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Hi, I am Lisa, a Chartered Clinical Psychologist and executive coach specialising in burnout, intense anxiety, perfectionism and imposter syndrome. I have over 20 years of experience of working within the NHS, the Military, and the independent sector. I love supporting my clients move towards change, psychological health, and improved wellbeing. 

I work with high achievers and professionals who experience intense anxiety and burnout, often brought about by perfectionism, imposter syndrome, and people pleasing, all of which I have also experienced in bucket loads over the course of my career!!

For many years, I can look back and see that I too, was in a place of what felt like constant burnout. I was juggling work as a Clinical Psychologist in the NHS and ambitiously building my own private practice, with parenting my four children, often alone and isolated with no extended family support, as my Military serving husband worked away or was deployed for months on end. I did it and looking back, I did it well, because that's what high striving perfectionists do! On the outside I was doing great. I was achieving at work, smashing being a mum to my four little loves, and keeping up with all of 'the things', but as I came to realise, the cost I was paying was high. 

Dr Lisa Ahmad
Dr Lisa with an eye ball art structure

If you'd have asked me at the time if I felt anxious or stressed, I'd have said no. Not because I was fibbing, but because I really didn't feel it, and most people would have described me as having my shit together, chilled out and unfazed by things. Looking back I now know I didn't feel stressed because I had shut down and disconnected from my feelings, my body....myself! I talk a lot to my clients about how important it is to listen to their internal voice, to really connect to it and to listen to what our body is telling us. Mine was telling me 'enough!'. Whilst I'd have told you that I wasn't stressed or anxious, my body was letting me know with constant headaches and migraines that resulted in high levels of prescription medication to manage and function, digestive problems, and escalating physical health symptoms that ultimately led to a diagnosis of an serious autoimmune condition. 

I knew as a Psychologist that my physical health was telling me something important, but I was too burnt out and exhausted to feel able to do much about it, so I did what lots of us do, I carried on regardless! I was still achieving at work and at home, albeit running myself into the ground doing so, and without anyone really noticing. Until one day a psychologist colleague and friend shared with me some gentle reflections and made me really question what I was doing and what I wanted for myself. If I kept running myself into the ground, soon enough I wouldn't be able to do the things that mattered to me, with the people that mattered! I realised that if I kept getting on the same bus, I was going to keep arriving at the same destination! BUT....change felt hard and I was acutely aware that I was holding the 'system' together..... just! Any possibility of that falling or wobbling by addressing the issues felt too overwhelming, but something had to give.

I realised that in order to live inline with my values and goals, I had to invest in my own wellbeing, get the support I needed and do more of the things that filled me with joy. I made some tough decisions and wrestled with some tricky thoughts and beliefs but I knew that for myself and the sake of my husband and children, change needed to happen. I needed to put into place what I was preaching to my clients. Change was slow, just as the burnout was slow to take hold, but after a while I felt its grip lessen and I 'noticed' and felt more! At home, it was clear to me that I was a better mum, wife and friend when I was connected and feeling truely calm and balanced. At work, I could focus on what mattered and make decisions with clarity and focus. As a psychologist I knew, and had seen in my clients, the amazing change that EMDR therapy and coaching could bring about, but it wasn't until I made the time and invested in it myself that I really understood the game change.

Working in private practice, and building my own business has allowed me to do more of what I love, both at work and at home with my family, and in doing so I felt happier and more aligned to my values of connection, compassion, and curiosity. I have been able to work with some inspirational clients whom I have learnt so much from, and been privileged to have been able to be part of their change and recovery. Blending together EMDR and coaching skills has meant that I can better help and serve more people, working with integrity and transparency, sharing my knowledge of psychology, neuro-biology and human behavior to help others achieve change. Working in this way I can provide bespoke 1:1 and group packages to support more stuck perfectionists, people pleasers, and imposters, make the changes they need to overcome intense anxiety and burnout, and to grow and thrive. 

Life is short, it's not just a cliche. Spending it exhausted, disconnected and burnt out is not how it has to be. There is another way!