174: Leaders with Heart Practice Self-Care

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In this episode, Heather interviews Cordelia Gaffar – Emotions Opener Coach, Creator of Replenish Me ™, Speaker, Author of Detached Love, Co-Host of the Unlearning Labels Podcast, and a Caring Leadership Community Coach. Cordelia also is the mother of 6 children and left Corporate America after her third child to focus on raising her children. Her story began 18 years ago, and her expertise is just the right blend of corporate, family, and community. She is a firm believer in self-care, and in this episode, you’ll see why.

Key Takeaways: 

  • Healing happens from within. 
  • Leadership can come from family, friendships, community, or corporate – it is not limited to a job title. 
  • Women’s voices need to be amplified in workplaces. 
  • Community is medicine. 
  • You must first take care of yourself in order to take care of others. 

People tend to want to pour from an empty cup. But when you don't care for yourself, you don't know how to care for other people. - Cordelia Gaffar #leadershipwithheart Click To Tweet

Cordelia Gaffar’s Bio

Cordelia Gaffar is an Emotions Opener Coach, Creator of Replenish Me ™, Speaker, Author of Detached Love, Co-Host of the Unlearning Labels Podcast, and a Caring Leadership Community Coach.

Cordelia is based out of the Washington DC – Baltimore area. She is also the mother of 6 children – she actually left corporate America after her third child to homeschool her kids. 

Cordelia Gaffar studied at the University of Vermont, where she got her degree in French language and Philosophy. Since then, she has continued her education through various certification programs such as the Shaw Academy. 

She is a true believer in self-care and believes leaders must be whole themselves in order to give to their team members, community, and peers. 

Lead Yourself First

People tend to want to pour from an empty cup. But when you don’t care for yourself, you don’t know how to care for other people. That’s really one of the most important aspects of being a leader. The self-awareness has to be there. I often have people come to me wanting to help others – when they are barely holding it together themselves. To me, there’s not much somebody can do for someone else when they are in need just as much. So, what I always recommend is for leaders to take a step back and take note of where they fall short and then be open to receiving the help they need to grow.

self-care cordelia gaffar caring leadership

The most powerful leadership tool is to turn your body and face towards the person you're talking to and look them in the eye, and see them for who they are. - Cordelia Gaffar #leadershipwithheart Click To Tweet

Being Present

I’m guilty of being caught up in the past or the future. But with time, I have learned that the best thing we can do is be present. Perfection is an illusion, right, and the medicine for that is to be with your emotions and be with who you are. Life is happening right now in the present. That’s the first step, just acknowledging the now and recognizing that community is the medicine. The allowing of community is the medicine, and the allowing of the now is the medicine we all need.

When you care from the inside out, people feel that. People are drawn to that. People recognize that. - Cordelia Gaffar #leadershipwithheart Click To Tweet

The Base of Human Existence is Love

It’s not romantic love – although it can be. What I mean is if I had to put it in a word, I’d say the breath that gives us life is love; the thing that creates us is love. The less we attach to material things, and the less we accept projections, the better we can lead ourselves. In my case, this is what lead me to get myself out of bed. It was a choice. I don’t want to make it sound so simple but, all of our problems are created in our heads. Once we gain control of ourselves, our thoughts, emotions, then we are indeed in control. From there, we can lead others because we have already led ourselves.


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