Photo of Margaret CollinsHi. I’m Margaret.

I wonder who you are and what makes you, you? Are you also dealing with feeling like an Imposter?

I started my life as a working class girl who worked hard, got lucky and jumped at opportunities. Fascinated by the question “How does that work?” I enjoyed a long career as a research scientist. I’m not sure if I was “typical” but I often felt like a fraud. I soon realised that to succeed, I needed both logic and creativity, skills in both project and people management, the technical and the personal.

Naturally introverted, I became fascinated by the power and complexity of connection and I learned to communicate with confidence and clarity – it’s not just about traits we inherit, we can learn new behaviours!

As I approached my forties – yes, time for that proverbial mid-life crisis – I worked hard to make sure my work was good enough, establish my position – as an academic that meant writing papers, grants and teaching. I often questioned whether I was as good as my peers, assuming they were more confident and certain. I trained as a coach because that skill set helped me do my job more effectively. Those very different skills also allowed me to clearly identify and appreciate my strengths. It was also the first time I learned of the Imposter Phenomenon, something I had long experienced without consciously knowing. Now I know it’s very common to doubt yourself, not own your achievements and feel like a fraud and, as a coach I knew how to change the way I thought and behaved – feeling like an Imposter did not make me an Imposter! Knowing that can set you free.   

I soon realised that my future would probably involve caring responsibilities – for aging parents or a disabled sister – so I started to create possibilities for a life and lifestyle which could be more flexible than a “9 to 5” job. This involved really looking at my schedule and commitments, making choices and prioritising those things most important to me.

Because a successful career is just part of the picture, there came the time when I decided to leave my life as an academic and researcher. In becoming a carer I also became a business owner, Director of my coaching and training company, Training For Universities.  In doing this I also created a better life with a more balanced perspective – a balance that is dynamic, flexible and responsive to changing events but is guided by my values.

I love working with people to overcome Imposter feelings, to identify their strengths, build their confidence to be the best version of themselves. For some people it’s about stepping up, putting themselves forward and taking a lead – even if they don’t feel like leaders yet.

If you’d like to make better choices, know that you’re doing the right thing, making a difference, living life on purpose rather than just getting by, then I’d love to work with you to create that life. Whether you’re looking for purpose or direction, courage or inspiration, even a greater sense of control, I’d love to coach you on this journey!

See how we can work together here: Coaching and mentoring packages

The values that guide my life and work include authenticity, empowerment and growth:
  • I am passionate about sharing the knowledge that each of us, right now, is enough, good enough, strong enough, wise enough and beautiful enough, just as we are
  • I am excited that, at the same time we have the potential to be so much more
  • I am intrigued that we sometimes feel that we see the big picture, yet each of us can only see in part; only together can we create more than we can see, more than we are
  • I feel I am on this planet to be a link in a chain, a bond of connection, part of something that is both bigger than me yet an essential part of me
  • I must do something about reducing evident unfairness or injustice, reducing conscious and unconscious bias, things that conspire to make a minority feel less than they are
  • I have the courage to create a better life, full of opportunities for you, for me; even when I fail or fall, I have the courage to get up and try once more
  • I will dare greatly by being most fully myself so that you may find the courage to explore the fullness of you.
Will you join me on this journey?

After training as a coach, I later qualified as a master practitioner of NLP and developed particular interests in overcoming Imposter Syndrome feelings and career coaching. I have completed advanced study in cognitive behavioural confidence coaching, the neuroscience of coaching and having trained with Dr Brené Brown – I am a fully Certified Daring Way™ and Dare to Lead™ Facilitator. I also trained with Dr Joanna Martin and am a certified coach and trainer with One Of Many™. I’m a full member of the Association for Coaching.

This means you benefit from a wide range of skills and styles, combining science and creativity, logic and intuition. Together we can build confidence, create purpose, grow in courage and create careers that support a well balanced life. I work within a professional body with a code of ethics and a commitment to ongoing professional development so you can trust that I’m working with the best.

I spend my home life together with my partner, caring for my disabled sister.

We grow vegetables and tend a small flock of 6 cute chickens that add richness and fresh eggs to our life!

As a family we sing and especially enjoy singing camp which combines the joys of being outdoors, community living, great vegetarian food and a rich variety of song.