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WTAF was I thinking?

Uncategorized Nov 05, 2023

"Alan's funeral is on the 17th November"

My response?

"I can't go, I've got my Power Up event"

Then I sat down and thought "WTAF was I thinking?" and the truth? 

I wasn't thinking.

The last month has been full on with work and kids, my Dad's health has been a rollercoaster of ups and downs, his big op had been postponed again, and this news just felt like one more thing, and with something already in my diary, I was armed with the facts - it's the day of my event.

So without even thinking, I responded with the information in front of me.

If I were still in corporate, it would have been a no-brainer - I'd be with my family.

I began thinking through all of the options, even though I'd already made my mind up - I had to postpone the event.

Then the what-ifs flooded in!

What if the attendees felt let down?

What if they hated me?

What if everyone wanted a refund instead of the new date?

What if the venue wouldn't let me postpone?

What if it damaged the reputation of my...

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HR, what language are you speaking, and how do you ensure that you are heard?

coaching hr leadership Aug 13, 2023

One of the biggest frustrations I hear from my HR clients is that they don’t feel heard. At Board meetings, they feel that whenever they speak, their colleagues turn into nodding dogs, agreeing that things need to change, but not actually taking any steps outside of the Boardroom to action or implement anything differently.

HR feel that they are banging their heads against a brick wall trying to get their Exec colleagues to pay attention to any of the People stuff, whilst everyone else remains so fixated on the money and the numbers.

A question I find myself asking often is ‘Have you explained your frustration?’ and the answer is usually no. The reasoning behind this is that they think it will be a waste of time, particularly given that their colleagues have made comments before about:

·     You do the people stuff

·     Tell us what you want us to do and we’ll just do it


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Are You a Primitive Leader Or An Innovative Leader? And why you're currently more primitive than you think

Currently, without even realising it, many more of you will be Primitive Leaders, rather than Innovative Leaders, and it’s impacting you, your people, and your performance.

Here’s why!

As your stress levels increase you move from the intellectual part of the brain, the part that always gets things right in life, innovates, and sees possibilities, to the primitive part of the brain, the part where your fight and flight sits, the part where you can operate from previous patterns of thoughts and behaviours, the part that sees you in panic mode, always on the lookout for the next imminent danger.

The primitive part of the brain is what kept the hunters safe when we all lived in caves. It wasn’t weighing up whether any of the wild animals had eaten and encouraging you to sit down in the middle of the field and have a picnic with your friends, it was keeping you on red alert, and keeping you safe.

And it’s this red alert, that many Exec teams have been living...

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The Gender Gap and why #EmbracingEquity won’t fix it!

burnout leadership Mar 08, 2023

The Gender Gap and why #EmbracingEquity won’t fix it!

Today we’ll see our feeds filled with stock photos of women hugging each other and themselves, we’ll see organisations talking about all that they are doing to #EmbraceEquity in their organisations whilst they bring out the bunting and balloons and provide a round of applause to all of the women in their workplace.

Don't get me wrong, I love a celebration (as long as it's a quiet, not over-stimulating one), and I love celebrating the incredible women in my life and in the world. But I’m done with paying lip service whilst we still see very little actual change in practice. And, until there actually IS equity, for all, there's nothing to embrace!

Unless you’ve been hiding under a bush for the last few years, you’ll know that I talk about Burnout A LOT! And whilst I work with men and women, the number of women I work with, who all come to me with the same issues as clients, or just to...

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Your voice matters

coaching leadership Mar 03, 2023

Your voice matters. 

In this post I’ll be talking to you about why our voices matter, what’s in our voice, what people hear when we talk and a learning experience following a podcast interview.

I have been on a self-development, self-discovery, self-learning and self-unlearning journey for years, decades even. Sometimes it can be exhausting and I have moments where I think it would be so much easier to live in complete ignorance and pretend that everything and life is ok. 

When we start on this deep dive self-discovery path it is endless and constant and every time you think that you’ve got something nailed and everything will become easier for you, it’s like you’ve just peeled back another layer of the onion and there’s something new to come to terms with. 

I find that the more I uncover and discover about myself and recognise I still have many repeating patterns of self-sabotage, something else comes up to bite me. 


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burnout coaching wellbeing Feb 17, 2023

How can we raise our awareness of what's happening to us when we self-sabotage and are there any repeating patterns we can look out for?

I’m not perfect and I still have these old patterns and old behaviours of self-sabotage that can still come up to the forefront, either when I’m not in my best place or if I’ve been letting go of my non-negotiables.

What happens to our brains, to our thoughts when we end up in this fight, flight, freeze mode? What can happen when our stress levels increase and when we’re not putting our wellbeing first and doing what is best for us?

It’s in this state that we can fall into our old patterns and even though we know that we’re doing things that aren’t good for us, there is that part of our brain that just tells us to keep going.

I invite you to give the self-sabotaging part of you a name. I’ve got 3 parts that I recognise within myself. Twins called Edna and Edith and The Warrior within. 

If you...

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The True Cost Of Burnout

The True Cost of Burnout

Burnout, as we know, is chronic workplace stress, and it sucks! It takes a long time to take hold of you and a long time to recover from it. And still, the number of people reaching burnout continues to rise. And it’s probably no surprise that after the last few years, with global events our need to keep pushing, the increase in stress levels, and the need to prove ourselves worthy and good enough, have contributed to these growing numbers.

As we continue to move from one stressful event to another in our outside world, there doesn’t appear to be a time anytime soon that we’ll see burnout numbers decrease.

And I hate to be doom and gloom in your inbox, but if we’re going to reduce, or ideally prevent burnout, then something needs to change.

I keep seeing posts and articles about who is to ‘blame’ for burnout. Is it the employer or the employee? Surely if chronic workplace stress is what’s causing...

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Are You A Superhero? And why pretending you are could be contributing to Burnout

Are You A Superhero?

I am not a superhero, and yet in the few years before I burned out, many of my friends, family, and colleagues would describe me as one.

“Hey Superwoman”

“Hey Wonderwoman”

“You’re like a superhero, I don’t know how you do it all”

And on the back of my leaving card as I moved from my penultimate internal role to my final internal role, the Head of Comms and Marketing, Simon, added to the messages of praise for my high-performing, over-achiever ridiculously high standards with this image.


Whilst I have never considered myself to be a superhero, a wonder woman or a superwoman, I can’t deny that the views of others, who saw me as a superhero of sorts, drove me to keep performing at the level I was performing at.

The endless juggling.

Each promotion came in very quick succession to the next.

The non-stop project work and continuous improvements.

The increased performance stats and the targets were all met,...

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Burnout 2.0: What I Didn't Realise I Needed To Do The First Time

Uncategorized Jan 18, 2023

I burned out, badly, in 2013. Yes, your Maths are correct, 10 years ago, and I’m still banging on about it every single day. In January 2013 the physical signs of Burnout really started to take hold of me. By the end of the second week of January, I was taken to the hospital for the first time. The first of many it turns out. And in July 2013 I underwent two operations in 48 hours under two different consultants for two different physical illnesses at two different hospitals, not the greatest week of my life.

And you’d have thought that all of this would be enough to make me see that something needed to change.

It didn’t.

I still hadn’t joined the dots, I still thought I could just carry on as I had been doing. Commuting to London every day, working up to 16 hours a day, spending all weekend with my sons, and then out with friends on a Friday night. I smoked like a chimney, drank like a fish, and ate what I wanted when I...

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How Steep Is The Hill?

How steep is the hill?

Last week really took it out of me.

#ThisIsBurnout was incredible, overwhelming in ways I hadn't imagined, emotional, tiring, and uplifting, all in one. My usual routine went out of the window, I'd added two additional things in that I should have said no to, and whilst I was expecting to be tired, I wasn't expecting to be as exhausted as I was. Plus, I'd been sat down for far too long each day, not something I normally do.

My partner Mick and I went on a long walk with Elysa, our rescue pooch, a beautiful Japanese Akita.  Mick has done the route a couple of times with his brother in the past, it was a new one for me, and whilst it was lovely, it was a bloody killer.

The distance was less than four miles, not a length that would normally phase me, and not too much less than I walk with the dog on a daily basis, but with more inclines and a big hill back to the car at the end, my calves are still aching.

The hills on the walk made me think back to a...

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