Welcome and thank you for visiting my website!
As a National Board Certified Health & Wellness Coach, I am happy that you are here! My intention is to provide you with the tools for a healthier, more balanced, and overall more joy-filled life. I offer services in coaching and meditation. These can be done together or separately, depending on your needs and wishes.
- Master of Arts in Pastoral Counseling from Loyola University Chicago.
- Certified Health & Wellness Coach through Wellcoaches.
- Certified National Board Health & Wellness Coach
- Certified HeartMath Coach and Mentor
- Counselor, Christian Brothers Retreat House
- Chaplain, Loyola University Chicago
- Psychotherapist, Internship at the Doyle Center at Loyola University
- School Counselor/Teacher, Villa Duchesne School in St. Louis, MO
- Pastoral Counselor, St. Stephens Catholic Community
- Volunteer/Program Teacher, St. Michael’s Academy
- Coach and Meditation Teacher, Optimal You Coaching
- Public Speaker on meditation, self-compassion, and leading a balanced and joyful life
My health and wellness interests began in 1983 as a freshman in pursuit of a major in Health and Recreation at the University of Maine. One of the first classes in my curriculum was a Personal Fitness class. I had always felt very healthy physically playing basketball in Junior High, cheerleading in high school and adept at almost any sport I tried. However, this professor taught me how little I knew about fitness. We started off the semester by being timed to run 1 mile. I remember thinking, “One mile? No problem.” I started off in good spirits, high confidence, but within about 6 minutes, I knew I was in trouble. The pain in my side was becoming stronger and I could not ignore it any longer. I had no idea how to get it to subside, so I stopped and laid down on the track. I didn’t care that people were running past me, I just wanted the pain to go away.
After a few minutes, I got up and finished the mile at a slow jog. My time was over 16 minutes. Yikes! I had some work to do. I had some things to learn about fitness. And fortunately, I had a great professor who believed in me. I committed to a running regimen that semester, and when we did the one mile run again at the end of the semester, I finished it in under 12 minutes. For me, I felt like I had achieved so much. My love for running continued for another 33 years. A few years ago, I had the opportunity to speak to my professor on the phone. I told him how much I had learned from him in that class, and that I had gone for a 3-mile run that morning without lying down once! We both laughed.
In 1994, I finished my Master of Arts degree in Pastoral Counseling from Loyola University Chicago. Later, I worked as the Personal Counselor for a school and I loved it because I loved the process of helping students get beyond the emotions that seemed to have such a grip on them. Psychology was a passion for me intellectually and professionally. My graduate program prepared me for this position because it’s where I learned how to incorporate psychological development with theological/spiritual development.
In 1997, we moved to Fernandina Beach, Florida and I decided to be a stay-at-home mom. I pursued part time jobs as a personal trainer, I wrote articles for a local publication, I worked at a physical therapy clinic, all the while waiting to see how I could incorporate my degree and counseling experience into a career once our children were grown and moved away. All the while pursuing interests in health and wellness.
In 2013, I became a Wellness Advocate for doTERRA Essential Oils. This was a training ground for me to learn how to start my own business. I had always worked for a company or organization. I had never thought about working for myself and it was scary, but exciting. I decided that I would work hard at teaching classes on my own and finding people who were open to using alternative methods for alleviating health issues. I learned so much about trusting myself and the power of working hard at something I believed in and knew others could benefit from. I still sell doTERRA by the way, if you’re interested! Their products are a vital part of my everyday health regimen.
In 2016, I developed arthritis in my lower back. And this began my deeper journey into health and wellness. Having arthritis gave me the opportunity to learn more about coping with pain. I tried a multitude of methods and modalities to decrease inflammation. I went to a chiropractor, tried cryotherapy, neuromuscular massage, cranio-sacral massage, physical therapy, etc. I began eating foods high in fat and low carb and I have cut out almost all sugar. And while I am still in pursuit of that magic bullet to cure my arthritis, I am taking better care of myself physically and mentally. In doing so, I am learning more ways of helping others take better care of themselves. So now I look at my arthritis as an opportunity to experiment and learn, which is how I work with my clients. We experiment and we learn.
In 2017, I began my certification training in Health & Wellness Coaching from Wellcoaches. During my time in this program, I became a true believer in the power of coaching. As students of the program, we practiced with each other and found ourselves exclaiming, “Wow! Coaching really works!” We learned about Positive Psychology, Appreciative Inquiry, Motivational Interviewing and brain science. The training was educational and also experiential.
The Wellcoaches training reminded me of my graduate school program where I learned about Carl Rogers and client-centered therapy. This is the theory of psychology that holds that the client has within them all the answers to their life’s problems. And it is the therapist’s job to assist clients to look within themselves for those answers. The therapist supports the client to get beyond defense mechanisms, negative self-talk, etc. and resolve various issues from childhood and other stages of their development. Coaching picks up where therapy leaves off. It goes beyond therapy by helping people move forward into the future they want to create for themselves. I love coaching because it uses Positive Psychology, Motivational Interviewing, and unconditional positive regard to help my clients achieve a higher level of joy and fulfillment in their lives.