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Unleash Your Inner Confidence and Tame Your Critic

5 Steps to Tame Your Inner Critic and Cultivate Self-Trust & Confidence

On the path of personal growth and self-discovery, one hurdle we encounter is the relentless presence of our inner critic and the destructive power of negative self talk. That nagging voice inside our head that undermines your confidence and questions your abilities can hinder your progress and limit your potential.  But fear not, for in this post we will explore effective strategies to increase self confidence, reduce the power of our inner critic, and nurture a stronger sense of self-trust. 

Get ready to unlock your inner power and unleash the confident, self-assured woman within you.

    1. Recognise Your Inner Critic: The first step in silencing your inner critic is to recognise its presence. Become aware of the negative self-talk patterns and the specific areas where your confidence takes a hit. By shining a light on this inner voice, you can gain a deeper understanding of its impact and take conscious steps to counter its influence. I often get my clients to name their inner critic. This can help to create some distance between you and “Barb”, “Sharon” or “Susan”. She is not you. You can choose to listen to her or not.

    2. Understand that this voice is there to protect you: It is made up of all your childhood fears, embarrassments, pain and it is trying to stop you from having to experience that again – but sometimes its judgement is shit. If we were to listen to every word we would be staying still..stagnant…stuck. Learning to acknowledge it, thank it for trying to protect you, and letting it know that it is not needed right now is a small but easy way to decrease its power.

    3. Challenge Your Inner Critic: Once you’ve identified your inner critic, it’s time to challenge its validity. Ask yourself: Are these thoughts based on facts or mere assumptions? Replace self-defeating beliefs with empowering affirmations. Cultivate a positive mindset by focusing on your strengths, accomplishments, and the progress you’ve made along your journey. Challenge the negative self-talk with evidence of your capabilities and potential.

    4. Cultivate Self-Compassion: Developing self-compassion is essential in building self-confidence. Treat yourself with kindness and understanding, just as you would a friend. Embrace the fact that making mistakes and experiencing setbacks are part of the growth process. Replace self-judgment with self-compassion, allowing room for learning, growth, and self-acceptance. Remember, you are human, and it’s okay to have flaws. Find a way to nurture yourself that feels authentic and meaningful.

    5. Nurture Positive Self-Talk: Become mindful of your internal dialogue and consciously shift it towards positive self-talk. Whenever your inner critic surfaces, reframe the negative thoughts into supportive and encouraging statements. Replace “I can’t do it” with “I am capable and resilient.” Practice affirmations that resonate with you and repeat them regularly to reinforce positive self-beliefs. With time and consistency, positive self-talk becomes a natural part of your mindset. I am a firm believer in the power of our thoughts. So intentionally CHOOSE thoughts that empower and motivate.

Increasing self-confidence and cultivating self-trust is a transformative process that requires awareness, commitment, and self-compassion. By recognising and challenging your inner critic, practicing self-compassion & nurturing positive self-talk you can unlock the doors to a more confident, empowered, and fulfilled version of yourself. Trust in your capabilities, believe in your worth, and step forward with confidence on your path to personal greatness. Remember, you have all the tools within you to embrace your true potential and create a life filled with self-assurance and self-trust.

PS: If you are ready to deep dive into your transformation, I am here to support you. Flick me a message and let’s have a free Clarity Session to give you a clear action plan so can take your next step with confidence.

With love & gratitude,


WTF is Mindfulness (and how to start)

Stress is an inevitable part of life, especially for women who are often juggling multiple responsibilities, expectations and roles at once. However, ongoing stress can take a toll on your physical and mental health (don’t I fucking know it!). That’s why it’s essential to practice stress management techniques to maintain your overall wellbeing and ensure you enjoy this crazy thing called life. One technique used by millions of people around the world is mindfulness, which can help you manage stress and improve your emotional regulation.

WTF is mindfulness? Mindfulness is the practice of being present and fully engaged in the present moment – no matter how mundane it may seem. It involves paying attention to your thoughts, feelings, and bodily sensations without judgment. By focusing on the present moment, you can turn down the volume of the endless jumble of unwanted thoughts that often leave you feeling overwhelmed and focusing on unhelpful shit.

How does mindfulness help with stress management? Stress triggers the body’s fight or flight response, which can cause physical and emotional symptoms. Mindfulness can help you regulate your body’s response to stress by promoting relaxation and reducing the physiological symptoms of stress. Additionally, mindfulness can help you identify negative thought patterns and reframe them in a more empowering, productive light.

What are some mindfulness techniques? Here are a few mindfulness techniques that you can practice daily:

  1. Breathing exercises: Eg square breathing – picture the 4 sides of a square. As you go up the side inhale, hold the breath across the top, exhale as you go down, and hold the breath across the bottom. I have another blog post all about this – check it out for more techniques.
  2. Body scan meditation: Lie down in a comfortable position and bring your attention to your body. Start at your toes and slowly move your attention up your body, noticing any sensations without judgment.
  3. Mindful eating: Pay attention to the taste, smell, and texture of your food. Eat slowly and savor each bite.
  4. 5,4,3,2,1: In any moment, pause and notice 5 things you can see, 4 things you can feel, 3 things you can hear, 2 things you can smell and 1 thing you can taste. This is very powerful and helps us to bring our attention to the present moment.

How can you incorporate mindfulness into your daily life? Here are a few tips to help you incorporate mindfulness into your daily routine:

  1. Start small: Begin with short mindfulness exercises, such as a few minutes of breathing exercises each day. Gradually increase the length of your practice as you become more comfortable.
  2. Practice regularly: Consistency is key to developing a mindfulness practice. Try to practice every day, even if it’s just for a few minutes.
  3. Find a community: Consider joining a mindfulness group or finding an accountability partner to help you stay motivated.
  4. Be patient: Mindfulness is a skill that takes time to develop. Don’t expect to see immediate results and be patient with yourself.

Mindfulness is a powerful tool that can help us to manage stress and enhance ones overall sense of wellbeing. By incorporating mindfulness techniques into your daily routine, you can improve your emotional regulation and reduce the negative effects of stress on your mind and body. Start small, practice regularly, and be patient with yourself, and you’ll soon notice the positive benefits of mindfulness.

Have questions about how to start? Don’t hesitate to get in touch.

Love B x

How to Set Boundaries – For Women Who Don’t Like Conflict

Healthy boundaries are the limits you place around your time, emotions, physical and mental healthy so you can stay content with who you are, experience higher levels of self-worth and confidence and to nurture relationships.

Without clear boundaries we can become lost, resentful and burnt out with work, social obligations and relationships. If you are experiencing increased feelings of stress or frustration check out these three steps.  

1. Get clear on the personal boundary that is being crossed. 
What exactly is it that is depleting your energy or increasing stress and frustration.
What one small change you can implement that would have the biggest positive change for your wellbeing?

2. Communicate your boundary
I know… this can be easy to think about and hard to do. However people can not read your beautiful mind. Who do you need to share this boundary with?  There are many ways to communicate your boundary, so find a way that feels right for you.

Remember, boundaries are kind. You are taking out the guess work for others and showing them how you need to be treated.
One framework can be: I feel____when___because___. What I need at the moment is____.

Another way is to state your boundary, but do so in a way that also validates the other persons needs.
Eg. It makes me uncomfortable to be around you when you argue around me and if it continues I’m going to head home.  However I do like spending time with you. Can you tell me about your last holiday?

3. Prepare for pushback
People don’t love change – especially change they aren’t in control of. Not everyone is going to understand your need for your boundary or like you putting it in place.

This is OK.

It is not up to you how they will respond. You can not control this.
Give them time to adjust.
Be clear on your WHY – why are you putting this boundary in place? Why is it important for you? What might happen if you don’t?
Trust your decision making. If you choose to prioritise their needs over your own, you are starting an internal battle that will stay with you until you choose YOU.

If you know that something needs to change in your life, but are not clear on what that change should be or how to implement it, get in touch and book in a 30 minute complementary Clarity Session. In this session you will get crystal clear on the direction that feels perfect for you, so you can take your next step with confidence.

What is a Mindset Life Coach?

Wondering what a Mindset Life Coach actually does and if life and mindset coaching is right for you? Here’s everything you need to know. 

28-year-old me was generally happy and successful. I was living in London, earning alright money, had friends and spent my spare time travelling. Things were ‘fine’. Yet deep in my gut I felt that something was missing. I could feel a gap between where I was and where I really wanted to be. 

Despite reading the books, doing the online courses and trying the strategies I thought would help, I found myself stuck in the same cycles with little changing. 

So I reached out to a life coach. 

What is a Mindset Life Coach?

A Mindset and Life Coach, or referred to as a Mindset Life Coach, takes you from where you are currently, to where you want to be.

We all have goals we want to reach, challenges we’re striving to overcome and times when we feel stuck. Partnering with a coach can change your life, setting you on a path to greater personal and professional fulfilment. (International Coach Federation)

Often we want something at the conscious level (eg. to achieve our goals.) however at unconscious level there are patterns, beliefs and behaviours that we have been practising and strengthening for years. Just ‘wanting’ to change is usually not enough. A Mindset Life Coach helps you to rewire your thinking, dissolve beliefs that no longer serve you, and create a mindset to match what you are wanting to achieve. 

Mindset and Life Coaches use powerful tools such as NLP, CBT and more traditional coaching techniques to help you increase your awareness around your current thoughts, beliefs and patterns, to help reframe those that are not benefiting you, create new neural pathways and set you up for success. 

You will not become reliant on the coach, instead you will transform your thinking and learn strategies so you can continue to experience success long after the sessions have finished. 

What a Mindset Life Coach is not:

A Mindset and Life Coach is not there to heal your past trauma, be your counsellor or listen to you vent for hours about why you dislike your family. Nor are they going to tell you what is the next best step for your life or do the work for you. 

Who is Mindset Life Coaching for?

Life and Mindset Coaching is for people who have the desire to change. 

“Life coaching is for anyone who wants to improve their performance – whether you want to advance at work or make more meaningful personal connections. Even the most skilled, successful people can benefit from coaching and there are a variety of different types of life coaches who can help in all different arenas of life.” Tony Robins.

I have had women come to me feeling like ‘something is missing’, ‘something is holding me back from achieving…but I don’t know what it is’ or an overwhelming feeling that they can be getting more out of their life. Sometimes they feel like they have too many options or  are procrastinating and not taking the action they know they need to. 

Mindset Life Coaching is for you if you:

  • Are ready to take action to make your dreams a reality
  • Feel stuck and want to move forwards quickly and easily
  • Have a desire to make positive, lasting changes in your life
  • Aren’t taking the steps you need to in order to live the life you desire
  • Want a life vision that inspires you and makes decision making easy 
  • Have limiting beliefs or recurring thought patterns which are holding you back
  • Want to discover your purpose and get complete clarity about what you want in life

If you’re wondering if Mindset and Life Coaching is for you, check out my top selling package Direction, Clarity, Action here.

Book your free 30min Mindset and Life Coaching Clarity Call. Find out more about the coaching process and book your coaching package with Bridie McHaffie here

3 Easy Ways To Use Your Breath When Stressed

You are wanting some effective tools to help keep anxiety and stress at the minimum. However there is so much information out there it’s hard to know where to start.

I get it, so I have given you my 3 favourite breathing techniques that kick anxiety in the butt.

When faced with stressful situations, our breathing shifts and we automatically begin quick, shallow breathing. If you are relaxing in the bath, listening or reading, your breathing is slow, deep, calm and inhaled and exhaled through our diaphragm and abdomen.

Exhaling is linked to the parasympathetic nervous system, which influences our body’s ability to relax and calm down. On the flip side, the sympathetic nervous system, which controls the fight-or-flight response (the one we are trying to calm down) can be triggered by a deep inhale, as it’s our bodies natural response to threat…this is NOT what we are aiming for.

Breathe easy babe. Using our breath to calm our body is straightforward. There are so many different breathing techniques and it’s a matter of finding what feel easy and natural for you. The following are my go to tools when I need to calm the f*** down.

3 Breathing Exercises

Square Breathing: Inhale for 4 counts, pause for 4 counts, exhale for 4, pause for 4. You can visualise a square, following it with your breath, or trace it with your finger.

Balloon Breathing: Visualise a balloon in your belly. As you breath in, your balloon expands. As you exhale, your balloon gets smaller. Breath deep into your belly as you inhale. I also have my fingertips touching on my belly. As my balloon expands my fingers move apart, as I exhale they move to touch again.

3/6 Breathing: This supports the longer exhale. Breathe in for 3 counts and out for 6. Doubling the exhale helps to kick your parasynthetic nervous system into gear, calming you down and helping you to think clearly.

Having these tools on hand was a game changer for me and I hope they are for you too.

Which one of these resonates with you most? Comment below.

Ready to reduce the feelings of being stuck and overwhelmed so you can enjoy life more? Click here to book a free 30 minute Clarity Call to see how we could work together.

B x

Top 5 Steps When You Don’t Agree in a Relationship

Arguments are a normal part of being in a relationship. Two people with different life experiences, beliefs and expectations are trying to merge their lives while continuing to have their own needs met.

When conflict arrises, have a go at using the following 5 steps. 

  • Address the problem – trying to ignore or think it’s not important will not make it go away, and usually makes it grow. Speak up and identify the problem, so it will start the process of moving forwards.

  • Understand the ‘Illusion of Sameness”. At times we feel we know our partner so well “We are soul mates”, “He really gets me”, “We are so similar”. The Illusion of Sameness leads us to make one of the biggest mistakes in our relationship – to assume our partners experience of something is the same as ours and that the events and behaviours mean the same to them as they do to us. We have certain expectations of how we think they should act, and when they don’t we blame them or get angry. Reminding yourself of this Illusion can help you to remember your partner is their own unique person.
  • When challenging moments occur, remember that both parties are trying to meet their needs. You might not yet understand what that means for your partner. Neither of you are right or wrong. You are both acting in the only way you know how at this exact moment. It’s up to you both to listen, communicate clearly and find a way to make it work.
  • Speak with kindness and listen. Using catastrophizing words like ‘why are you always’ or ‘You never..” make the problem bigger than it is.
  • Use the talking frame “When you……I feel like…..”. This allows your partner to hear what you feel the problem is and how it is impacting you. You are not attacking them, simply saying how you are affected by what they are doing.

Continue to increase your own self-awareness searching to find out your triggers, finding strategies to regulate your emotions and thinking about how you can act differently (rather than put blame on your partner).

B x

Worried – Overthinking – Need to make a decision = Grab a Pen

Clarity awaits! Use this writing technique if worrying, decision making Now, before you get skeptical, this is not the same as that book you kept locked under your bed as a child. Journalling is not diary writing. Instead of bitching about your BFF or crush, journalling is an excellent tool to help you deal with overwhelming emotions, unlock your intuition, and gain clarity.

Research (see notes) has show that the act of expressive writing can clear your mind’s worries and free up resources in your brain that could be put to use on other tasks. CLEAR MY WORRIES?! Sign. me. up.

Gaining clarity of your thoughts, decision making, a clear vision and feeling less stressed out are many of the well known benefits of putting pen to paper. Consequently, your emotional intelligence can also be strengthened when writing. It provides a space for you to identify, and manage your emotions while also understanding the emotions and actions of others.

Ok, so you get it. Journalling sounds like a bit of you. But where do you start?

“Writing is medicine. It is an appropriate antidote to injury. It is an appropriate companion for any difficult change.” – Julia Cameron

Let’s get started: Here is a simple yet effective writing prompt to help you gain clarity and to figure out what you really want and to start manifesting the shit out of it.

Grab pen and paper and find a calm, quiet spot. Take a few deep breaths to calm your nervous system. Add a title if wanted (My ideal work, relationship).

Tips for success:

  • Write in the present tense: Write about it as if you already have it. I have, I am, I can
  • State it in the positive: I like that my evenings are free to do what I want. (NOT I don’t want to work after hours).
  • Remove restrictions: Write as if you have NO boundaries or blocks and everything is possible.
  • Let it flow: Write down whatever comes to mind.

What now? It’s time to step into your aligned action. Not sure how to do this? Join me in Aligned Goals and Action. for more info.

Notes: *Study byHans Schroder, an MSU doctoral student in psychology.

5 Ways to Reduce Negative Thoughts

Sick of negative thoughts and worry taking over? No one can be positive 100 percent of the time and we are naturally programmed to have negative thoughts. ‘Negativity bias’ explains that we give more attention to negative events than positive, an evolutionary response designed to keep you safe and protected. However in today’s world they cause more harm than good.

Every word you say and thought you think becomes a blueprint that your mind works to turn into reality. So learning to understand and ‘hack’ your mind, and change your internal dialogue can help to reduce the mental and physical distress caused by these negative thought loops.

5 Ways to Reduce the Power of Negative Thoughts.

1.Allow (don’t try to stop it) and Identify the negative thought. The goal is not to try ‘remove’ all negative thoughts – they are a normal part of being human. It is a matter of separating yourself from them and not buying into the story. 

2. Labelling thoughts can help us to understand our repeating loop patterns, thus making it easier to notice when they are showing up. Here are some common cognitive distortions to be aware of:

  • Should’ statements – ‘I should be able to cope with this better than I am.’
  • Jumping to conclusions – ‘I’m going to embarrass myself on stage!’
  • Catastrophising – I’ll never find a boyfriend and i’ll be alone forever.
  • Overgeneralisation – When not winning the raffle you think; “Typical, I never win anything.”
  • Labelling yourself – ‘I’m such a loser’. 

3. Evaluating the accuracy of the thought and finding evidence to the contrary can help your brain to weaken the power of the thought and make the next step a whole lot more believable for your brain. For this, choose a thought and write down at least 2 examples that prove the thought wrong. Eg. I’m terrible at talking to guys: 1. I have guy mates that I talk to easily. 2. I had no trouble meeting my ex and can talk when needed. 

4. Reframe: Use the CBT technique of cognitive restructuring/reframing. This stems from the idea that your brain is listening and believes whatever you tell it. So have a go at flipping the words around to be beneficial for your growth. The more you do it the more natural it will feel. Eg. All my plans are ruined = Plans change and I am learning to adapt.

5. Practice mindfulness: Spend 1 minute imagining your thoughts like objects flowing down a river. As each object floats by notice it, but you don’t get stuck on it. This teaches our brain to separate ourself from our thoughts and will make it easier for you to recognise when a negative thought loop has appeared and when to put your strategies in place. It is also just a lovey feeling to allow your brain a moment of peace. 

Including these in a daily routine will start creating a powerful shift. Negative thoughts will still appear from time to time. That’s OK! Think of them as an opportunity to practice your new habit and soon it will be second nature.

Enjoyed this blog? Leave a message and let me know. Your feedback and questions help guide future blogs.

B x

Expectations and Uncertainty

Ten years ago on my anniversary: I had already imagined my (ex) partner coming home with flowers. Thats what I ‘decided’ would show me he loved me, thus no flowers meant he did not.

My expectations on how he ‘should’ behave and how things ‘should’ be, left me feeling disappointed as his smiling face entered the room….empty handed. 

Poor boy. Apparently he was not a mindreader.

Like many women, I had created a habit to overthink and create expectations about how a conversation would go, what dinner should be like, or how someone else should behave. I was focusing on how things were ‘supposed’ to be. without realising that these expectations were creating an intense gap between what is and what will be.

Thankfully, I started to notice a pattern. My anxiety would increase as things didn’t go as my mind had planned and I would feel consequently feel disappointed or let down.

I was the one who was creating this problem for myself. I was expecting others to not be allowed to act as they are. This was a refreshing realisation as it meant I could learn to STOP it and change my behaviour (rather than trying to change theirs).

Fast forward to today and I am a different person. I catch myself starting to lay down expectations and can reframe my thoughts immediately. My relationship flows like none I have had before and I live for the present moment, because I can’t control the future. My mantra “It is what it is” stops me getting stuck inside my head. This mindset shift a f**king game changer!!

Shifting Expectations

What would change for you if you could shift your expectation to wonder and curiosity?

When we let go of expectations, we live in the present moment. We open space for more curiosity, more creativity, more connectedness. Expectations feed our worst nightmares of uncertainty, doubt, hesitation, self-consciousness, anxiety, fear, and worry.

Author and neuroscientist Robb Rutledge says “Happiness depends not on how well things are going but whether things are going better or worse than expected.” However micro-managing and overthinking every detail in our life reduces our feelings of happiness.

*I want to add here that I am not suggesting you remove your boundaries or your moral code. Some of our expectations are healthy and expectations that others will obey laws and not harm us helps to create inner peace and trust within our communities.*

“Trade your expectations for appreciation and your whole world changes in an instant. ” – Tony Robbins .

How to create the shift

To start creating the shift in mindset for yourself:

1) Become aware of your overthinking and the expectations you are holding for the people and situations around you. 

2) Explore how it feels to change your language from ‘hope’ ‘should’ ‘expect’ to ‘wonder’ or that of appreciation of what is happening right now.

Old thought: “I hope he gets here early”

New thought: “I wonder if he will get here early’.

Old thought: “She should stop telling me what to do”

New thought: “I wonder why she feels she needs to tell me what to do. I’ll ask her.”

3) If required, think of one thing YOU can do now to get yourself closer to the preferred outcome. Remember that the only thing we can control is how WE respond to a situation.

What expectations in your life could you drop and trade for appreciation or wonder?

Ready to shift your thinking and remove the expectations making you feel like sh*t? I invite you to 8 weeks of personalised coaching – Just you and me.