to make yourself un-happy: the power of the mind

Some years ago I attended a personal development workshop. By the second day we had all bonded.  The facilitator then introduced an exercise:

One participant, Jenni, was selected and sent out of the room while the rest of us were briefed.  We were instructed to ignore Jenni.

For the next half hour Jenni tried to engage with the others, the very people she had already bonded with. – but to no avail. She was ignored and given the cold shoulder.  After a while

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What does it mean to be present in your own life?

One April, about fifteen years ago Alan, my then life coach, who had the gift of second sight – though one he rarely used – told me that my Mum would die that October.

When I told friends they were absolutely horrified but, for me, that was a precious gift.

From that moment on, if I felt there was something I wanted to say to her or if I found myself thinking how much I loved her, I decided to stop waiting to tell her until next time I phoned or visited, as I used to and started calling her to tell her straight away.

That warning made it clear to me that

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