“When we protect ourselves so we won’t feel pain, that protection becomes armor, like armor that imprisons the softness of the heart.”

Pema Chödrön

One of my coaching clients recently experienced a big insight during one of our sessions.

She realised that while she thought she needed to learn how to protect herself more at work (to get through an impending restructure), what she really needed was to learn how to care for the most vulnerable parts of herself.

Often we can feel extremely emotional about something that happens at work. Sometimes to the point when is feels like a life or death situation, when rationally we know it’s not.

This is often because a younger, more vulnerable part of ourselves is feeling hurt, afraid, at risk, alone and unseen.

This is where coaching can really help.

Through just a few skillfully guided conversations, you can learn how to better care for the different parts of yourself.

The result? More inner peace, a greater sense of empowerment and the underpinning of performance with sustained well-being.

The working world can condition us to think that we need to shield our hearts – over time this way of thinking forms a belief.

We believe that we must shield our hearts to protect ourselves from the slings and arrows of the world. As we all know, these slings and arrows can be particularly prevalent and cutting in our workplaces.

However, by shielding our hearts we cut ourselves off from the care and connection we long for.

The first step to releasing the burden of the belief that we must shield our hearts is to be aware of its existence. From this place of awareness, we can begin to imagine the possibilities that might emerge if we were to find the courage to lay down our heavy armour and to think differently about our capacity to care for ourselves, so we can keep our hearts open, despite the risk of heartbreak at work.

In my experience, the concept of self-care is often too abstract.

To sustainably thrive, each of our “parts” need to be cared for in very specific ways.

And you are the only person who can care for your parts in the way they need to be cared for.

But often we just need a little help and expert guidance to get started.

If you are on the path from self-betrayal to self-fidelity and might benefit from a little guidance and support to figure how to be true to yourself at work, click here to see how I can help.