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Happiness - 2. page

Career Choices

The decisions we make about which career we will follow significantly affect our levels of happiness for the rest of their lives.

So how do people choose a career?

Some go for the best paid careers, some go into the family business, some may choose a career that teachers or friends say they would be good at, whilst others may take whatever job comes along and see where it leads.

For me, a better way to ensure you are choosing the right career for you is to understand your career values, then find a career and an employer that are a good fit with those values.  This way you will be tapping into your core motivators and you will be honouring the values that are important to you which will help you to feel happy and fulfilled.

If you have career values such as freedom, choice and flexibility then it is unlikely that you would enjoy a 9-5 office job, whereas if you value security, certainty, reliability then this might be the right career choice for you.  If you value creativity, beauty and inner peace then a city-based job in finance or admin is not going to give you an environment to thrive in, whereas working from home, a studio or spa may well do.

Public or private sector? I have found that people doing well working in the public or voluntary sector are more likely to have values of making a difference, service and contribution, whereas in the private sector, values of achievement, independence and ambition are more common.

Understanding your career values stops you choosing the wrong career and environment for you and helps you to choose a career, employer and environment in which you will be happy, fulfilled and productive and will thrive and so are more likely to be successful.

If you would like to understand your values better then you might like to complete the free values exercise on my website and if you send the results form back to me online I would be very happy to offer you with a free 30 minute telephone consultation to discuss your values and what they mean for your choice of career.

Best wishes


Coping with Change

Change aheadThey say ‘there is one thing in life that is constant and that is change’ which can make it feel daunting, however if we view change as just the transition from one set of circumstances to another, it makes it more manageable.

 This week I shall be talking about coping with change at the Wellbeing Group I run in Winchmore Hill, for details go to 
Here are a few tips that we will be covering, which I hope you will find helpful.

 Recognise the impact of the change: it can affect people in different ways, for some its negative thoughts, worries and concerns; others feel it emotionally in negative feelings, anxiety and panic or with tears. In more severe cases the impact can take its toll physically, for example affecting our weight or giving us skin, breathing or digestives conditions.

 Grounding techniques help to regain a sense of stability, such as thinking of all the good things in your life and in the world that are not affected by this change; or thinking of other times when you have coped well with a change and remember how you did it to give you confidence to do it again; or think ‘happy thoughts’ and remember good times that comfort you.

 Face the fear by working out what it is you are afraid of and breaking the change down into small steps, plan forward but focus one day at a time to make it more manageable and give you a sense of control; reframe the change into something more positive by taking a different perspective; know and reassure yourself that the transition period of change will end and a new ‘normality’ will settle you again.

 Emotional support is essential; talk to supportive friends and family who will encourage you through the change; a hug, a smile and a cup of tea can go a long way to improving how you feel.  Understanding which of your values are affected negatively by the change is also extremely helpful and drawing on other values will help to motivate you to take action to improve things.  For more information on values and to learn more about your own, see the free values exercise on my website

 Relax and energise yourself by using breathing exercises, meditation or yoga; get active in whatever way you enjoy, e.g. go for a walk, a run, a swim, to the gym, dance, sing.  Even cleaning the house or washing the car can be good exercise and give you a sense of normality.  Keeping yourself relaxed and energised will help to ensure the stress of the change does not affect your health and will keep you strong to handle the challenge.

 I hope this is helpful and I look forward to hearing your views.


Introduction to Values

Values: That 'lightbulb moment' of self-awarenessMany times through my years in coaching, it has struck me how important values are; identifying ones own values can be a true ‘lightbulb moment’ of self awareness for most people.

Values are the things that are important to us, the core of who we are, the foundation of our lives, our reason for being, what makes us tick and indeed what makes us angry or upset if not honoured. 

When I ask people what is important to them, often the responses are things like family, health or money, however these are not values.  If we look a little deeper into ourselves and ask: what do these things give us? what do we get from them that is important to us? only then do we get closer to finding our core values e.g. from family we might get a sense of love, support or kindness. From having good health, we might get a sense of wellbeing or vitality.  Money might give us security, choice or freedom.

We will find different values in different aspects of our lives, for example in terms of career we might value responsibility, recognition and sense of achievement, whereas in our home life, we might have values of stability, happiness and love.  In our relationships with friends, we might value trust, honesty and loyalty.  In interests or hobbies, things like fun, growth and contribution might be important to us. There may also be some cross-over, so values like fairness and respect may be important to us in all aspects of our lives and in all our relationships.

All these things may be important to us to a degree, the key is to find out which of them are our core values, the ‘top ten’ values that are individual and crucial to us that must be honoured in our lives for us to be happy and feel fulfilled. 

When I have undertaken values exploration exercises with clients, they often say, ‘yes that’s me on a page!’ when they see the list of their top ten values, which represent their uniqueness and the core of who they are and what matters most to them.  That new self-awareness and understanding allows them to focus and move forward in a positive way.

Once we understand our own true individual set of values, then we have a foundation that we can build on to construct a life that will bring us happiness and fulfilment.

If you would like to learn more about your own values go to and complete the free values exercise to experience the power of values for yourself.


Broken New Year Resolutions

Every year we have good intentions; set ourselves New Year resolutions, whether it is to lose weight, get fit or get a new job.  Strangely, something often stops us, something inside us says, ‘it’s a bit cold to go for a run today’ or ‘I don’t like to waste good food’, or ‘there’s a recession on, there won’t be any jobs going’.

So what is it in us that finds these good reasons not to do the things that would be so good for us? Let’s call it, our ‘inner saboteur’, that little voice in our head that persuades us to sabotage all our best efforts.

We all have an ‘inner saboteur’ that can disrupt our plans to be happy and successful, if we don’t learn to recognise and control the thought and behaviour patterns it brings about in us.  It uses our fears of taking responsibility and causes us to avoid change.

When our ‘saboteur’ has got the better of us, we can be so afraid of change that we became ‘stuck in a rut’, it does not have to be this way.

Here are some steps I use in life coaching to help people get their control back:

–        Firstly, we need to recognise when it is our ‘inner saboteur’ speaking or acting and separate this from what we really believe, want and know to be true.

–        Then, forgive ourselves for all the times we have let that saboteur take control; there is no use beating ourselves up for it, just forgive and clear the way to move forward.

–        Next, identify the changes we need to make to get what we really want and to be who we really want to be and welcome those changes into our lives.

–        Trust our ‘gut instinct’; follow our intuition; practise hearing what it is telling us and responding to it by taking action.

–        Overcome the saboteur’s power, by taking small steps, small acts of courage, making small decisions, taking small choices to help us to regain control.

Once we have control over our lives and our future and are responding in a positive way to opportunities, we can move forward to achieve happiness and success, in whatever ways are appropriate for us.

I recommend a wonderful book called Sacred Contracts by Caroline Myss that is really helpful in learning to work with our inner saboteur.

Welcome To Lindsay West Coaching

Welcome to Lindsay West Coaching

I have always had a passion for self development.  I love learning and growing in knowledge, skills and experience and helping others to do the same.

It was an aspect of managing people that I really enjoyed in my previous career in banking and with over 6 years of coaching experience I now get to do it every day.   Most of my coaching work is on a one-to-one basis, I also do workshops with groups and teams and I run The Wellbeing Group in North London, so in this way, I have daily opportunities to share my knowledge and resources with others.

This blog is really exciting, as it gives me the opportunity to reach a much wider audience and to make a difference to the lives of so many more people.  Helping people to find their passion and make changes in their lives so that they can be happier, healthier and more successful is so important to me.  This blog will be packed with tips, techniques and resources to help make this happen.

So keep reading, share with friends or join my mailing list.

I hope you enjoy reading it as much as I do writing it.

Best wishes