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Sustainable productivity + focus

Navigating transitions + tough times

Honouring your callings + desires

Untangling from fear, uncertainty + doubt

Wanna know more?

I’m Siobhan. That’s pronounced Shiv-On. Which rhymes with Yvonne. My friends call me Shiv, and you can do the same. I’m a mother, lover, writer and a soulful executive coach. I help women figure out why you’re here, what you’re here to do, and get to work doing it, so that you can live your life in full colour without the hustle, grind and merely surviving.

Hello!

Loving your life and work as a sensitive career woman

Untangling From Fear Uncertainty + Doubt

January 30, 2020

I’m passionate about today’s topic because I classify myself as sensitive.

 

How do you know if you’re a sensitive career woman?

 

Hint: If you answer yes to most of the following qualities then chances are you are a sensitive woman.  You...

  • Feel deeply 
  • Cry more easily
  • React with deep felt emotions
  • Can take longer to make a decision (you tend to weigh up your emotions with logic)
  • Get upset over poor or wrong decisions
  • Are more prone to anxiety or depression
  • Consider yourself as detail oriented
  • Attract people to you
  • Are a good listener
  • Tend to help and give advice when you can 
  • Get along well with animals
  • Are intuitive
  • Can read people
  • Sense or feel the pain of others
  • Love or hate passionately
  • Deeply feel the problems in the world
  • Are connected to your spirituality
  • Feel in tune with your body

 

Did you answer yes to most of the above? 

Then chances are your a sensitive career woman, friend!

You're in the right place.


 

I remember in my corporate job, I used to go to the toilets and cry when things were falling apart... 

I needed that space to release my emotions because I just couldn’t keep up appearances. It was awful. 


 

The truth is, I thought the corporate environment wasn’t suitable for my sensitive nature, but arguably the entrepreneurial journey is even more challenging. 

In the corporate world, I could hide behind a professional work persona, but as an integrative life coach with a business under my own name, there’s no hiding. 

I’ve consciously chosen to use my story, my journey and my opinions to support women living out their own calling and purpose. And as a sensitive woman it’s been tricky to find my own way with this.

Hanging my shingle so publicly is vulnerable and it’s easy to get negative comments, disparaging remarks and horrible feedback. All of which have happened to me.

But that’s life. And doing my soul’s work is more important than getting hung up on how my work or I, as a person, am perceived. 

There is a way to honour our sensitivity in how we live and work.

Let’s explore how we, as sensitive career women, can use our sensitivity to live and work in sustainable ways that propel us forward….

As appealing as it might be to change our environments (quitting corporate or hiding away from the world) or try and control people (never going to happen), I believe that isn't the answer. Instead, taking back our power IS.

Siobhan Barnes - Hong Kong Life Coach Career Coach Street 3

 

Here are my 3 important rules for sensitive career women to remember...

 


 

Rule #1: Embrace your sensitive nature as a strength

I believe being sensitive is one of my strengths and I embrace that side of myself instead of trying to be more tough. 

The strong powerful leader that we see depicted in movies and books certainly doesn’t come across as sensitive. But let’s reframe the mindset of a "powerful and effective leader", shall we?

I believe that the best way to step into your power as a conscious leader is to embrace your natural self. Embrace your personality, your gifts, and your talents. Just let it be easy. 

You don’t have to be someone that you’re not in order to be “successful.”

Action Step: Make a list of 10 reasons why and how your sensitive nature makes you a good person and leader. Go back up to that list I mentioned at the start of the article. Can you see how these traits are helpful and needed in the world?


 

Rule #2: Focus on the work and impact you’re here to make and not yourself

As sensitive types, we can take things so personally. 

I remember over analyzing my boss’ behaviour and always tying it back to something that I did wrong or didn’t do right. I always assumed the worst. 

I'd think to myself:

….He’s frowning because he must not have liked the deck I put together.

….He slammed his bag on the ground and jumped on the conference call without saying “good morning” so he must be pissed off that I didn’t get a better offer from that landlord.

….He seems to be ignoring me so he must be angry about something.

Gosh, I was so obsessed with me, me, me. 

The poor guy was probably just…

….stressed out

….late for a call and worrying about getting on in time

….distracted by an argument he’d had with his wife in the morning

It’s not about you! Don’t assume that it is. 

Action Step: When you feel like you’re taking something personally, take yourself out of the equation and focus on the work or the goal you’re working towards. Get back in the driving seat and focus on what’s important.


 

Rule #3: Set clear boundaries

This is a big and very important rule for us sensitive types. 

If we’re not careful we can take on other people’s emotions and struggles as our own without even realising it. 

We want to be right there for another person and help them work through their challenge - side by side.  

I remember learning the phrase “compassionate objectivity” in my coaching course. 

The message was: you can’t help someone if you’re there in it with them. 

Picture a friend sinking in quicksand. Would it do any good to jump in and be there with them? Side by side? Asking them “how do you feel?”

No. You’d both get stuck. 

The best thing you can do is stay on dry stable ground and figure out the best way to get your friend out of quicksand. 

The message: Allow both yourself and other people to have their own space and perspectives. You don’t have to literally give everything and join them in their pain and misery in order to be compassionate. 

Action Step: Hold out your arms to the side of you. Sweep your arms in front and as far back as you can and imagine that you are painting a bubble all around yourself. This is your personal space. Imagine the bubble to have a soft and rubbery texture. It’s permeable and breathable, but nothing can penetrate that bubble unless you allow it too. Allow others to have their bubble and know that your bubble can get smaller or bigger as you move closer to or further away from another person. You are protected. 

Siobhan Barnes - Hong Kong Integrative Life Coach Career Coach - Flat Lay Image116

So there you have it, 3 rules to support you in succeeding in your life and work as a sensitive type.

Rule #1: Embrace your sensitive nature as a strength

Rule #2: Focus on the work and impact you’re here to make and not yourself

Rule #3: Set clear boundaries 

Now I want to hear from you:

+ Do you identify with being sensitive? Which traits from the list did you resonate with?

+ Which rule would help you the most so that you can stay on track doing work that you love?

Leave a comment and let me know. I read every response!

With love,

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Finding
clarity

Connecting your mind + body + soul

HOW CAN I BEST SUPPORT YOU?

Sustainable productivity + focus

Navigating transitions + tough times

Honouring your callings + desires

Untangling from fear, uncertainty + doubt

Wanna know more?

I’m Siobhan. That’s pronounced Shiv-On. Which rhymes with Yvonne. My friends call me Shiv, and you can do the same. I’m a mother, lover, writer and a soulful executive coach. I help women figure out why you’re here, what you’re here to do, and get to work doing it, so that you can live your life in full colour without the hustle, grind and merely surviving.

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