What is the magical ingredient that keeps people moving forward when their circumstances appears bleak? The answer is hope. Hope is the spark that ignites resilience in people. Whether they are struggling with a physical, emotional or spiritual challenge, the essence of hope keeps them moving forward.

I have seen these situations played out time and time again with clients who live with painful chronic conditions, serious family challenges and situations that have tested their faith. When they could easily have drifted down the easy path to depression, despair and helplessness, they instead chose a path of courage, hard work and discovery. Their hope is like a beacon that very often enables them to turn their situations around and create remarkable lives.

If you are struggling to find that spark, persevere and connect with someone like me, who will never give up encouraging you and working with you to discover the next possibility.

Childhood shyness can lead to anxiety

Child Shyness

Recent studies have uncovered a link between childhood shyness and anxiety later in life .

These findings highlight the importance of helping our children increase their sense of self, understand their world of feelings and gain knowledge and experience managing their worry.

If you notice your child shying away from social activities like play dates or birthday parties, isolating themselves and other changes in their normal behaviour, they need help. Introduce them to a counsellor like myself who is trained in cognitive (conscious thinking mind) and mind/body ( subconscious feeling mind) techniques. Helping your child overcome their shyness can prevent them from suffering from future anxiety.

Do you struggle with going to sleep or staying asleep?

It’s approaching bedtime and you are starting to get nervous, worrying if you are going to be able to get to sleep. You check your phone for messages and a few last emails, finish watching the news and then get into bed. Your mind is racing and you are thinking about all of the important things that you have to do tomorrow and you need to be able to think. Throughout the night you keep looking at your clock counting the hours of sleep you can get if only you fall asleep now! In the morning you are tired, cranky and feeling less than resilient.

Does this sound like you?

A good night sleep I essential for allowing both your body and your mind to heal. Lack of sleep is correlated to decreased immunity, mood issues, poor concentration and relationship challenges.

Depriving humans of sleep is often used as an interrogation technique, a means of torture and “brainwashing”. It is very difficult to feel sharp, oriented and capable when you just want to cry because you are so exhausted.

After a short time of being in this cycle, not sleeping and the expectation of not sleeping can actually become a habit formed through repetition.

Through a combination of sleep hygiene, cognitive and mind body work we can release the pattern that has kept you awake and relearn a healthy process of going to sleep and sleeping well.

Random Acts of Kindness are Priceless

I recently broke a bone in my foot and have been on crutches. It has been an incredible opportunity to feel the kindness of others.  A young lady in the middle of a transaction at a cash machine stopped what she was doing to open the door for me.  How wonderful it felt to know there was such a kind person out there. Rather than  being “plugged in”, she was aware of the difficulty I was having opening the door and put her business aside to help me out.

Today I decided to put on my backpack and crutch to the mailbox for exercise when a woman I have never met pulled over to ask me if I needed a ride somewhere.  She explained a few years ago she had been in a similar situation and knew how hard it was.  That situation created empathy-she understood my experience and wanted to help.

Multiple people I have never met approach me in the grocery store to ask what happened and to share their own story, often ending with advice to look after my foot better than they did as it still affects them today.  A commonality created an opening for them to approach a stranger and give support.

I know after each of these encounters how happy and at peace I felt. It will encourage me to continue to do the same with others.

Imagine how many lives you can touch in a positive way just by taking the time to reach out.


Take Charge of Your Emotional Eating

Eating in response to uncomfortable emotions seems like an out of control roller coaster.  You keep telling yourself that this time it is going to be different!  You find yourself  triggered by a person or an event which leads to binge eating.  This pattern continues with emotional pressure building up, binging and then  feeling remorse or guilt.  Over time, this unhealthy pattern takes a huge chunk out of your self esteem. It feels like there is no way out….but there is a way.

Understanding the connection between your conscious, thinking mind and subconscious, feeling mind is the answer.  Our conscious thoughts can ignite  uncomfortable feelings that lead to out of control eating.  Also our subconscious feelings influence our thoughts that lead to out of control eating.

Change happens when you are able to tune in and refocus your conscious, thinking mind, become fluent in your body’s language, allowing you to fulfill your emotional needs, and engage both the conscious, thinking world and subconscious, feeling world in cooperation to change the pattern.

Learning to understand our needs emotionally, consciously and subconsciously, allows us to “rewire” the old habit, resulting in a sense of calm control and choice.


How to Help Create Confident Happy People

In my practice I see a wide variety of clients from many backgrounds facing different challenges, yet when they speak about their pain, it is often expressed in a similar way.

I repeatedly hear people sharing that when they were children, they were made to feel small, unimportant and not good enough.  Those painful feelings often carry over into adulthood.

I have heard these expressions of painful memories enough times to realize it is not a coincidence.

It is human nature to notice negative behaviours or situations, leading us to criticize or reprimand. It requires effort to refrain from making a negative comment and to consciously choose to express something positive, but the very act and intention of making that effort is what helps to encourage children to be confident and whole people.

This can also apply to the way you interact with friends, co-workers/employees, partners, family, and even pets.

So the next time you notice something that bothers you, take a deep breath and move on until you are able to find and express the positive.


Top 6 Tips for Stress Free Family Gatherings

Holiday gatherings can be a very stressful time when unresolved family dynamics are in the mix.  Physical and emotional distance often seem to smooth out unpleasant family relationships, yet when you get together all the “old stuff” comes back.  Rather than letting family issues ruin your holidays, follow these simple tips.

  1. Holidays are not the time to work through old hurts. Decide what you are hoping to accomplish, for example, getting through a pleasant dinner without feeling tense. That might require steering away from patterns that trigger tension. Stick to this plan.
  2. Accept your family for who they are without expecting them to be different.  Unrealistic expectations are disappointing.  You might be working through your “stuff”, but others might not be.
  3. Limit your intake of alcohol to ensure you are able to stick to your plan.  Overindulging in alcohol has a way of bringing intense emotions to the surface.
  4. Enjoy the moments that are pleasant and let everything else go.
  5. Have a positive mantra you repeat to yourself before and throughout the event to keep you on track. For example, I feel great about myself.  I am making wonderful changes.  Focus on the positive things in your life.
  6. Stick to the present, enjoying each moment as it comes, rather than dragging up past incidents or worrying about the future.

If you believe your family situation is so unpleasant that it will compromise your well-being it is perfectly ok to let your family know that this year you will be unavailable.

Go into the event with a positive mind and energy, understanding that you can choose how to manage yourself in any situation.

Weight Management During the Holidays



Holidays can be a stressful time of year as far as weight is concerned.  However, there are many practical steps you can take to make sure that you enjoy the holidays and stay healthy.    If you have been wanting to lose weight but have not yet committed to doing things differently or if you have been making a serious effort to feed your body healthy food, follow these guidelines for simple suggestions.

1.  When you attend a party focus on enjoying the people or the event as the main attraction rather than the food.  Try to learn at least one thing you did not know each person you talk to and you will keep your mind engaged.

2. The idea of “skipping” meals so that you can eat later is really not effective.  Make sure you eat regularly spaced meals throughout the day rather than waiting for food at the party.  That way you can ensure you are eating healthy proportioned meals and can add in one or two extras at the party.  Going to an event already fed allows you to be choosy about what you select.

3. Have a mental picture of what you would like to eat at a party even if it includes something salty, fatty or sweet.  Give yourself permission to eat that special treat, taking your time to choose it, taste it and enjoy it.

4. Alcohol always makes it more challenging to stick to your mental plan so limit your consumption by simply having a glass of water for every drink you have, choosing a wine spritzer or a light beer.

5. Continue to exercise throughout the party season. Adding a nice walk before or after an event, going to a yoga class or riding your bike feels good, burns calories and lifts your mood.

Following these practical solutions will go a long way towards making your holiday season empowering and enjoyable.

Weight Management that Works!

Healthy Relationship with Food

Create a Healthy Relationship with Food; Weight Management that Works!

Like many people, you may be unhappy with your body image, struggle with food and eating issues, and are frustrated with your inability to change.

Your challenge with food could be manifesting itself in a number of different ways:

  • Restricting Your Food Intake: Do you exercise in order to balance out what you have eaten, skip meals, obsessively count calories and limit how much food you eat?
  • Eating Too Much:  Is your life a merry go round of diets and disappointments?  Do you binge eat, eat compulsively, comfort yourself with food or eat to combat stress?

While you may be focused on issues around food and either under or over-eating, in reality the core cause of your food issues is likely something different altogether. Some of these core causes can be:

  • Trauma
  • Abuse
  • Relationship issues
  • Self-esteem
  • Anxiety
  • Depression

Identifying and treating the core cause of your eating issue is key to the effective change and healthy relationship with food you are looking for.  Get off the roller coaster of pain associated with dieting.  Learn how to


The Top 5 Distracting Behaviours Your Subconscious Mind Uses to Keep You Comfortable

If you are regularly experiencing any of these 5 unhealthy behaviours you may have unresolved emotional pressure pushing on your subconscious.

1.  Eating too much when you are not hungry even to the point of feeling physically ill.  Telling yourself that you will not do it again and then you do.

2. Drinking too much even if it causes negative backlash in your relationships, work or health.

3. Doing drugs on a regular basis and that drug use begins to cause you problems personally, professionally or legally.

4. Gambling even if the amount of money you lose effects your ability to pay your bills or meet your financial plan.

5. Shopping too much, your closet is full, your credit cards are at maximum capacity and your continue to purchase things you don’t need.

If you are living with one or more of these patterns on a basis enough to cause you problems in your physical/ emotional health, relationships or work feel free to contact me for help.  It often feels frightening to make the first step to get help however you will be surprised by how quickly these issues can begin to resolve.