It's Christmas! What's Your Heart's Desire?

Time to read: Less than one minute! (All client stories are told with their express permission.)

What's your heart's desire?

What's your heart's desire?

One of my clients came to me because she was unhappy at work. She was frustrated by parts of her work environment, wondered if she was in the right profession, and wanted to consider going into business for herself. We had lots of conversations about her professional dreams, her strengths, what wasn't working, what she wanted for her career, and what she would create in her business.

And, since I believe that people are whole and integrated across work and home, we talked about her daughter and family life as well. She was very clear that they were a happy, one-child family with two parents focused on their careers.

During one particularly powerful session, I asked her, "What's your heart's desire?" The air became charged in a potent silence. Then to my surprise, as well as her own, she said, "I want another child." Neither of us expected that answer as she had been consistently committed to a single-child. From that moment, little Mathias was destined to enter this world into the waiting arms of a big sister who had dreamed of him for years.

Fast forward to today. Mathias is now 5. His mother happily still works in the same profession, for the same employer. The dissatisfaction she was experiencing wasn't with her career. What she really wanted was much bigger. Once she set about the business of fulfilling her heart's desire, she filled the empty space, and her career satisfaction handled itself.

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So, I ask you, as Christmas draws close, what is your heart's desire? It's time to set about the business of going out there to get it. (Here's a hint: It may not be your job.)

Please email me at christina@boydsmithcoaching.com and tell me all about it. I always love to hear from you.

With love,

Christina

P.S. I can't promise you a baby for Christmas (although 3 babies have been born as a direct result of coaching with me). I can promise you a powerful weekly dose of optimism and practical tools to help you find your heart's desire at work and at home. Give the gift of that insight to your friends by sharing this newsletter with them. They can join here.

Do You Hate It When People Tell You How You Feel?

Time to read: 1 little minute and 15 tiny seconds

My corporate campsite this week.

My corporate campsite this week.

Do you hate it when people tell you how you feel?

Let me begin with a little story then tell you what to do when someone inaccurately insists you must be feeling something you are not.

I'm at a client site this week doing 2 intense days of back to back private coaching for a big corporation followed by a third day of team building sessions. When I return home, I head to another big corporation to coach all day in their women's leadership program. When I tell people about my week, they say, "that must be exhausting!",

When I hear that, I'm like, "hmmmmm….," or I'm annoyed. I'm annoyed because other people's opinions can muddy the water and make it hard to listen to your own feelings and trust your own experience. With their suggestion, you might start to wonder, "Am I exhausted? Maybe I should be."

By becoming aware when other people are imposing how you should feel, you can commit to listen to and trust how you actually feel.

Here's how to do that:

  1. Check in with yourself. When you hear a suggestion for how you should feel, use it as a reminder to pause and check in. How are you feeling? Is there something you need to express, process alone, or adjust? What will get you on track with where you want to be?
  2. Pay attention to the stories you tell yourself. Are you telling stories that are empowering or disempowering? Is telling yourself that you are exhausted or overwhelmed enabling you to be your best self and do your best work or is it sapping your energy?
  3. Choose your feelings. You get to decide if you are exhausted, overwhelmed or frustrated. The circumstances don't dictate your feelings, and other people's suggestions certainly don't. It is true that I may be tired when I get on the plane to go home, and while doing the work, I choose to be energized and inspired by my clients.
  4. Clarify. If you want to, you can clarify how you really feel to the person who is asking. Assume they care about you and had the best of intentions when they made their comment. Something like, "actually, I love these clients and get in the zone when I do back-to-back coaching."
  5. Get curious. If you notice yourself "suggesting" feelings to others, get curious. Instead of telling them how they feel, ask, "How do you feel about that?" You might be surprised by what you learn and amused to see the assumptions you make, too.

I hope this helps!

Christina

P.S. Are there people to whom you'd like to give a big, fat hint? Use this email to tell them to stop suggesting how you should feel! They can join to receive this newsletter right here.

Who you are being matters!

Estimated read time: 4 seconds less than one minute.

Pets and kids get this concept without trying.

Pets and kids get this concept without trying.

Like you, I have a lot to do this week - a long list of tasks, mundane and challenging. A few minutes ago, I was walking out the door laden with my laptop, anxious to start knocking items off my to-do list at the local coffee shop.

Right as I was about to leave, I stopped and remembered the words of my mentor. She said, "Trust that who you are is enough. Do your prep work and trust who you are being in the world." I put down my laptop and spent the next 20 minutes meditating.

The point here is simple. What you do is only part of the story. Who you are is just as important.

Here's an example:

One of my clients leads a large team. She is responsible for day-to-day management activities and projects that affect thousands of end-users. At her core, she is deeply empathetic. When she gets anxious about the things that need to be done, she has a harder time moving forward. When she taps into her deep well of compassion for herself and her team, the work gets done smoothly.

See how that works?

In the midst of all of your doing, remember who you are being is important, too. Have you heard the phrase, "you are a human being, not a human doing?"

Spend some time this week paying attention to who you are being. And my calm and centered self just easily completed one thing on my to-do list - this newsletter!

In love,

Christina

P.S. If you know someone who would like to receive this newsletter, they can sign-up for The Corporate Rebel Video Podcast and Newsletter HERE.

You are not fooling anyone!

Estimated read time: 1:16.27 minutes

No cubes, real or imagined, were harmed for the creation of this newsletter.

No cubes, real or imagined, were harmed for the creation of this newsletter.

Meet Carole.*

*Carole's story is told with permission. In Carole's words, "Sure! I’m flattered."

When Carole walked into the conference room for the women's leadership program I was facilitating, she wore a tight bun, a polo shirt and what can only be described in 1950s terms as "slacks."

She was buttoned up.

As we spent time talking about the program topics like navigating politics and developing a business persona, I started to notice subtle things about Carole, like a pair of Saturn earrings or the cape she quickly removed when she walked in from the cold.

In our third session, we did a feedback exercise where the group shared what they wanted to see more of in each other. The other women wrote things on Carole's board like, "I wonder what it would be like if you wore your hair down and let your creativity fly?" After reading the feedback, Carole told the group in a stricken voice, "It's clear that I'm not fooling anyone."

In our next session, Carole said she realized how much she had sacrificed to fit some made-up image of a successful corporate professional. She decided to embrace her creative, rebelicious self, and let her masses of curly hair down, literally and figuratively. She started wearing the loose, creative clothes she loves and donned her giant jewelry, too. And she was right, her gorgeous hair looks just like Hermione from Harry Potter.

Carole liberated herself from the sense that she had to be a certain way to be successful in corporate environment.

Here's what she wrote in an email a few weeks later:

"I also decorated my cube with some colored fabric and art to express my personality, and have gotten a lot of positive feedback on being more authentic in both my décor and my appearance. I’m definitely getting a more positive vibe from people, and I’m more relaxed and open myself, too."

You are not fooling anyone, either.

Here's a challenge for you: Where will you let your hair down, literally or metaphorically, to be who you truly are - at the office and at home?

I hope Carole's story inspires you as much as it did me.

Love to all of you!

Christina

P.S. If you know someone who would like to receive this newsletter, they can sign-up for The Corporate Rebel Video Podcast and Newsletter HERE.