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Jayne Chater is well known for her expertise in working with professional women to enhance their careers and organisations in the area of mothers returning to work, the struggle of the juggle and developing women into leadership.

 

She has developed a well-known and leveraged Return to Work programme, "Reconnect", reconnecting mothers to life, work, and family, used across organisations and sectors today.

 

Jayne lives and breathes the juggle as a mother of three teenage daughters and two bonus children. She is the author of "A Slight Detour" a resource on How to successfully navigate your family and career.

Why self-compassion is important

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Self-compassion is a must-have in leadership and in life, yet it often falls by the wayside, especially for those of us who are toughest on ourselves.

As an Executive Coach who has worked with thousands of women over the past two decades, I see too much self-criticism eating away at people’s self-esteem. It is time to change that narrative. 

When working with women, I encourage them to reframe the golden rule – suggesting we "treat ourselves as we treat others" and emphasising the need for self-kindness. Imagine if we spoke to others, the way we speak to ourselves at times! (We wouldn’t dare!)  

 

​So, what does self-compassion mean? It's about recognising when you're not perfect, letting go of tiny mistakes, and not being too harsh on yourself. For leaders, this isn't a sign of weakness or softness, but a foundation for resilience and strength. 

Here are some strategies to cultivate self-compassion: 

1.

Celebrate your wins: In the quest for continued achievement, we forget to look at where we have come from.  Where are you now, compared to a year ago? Six months ago?  Celebrate the wins, no matter how small. This helps to reinforce our sense of accomplishment and self-worth. 

2.

Practice gratitude: Practicing gratitude can seriously shift your mood from negative to positive. Think about the things you're thankful for and capture them. This is a regular dinner-time activity in our household: sharing our highlights of the day that we’re grateful for. 

3.

Set and honour your boundaries: Setting boundaries is vital for protecting your time and energy from getting nibbled away or zapped. What have you said yes to, or no to, that has honoured or diminished your boundaries recently?  

4.

Keep it real: Make sure what you're aiming for is actually achievable, especially with everything going on in the world right now. Zoom out and look at the wider context, and the uncertain nature of how we work and live

For all of us, taking care of yourself means you can take better care of others. Self-compassion lets you lead with empathy and creativity, even when things get chaotic. So, really, being kind to yourself not only feels good, it also makes you a better leader, a better parent, a better partner or friend and a happier person.

 

Why not give it a try? 

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