For decades, like so many of us, I built the ‘perfect’ image. I hid from the world what was troubling my heart – I hid me. I thought others might like me ‘less’ if they knew what had happened to me. I moved inside my head. I locked myself in an intellectual armour that let no one close to my heart … not even me.

Anne Beaulieu
Emotional Intelligence Coach, Speaker & Author

I didn’t realize it at the time. but I felt I must prove I had the right to exist. I chased diplomas and certifications. I got married. I had three children, and I built the white picket fence … but I still felt empty. I kept wondering what was wrong with me since I had it ‘all’ What it took me too long to realize was, I had nothing to prove to anyone! All I had to do was find a way to be loving towards myself. (Easier said than done!) I couldn’t do that because. like I said earlier, I had locked my heart away, even from myself.

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Even though my marriage was over, I was still clinging to my armour. Finally, tired of going to bed at night physically exhausted and emotionally drained, I attended an event hosted by a top leadership expert, Dov Baron. Standing on stage, he asked a powerful question that would haunt me for months to come. He asked,”Who are you hurting by playing small?” That night, I went to bed crying into my pillow, his question echoing in my head. I knew the answer was, The people I love, The people I love, especially my kids. I also secretly knew there were many more.

Terrified that the old conditioning was right, and I wasn’t good enough, I somehow found the courage to reach out to Dov, who agreed to mentor me. With great love and compassion and some hard truths, he blew my armour to pieces, allowing my heart to open to myself and others. It was then, I realized how truly dark my life had been; I had had so little compassion for myself or others. I had always told myself I’d have to do “it” (whatever it was) alone … I was wrong! No one does it alone!

Being honest with myself. for perhaps the very first time-and this may sound strange to you-I had to accept that as loving as I thought I was (because I was armoured). I actually did not know what real love was. how to love, or how to be loved. With my armour in pieces at my feet, and sadly, for maybe the first time in mylife, I learned how to genuinely become more loving towards myself. Suddenly, almost magically, I stopped envying others whom I once deemed more fully attractive, better parents, and more powerful human beings. I began to treat myself with the love. kindness, and compassion I wanted others to show me.

Three years into mentoring with him. here’s what Dov said about me, “I have had the honour of mentoring Anne for three years. As you will see in her writing. Anne’s journey has not been an easy one. but it has been a courageous one. l have had the honour of being her guide as she walked inside her own, often painful story to retrieve the true beauty and gifts she has to offer. Anne is now serving others in a magnificent manner. I have no doubt she has what it takes to make the kind of impact she Wishes to make in our world. Anne’s commitment to her journey make her a rare and excellent coach because every day she is walking her talk”

“Anne is now serving others in a magnificent manner. I have no doubt she has what it takes to make the kind of impact she wishes to make in our world.”

Inc Magazine Top 100 Leadership Speaker, Bestselling Author, Mentor and Founder of

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