One Heart at a Time: Ashley’s story of personal development
Sandra Bullen – Marketing & Communications Director
Ashley shared with us that the programme has given her insight into how she can better lay the foundations for her personal and professional success.
Coming from a store management background, Ashley identified that when operating in a fast-paced environment she’d sometimes slip into competitive and controlling behaviours. Having had the time to reflect and taking into consideration her Heartstyles learnings, she understood that these behaviours were manifesting when she was under pressure:
‘When I found myself in an environment where I could control what was happening and I could predict the outcomes I feel like I lived in that space a little bit longer than I probably should have. Attending the programme really helped me to ask, what is the baggage you are carrying? You probably need to dump it and re-look at how you can be more effective and where you can drive those behaviours and mindsets to become a better version of yourself.’
Sharing with others and relating to them in a way that didn’t make her feel too vulnerable was also something that she wanted to work on. She shared with us that she often struggles to let others get to know her better and she hadn’t realised how much of an impact this was having on others being able to understand where some of her behaviours were coming from; Why she does the things she does.
When it comes to building relationships, Ashley knows that it can take time, whether that relationship is a work or a personal one. Recognising that she had previously worked in environments where she felt that targets were more important than relationship building, she knew that she’d have to work on overcoming her fear of being judged, being vulnerable or being misread.
Going through the Heartstyles journey over the last six years has made it easier for her to focus more on sharing and understanding how to improve her relationships with friends, family and work colleagues:
‘Working with my peers and being open and sharing with them and letting them get to know me more, about who I am and what shaped me to be the way that I am. I never realised before how much that can help them understand me, understand why I do the things the way that I do and how I think and behave. I feel like for me, that was that light bulb moment, to be like ‘hey I don’t have to share everything but I can share enough to show who I am. And this is why I am the way that I am.’ And those kind of snippets grow over time as you build relationships, whether it be with your peers or your colleagues or your friends or your family.’
She goes on to say:
‘Previously I’ve been in environments where targets are more important than sharing and people whereas going through this whole journey of Heartstyles has helped me realise that’s not the kind of leader that I want to be. I’m now focusing on relationship building and understanding what that will do for my relationship with myself and with friends, family and work colleagues and the value that gives you. You can’t really match that, that’s where you want to be. That’s where you’re really achieving everything. You’re achieving goals, you’re being your best self. You’re living, you’re thriving in that area.’
For Ashley, it’s been about pushing through that barrier to be vulnerable and open with others because she believes that this can help her relate better to people in her personal life or whoever she’s working with on a specific project and even in her future work environments. And now, this is the biggest thing for her, to continue growing within herself. She feels that Heartstyles has given her a common language to share with her friends, family and work colleagues. She feels that her way of approaching different situations has broadened and she encourages herself to open her mind to new ways of thinking and behaving.
Ashley knows that personal development takes time, work and dedication and she’s made a commitment to herself to keep her learning going.