Case Studies

Stories about people I have worked with

Alison’s Story

Alison came to see me after she decided to return to work. She’d had a successful career in the media and had taken a break to have children. She passionately wanted to start work again to revive her career but felt the odds were stacked against her, new technology and also the area she’d been involved in was ageist and she would be considered ‘over the hill’. Areas we explored together were:

  • Tools to help her access some high points in her earlier life to really rebuild her confidence
  • Adapting how she marketed herself to reflect her experience and changing times
  • Working together to overcome feelings of guilt about her desire to go back to work
  • Tools to help her find the courage to actually ask for work and explain she needed help and support

Alison now has a vibrant freelance career that allows her time with her kids and is intellectually challenging and varied.

Working with Polly was challenging, not exactly a walk in the park, but she’s amazingly supportive and really helped me cut through the crap. I highly recommend working with Polly for anyone who is determined to make changes in their lives. She’s not a coach for the faint hearted, but she helped me get great results.

Susie’s Story

Susie got in touch because having moved here from California to take up a challenging new role, she found the cultural differences more than she’d bargained for and her confidence had taken a severe knock, especially when on top of everything else her company was subject to a hostile takeover. Here’s what we did together:

  • Concentrating on the things Susie could influence and acknowledging those things she couldn’t change
  • Breaking down Susie’s creative ambitions into ‘manageable chunks’, finding tools to deal with and think through one thing at a time to avoid feelings of overwhelm and dread
  • Tools to adapt her style when dealing with different individuals
  • Identifying what she really enjoyed about her job
  • ‘Mapping across’ what had worked well in the past to her current situation

Working with Polly was both comforting and inspiring; she really helped me regain a healthy perspective and confidence at a very tricky time. I now love being in the UK and know I made the right move. And I’m about to marry a lovely Brit.

Alan’s Story

Alan contacted me when he was made redundant from his PR role. Though Alan had planned for some time to set up on his own, when the opportunity to actually do this presented itself, the thought terrified Alan and he said he’d totally lost his confidence. He described himself as feeling like a rabbit trapped in the headlights. Here are some of the things we worked on:

  • Recalling times in his life when he had felt confident and developing techniques to help him re-access and harness those resources
  • Understanding that small things can make a big difference once we find the courage to make a start
  • Brainstorming various ways Alan could find the support he needed from different areas in his life
  • Examining his limiting beliefs and understanding why he had them, gave Alan the confidence to start moving forward
  • Tools to help kick-start Alan when his doubts returned

I felt so relieved to know my lack of confidence and feelings of failure were not exclusive to me. Through working with Polly, I came to understand myself and my beliefs and behaviours much more clearly. I feel genuinely confident now and am now on my way to making my dream of working for myself a real success

Kathleen’s Story

Kathleen works as a City Banker. She came to see me feeling overwhelmed and miserable at work despite considerable professional and financial success. She said was simply marking time until her retirement that was still some years off. Kathleen had given up on all other aspects of her life. As this had happened over many years, she had not been consciously aware of it. And, as her life had become smaller and smaller, Kathleen had become increasingly fearful. Working together she realised what was happening and felt encouraged and able to make changes. Some areas we explored together were:

  • Deconstructing some long held and strong limiting beliefs and gently testing their veracity to gain a different perspective
  • Supporting her as she took small but important and meaningful steps to a more satisfying life
  • Looking at and researching pastimes and hobbies that had engaged and appealed to her as a child
  • Helping her to understand that, whether we like to admit it or not, we do always, have a choice
  • Challenging Kathleen when she felt tempted to retreat into the uncomfortable comfort zone of her work shell

Our work is ongoing. Kathleen has taken up horse riding and is also studying the Tudors, a period of history that fascinated her as a child.

Polly’s style of coaching really spurred me into taking action and becoming more involved in the world outside the Bank. A wonderful and totally unexpected bonus is I now feel much more connected with my colleagues and relish instead of dread new challenges. Thanks to working with Polly I really do feel much more positive abut my life