Dear friends and colleagues,
Most people know me as a psychotherapist specializing in grief & loss. After completing coaching courses, I'm currently shifting my focus from therapy to coaching. A simplified explanation of the difference is that while therapy focuses more on the past and insight, coaching focuses more on the future and moving forward toward achieving goals. Instead of being "problem-focused," coaching is more "solution-focused."
Currently, we are experiencing unbelievable levels of stress in a rapidly changing environment and way of life, globally. After contemplating how I can best serve the community, I'm currently offering some pro bono virtual coaching sessions, particularly for healthcare providers and other essential front line workers. As a coach, I can work directly with people who may also be my friends, colleagues, etc., and there aren't geographic limitations, whereas as a therapist, I am much more limited.
If you (or someone you know) are feeling stressed, overwhelmed, and like you're stuck and would instead like to have a plan, feel more grounded, more connected to others and to regain control of your life following transitions and loss, please feel free to contact me and/or pass this along.
Thank you and please take care!
I sent this recently to a friend who is struggling with a breakup & depression during this pandemic, but I think it applies to most of us:
On this day, no matter how boring or difficult you may find it, know that you can choose to find ways to make it better. There's always a light in the darkness, though you must choose to see it, or may even need to seek it out. You are not alone, there are people who care about you. Know also that you MATTER...not just for what you can do, but for who you are. Remember that, especially on the grey days. 🤗
The other day, in the midst of this global pandemic, this mantra came to me: "Be visible! You are not meant to remain a best-kept secret."
Come out of the shadows and into the light. Start a revolution if you need to. Lead. Write. Be you. Look forward, not back. Excavate the lessons, take what is useful into the future, leave the rest, release it. Enlist allies, gather support. Be a maverick. Take calculated risks. Don't go it alone, but lead. Be bold. Color outside the lines. Be careful who you surround yourself with. Be a compassionate leader. Let that be your guidance.
Oakwood Cemetery's Death Letter Project - North Carolina was selected as the 2019 Keeping it Personal Event Award Recipient by the International Cemetery, Cremation & Funeral Association
Out of 47 nominations from 3 continents our project was selected as the winner.
https://spark.adobe.com/page/Ik1TyxsWmoguP/ (See the project)
https://spark.adobe.com/page/rIN92zwBzbhz3/ (See Amber's letter)
Words of wisdom from my former skating coach, that also apply to life.
She meant it literally at the time, because if you look straight down doing figures in skating, you'll fall on your face. You must look ahead to see what's coming in order to make adjustments and adapt.
Life is constantly changing. The things that happen to and around us are actually devoid of meaning, until we as humans give them meaning. Don't let your present circumstances limit your vision for your future.
Being grateful for what was
embrace what now is
and allow for what is yet to be.
On this magical Christmas Day, a point of reflection: The only things that truly matter are not things...They are our experiences, our contributions, our relationships--and how we create meaning from each of these.
Merry Christmas & Happy Holidays!
Last year, after mending a broken foot, I wrote about some of the overarching lessons learned through that experience, for which I created a charm bracelet as a physical reminder (October 2017 blog entry). There was a fourth lesson, probably the most difficult one for me. I've since added a charm for it.
The lesson was for accepting help. Even with a broken foot, I stubbornly refused to accept any help, at least at first. "No, I can do it! I've got it!" Until I realized just how exhausting trying to do everything myself--especially whilst injured and healing--truly was. And people seemed to genuinely WANT to help. They were everywhere: friends, neighbors, colleagues, and a surprising number of strangers. Many shared their own stories of having gone through something similar in the past. Each was an opportunity for real connection.
The fourth charm is an open heart with a wing in the interior. It symbolizes this connection between people--the helpers (Good Samaritans!) and the person being helped.
This was a tough lesson for me. It's seriously difficult to acknowledge that you need help, especially when you are accustomed to being the helper. I believe this is true for so many of us. We so value independence and believe we should be able to do everything on our own, to our own detriment. We refuse help when offered, believing that it makes us look weak. But what if the opposite is actually true? What if being able to acknowledge and accept that we may need some additional support instead makes us courageous, as well as affords an opportunity to connect with a fellow human being? And that it helps the helper just as much, to be of service to someone? Think about it--were the situation reversed, wouldn't most of us be willing to offer that very assistance?
It occurred to me whilst walking along a popular nature trail, sometimes I passed some people, sometimes people passed me. Life is like that. With cars, for example. Sometimes you'll be ahead of others, sometimes other people will be ahead, even seemingly ZOOM past you. A lot has to do with what kind of vehicle you have, as well as how well you've maintained it, or even if you have a vehicle at all or have to deal with driving someone else's.
A racecar won't function well in the same conditions that a jeep would, and vice versa. And neither would get very far if you didn't give them fuel or proper maintenance. A lot has to do with road conditions, timing and obstacles, too. Not everyone will experience the same ones nor the same intensity, frequency or duration. And of course, not everyone chooses the same path or destination. Yet we all have the same FINAL destination. So it really is all about the journey itself, which makes us each simultaneously utterly unique and recognizably similar in our life paths.