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a blog by Chris Barrow

The Female Principal blog series part 4: Onion skins

Onion skins Stop comparing your inside to other people’s outside. It seems a common attribute of female Principals that you want to look at everyone else around you, imagine their success and compare that with your perceived “failure”. So another round of self-doubt begins. I was taught many years ago by a wonderful personal coach that we are all like an onion skin – with many layers protecting a fragile core. In this world of affluenza, many of those skins are material:

  1. the house you live in

  2. the car you drive

  3. the school your kids attend

  4. what you and your partner do for a living

  5. where you holiday

  6. where and with whom you socialise

Again, men can be the weaker sex in this respect – too many young male dentists who think that owning a sports car is symbol to their peers that success has been achieved. Social media has become a device that allows us all to parade our skins for the world to see, without revealing anything about our core. Those people on Facebook are not really your friends – they are just looking at your skins whilst they show their own (and I say that as a committed Facebook user – only child of alcoholic parents – go figure). As I have gotten older I’ve realised that the only real friends I have in the world are those who are unafraid to share their core with me and don’t give a rat’s ass about the skins we do or don’t have. There’s a version of that in dentistry of course. All those dental dinners and award ceremonies populated by the glitterati, some of whom haven’t got a pot to piss in. Don’t be taken in by onion skins. *An excerpt from The Female Principal manuscript by Chris Barrow – to be published as an ebook later in 2014

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