Welcome back to the Speak Female Podcast in this Episode Lucy Grimwade is joined by Tracy James, Samantha Harman,Kim Gowing and Charlotte Picker discussing and understanding confidence. From Demystifying the term to challenging assumptions around how someone with confidence shows up. This episode dives into how do we build confidence? How do we maintain confidence? And, how resilience’s play a part?
Ending with a toolbox on how we can all develop our confident muscle?
I get asked at least once a week – ‘how do you do it all?’
And every time I get asked this question, I always stumble on the answer. I start to mutter something along the lines of how I don’t have kids yet, then start making excuses for my success and mention that doing things virtually has made things easier…
Then it hit me, why am I apologising?
I do, do a lot. And I do it darn well. Yes zoom has been a huge enabler, but that isn’t why or even how I do it all.
In this blog post I am going to let you in on how I do it all and how you can too.
⚡️ Since reading Robin Sharma’s book – The 5am Club, I have embraced the key learnings. The creative in me designed my own version on elevating my leadership and coaching:
No, I don’t get up at 5am.
And No, I don’t always stick to the rules.
But I do follow the leadership empires. I am huge believer in being self-aware and taking care of myself. For me to be the best for my clients so they can achieve their results, I need to make sure I am healthy, emotionally stable, educated and my inner spirit in nurtured.
⚡️ Who you have in your tribe matters. And gosh, don’t I know it. My partner is incredibly supportive when it comes to my career, ambition and needs. In our household there is no such thing as pink jobs and blue jobs. Just a balance of support, ambition and love.
Someone said to me last week – ‘if you can’t solve a problem with your 5 closest friends, you need to get new ones.’ This is true, over the last 3 to 5 years I have surrounded myself with the right people who I know can help and support me. And, I have parted ways with those who no longer support my growth.
⚡️ I manage my time well: I have a full time job, I coach between 2 to 3 clients a week, I am involved in speaking engagements, I prep/record/edit a podcast, attend or lead networking events, I read lots of books and I write a blog… etc.
I don’t waste time scrolling through Instagram (anymore). I don’t binge watch Netflix. I pre-plan most evening activities e.g. 7pm networking hubs. And, I pick and choose what I do. I no longer feel obligated to attend every single damn networking call. I only attend ones where I can provide value and/or go there with a specific purpose.
Side note: I recommend reviewing this sense of obligation. We are always striving to do more, be more and say more because society is telling us to. But, is that what you want to be doing?
Are you a bad mum because you didn’t bake cookies for the school bake sale? – NO, who doesn’t love M&S buckets?
Are you a bad friend because you rescheduled dinner plans? – Nope.
Are you a bad leader because you didn’t work a 12 hour day? – Hell no, and if you do normally – we need to talk.
➡️ When I start to feel overwhelmed or burnout creeping in (because I have worked on my triggers and I know what to look out for) … I take a break, go for a massage or a walk or journal.
Why I do it all
Someone asked this week – ‘What is your why?’ And wow, what a questions.
The reason I work so hard is because I want to empower, encourage and grow other people. I want to enable others to be the best of versions of themselves. Because I know we all have the potential to be in that top 5% of leadership and the human race.
Oh and whilst I am on the subject of leadership, I am still on a mission to change the face of it.
So my why: Empower and enable others to progress whilst changing the face of leadership.
When I asked the question back, I was blown away with her response: ‘Everyone is welcomed at my table.’ Backed up with a strong story of female empowerment.
Now over to you
We have all seen that saying: ‘You have the same amount of hours as Beyoncé’
I have the same amount of hours in the day as Oprah. And, hell yes I make them count.
What will you start to do with your hours in the day?
It was reported that 73% of British workers took time out of work because of stress in the work place… and 19% quit on the spot!
From Lack of support and excessive workload. To poor company culture and incompetent colleagues. There are many factors that lead to stress. I explore how work related stress impacts your and how we can implement some remedies to alleviate the excessive pressures.
HSE’s formal definition of work-related stress is: “The adverse reaction people have to excessive pressures or other types of demand placed on them at work.”
Stress V Stretch
Although stress is a state more than an illness, however, it is worth noting that if stress becomes too excessive and prolonged – mental and physical illness may develop.
Work related stress develops because a person is unable to cope with the demands being placed on them. Stress can be a significant cause of illness and is known to be linked with high levels of sickness absence, staff turnover and other issues such as mistakes and errors.
Stress can hit anyone at any level of the business. From looking into this topic further as well as discussing this at my networking group, it was found that work related stress is widespread and is not confined to particular sectors, jobs or industries.
Pressures at work compared to stress caused because of work has a clear difference: Pressure can be positive, motivating factor in someone’s career, and is often essential. It can help us achieve our goals as well as perform better.
Stress occurs when this pressure becomes excessive.
Stress affects people in different ways and what one person finds stressful can be normal to another. With each new situation a person will decide what the challenge is and whether they have the resources to cope. If they decide they don’t have the resources, they will begin to feel stressed. How they appraise the situation will depend on various factors, including:
Background and culture
Skills and experience
Ethnicity, gender, age or disability
Just like how people are affected by stress, the ways of managing can be different for each individual. It is all well and good to talk about a work life balance, however what people really need are tools and techniques to help them.
How to alleviate work related stress can be managed by:
Talking to your manager, colleague or HR. There is no shame in saying that the current pressures that are on you are causes you to feel stressed. It is always best to take some examples with you that include situation when you have felt stressed or document you current work load to show your manager. By talking, you are highlighting the problem. You never know, you might be able to recruit a junior to support you.
Get a priority list together. Have you ever used a Kanban board? Such a great way to visually see what you need to do and what you have achieved. (also GREAT for reporting) You can use Trello which is a free online tool.
Be part of a culture change. Do you have an idea to help improve team performance? an Idea on how to feel calmer at work? Maybe introduce a well-being Wednesday? Be the change you want to see.
Change your job or career direction. This one will take more time and planning. However, if you really are struggling this might be the option.
Have a break. Stop, put down your work phone and be present with your family and friends.
Exercise! Make time to go for a walk/run. Go to that gym class. Getting out helps clear the mind, looking after yourself will help with all aspects of your life and your mental health.
Do you have a story of stressed caused by work? Or do you have any suggestions of remedies? Comment below to share.
People evolve thus people can change. We have a personality foundation which starts to develop the day we are born. Our environments, education, childhood, peer groups as well as our hobbies, shape the human being that we are today.
The Psychology Today wrote: “Can we change people? It depends what we mean by change. First, can people change? Well, obviously. For example, we get older. Can we change in every respect? Obviously not. We change in some respects and not in others. “
I recognise in myself that I still have the core personality foundations that I had when I was in my teens. For example, I talk with my hands, I am fiercely independent and super ambitious… I also care a lot about people and wrongly, what they think about me.
However the way I now conduct myself has evolved. And the way I think, feel and listen is different. The way I approach an activity or situation is tailored from lessons learnt throughout my life where I have been successful and of course when I have also failed.
To understand more about changes in people, I did some research for this post and of course, that research means googling. I found that the results were more for answers for someone who is seeking some kind of clarity or explanation for behaviour that has caused them pain. Such as and mainly: cheating. It was surprising that with no clear answers. Using my platform, I wanted to start this post by addressing the leopard in the room.
Certain common phrases such as – “A leopard never changes its spots” and “Once a cheat, always a cheat” – might stick for a while, but if we decide that someone is set on their own path whether positive or negative, are we not doing so because, on some level, creating a barrier between their bad behaviour or success and the pain or jealousy they caused to protect ourselves?
Whilst it can be comforting to sometimes decide someone is bad, it can also be rewarding to perhaps ask why do they behaviour in such ways? Perhaps you are the one who is inflicting pain on others, have you ever stopped and wondered why you are doing this? Perhaps it is jealously? A childhood trauma that is unresolved? Or perhaps you are just so unhappy in yourself, you are making others around you unhappy?
Everyone has the ability to behave selfishly and be disruptive. We mess up and cause unbelievable pain to one another. Often repeat certain behaviours if the root cause isn’t addressed or time is spent on healing our previous wounds.
I am not saying if your partner has cheated on you to forgive them or even give an excuse, what I am merely suggesting is perhaps start by asking why. Ask why 5 times and see what could be rebuilt from opening up. Sadly, on the flip side of the coin, you will come across those who are content with inflicting pain on others. These people are not worthy of your time, efforts and loyalty. If you have recognised that change is needed, sometime that means leaving a person, environment and/or life to create a new path.
If we are seeking some kind of change in how we exist in relation to other people in this world the real question, is how much time, work and effort we will spend on ourselves?
This brings me onto my purpose of this post. I believe in change and that people can evolve, grow and transform.
The reason I believe this, is because I have changed. (Alex, I know you are laughing if you are reading this line!). The people I have met have shaped me, CBT and Counselling healed me, Coaching is evolving me and networking as well as blogging is expanding my connections.
Changing is a choice. Choice is the art of possibilities. And possibilities are endless.
Personal development is something most people associate with their jobs. Completing objectives and smashing targets to enable them to achieve their bonuses. But what if I told that personal development isn’t just something you do in your job, that actually this can aid an individual to change as well as enrich their potential?
There are so amazing tools, forums and people out there, right at your finger tips to get you started! Here are 5 areas to start your journey:
1: Of course, there is this blog
A Platform that is focused on female empowerment with the goal to enable women to be successful, strong and sassy. I write articles across a number of pillars: Personal Branding. Wellbeing. Female Empowerment. Life Style. Career Building. And… sometimes I might go off topic, like I did in this post, but roll with me.
The blog was created to connect others, provide empowerment, share knowledge, inspire the soul and give a sense of belonging.
Coaching is a process that aims to improve personal performance and focuses on the ‘here and now’ rather than on the distant past or future.
As a Professional Development Coach, I specialise in: Helping you to cultivate and implement your personal brand. Building personal & career confidence. Overcoming limited beliefs and amplifying your voice. Moreover, I also work with you to shift your fixed mindset into a growth mindset. You will finish your career coaching programme with a clear, concise career plan that will enable you to level up. Whether that is asking for more responsibility or finally applying for a leadership role.
3: Asking for professional help – CBT, Counselling and Therapy.
Cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) is a type of talking treatment which focuses on how your thoughts, beliefs and attitudes affect your feelings and behaviour, and teaches you coping skills for dealing with different problems.
It combines cognitive therapy (examining the things you think) and behaviour therapy (examining the things you do).
Counselling is the process by which a counsellor helps an individual understand and solve problems to help him or her cope with mental or emotional triggers. Where as Therapy usually involves talking about your situation in order to gain more understanding about issues such as mood, feelings, behaviour, and ways of thinking.
Ask your GP for advice on which treatment they would recommend.
4: Networking, attending industry related conferences/expos and connecting with others. I am part of the All Bright Academy that offer events throughout the year to attend. Women in Business Expo, Best You Expo and browsing through Meetup and Eventbrite to find local groups to attend.
5: Mentoring – Is there someone who you admire? Perhaps even aspire to follow in their footsteps! Never be afraid to reach out and offer to buy them a coffee. Mentoring is different to coaching. Mentoring is a relationship in which a more experienced or more knowledgeable person helps to guide a less experienced or less knowledgeable person. The mentor may be older or younger than the person being mentored, but he or she must have a certain area of expertise.
Working on yourself can start today…. Let it be DAY ONE, not one day.
So the question is, what are you prepared to do to grow, evolve and change?
In this 5 minute coaching episode – I take you through an exercise where you can create and achieve healthy boundaries. From establishing what boundaries mean for you to what you can do to protect yourself. Grab yourself a pen and paper and enjoy the episode.