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Is Empathy A Dangerous Strength for Women Consultants?

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Is empathy damaging your consulting business?

As women, we are often SO quick to feel and offer empathy. 

If we see someone experiencing something, we want to share that experience.

It’s often how we show that we care.

If you’re an empathetic person and you are very attuned to the emotions and experiences of other people, it can be a huge benefit – to your business, to you personally, and to those around you.

But right now, it could be causing you a big problem.

All day, every day, for weeks, we’ve been surrounded by stories from people who are struggling financially, their work has dried up, their contracts have disappeared. Maybe they’re employed and they’ve been made redundant or put on furlough. Maybe the company they work for is going under.

But for some (or maybe many) of us there’s a lot to appreciate about the current situation.

The more introverted among us are enjoying a quieter lifestyle that suits us more than the hustle and bustle we find ourselves in a lot of the time.

Maybe with fewer demands on your time, you’ve been able to focus more on your business and make more rapid progress. 

I’m seeing plenty of women who feel guilty because they AREN’T negatively impacted by the coronavirus crisis. Their businesses are continuing on and in some cases are actually performing much better since the crisis began.

Some women have seen their services swing from being perceived as ‘nice to have’ to ‘essential’ – those who offer corporate wellbeing services, or who can help companies support their employees who are working remotely or being put on furlough.

HR consultancy is in huge demand at the moment, so is legal consulting as companies need help understanding the changing framework of government guidance being rolled out.

But when our personal experience is out of step with the collective experience, this causes emotional friction. 

Our desire to empathize feels at odds with our reality, so we start to minimize our own success.

We might not take advantage of opportunities in front of us.

When we get that spark of inspiration, we snuff it out because it feels inappropriate at such a time. 

Or when we stop sharing our own achievements, worrying ‘who am I to be doing well at a time when everyone else is struggling’.

This can quickly lead to self-sabotage.


In this podcast episode I’m exploring some of the reasons you may be enjoying the lockdown more than others, how to avoid sabotaging your own success at this time, and two reasons you simply MUST continue to thrive if you’re in a position to do so. I also look into how navigating against the tide during the current crisis can set you up for more success for years to come.

🎧  Listen to the full episode here – 026 “I feel guilty that my business isn’t struggling right now”

And tell me, have you felt awkward for enjoying the lockdown ‘too’ much?

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It’s the framework that helps consultant women like you find their feet and get back to leading the business, rather than being buried in client work and back-end business operations.

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Thanks for reading! I’d love to hear your feedback and future topics you’d like me to feature.