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3 Key Business Skills

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Slowing Down, Compassion, and Time Management

I gave birth to three children in short order. For about five (5) years from the mid- to late-aughts I don’t remember much of popular culture. TV, movies, songs – it’s a gaping hole.

I absolutely loved raising our children and seeing their little hearts, minds, bodies, and spirits grow. It felt good to give and receive “huggles” from our son, to see our eldest run around leading the other little kids in a playgroup, and our middle creating her artistic masterpieces amid the chaos around her. At times, I felt overwhelmed and exhausted. I alternately fumed that I wasn’t using my brain enough or believed that my brain had stopped functioning.

Slowing Down

If nothing else, I discovered how to slow down. Children can’t process information, events, or emotions as quickly as adults. They need us to explain the how’s and why’s of the amazing world around them. Slowing down made me more aware of how much life I’d missed focusing on the next hurdle or ruminating on the past. Things like:

  • walking down the street and greeting other pedestrians;
  • providing full-bodied hugs after being stung by a bee;
  • eating a gingerbread man during snack time at the local park;
  • playing in the sandbox “just because.”

Compassion

By slowing down, I learned a few things: compassion and time management. Compassion developed through meeting the needs of others. Young children require full attention. When we don’t address their demands quickly, emotions escalate FAST. Taking time to respond to our children teaches them their needs are valid and deserve our loving care. Over the years, this allows them to practise compassion with others because they’ve experienced it themselves.

Time Management

Parenting young children also requires exceptional time management skills. Timing naps, meals, activities, bath-time, and bed sounds innocuous until you do it. Then you recognize the planning involved. I remember having a window between 1:15 p.m. and 2:15 p.m. to do yoga when I had all three kids napping. It was the only time to myself during the day and, if I didn’t nab it then, I lost the opportunity altogether. Add in the usual extracurricular events like swimming lessons and soccer games and you add another layer to the level of organization required. Eventually, I colour-coded my calendar by child so I could see who had what event when.

So What?

The business world needs to know that parenting skills are business skills. Full stop. When I returned to work full time I was only offered junior roles as if I were less capable since I had become a mom. In truth, my compassion and time management skills increased, valuable assets in my area of specialty, HR.

Through my lived experience, I fully appreciate what parents bring to the working world and why business needs more of it. Imagine if we all took a moment to slow down at work. To respond instead of react. Wouldn’t we make more thoughtful decisions? Consider compassion and time management. If we saw more of them today, we’d see a lot less burnout happening in the workplace. And make no mistake, there’s a lot of burnout happening now not just with parents but with all workers.

Header Photo by NordWood Themes on Unsplash,. Calendar Photo by Gaining Visuals on Unsplash

Next time you’re hiring and see a gap on a resume, ask a candidate what they learned during that timeframe. See the skills that emerge when you open that door. Because, you never know unless you ask.

You have to be open minded in order to grow. The coaching that Laura gave me opened my eyes to what and how I was doing things and allowed me to see the bigger picture. I am not done yet but I already see the changes in my everyday life.

MM

I think coaching is a great way to help you clear your mind when you get stuck with overwhelming situations or when stepping into changes in your life.

MO

Coaching is life changing. It pushes you outside your comfort zone and challenges your perspectives.  It is highly motivating and the exercises and techniques used are both fun and informative.  I think the main benefits of coaching are to see yourself, others and the world more clearly.  I think coaching is valuable to anyone regardless of where you are in your life or career.

LE

I honestly never thought I’d need a coach. I thought coaching was for CEOs and industry VIPs. I didn’t think it was for the “little guys” (i.e. me). Now, I’m of the belief that everyone – yes, EVERYONE – needs a coach. Coaching has really benefitted me and I’m so grateful to have had that time with Laura. It’s changed my life!

VB

Laura is very patient. She took the time to understand what was causing me to be stuck where I am today and help me build a better vision so I can continue to grow.

MM

I think Laura’s coaching was what I had been waiting for. Laura was so approachable, kind, and open. Her willingness to help and support made a difference for me. I found in her coaching new strategies, ideas, and perspectives that I could incorporate into my goals and objectives that I didn’t see before.

MO

Laura is an incredibly intuitive, positive and caring coach. Her techniques helped me recognize both my strengths and areas I might want to explore as I embark on the next chapter of my career. The exercises she employed were instrumental in providing self perspective and challenging my frames of reference.

LE

Laura is a natural coach. Her probing and compassionate questions helped me learn about myself: my value system, interests, goals and strengths.

LM

Coaching sessions with Laura gave me new perspectives on how to process specific feelings and situations in life.  She showed me how to sit with my emotions, acknowledge them, and then use visualization strategies to move through them.  I now feel more confident and in control of how I choose to walk through life.

CP

From the beginning, Laura put me at ease, creating a safe, open space for me to talk and share freely without fear of judgement. I loved the variety of approaches she used depending on the topic we were working on and it was fun being able to try out things I wouldn’t have considered before! With Laura’s coaching, I substantially grew my confidence in the workplace, overcame fears, dealt with issues I’d been carrying around for many years and, most importantly, learned to value myself and define a path forward into the future.

AG

Laura’s coaching was a breath of fresh air and EXACTLY what I needed at that point of my life. I didn’t realize how impactful coaching was going to be, but by the end of the sessions together, I left feeling refreshed, inspired and genuinely curious about what my future held for me. Because of Laura and her coaching, I believe I became a better person – someone who is more open-minded, someone with a clearer focus, and someone who is willing to explore opportunities and possibilities far more than I ever did before.

VB

I engaged Laura for coaching as I took on an expanded role leading an asset management company in Canada. As a female, I knew I would be a role model and had high expectations of myself. I was feeling overwhelmed and anxious.

In our first few coaching sessions we worked through exercises that allowed me to reflect on my purpose, leadership style and what mattered most to me. I continue to be grounded by the clarity I achieve in my coaching sessions – allowing me to be resilient and confident when challenges came my way.

OS