The Bullet Points of me:
Recovering people pleaser
Reiki Master Teacher
Mom, wife, daughter, sister, friend
Hikes with dogs
Believer in Unity Consciousness and lots of "woo"
Practitioner of magic
Certified life coach
Tarot card enthusiast
More interested in you
Why do I do what I do?
As a child I was taught that to be acceptable I had to follow the rules, not make a nuisance of myself, do what my parents said, and not be so sensitive. As I grew, the list of rules grew and became both more specific and more confusing. The list of people that told me what to do suddenly went way beyond my parents. Move forward a few more years and add on MTV, boys, bosses, coworkers, and HR departments. Then throw on a heaping mass of Moms' Groups, breastfeeding advocates, and fitness instructors, all with their own idea of what people like me should and should not be thinking, saying and doing in order to be acceptable.
The list of people who influenced my daily life and who needed to be pleased in order for me to be acceptable became so vast that I had no choice but to concede my defeat. Years of depression, therapy, and medication ensued. I spent my time in fear of getting out of bed flirting with the comforting idea of dropping out of life altogether. Looking outside of myself for love, approval, and appreciation left me so empty that there seemed no point in continuing. I was a hot mess.
I was on a trip with my family when I came across a paperback copy of Finding Your Own North Star by Martha Beck which talks about following your joy to realize your best life (and other stuff). I was both repelled and obsessed by the idea. I hid the book because I was definitely not the sort of person who needed, let alone read, self-help. I thought books like this were only for the weak. I did not want to look weak to my family and any strangers who might see my choice of leisure time reading material. I also hid it because I couldn't stop crying every time I opened it. Knowing well that I shouldn't be so sensitive and that I am ugly when I cry, showing emotion in public was akin to stripping in the middle of Costco - exposed, cold, and very unacceptable. I kept it secret and kept reading.
Since then, I look back with such compassion at myself through all those years of trying to please everyone and beating myself up with each perceived failure. I also look back at myself with gratitude and awe at how I not only survived but to all outward appearances thrived in spite of my unhappiness. I finished reading the book, took the classes, did the work, and kept following the simple directions. For the first time since toddlerhood, I prioritized myself, my mental health, and my happiness.
I no longer look outside of myself for validation that I am acceptable, because I am the only one who knows whether it is true (hint - it always has been and always will be true). I can now fill my own need for love, approval, and appreciation, which frees me to deeply connect with my family and friends, with new ideas, with nature, and with humanity just for the joy of connection. And when I fail and revert to an old habit, I can bring myself back quickly and kindly.
This long-winded story is why I do what I do. I know the difference between real joy and pretending, real love and the fake stuff, living in integrity and living a lie. I love sharing this gift. I cannot do it for you, but I can hold your hand and light the path.
Want the resume stuff?
BS from Penn State University in Business Logistics
A few years in operations management for a couple of pharmaceutical companies
Couple of years in software development and consulting
A while in software sales and sales management
10 years as a stay at home mom
A few years as an operations manager at yet another software company
2017 - present: life coach which is my favorite so far