For you, new and popular

An edit of newly added resources and those proving consistently popular among our partners' teams.
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Raul Aparici on mitigating impostor syndrome
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Kate and Catherine on pausing, for conversational space
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Kate and Catherine on intentional listening
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Kate and Catherine on questioning well
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Worksheet: Time Blocking
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Kate and Catherine on the coaching opportunity
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Matteo's coaching reflections
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Kas's reflections on listening and questioning well
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Time Blocking, and bringing some colour into your calendar
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Worksheet: Owning Feedback
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Making the case for situational flexibility as leaders
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eCourse: Difficult Conversations
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Mentors, Sponsors and Champions. With Abi Adamson
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Effective Allyship. With Abi Adamson
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What's your Privilege Pledge? With Abi Adamson
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Diversify your feed. With Abi Adamson
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Privilege reflections. With Abi Adamson
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Mindful toothbrushing. With Dr. Sam Akbar
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Anchor dropping. With Dr. Sam Akbar
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5,4,3,2,1 — a mindfulness technique. With Dr. Sam Akbar
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Urge surfing. With Dr. Sam Akbar
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Everyday mindfulness. With Dr. Sam Akbar
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Making room for emotions (and the weather). With Dr. Sam Akbar
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Letting go of emotions. With Dr. Sam Akbar
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How do you notice your thoughts? With Dr. Sam Akbar
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A coaching conversation around strengths
Confidence Ecourse
eCourse: Confidence Mastery
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Daniel Goleman's Six Leadership Styles, explained by Louise Hedges
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eCourse: Mastering Delegation
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eCourse: Time Management and Prioritisation
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eCourse: Get SET with your Goals
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Perspectives on privilege, with Abi Adamson
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Neurodivergent Perspectives. Lexi Keegan in conversation with Dr. Anne Cockayne
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Neurodiversity know-how: The Spiky Profile explained
Neurodiversity explained with Dr Anne Cockayne low
Neurodiversity explained, with Dr. Anne Cockayne
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Neuroinclusion at work: Thinking about adjustments
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Neurodiversity know-how. Autism with Dr. Anne Cockayne
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Neurodiversity know-how. ADHD with Dr. Anne Cockayne
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Neurodiversity know-how. Dyslexia with Dr. Anne Cockayne
Micro-learning: Setting Better Boundaries
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eCourse: Practicing a Coaching Approach
Finding fortitude, and follow on experiments
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eCourse: Conscious Inclusion
Seven things to avoid when writing at work
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Share genuinely useful feedback with the BID model
Solve problems before they happen with pre-mortems
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Five tactics for influencing those more senior
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Five powerful questions for adding impact and insight to your next interview.
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Try out the CAR technique, and upgrade your understanding when interviewing someone.
Good Qs
Smart ways to frame questions in your next mentoring session
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Try the 5 Whys to invigorate your problem solving and add depth to your decisions.
Allyship CP
Course Pack: Effective Allyship, with Abi Adamson
Course Pack: Voice Gym. Building your vocal confidence
A three minute mindset exercise, to support a coaching approach
Try this deep listening exercise for deeper connection and better conversations
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Experiment with the BRAIN model for confident decision making and problem solving
Discover the impact a five minute favour can have on your relationships, and network building
Homework for Life: A ten-second daily ritual for noticing, capturing and practicing stories
Course Pack: Storytelling
Do Story
Practical storytelling principles from Bobette Buster's book — Do: Story
Evolve your 'inner mentor' — a short reflective exercise to focus your development, and the ways you can better support others
Experiment with a Springboard Story to communicate your change idea, and take people with you towards it.
N Ngrab
Course Pack: Natural Networking
Tone Policing - What it is, why it's unhelpful and how to helpfully notice it.
Coaching Criticism
Find the Coaching in Criticism. Things to try when feedback doesn't quite land
4 Ds
The 4Ds. A practical framework for acknowledging microaggressions
Mindful breathing — the foundation of focus and flow
Channel that fly on the wall. Try some purposeful self talk to mitigate moments of doubt
Add some friction to your most common distractions
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Build belief by recognising small wins — Try a 'Done List'
Silent Meeting
Make your next meeting a Silent Meeting
Can If Go
Immediately build your confidence, with a 'Can-If' statement
To Think
Don't forget to diarise thinking time — experiment with a 'To Think' list
Smarten your approach to setbacks, by trying out a Setback Story
Get clear on control with a Clarity Clap
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Everything I Know about Life I Learned from PowerPoint — What we learned and where it led...
How to be a meaningful mentor, insights from a purposeful podcast
If Then New
Design (and share) your If > Then statements, for a purposefully prompt towards action
Practice the principles of persuasion from 'Godfather of Influence,' Robert Cialdini.
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Six steps for finding focus and flow, with Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi in mind
Course Pack: Making Time
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Great questions to ask in coaching conversations, 1-1's and other curious contexts

Smarten your approach to setbacks, by trying out a Setback Story

Build self-belief and self-awareness simultaneously with this super-simple method for overcoming setbacks and re-discovering resilience. Introducing Setback Stories — a tool we discovered in the brilliant new book You Coach You. Here’s how to use it.

What's the story?

When you’re faced with a setback, it’s easy to mentally skip forward in time and imagine the worst possible outcome.

“Setbacks cause our self-doubts to surface, encouraging us to give up, stop trying and reduce our ambitions.”
Helen Tupper and Sarah Ellis — You Coach You

Luckily, research has shown how storytelling through expressive writing can help us reframe our feelings about setbacks, better understand ourselves and get clearer on positive actions. And that’s where ‘Setback Stories’ are useful.

Setback Stories help you pick apart the stories you’re telling yourself, analyse what’s happening, who’s involved, and change your ending for the better. Coupled with some powerful coaching questions, you can create some helpful emotional distance and a more positive outlook overall. Plus, they’re really fun to do!

Setback Stories: A You Coach You tool, from Helen Tupper and Sarah Ellis

Giving the tool a go

Let’s take a look at the nuts and bolts of a setback story, so you can then experiment with your own.

Think of a setback that’s happened recently

Maybe you feel out of your depth in your new position, or didn’t feel like a job interview went well. It could be something outside of work too. This is what your story is about.

Give it a good title

Find one that suits your story, and write it down on the head of a sheet of paper. It could be straightforward (The Day I’m Having), it could capture an audience's imagination (Running in Circles), or be more specific about an actual incident (The presentation from HELL) — anything at all.

Find your protagonist (spoiler - it’s you)

Introduce yourself in a couple of sentences; who you are, what you like to do. It might be something like ‘My name is Wale. I’m outgoing, I’m optimistic, I like rock-climbing, and I’m an avid reader’. It could also be about a belief you hold, or focus more on a feeling, like ‘feeling really prepared for any kind of meeting or presentation helps me feel in control of what’s coming’.

Stir up some jeopardy and drama

A story is nothing without conflict, so write a small paragraph that describes the setback you’re facing. It could focus on the facts - ‘I completed a presentation and received some negative feedback on my speaking skills,' - it could explain your emotions - ‘I didn’t feel my design pitch went very well and it made me feel like a failure,’ - or it could be a mix of both. Don’t dwell on it too much, three or four sentences will do just fine.

Supporting characters

Who always comes to your aid when you need it most? Who always believes in you, even when you don’t believe in you? Write down their names, your relationship to them, and how they make you feel. These are the supporting characters to your story of resilience and self-belief.


This is your chance to look forward and write out how you’re going to respond and react to your setback. You don’t need to know all the answers about the steps you’re going to take next, but you will need to intentionally and purposefully look for positives; learning opportunities, habits you’re going to start, new beginnings.

For example, ‘Before I go into my next job interview I’m going to take five minutes to focus on my breathing. When I do that, I won’t be nearly as nervous, and I’m going to make a much better impression. It might even be one that’s a better fit for me…” Or “Maybe if I share the presentation with my manager ahead of the next team meeting he can give me some feedback in advance, so I’m not rattled by it during?”

How will your story end?

Self-coaching questions

Helen and Sarah recommend these self-coaching questions to ask yourself off the back of experimenting with your Setback Story:

• What am in in control of as part of my current setback?
• Who could provide me with a helpful perspective on this challenge?
• When I’ve experienced a setback before, what helped me to move forward?
• What can I learn from this challenge that will be helpful in my future career?
• What successes have I had at the same time as this setback?
• What advice would I give to my work best friend if they were having this setback?
• When I reflect on this setback in a year’s time, what do I want to be true about how I responded?

Putting your setbacks in writing and charting a course for overcoming them creates powerful ‘emotional distancing’ while building self-belief and positive future planning at the same time.
How can you use a setback story today?

Good to know...

We cover an array of tools and techniques for building bounce-back-ability in our Rethinking Resilience workshop. Book into coming sessions here.

You Coach You is a must have book for every team bookshelf, packed with practical approaches to work and relational challenges.

Helen and Sarah, the authors of You Coach You — have a superb podcast on the Squiggly Career.

We collaborated on a live workshop with psychologist and author of Chatter, Ethan Kross. Ethan shared some very practical insights into quietening our inner critic, and turning up the volume on our inner coach.

Similarly, neuroscientist and brain expert Ian Robertson has shared six tactical, actionable approaches to boosting our confidence.

More Resources