She Uncovered her Secret Sauce & Watched her Confidence Soar (Nicole’s Story)

Ep: 145

Do you often wonder if you have what it takes to do what you really want to?

Do you sometimes doubt that you’re qualified or strong enough to make a change?

Doubts and questions about how and if we measure up are more common than most of us realize. But when you’re able to shift your perspective and see things from a different angle, you can finally start to identify the possibilities that have always existed…you just didn’t see them there before.

Today, Blake welcomes Nicole to the program to share her experience of finding clarity, success, and more fulfillment than she ever thought was possible when she uncovered her secret sauce transferable skills. Working in the tech industry left her feeling like a move to the private sector was something she wanted, but she worried whether or not she was capable of making the change. She wondered what she had to offer and if she’d be taken seriously.

That’s when Nicole made the decision to reach out and ask for help.

Through The Bridge to Fulfillment program, Nicole learned more about what she was looking for and uncovered her secret sauce transferable skills. She was finally able to find her voice and make real changes in her life and career. Today, you’ll hear what made her finally decide to ask for help, how she learned to let go of her limiting beliefs, and how she gained confidence in herself and her abilities, giving her the strength to reach for transformative change.

What You’ll Learn:

  • How Nicole was feeling before she reached out for help (2:09)
  • Why your secret sauce transferable skills probably aren’t what you think (3:38)
  • Learning how to communicate on a deeper, more personal level (6:53)
  • The importance of building a solid foundation for changes to take place (10:35)
  • Why unlearning is just as important as learning (14:39)
  • The holistic changes the program has brought to Nicole’s life (23:05)

Favorite Quotes:

  1. I was listening to your podcast a lot on my way to work, it really helped pump me up and give me hope when I was listening to those success stories. That was the first moment when I realized that there were possibilities for approaching my career through a different lens. -Nicole
  2. My whole transformation, personally, has just been really profound. I articulate so much better than I used to. I used to get really tied up with verbal communication in general and now, here I am going into these interviews completely confident and grounded in knowing exactly who I am, what I’m capable of and what I can bring to the team. -Nicole
  3. When we get to a place where we are really unfulfilled in our careers, we get really focused on the tactics and our circumstances. And yes, those things matter. But many times we don’t realize the personal growth and the personal opportunities that we have to gain skills or shift our perspective and open up possibilities. -Blake
  4. When you’re at this crossroads, this can absolutely be the launchpad to the best next part of your life. But it only happens when you take the opportunity to really make it that way. -Blake

Additional Resources:

Rather than hoping the grass will be greener, identify what the RIGHT next step is.

We can help you do just that.

Get clarity on where you are on your journey to career fulfillment, where you’re headed, optional paths to get there, and the right next step to take.

Start your complimentary, Personalized Career Fulfillment Plan by going to

Want free resources to set your job search up for success? You can get them by going to:


Blake Schofield 0:06 Hello, and welcome back to another episode of The Bridge to Fulfillment. I am very honored and excited to share my client Nicole’s story with you today. I think Nicole and I have developed somewhat of a really special bonds through this journey. And I think her story will inspire you and open up, I think some perspectives about this journey, and the possibilities for your life and your journey in some ways that maybe you haven’t heard before. So Nicole came to me from the tech industry, that is her background, she was really unfulfilled, struggling to figure out what that right next path was, and really was looking to move from the public to the private sector, but was really struggling with, can I do that? Will people take me seriously? Do I have the experience? What is the right? What is the right company or the right approach? So with that said, I’m going to introduce you to Nicole, welcome.

Nicole 1:05 Thank you. Thanks for having me.

Blake Schofield 1:09 Absolutely. So happy to have you and can’t wait to kind of dive in. Want to give everybody a little bit of a background on you? So they know a little bit about you? Can you share a little bit about the background of your career and what was going on in your career in life when we connected?

Nicole 1:25 Yeah, so when we connected, I was feeling really overwhelmed and kind of unfulfilled where I was at. It was tricky, because I was getting to do the type of physician UX design that I always wanted to do. On yet over and over, I was still feeling unfulfilled from project to project, just not really feeling like I was making the impact that I wanted to on sort of the everyday people that I’m interested in being able to support, I was feeling really overwhelmed with a heavy workload and not feeling like I knew quite how to bring my voice up and say that I was overwhelmed, or that I was interested in doing other types of work. So I found you via a mutual contact on LinkedIn. And I looked up your podcast for inspiration. And I was listening to your podcast a lot on my way to work. It really helped pump me up and give me hope when I was listening to those success stories. And that was the first Yeah, that was the first moment when I realized that that there were possibilities for approaching my career through a different lens and really getting to where I would rather be and getting more fulfilled.

Blake Schofield 2:55 Yeah. And so you shared with me that you not only were listening to the podcast, but you were trying to take the information I was sharing and do something with it. Tell me more about that.

Nicole 3:08 So you kept mentioning the secret sauce, transferable skills, and I thought, well, maybe I can figure this out on my own. And I sat down and listened to this one podcast episode where there was more information kind of going a little more in depth with the secret sauce. And I sat down and I made a chart and I was trying so hard to like map it out and figure it out. Like okay, it includes this, it includes that, how do I bring it all together? And then finally, no, no, how to bring it all together. So then I called you.

Blake Schofield 3:44 You know, it’s funny. I love that you did that. It’s just by the nature of how you think during my things. And when I when you shared with me that you had I don’t think I knew that before we start working together. I actually don’t think any of that until you shared it with me recently, that you had tried to figure out your own secret sauce. I immediately my ears perked up because so many times I hear women go Oh, yeah, I figured out my secret sauce. Transferable skills. And I’m like, probably not. I think we think that secret sauce transferrable skills are, well, I’m really good at this thing, or I really liked doing that thing. But you and I both know it’s much more complex than that. When you got in, we actually uncovered your secret sauce, transferable skills. How different was it than what you thought it was going to be as you sat there trying to figure it out yourself?

Nicole 4:35 Um, yeah, it was different because it really showcased who I am, like, you took the time to get to know me as a person. And that really made a big difference because I was able to look at myself my experiences, um, you know, my skill set, and everything that just kind of Have makes me who I am. And like that spark of uniqueness that I bring to things, you were able to show me those from a new point of views, I was able to see myself more objectively. And when you brought certain things to like, especially like, like how I like to see things from a different perspective on how I see things, I see nuances that other people miss, and that I’m always thinking that there’s, there’s got to be a better way, there’s got to be a better way, when something’s not working, and to have you point those out to me, it kind of like unearthed them for me. So it was things that I knew about myself, but wasn’t really either ready to step into or fully acknowledge, or that I didn’t know how these things really applied to my career path. So I learned a new sense of appreciation for myself and my unique lens on life through that whole exercise.

Blake Schofield 6:02 I love that. So you’ve had, like I said, as we began a really amazing journey. If I think back to the beginning, when you came, you talked about at the very beginning, being overwhelmed with your workload, there were a lot of things that were really misaligned for you in your life and career when we first connected, can you share a little bit about what you’ve learned in this journey, and how the skills and tools especially at the beginning part of the journey, right, we talked about gain control and gain clarity, how those helped you substantially shift what was going on, even though your circumstances hadn’t yet changed.

Nicole 6:42 So one of the things that I learned very early on, was how to tune into what other people are thinking, or figuring out, like, what their underlying beliefs might be based on my interactions with them, and the information that I know about them, you know, from, from our own interactions, and using that to apply to our conversations, so that I, for instance, I was able to get into conversations with my supervisor and sort of lead the leader by tuning into what I knew that her beliefs and concerns were not only about the business, but kind of on a more personal level, just because of the level of empathy that I bring to everything I do. And, you know, I was able to find what made her tick, and then you’ll draw the conversation in a way that, you know, the outcome was favorable for both of us. So through that technique, I was able to really not necessarily shift my workload that I was doing less but what I was doing, I was able to really give my 100% to, and that did involve a level of boundary setting, where if I knew that I had a substantial workload, instead of saying like, Okay, that’s enough, I would just focus on, you know, what I was doing, what I was accomplishing, and the impact that that was making really drawing attention to that impact. So that it was known that this is this is the boundary for the workload that I can handle currently. And then I can take on other things later. Um, let’s see. The other thing about that,

Blake Schofield 8:40 Can we talk about?

Nicole 8:42 Oh, yeah, yes.

Blake Schofield 8:44 That for a second, because one of the hardest pieces I think, when you’ve been through this journey is you forget what it was like, when you were at the beginning. And you remember the end, and you’re like, Yeah, I just put in boundaries had the conversation may happen. But the reality is, that isn’t what the journey actually felt and looked like, there was a point of which you were really emotionally struggling with a workload that felt unbearable, the feeling that you didn’t have control over your work and the things that you did, and an opportunity to connect and understand the context of what’s going on. Right? Why is this happening? What’s what’s potentially going on with your supervisor, white? Why might why might they be behaving this way? My Why might you be behaving this way? And then craft a plan to be able to take baby steps towards changing that behavior, right. Like it was a it was something that was progressive. It wasn’t like, Oh, I just knew it. And I go back to that because I think that if you today are listening, and you’re like, Gosh, I really wish that I could have that conversation and create a five favorite outcome and be able to lead my Boss or lead my leader, I want you to understand it doesn’t just happen all at once. There’s a process of which we have to understand the context of what’s going on. So, Nicole, you do you have such a high level of empathy is part of your superpower. But in that situation, right? I don’t, at least from my memory, I don’t remember you really having empathy at that moment for what was going on? Because it was so hard and heavy to you. So as any of this, what I’m describing, and what I remember the situation, is that also similar to what you remember, and what can you share about that, because I think sometimes helping to share the details of, you know, success does leave clues, there was a process that you went through to learn how to do that. Now today, it’s easy. Now you’re like, Yeah, I just did this, I had this conversation, I get the boundary, you know, we work together. But when you first started, it wasn’t easy. You weren’t sure what the right path was.

Nicole 10:54 That’s because I didn’t trust myself yet. That’s that was the biggest thing is, you know, just I’m putting, putting that foundation in place where I started showing up for myself every day, to do my morning minutes to create structure in my schedule, to I mean, even the affirmations that I started using to really instill a new mindset into myself. That’s where it all started. That’s where it stemmed from, I had to plant that seed every morning, when I woke up of today, I’m showing up for myself, I’m changing my mindset, I might not be where I want to be yet. But and it might feel weird speaking up, or, you know, I had to step out of my own comfort zone and take your advice, even before I trusted whether it was going to work. Um, so you know, that one of those first conversation, Asians, that was really difficult, and my voice was probably shaking when I was asking for, you know, whatever it was that I was trying to set that first boundary with, um, I just had to have faith that it was gonna work before I really had the proof that, that that technique would actually work for me, even though I had heard over and over on your podcast, and from you just conversationally, that it didn’t work, and that there’s no reason why it couldn’t work for me too.

Blake Schofield 12:33 I love that. Your journey, I think, involves so much personal growth. And we were talking about this just a minute, before we kind of got started that women join the bridge to fulfillment because they want something more something better for their life, right? Ultimately, we see that as I want to move into a new job, where I have this balance, and I don’t have to sacrifice and I’m excited to get up every day. And yet often. I think when you get in this program, you begin to realize that again, it’s really holistic. And we talked about it being holistic, right? There is absolutely the tactical elements of job search and networking and positioning yourself and communicating and all those things. But then there’s also this much deeper understanding of who you are as a person, gaining self awareness, building your confidence, lifelong tools to set you up for success. And that’s a place that I see like you’ve fully embraced in such wonderful ways. And so I just would love to open it up and ask a little bit about your experience there. How has what you’ve learned here giving you tools to shift and change your life? And what that might actually look like for somebody else if they were to go on a similar journey.

Nicole 13:56 Yeah, I think that the first step, that was the firt the first thing that really started to shift my mindset was the the required reading the book that you sent us all. Um, when I started to read that, it really gave me it really, um, it illuminated the practices that I was already familiar with a lot of the concepts that you know about intuition and setting goals, and, you know, following through taking action, being true to yourself being authentic, all of that stuff I was familiar with, but I wasn’t necessarily putting it into practice because I felt like I needed proof or I felt like I needed all of the information to know if it was going to actually help me like would it even be worth my time to put all these things into practice? But um, that particular book actually approached those things from a more technical perspective, more scientific. And I think that that kind of bridged the gap between the belief systems that I was striving for, and then the approach on how to actually put them into action in my everyday life, and, and the why behind it. I also just did trading. So I was ready to just devour some new information. And I was feeling very open for taking in new perspectives, because I knew that how I was approaching things, and the way that I was thinking about them wasn’t working for me. So I was very open to just like, kind of letting some of my former beliefs just fly out the window and just try something new.

Nicole 15:56 Yeah, my, my whole transformation, personally has just been really profound, I, I articulate so much better than I used to, I used to get really tied up, you know, with just verbal communication in general. And now, here I am going into these interviews, like completely confident and grounded in knowing exactly who I am, what I’m capable of what I can bring to the team. And, you know, just understanding the the depth and breadth of my skills and experience in a way that I couldn’t have done on my own, I really couldn’t have, um, I think that a lot of this whole process, you know, from, especially the mindset perspective, but even some of the tactical like, as far as networking goes, this has really been a process of peeling back layers of detangling, of unlearning, on uncovering, those have been really key themes for me. And I think that, you know, through the group calls, I’ve seen that a lot of the other women as well, if not all of them, are really uncovering things that have always been their, you know, their their authenticity, and how they do things and their unique perspectives on life, and how that can be beneficial to you know, others in their life as well as in their career. And I think that this program really ties it all together in a very approachable and straightforward step by step way, where you get to see what the whole program entails from the very beginning. But you’re only expected to handle one little baby step at a time. And that made it really, I don’t want to say easy, but it made it very, very approachable. And, you know, I felt like I could handle each little step as it was built on. There’s no way that I could have just, you know, jumped right in and ended up where I’m at right now, without taking each of those steps and really giving each of them my 100%

Blake Schofield 18:16 You have been such a champion and a cheerleader for the women in this program. I have loved to see you on the deep dive calls, sharing your knowledge and inspiration and just educating and teaching. I remember a call, you know, just a few weeks ago, where you were talking about how you learned how to ask for help, and how this program has helped empower you with tools to do so. I’d love to open that up. Because what you shared was so beautiful, that I have a feeling you probably could share something to women listening today who probably like you and I used to be right. So completely self sufficient. Don’t feel like we need to ask for help or really struggle to ask for help. So is there anything you would share that you’ve learned there that you think might be helpful?

Nicole 19:11 Yeah, I felt before like I had to figure things out on my own. And I had a limiting belief system that it wasn’t safe for me to ask for help. Um, I felt like if I couldn’t figure it out on my own, that it meant I was stupid or that you know that I wasn’t worthy of doing it. Right. If if I couldn’t figure it out on my own. Um, so you’re empowered questions format really helped me formulate my questions. And, um, you know, just the whole point of the program is to get the support. So if you feel like you need support, just Yeah. And so if you’re in the program, you’re here for the support. So you just have to ask for it. I was definitely a little hesitant at first, um, to reach out and ask for specific support, because I felt like, maybe, maybe I missed something in one of the videos, or, you know, maybe I’m just missing the point you need to reread something or rewatch something. Or maybe it’ll get handled by somebody else’s question and one of the group calls, but then I learned like, no, it people answer my questions. It’s okay. And so I started using the support form a lot more. And, you know, being able to format my questions using the Empowered format of stating, you know, what, what am I trying to seek help on? And what have I done already to try to, you know, approach the situation, how am I feeling, all of those sorts of things, being able to really reach out and approach the, the questions with confidence, and also clarity, so that you knew how you can best help me, that was really important. So by bringing that level of clarity to the questions that I was asking, and being very open about the type of support that I was seeking, that really yielded great results.

Blake Schofield 21:32 And have you been able to see how using that skill of understanding how to ask great questions, how to communicate clearly has changed or impacted other relationships or your job?

Nicole 21:43 Absolutely 100% of everything from talking to hiring managers, or folks that I’m not working with, and being able to ask more specific tailor questions to gather more information about a certain role that I’m seeking, as well as being able to be more confident in my interactions with people at work, or I need in my marriage, being able to say, you know, hey, I’m feeling this, about the situation. And I’m, you know, getting getting called that way.

Blake Schofield 22:27 Awesome. So you are right smack in the middle of your interview process. You were sharing with me just a little bit when we got on about what’s happening there. You know, often I have women come into the program. And I think one of the, one of the fears I hear with women who are considering coming into the program is, what if I do this program, and I leave, and I’m in the exact same situation? What would you say to women that have that fear? Right? Because I think there’s like, what if I leave and I don’t have a job immediately? Or what if nothing happens, and I’m in the exact same situation? What would you share with them based on your experience?

Nicole 23:05 Okay, so if you’ve completed this program, you are not in the same situation, even if you’re still working at the same job that you’re currently at. Um, if you’ve worked through this program, there’s no way you’re in the same place that you were, before you started. You’ll grow in ways that you might not even be able to see right now. And you just need to go into it trusting that you are capable of making that difference in your life. And that this program can be that level of support that you need to get there. Um, I think that you know, for me in my experience, um, if I you know, if I look back on where I was before I started and where I am now you know, even though I’m, I’m still in the interview process, I feel just exponentially more confident in my ability to articulate what it is that I’m looking for. In my next role. I’ve defined all the criteria that will make me fulfilled in my next role and I have received proof in my my research and everything that I’ve done, that it does exist and that the right role is sitting there waiting for me and that it will find its way to me and I will find my way to it when the time is right so I have this level of faith and trust about it now that I didn’t have before. I was filled with so much fear before. And now I just have this even keel mindset about it. Where I, I know that the right things are happening. And it’s because I have done the work and I’m doing the work and I’m taking action steps towards my goals every single day.

Blake Schofield 25:01 I love that. I almost want to hear you say that because it’s it’s so hard to convey. I’ve had many women say, gosh, I love your stories, but all these women seem to have it so together, right? And it’s like, but you don’t know, they’re they were where you were right? They were filled with fear and doubt and anxiety and feeling out of control and doubting, if what, what you wanted was even possible, right? And it’s just, it’s such an amazing thing to be able to do what I get to do every day and see that personal transformation. Nicole, is there anything? Well, I guess I’ll ask this. And looking back at your journey, how has this program changed your life.

Nicole 25:52 So many ways. I mean, just the level of love and trust that I have, for myself as a person. Yeah, that can’t say that existed before. Um, this just really helped me learn that I’m worth seeking support. And, you know, showing up for myself in that way and investing in myself, um, you know, that this goes well beyond just my career. I think they, I really did receive the level of support that I absolutely needed at precisely the right time in my life. And here’s the combination of having this really thoughtful, well organized, planned out program available to me, and the, I’m fortunate enough that I was able to make that investment in myself, and my career, and then just being able to meet all these amazing women where we were able to, like form these relationships. And, you know, I keep up with these friendships on even now and plan to well beyond. And, you know, having, having this network of really strong, talented, successful supportive women, and especially like the level of attention and support that you’ve given me. And, yeah, I had to ask for it, I had to be clear, when I needed the support, I know that you can’t read minds. And once I, once I really dug in and started leveraging that support, I got some really, really useful, useful tools. And even the strongest word I’m looking for right now, just like, some pretty life saving feedback on how I could change what I was doing. Um, you know, I took advice that I trusted because of your experience, and I acted on that advice and spoke up and asked for things that I didn’t know, were even possible. And because of that, you know, I, I learned that, you know, when you ask for things in the right fashion, that limitless possibilities can be presented to you. There are endless opportunities out there. And sometimes it just takes like a third person like a third party to either show you the gaps that you’re missing to show your blind spots or to shed light from a different angle on a situation to really light up all of those possibilities that are there that maybe you didn’t see before. That’s that’s really a lot of what I gained from this program was that level of support and learning the the possibilities are really endless.

Blake Schofield 29:23 Awesome. Well, I know our time is coming to a close and so I’d love to end with this. Is there anything that I haven’t asked you that A should app or anything else you just really feel as on your heart that you’d like to share?

Nicole 29:42 Yeah, to to anyone listening. Just know the whatever situation that you’re currently in, no matter how stressed out you are right now, no matter what wrong patterns you think you’ve taken in your career to end up where You are right now feeling super unfulfilled, just know that you’re worthy of any, any change and level of fulfillment that you’re seeking. The first step is to just know that you’re worthy of that and to to take action on what you feel is best for yourself and your family.

Blake Schofield 30:29 Thank you, it’s been such an honor, I’m cannot wait for the moment when we can reconnect and, you know, really maximize this path and get get this deal done for when you move into this next next role, because I know whoever and wherever you go, they’re going to be very blessed with your gifts and your skills. You just are somebody that really lights up a room. And I think your ability to connect with people. And that is infinitely stronger now than I think it was when you came in, because of your understanding of yourself really enables you to be a team player in a way that I think many others can’t solve problems, many others can’t. And see opportunities and close that gap in ways others can’t. And so I’m excited for that moment and what’s yet to come for you. And I’m excited for all the amazing progress you’re having in your interview process. And the exciting things that are, like I said yet to come. So for those of you guys listening, thank you so much for joining us today on the bridge to fulfillment. I hope Nicole’s I think just really authentic. And you know, vulnerable story has helped you understand a little bit more about this journey. When we get to a place where we are ultimately really unfulfilled in our careers. We get really focused on the tactics and our circumstances. And yes, those things matter. Absolutely they do. But many times we don’t realize the personal growth and the personal opportunities that we have to gain skills or shift our perspective or open up possibilities. That’s also a significant piece of it. I often talk about tactics, right plus emotions, both are really critical to get there. And I think Nicole’s really shared some of that in terms of her journey to help open up that perspective for you to about what this might actually look and feel like because when you’re at this crossroads, I often say this can absolutely be the launchpad to the best next part of your life. But it only happens that way when you take the opportunity to really make it that way. Thanks again, have a great week ahead.