10 Reasons Not to “Fake It Until You Make It"

10 Reasons Not to “Fake It Until You Make It"

Please stop telling people to “fake it until you make it”.  It’s an old piece of career advice that is often shared with the best intentions.  The rationale is that if someone responds to a new challenge by adopting successful behaviors, their confidence will eventually catch up.  Unfortunately, most of us have internalized the harmful message that showing up as we are at work is unacceptable.  We believe that people prefer the successful show we put on instead of our real selves.  Almost every week, I hear coaching clients describe aspects of themselves they wish they could change.  In their drive to belong and excel, they have taken self-improvement to extremes and value the appearance of expertise over deeper personal alignment and authenticity.

Here are 10 ways I have seen “Faking It” hurt organizations and deplete leaders: 

Read More

Giving Ourselves Permission to Want What We Want

Giving Ourselves Permission to Want What We Want

In my family, when it's your birthday, you are empowered to make more choices than usual.  The birthday girl (or boy) gets to select their favorite breakfast, lunch and dinner.  They decide if presents get opened in the morning or evening and get to request a special activity that they love.  The whole family supports their choices as a celebration of who they are.

During my birthday last week, I noticed how many choices I allowed myself because it was my special day that no one was preventing me from making every other day. 

Read More

A Practice For Navigating Uncertainty

A Practice For Navigating Uncertainty

“Is this the right choice?”  “What will I do next?”  “What do I want to do with my life?”  These big questions frequently come up during sessions with my clients.  Sitting with this uncomfortable uncertainty can feel overwhelming.  Many of us want to reach an answer quickly or be told that a choice we’re making will turn out well.  I experienced this a lot over the past two years as I decided to start a coaching business.  "Is this my purpose?"  "Will someone please tell me I'm doing it right?"

There is one activity I have been introduced to that translates that inner journey of not-knowing into a physical contemplative practice: walking a labyrinth.  People have been building labyrinths for over 3500 years across multiple continents and cultures.  Moving along a labyrinth combines the mindful practice of walking meditation with a surrender to the twists and turns of the path.  There is only one way in and one way out.  You may find yourself trying to puzzle out how soon you will get to the center or what the overall design is.  Letting go of your need to predict the journey is a powerful metaphor for exploring uncertainty in life.  Another metaphor within the practice is that as you move towards the center it is as if you are coming closer to your Inner Knowing or True Essence or the Divine.  In this way, it is also a practice in developing trust.

Read More

Finding The Gift In Your Experience

Finding The Gift In Your Experience

I consider myself a Spiritual Career Coach.  What that means to me is constantly evolving but if I were asked to describe it today, I would say that my coaching is based on these beliefs: 

  1. My work is part of my spiritual practice.  Being in deep presence with my clients is healing for them and me and we are constantly learning from each other. 
  2. No one needs fixing.  Truly transformative personal work is not about changing who you are; it is a process of loosening the grip of beliefs and habits that have obscured the real you.
  3. Each one of us has access to the intuition we need to expand and grow.  The paradox is that this highly personal work can often only take place when witnessed and supported by someone else. 
  4. Holding space for people to be seen in their wholeness - the aspects they love about themselves and those they don’t yet - is the privilege of my work.
  5. I see the world as an ally.  I believe that the people and experiences that come into our lives are invitations to become more conscious.
Read More

What My Daughters Teach Me About Gratitude

What My Daughters Teach Me About Gratitude

“I'm grateful for the cow who gave us our milk and the worker who picked these strawberries and the person who packed this glass in a box to send it to the store and Daddy for cooking … “  When our older daughter was a toddler, we started the practice of naming and appreciating ingredients in our meal.  We wanted to teach her where her food came from and help her recognize how much abundance we have.  Now that she is seven and has a personal passion for details, her list can be quite long.  “And I’m grateful for the person who created the fabric for our napkins and the lettuce plant for growing our salad … “

Read More

Networking That Feels Fun and Easy

Networking That Feels Fun and Easy

Have you ever had the experience where you introduce yourself at a networking event and have the thought, “that doesn't sound like me”?  At a recent event, someone approached me and asked what kind of coaching I do.  My answer was four words long followed by an awkward pause.  

I was shocked at my own response.  Coaching is something I’m incredibly passionate about.  ... The truth is I was putting too much pressure on myself.  In wanting to say the perfect thing, I said nothing at all.  I was surprised and amused to see this old pattern show up because, in general, I have enjoyed most of my networking events this year.

Read More

Back to School

Back to School

Yesterday, I took my daughter to an event at her elementary school where we could drop off supplies and spend time with other families.  In two days, she will start second grade and my family will transition from the rhythm of summer camp and travel back to 5:30 am alarms and remembering that it’s Wear Clothes From Your Favorite Sports Team Day, 5 minutes before we leave the house.

I love these kinds of occasions.  The first day of school.  New Years.  Birthdays.  Anniversaries.  These moments remind me to pause and reflect on what has changed over the course of a year.  What traditions do I want to maintain?  How have the four of us grown?  How can we make our routine easier? 

Read More

Staying Present at the Playground

Staying Present at the Playground

“Are you ready to go to the slide?”  I ask.

“No!  More pushes!”  My 2-year-old daughter is in a swing phase.  And by swing phase, I mean she wants to do that activity with a single-minded focus that outlasts my interest by 15 minutes.  It’s beautiful that she’s learning and enjoying herself and smiling adorably but oh-my-gosh-why-can’t-we-switch-to-something-else?!  I’m crawling out of my skin with impatience, which is ironic because I’m helping both girls practice ways to be patient every day.  Remembering this, I try to flip my internal script.  I decide to ask the developing expert.

Read More