Updated: Jan 28, 2021
We asked Cheltenham's That Balanced Life Coach three important questions that every mum needs to hear the answers to...
Laura Bentley, also known as That Balanced Life Coach from Cheltenham, helps overwhelmed and busy working mums to feel calmer and more in control! Laura's clients come to her with a variety of issues they're struggling with, from feeling drained and stressed due to a hectic work/parenting routine, or deflated by mum guilt and self-doubt, to confusion about how to realise their true personal and professional potential.
With the support and techniques they gain during her consultations and workshops, Laura's clients will come away from their sessions feeling they can better cope with what life has to throw at them and with a renewed sense of self-belief. She's the woman every woman needs in her life, so we thought we'd ask That Balanced Life Coach three questions that we all need to hear the answers to.
Hi Laura, after becoming a mum, many women seem to lose a sense of their identity and confidence, and are often plagued with self-doubt. How do you advise women to tackle those troublesome feelings?
Laura: I would first of all say to ask for help and to share what is going on. You are not alone in feeling this way and often you’ll find that others are struggling in the same way. The negative feelings of self doubt, loss of identity and low confidence are understandable because becoming a mum is a huge change. It takes us all time to process change so be kind to yourself as you navigate who you are now you are also a mum. I love positive affirmations and have cards that have really great statements that can help boost your mood. The more we hear positive things about ourselves the more they start to embed. Journaling can also help with this as it gives you an opportunity to write down all those negative thoughts and then start to reflect on how to change those to positives. And most of all, remember – you are doing a great job!
Often when their children are young, mums have to compromise on their careers or dreams for more flexible roles, often leaving them feeling deflated, and, when they finally can focus on their careers once more, they can be left feeling confused about what they want to do or want to achieve. What advice would you give to a mum who finds herself in this situation?
Laura: I’d say invest in a coach! It will help you to identify what you want from your career and give you the tools to feel more confident about getting there. When I speak to mums who are looking to change their career after having kids we use a tool called the Wheel of Life. It helps you to identify where you are looking for more fulfilment in life & work (because those are very closely linked in my opinion) and then we focus on setting goals based on the Wheel. Having clear goals helps you feel accountable and move forward – it can feel really scary to make a change in your career, but you don’t have to do it alone.
Working mums have so many responsibilities and commitments to perform and often in such limited amounts of time. How can we prevent ourselves from becoming frazzled, burnt out and overwhelmed by routine?
Laura: The key is prioritisation. Our to do lists are never going to end (I read recently it would take us 300 hours to do everything we have on those lists!) but there are more important and less important tasks. Practically, I use to do lists and also done lists to mark what I have achieved, rather than just focussing on what needs to be done. I set timers for tasks so that I procrastinate less (the dreaded Instagram scroll hole!) and I also don’t beat myself up for not getting absolutely everything done. Boundaries and communication are also key in getting the balance right – your partner and family need to understand that you need time for yourself to be something other than ‘mum’ and if you let them know what you expect then they can help you achieve this. Finally, letting go of perfectionist tendencies is helpful; if we have control over every aspect then we leave little room for other people to take on some of the load. Lower your expectations or lighten your load by asking for help.
To book a consultation with Laura over the phone or in person in Cheltenham, follow the links below.
Laura Bentley, That Balanced Life Coach
W: Book a free 30 minute consultation with me
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