Author & FacilitatorI have worn many hats and experienced many adventures in this game of life. Of all that I have done, nothing has been as educational, traumatic, empowering or eye-opening as working at jobs with and for other people. As a life-long student and observer of what makes us tick, as well as having empathic qualities, I know how business owners – especially small business owners – can have a major impact in creating systemic change at a grassroots level simply by taking a human approach to work.
My interests and experiences in the business/work world would constitute a novel, so I’ll just hit the main points. Much of what goes into my work today comes from experiences that, if named by source, would be detrimental to quite a few people, so let’s move on.
At the tender age of six, I knew that I would one day run the family business (installation and repair of underground gas lines) and had visions of a grown-up me in a corner office. Little did I know at the time that the whole thing would fall apart within a few years and my new goal at the age of ten would change to becoming a writer. After high school, I worked my way up to leadership roles in pretty much every job that I had and absolutely loved going to business school. This led to marketing and, somehow, tax returns and corporate year ends. If there was something that I found fascinating and studied for fun aside from esoteric pursuits, it was business and marketing. I would spend hours and days playing with business ideas and pursuing business plans until I hit a deal-breaker.
Along the way, I became quite well educated in business systems and became cognizant of the disconnect between profit, people and the planet as I worked for small businesses that were undergoing major transitions – either growing, selling or re-branding. Later on, after training as a Business Broker, it was clear that my true interests and my gifts did not lie with the sales aspect, but would be best suited to helping business owners through transitions and building bridges in business to a multiple-bottom-line approach. With the experience under my belt from active involvement in facilitating transitions, I went on to seriously observe and join the conversation on new economic models. What is the next step? Look at the menu on this website. It’s happening.
In 2008, I had a traumatic experience in a highly dysfunctional workplace and spiraled downward. My faith in humanity was burned up and I was full of despair. Struggling to get my head above water again, along with some excellent counselling, I dove into a range of teachings on success, quantum physics, law of attraction, motivation, healing modalities and more found through Hay House and films such as The Secret and What the Bleep: Down the Rabbit Hole.
Somewhere along the way, a switch flipped and I went from negative to positive overnight. I had written a long list of blame and anger. The day I woke up grateful, I took that list and turned it into joy and gratitude. That list became the table of contents of my self-published book, 101 Reasons to Be Yourself – notes on positive change and creative living. Settling into the ‘good job’ ironically led to the very thing that I was never encouraged to do: become a writer.
Going much further back to 1993, I found myself partnering in a home-based futon frame making business with my boyfriend at the time. We began to branch out into cedar chests and bookshelves, all of which was wholesaled to a great little store on 4th Ave in Vancouver. My ideas grew and designs became more complex. I loved working in the shop, turning my designs into tangible, useful things. When my partner received an inheritance, he put it all into building the business and decided to go it alone. Our relationship did not survive, but my passion for making stuff did.
I have gone through stretches of making jewelry, furniture, candles, skin care products and more, but my love of making has been consistently played out in the kitchen. Being unable to sustainably channel my designing/making/creating energy into just one thing, I used my business and technical experience to build a co-operative advertising platform for locally-made products and places to buy them instead. Long live the Makers!
In 2001 I decided to get the songs out of my head and into the world, mainly driven by a desire to join my songwriter friends in the green room and on the stage at music festivals. Over the course of five years, I learned to write songs, play rhythm guitar, sing in tune, perform on stage, work with a band, work in the recording studio and of course, how to write a grant proposal! You can check out my album, All Day Breakfast, by clicking the link. It is on iTunes as well.
This was an amazing time in my life that I will never regret. The things is – with me – there is always another mountain to climb and I left music-making behind in 2006. My passion for making music was not as strong as my passion for living a life full of varied experiences. The politics of the music biz are best left to those who wish to play the games and stick with it for the long haul.
The word, “Mystic”, seems sooo pretentious, but it simply means, “
Mostly, I find that I am able to piece together widely diverse pieces of information or observation in a non-scientific manner and understand how things work, and how they could work more harmoniously. It is very helpful in systems development, distilling complex issues down to root cause and problem solving…that sort of thing. I am a strong proponent of people developing intuition, logic and imagination. This is the perfect marriage of natural abilities for the creative process.
Yes, I meditate, do yoga (sometimes), use oracle cards and do intuitive readings, etc. This mystic side is a big part of who I am and I hope to use it more often to be of service in this world. It was sent underground back in 2009, as was my pursuit of any sort of self-help career path, largely due to gross commercialization and the Jesus complex running rampant in the “guru” industry. Now it is time to do something with it.
I am a highly qualified beach bum, having spent my childhood and teenage years this close to one of the best beaches in Canada. It doesn’t have to be a beach. An old growth forest or a park or the seaside or a mountain top will do just fine. Some people go to church…I go to nature to connect and recharge my batteries. There was a nine-year stretch when I lived in the Yukon – six and a half of those years were in an off-grid cabin in the woods south of Whitehorse with a view of the Yukon River 50 steps from my door. It was freaking awesome until I became too busy to do all the work involved. There comes a day when you want running water and a thermostat, so for two years I lived in a tiny house downtown across the street from the Yukon River. Must have some nature out the front door!
Vacation? Tropical beach. Dream home? On the perfect beach surrounded by old growth forest. Wedding? Beach party. Funeral? Viking send off from a beach.