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The Coaching Diaries – Reinstalling self-belief

Ivy needs to regain her confidence.

A few years ago she left her job as a solicitor, longing for more flexibility and space to pursue other areas of her life. After a break spent exploring personal avenues she started back as a contractor. Unsure how sustainable it would be, at first she took all the work offered to her. As a result she’s been working just as hard as before, and she’s starting to feel stuck again.

Ivy knows she doesn’t want to spend her life behind a desk. But at the moment, caught in the cycle of working long hours and worrying about finding the next job, she doesn’t have the space or self-belief to think clearly about the future she wants to build. “I need to reinstall that confidence somehow,” she says.

We talk about self-belief, where else the issue shows up. “I’ve constantly been told that I’m not good enough or I’m not going to make it,” Ivy says. “They’d say ‘Are you sure you want to do this? It’s very difficult.’ No one was confident in my ability.” She never let it stop her, but still her family is discouraging of any new challenge and surprised at each success. The enduring negativity, and battle to overcome it, have taken their toll.

We go looking ahead, to the life that Ivy wants to aim for in the next 6-12 months. We make it detailed, specific, enticing. By the end of the session we have clarity and a plan, and Ivy’s excitement is back.

“What rule do you need for yourself to get there?” I ask. "Holding out,” Ivy says. “Not just taking the first thing offered if it’s not what I want. Holding out for something better.”

A week later I get an update. The rule is working. Ivy’s already well on her way.


When there's something you really want, do you give it a chance to happen? Asking for it is the first step - getting clear, with yourself and with the world around you, about what it is you're after. Next up is actively looking, spreading the word and allowing space for it to arrive. For sure we have to be realistic, but there's a spectrum between grabbing the first thing, out of fear it will be the only option, and recognising when we can hold out to see if something better comes along. With clarity and space, amazing things can occur.


Produced with full client permission, anonymised and names changed.

Most professionals work too much and live too little. I help people to reset, reenergise and take action, so they reach the goals and fulfilment they really want, personally and professionally.

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