I'm Penny...book, coffee and chocolate lover; Francophile; veg growing novice; coach and psychologist
I have been working as a qualified coach since 2006. I am a chartered organisational psychologist and my work over the last 30 years has focused significantly on executive coaching; team coaching; resilience at work and leadership development. During this time I have become more and more interested in positive psychology and the psychology of wellbeing. This interest grew partly because I began to notice, over time, the extent to which people I worked with did not appear to be able, for one reason or another, to attend to their wellbeing, including myself at times! As well as this, they did not seem to be aware of the importance of this until they began to work with me, when I would encourage them to think about themselves and their health. Many clients were too busy striving; although they didn’t seem to be clear what they were striving for. They were unclear as to how they would ever get to where they were so focused on getting to, in this monumental effort to get somewhere, or attain something. This was impacting on their ability to perform well at work and/or feel fulfilled in their lives outside of work. My work therefore began to evolve and focus more on wellbeing, concentrating on the whole person and I transitioned into my current work focus of life with wellbeing.
My own life and wellbeing changes
Around 2010, after a significant life event, my husband and I began to dream of living a life with wellbeing ourselves, as well as starting a new adventure. After much planning, we moved to South West France in 2015 and settled in Bordeaux wine country. My husband took early retirement and single-handedly renovated two holiday homes, or gites, as they're called in France. I still work with many UK based organisations and coaching clients but also manage the gite business and run retreats.
Having experienced my own expat rollercoaster ride, including all the ups and downs that come with planning for and moving to a new country, I have begun to offer expat coaching to clients. Moving to a new culture and new way of life involves facing small daily hassles, as well as more significant issues such as learning a new language, making new friends and integrating into a different health system. Once settled, expats might start to make decisions about what comes next or even think about repatriation. Although my own experience will have been different to everyone else, it is easier for me to walk beside a coachee on their expat journey having some knowledge of what they might bring to coaching sessions.
My approach and qualifications
I draw on positive psychology, mindfulness, cognitive behavioural approaches and stress management techniques to help people to achieve realistic goals in relation to reducing their stress and attaining improved wellbeing.
Clients have described me as: self-assured; calm; positive; challenging; knowledgeable and supportive.
My qualifications include:
PhD, MSc, BSc - all in psychology
a range of coaching certificates
use of personality, emotional intelligence and other psychometrics
As I write I'm attending a Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction course as part of my continuing personal and professional development.
Membership of professional bodies
I am a member of the following professional bodies and abide by the ethical code of all of these organisations:
British Psychological Society (BPS)
Special Group in Coaching Psychology (BPS)
The Association for Coaching
The Health & Care Professions Council
This means that I act with integrity and everything you share with me in your coaching sessions remains confidential. You can feel safe in the knowledge that I will maintain your privacy and I also keep up to date by engaging regularly in continuing professional development. I attend regular supervision sessions to enable me to work to the best of my ability with you.
It's also important for you to know that I am fully insured.