I love to question and I love to be of service. Coaching is a great way to do both.
I’ve been coaching since 2011 using the skills gained from a dozen years of yoga and meditation teaching as my foundation. I’ve continued to grow my skills most notably with Inner Empathy. Meeting my parts with compassion and deep listening has been the single biggest transformational tool that I’ve learned. I use it daily. It allows a whole different framework for relating to myself, my desires, and my shortcomings. The skills I use in my coaching have transformed my life.
For the last 15 years or so, I’ve been questioning my role in society, who I am, what I want from life, and what I have to offer. I started out in Silicon Valley working as a chemical engineer in an environmental consulting firm. I noticed that the people around me, the adults who I was supposed to look up to, were generally overweight and unhappy. They worked long hours and complained a lot. Many had lingering illnesses. Even more telling, I dreaded Monday morning and going to work every day. I left that job and became an aerobics instructor. The hours were good and I wasn’t going to get fat, I reasoned. I also learned something about myself. I like to slow down and look at the details of things. I started to teach yoga as it’s both slower, more mindful, and to me more meaningful than step aerobics or kickboxing.
Relationships are where it’s at. Relationships have pushed me to look deeper into myself and take responsibility both for my own misery and my own happiness.
I am a parent to two wonderful girls who sometimes challenge everything I think and know. I gave birth to both of them at home, in the water. Both girls were breastfed for more than three years each. We learned EC (elimination communication) with our first daughter and went completely diaper free with our second. We have unschooled and homeschooled. Both girls are currently in private school. All of these experiences are teaching me a great deal about trust and the inherent wisdom of my children.
That all sounds great, but what’s hidden in it is that I wanted to do attachment parenting perfectly so that my children would be perfectly happy. The driven nagging of the Perfectionist was my constant companion saying it “has to be just so or else your failing!” It didn’t work. I often felt like a failure. I’m still very glad I did all those things and very glad that Parts Work in the style of Inner Empathy came into my life. My Perfectionist is a lot easier to live with now and consequently my parenting has improved. My relationships with my children are mellowing into more enjoyment, clearer boundaries, and less need to prove ourselves. I mention our summer of 2015 in this video.
In 2011, I came out as a parent coach. It really felt like coming out. It took me a year to be able to answer “What do you do?” with “I’m a parent coach,” and not anticipate them laughing, attacking, or challenging my abilities. I was terribly afraid someone would find out I wasn’t a perfect parent and tell me I wasn’t qualified to work. I now love coaching parents and have let go of needing to do it perfectly. While influenced by my own insights and background, I help my clients find the truth and wisdom inside themselves. I don’t need to be perfect. Whew.
At the same time I was coming out as a parent coach, I was opening my marriage and embracing my bisexual, polyamorous nature. As woman who’s spent most of the last 20 years in two different mostly-heterosexual, mostly-monogamous marriages, I was a touch nervous I’d be rejected for being a bad person, a bad wife, and unacceptable for opening my marriage. The reality is that sometimes I was. Embracing more of who I am rather than keeping those parts of me outside myself have certainly changed my life. Some relationships have changed dramatically. And my happiness is continuing to increase. My joy and gratitude for my life and the trust I have in myself to be the best authority on my own life continue to increase.