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Every month on this blog, I share my professional views and ongoing learning about life, change and relationships.

These posts are my personal reflections that offer tips and guidance for people looking to live their best lives possible.

The Power of No

The Power of No

"No" is a powerful word.  And not always a negative one. In fact, “no” can be quite positive. Saying “no” can liberate and empower us. It can help us move forward. It can strengthen our relationships, clarify our communications, and give us the space we need in our lives to say “yes” to what we truly want. Lately, I’ve felt frustrated when people around me didn’t say “no” when they clearly...

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The Wisdom of Silence

The Wisdom of Silence

As human beings we need to feel connected to others. We are social animals and need positive interactions to keep feeling fulfilled and happy. These connections don’t always come easily. We need healthy channels of communication in order to achieve connections with others. Yet, interpersonal communication is challenging. It involves people with different perspectives and personalities — not to...

read more
Reclaim Control in Uncertain Times

Reclaim Control in Uncertain Times

  In the past few weeks, as we try to adjust to “new normals,” many clients have expressed wanting to reclaim control in their lives in these uncertain times. Many have said: “I don’t like change” and “I am feeling uncomfortable with so much uncertainty and a lack of control.” There have also been many questions about “when will things go back to normal?” which had me thinking about why so...

read more
Time to Slow Down

Time to Slow Down

Time.  Time to be. Time to stop and appreciate what is around you and to do something for yourself. Appreciation is an important concept in positive psychology. It is important to practice being grateful for what you have and for what is around you. Most things that make our life meaningful and happy are typically the small things that happen every day. “When I appreciate the good, the good...

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Find Your Strength.  Find Yourself.

Find Your Strength. Find Yourself.

Do you know where your strengths lie?  What do you feel comes naturally to you? Imagine we were able to flip the lens through which we view ourselves. What if, rather than focusing on our areas of need and weakness, we focused entirely on seeing ourselves through our personal strengths? What would that look like? And how empowering would it feel? We live in a world that is challenging and full...

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Put Down Your To-Do List

Put Down Your To-Do List

Turn off "I should" and "I have to"!Personal growth, learning, introspection and new habits—as a personal development and relationship coach, I am all for these things. I personally live and breathe these positive practices and I encourage my clients to do the same. Yet, today I want to give you another option, that it’s okay to do the opposite. It’s okay to just be. Do less, not more. Focus on...

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Swinging Through Transition

Swinging Through Transition

Change. It’s constant. And it’s in every area of our lives: health, work, family, and internally. I say it often because it’s true: change is the only constant in life. It’s a part of life. Period. So why do we have so much trouble with it? As humans, our dislike for change is so strong that even when we are unhappy with something, we are reluctant to modify it. We often just keep things as they...

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Managing Relationships in Difficult Times

Managing Relationships in Difficult Times

Managing relationships is difficult at the best of times. As we face the global COVID-19 pandemic, we are reminded of how small the world really is and how similar we are. At the same time, we cannot help but see just how unique we are as individuals.  One thing that I am reminded of during this time of physical isolation, is our deep, unwavering need for human connection. We need each other. We...

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Feeling Seen and Acknowledged is a Universal Need

Feeling Seen and Acknowledged is a Universal Need

The Importance of Feeling Seen and Acknowledged My grandmother “Tita Sarita''  as we called her was an amazing woman. She made everyone feel that they were unique and special. I really thought I was her favourite, until one day after she died when I was having lunch with a large group of my cousins and we realized that we all felt that we were her favourite. How amazing that she could make each...

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The Power of No

The Power of No

"No" is a powerful word.  And not always a negative one. In fact, “no” can be quite positive. Saying “no” can liberate and empower us. It can help us move forward. It can strengthen our relationships, clarify our communications, and give us the space we need in our lives to say “yes” to what we truly want. Lately, I’ve felt frustrated when people around me didn’t say “no” when they clearly...

read more
The Wisdom of Silence

The Wisdom of Silence

As human beings we need to feel connected to others. We are social animals and need positive interactions to keep feeling fulfilled and happy. These connections don’t always come easily. We need healthy channels of communication in order to achieve connections with others. Yet, interpersonal communication is challenging. It involves people with different perspectives and personalities — not to...

read more
Celebrating Our Differences

Celebrating Our Differences

“I treat others how I would like to be treated.” A client recently repeated this familiar refrain to me during our discussion about disagreement in the workplace. I understand the sentiment and it’s a great starting point, but I would argue that this isn’t what is needed in our relationships. Here’s why.  In relationships, it’s not enough to simply model the way we want to be treated. We need to...

read more
Finding Your Courage

Finding Your Courage

As more weeks pass during this pandemic, and we continue to adapt to a “new normal” that keeps changing, I have been exploring the concept of what it means to have courage.   Does courage mean that we feel in control and are not feeling afraid? Does courage mean that we are constantly positive and taking action?    The dictionary defines courage as “the ability to do something that...

read more
The Secret To Thriving Relationships

The Secret To Thriving Relationships

In a recent post, I shared the story of my paternal grandmother’s “magic” rings. Whenever someone in our family gets married, she shares her parents’ wedding rings with the bride and groom for the wedding ceremony. After the ceremony, she immediately takes them back. But, with the rings, my grandmother believes she is passing along the “good luck” of the successfully married couples who...

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Paradigm Shift

Paradigm Shift

A paradigm is a frame of reference. A person's paradigm is how they see the world based on all the information that they have gathered and the beliefs that they possess.  At times of crisis, it is often helpful to reflect on the paradigms that we have set for ourselves. These can affect our perspective and even impact our ability to cope—good or bad—during difficult periods. As I prepared this...

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Managing Relationships in Difficult Times

Managing Relationships in Difficult Times

Managing relationships is difficult at the best of times. As we face the global COVID-19 pandemic, we are reminded of how small the world really is and how similar we are. At the same time, we cannot help but see just how unique we are as individuals.  One thing that I am reminded of during this time of physical isolation, is our deep, unwavering need for human connection. We need each other. We...

read more

Small gifts of gratitude. Big impact.

Small gifts of gratitude. Big impact.

The holiday season often brings many opportunities to visit with friends and family. As human beings, it is our connection with others that makes us thrive. Here are two simple ways to make someone else—and yourself—smile this month. Show gratitude Science confirms it: expressing gratitude has a profoundly positive effect on both the person who receives the message and the person expressing it....

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Why You Should Fail Spectacularly

Why You Should Fail Spectacularly

Just a few weeks ago my daughter and I were stranded in a hotel room during an unexpected ice storm. With no place to go, we sat together and rewatched The Last Word. In the movie, a young woman hates her job but is too afraid to make a change. The older main character, who is dying, advises her to “fail spectacularly”: “You don’t make mistakes. Mistakes make you. They make you smarter. They...

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Reality Bites, But It Doesn’t Have To

Reality Bites, But It Doesn’t Have To

Good or bad, we choose how we behave, react and think. It is these many small choices that make up our overall life course. Do you have a favourite book that you return to again and again for guidance or inspiration? For me, Tal Ben-Shahar’s Choose the Life You Want: The Mindful Way to Happiness is one. This wonderful guide inspires me to live and work better. Ben-Shahar’s central premise is...

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What Do You See When You Look In The Mirror?

What Do You See When You Look In The Mirror?

I consider myself to be a life learner. Right now I am in the middle of a year-long certificate in Positive Psychology. It has been a fantastic journey and last month, as part of my training, I attended a week-long retreat in the beautiful town of Tepoztlán, Mexico (picture above). In this intensive week of scientific learning and deep introspection, one of the lecturers put on the Michael...

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Reality Bites, But It Doesn’t Have To

The Choice Is Yours

I am writing this post at 8 am on a cold Monday morning, after rushing out the door for an early morning meeting. There was no time for exercise or a healthy breakfast this morning. And I had to take the subway during the most crowded hour of the day. After all this, my meeting was cancelled at the very last minute. And so here I am, alone in a downtown café. In the past I would probably have...

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It’s Okay To Say “No”. Here’s Why

It’s Okay To Say “No”. Here’s Why

As a young university student, I remember being unable to decide what I wanted to major in. I liked so many different things. Medicine, education, psychology…. I even considered engineering! I was all over the map because I was trying to keep all of my doors open. This is what I had been taught was a wise thing to do. Unfortunately, it left me feeling quite overwhelmed. Today, the older and...

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Make September Count!

Make September Count!

SEIZE THAT OPPORTUNITY September is here. Kids are back to school and the days are starting to get shorter.The arrival of this month often marks new beginnings with new routines and new energy. And this is what makes it an ideal time to ensure that 2017 ends the way we want it to. With just a third of the year left, here is our opportunity to give one last push toward reaching the goals we set...

read more

Allowing Unhappiness

Allowing Unhappiness

If you have been following my work for a while you will know that I am a positive person, constantly learning and always ready for what comes next. I try to inspire others to pay attention to what is positive and what we have control over in our lives.     AND (my favourite word in the dictionary)...    Despite all of this, it felt so good this week to let go and complain. To cry a...

read more
The Power of Positivity

The Power of Positivity

Relationships are fascinating and they can be difficult.    I am reminded of this often as my family and I spend more time together in our home during the pandemic. We pass from being kind and joyful with each other to expressing frustration, anger and impatience. Most families are likely feeling the same. In one of these ‘crisis moments’ I was reminded of the concept of the positivity...

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When Perfection is the Enemy

When Perfection is the Enemy

Sometimes, perfection is the enemy. We hear a lot about “giving it our best” and “nothing less than 100 percent” in order to be successful in life. But are there times when achieving 80 percent might be good enough? Of course, there are certain tasks where only 100 percent is acceptable. We would expect nothing else from a pilot or surgeon, for example. But for most of us, perfection is not...

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Celebrating Our Differences

Celebrating Our Differences

“I treat others how I would like to be treated.” A client recently repeated this familiar refrain to me during our discussion about disagreement in the workplace. I understand the sentiment and it’s a great starting point, but I would argue that this isn’t what is needed in our relationships. Here’s why.  In relationships, it’s not enough to simply model the way we want to be treated. We need to...

read more
Reclaim Control in Uncertain Times

Reclaim Control in Uncertain Times

  In the past few weeks, as we try to adjust to “new normals,” many clients have expressed wanting to reclaim control in their lives in these uncertain times. Many have said: “I don’t like change” and “I am feeling uncomfortable with so much uncertainty and a lack of control.” There have also been many questions about “when will things go back to normal?” which had me thinking about why so...

read more
Find your values, find your way

Find your values, find your way

With so many questions about what is happening in the world right now, I have struggled with what to write. But whenever I question what my ideal role should be during uncertain times, I always return my core beliefs and foundation. In other words, I return to my values.    Now, I fully recognize that it might feel superficial, at a time like this, to focus on our values, but I would...

read more
Finding Your Courage

Finding Your Courage

As more weeks pass during this pandemic, and we continue to adapt to a “new normal” that keeps changing, I have been exploring the concept of what it means to have courage.   Does courage mean that we feel in control and are not feeling afraid? Does courage mean that we are constantly positive and taking action?    The dictionary defines courage as “the ability to do something that...

read more
Find Your Strength.  Find Yourself.

Find Your Strength. Find Yourself.

Do you know where your strengths lie?  What do you feel comes naturally to you? Imagine we were able to flip the lens through which we view ourselves. What if, rather than focusing on our areas of need and weakness, we focused entirely on seeing ourselves through our personal strengths? What would that look like? And how empowering would it feel? We live in a world that is challenging and full...

read more
The Importance of Connection

The Importance of Connection

The Lonely Planet   We have all heard so much about the pandemic and its horrible consequences. The isolation, economic hardships, illnesses and deaths have touched every part of the world. In Canada, where I live, you can feel the heaviness that this year of uncertainty and long winter are having on people. But do you know the number one health crisis in North America today? Covid, cancer,...

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Are You Willing to be Courageous?

Are You Willing to be Courageous?

Having the courage to thrive in life’s relationships is so important. I am not a fan of commercial celebrations like Valentine’s Day, but I do believe that we need to take every opportunity to enrich our daily lives with gratitude and joy. In normal years, unlike this isolated, uncertain winter of 2021, I would ignore Valentine’s Day. Instead, I am dedicating the entire month of February this...

read more
Allowing Unhappiness

Allowing Unhappiness

If you have been following my work for a while you will know that I am a positive person, constantly learning and always ready for what comes next. I try to inspire others to pay attention to what is positive and what we have control over in our lives.     AND (my favourite word in the dictionary)...    Despite all of this, it felt so good this week to let go and complain. To cry a...

read more
Personal Growth is a Life-Long Journey

Personal Growth is a Life-Long Journey

Early in my coaching career, I came to an important realization: Personal growth never stops. Stepping outside of our comfort zones, adapting to ongoing changes, and learning new things; It’s ongoing and it’s hard work.   Life by definition is challenging. Even though we may wish someone else could do the hard work of learning, adapting and growing, it’s only up to us. After all, only we...

read more
Reclaim Control in Uncertain Times

Reclaim Control in Uncertain Times

  In the past few weeks, as we try to adjust to “new normals,” many clients have expressed wanting to reclaim control in their lives in these uncertain times. Many have said: “I don’t like change” and “I am feeling uncomfortable with so much uncertainty and a lack of control.” There have also been many questions about “when will things go back to normal?” which had me thinking about why so...

read more
Find your values, find your way

Find your values, find your way

With so many questions about what is happening in the world right now, I have struggled with what to write. But whenever I question what my ideal role should be during uncertain times, I always return my core beliefs and foundation. In other words, I return to my values.    Now, I fully recognize that it might feel superficial, at a time like this, to focus on our values, but I would...

read more
Finding Your Courage

Finding Your Courage

As more weeks pass during this pandemic, and we continue to adapt to a “new normal” that keeps changing, I have been exploring the concept of what it means to have courage.   Does courage mean that we feel in control and are not feeling afraid? Does courage mean that we are constantly positive and taking action?    The dictionary defines courage as “the ability to do something that...

read more
Find Your Strength.  Find Yourself.

Find Your Strength. Find Yourself.

Do you know where your strengths lie?  What do you feel comes naturally to you? Imagine we were able to flip the lens through which we view ourselves. What if, rather than focusing on our areas of need and weakness, we focused entirely on seeing ourselves through our personal strengths? What would that look like? And how empowering would it feel? We live in a world that is challenging and full...

read more
Make September Count!

Make September Count!

SEIZE THAT OPPORTUNITY September is here. Kids are back to school and the days are starting to get shorter.The arrival of this month often marks new beginnings with new routines and new energy. And this is what makes it an ideal time to ensure that 2017 ends the way we want it to. With just a third of the year left, here is our opportunity to give one last push toward reaching the goals we set...

read more
Why Is It So Hard To Change?

Why Is It So Hard To Change?

I have been enjoying the slower pace of summer by reading some interesting books, relevant to my work. One of the books, Changing to Thrive by James and Janice Prochaska, explains the different stages people go through when making important behavioural changes in their lives. I first studied the Prochaska model of change during my master studies some 20 years ago. So much has changed...

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How to Reach the End Before you Begin

How to Reach the End Before you Begin

Just as nature shows us every year, transitions are a part of life. Soon after one season begins, another arrives. Change is the cycle of natural life and the natural cycle of our own lives as well. With these constant changes in nature surrounding us, we might assume that humans would adapt easily to the constant changes in our own lives. For some reason, however, we often cling to what we had...

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Celebrate motherhood and the changes it brings

Celebrate motherhood and the changes it brings

In front of me, as I write this post, are pictures of me over the years with my kids. There they are as newborns, with me looking completely exhausted. Soon they are toddlers, then school-aged and, suddenly, they are taller than me! Each step in their development meant a new stage for both of us. Their needs would change and my role would have to adapt accordingly. This often meant me needing to...

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What is the right way to live?

What is the right way to live?

Is there a right way to live your life? As a certified coach I spend a lot of time reading, researching, and considering the meaning of life with my clients. Is there a better way to live? What does happiness really mean? And how do we reach the end of life and be at peace with the life that we have lived?There are many different ways to live a fulfilling life and it is up to us to find what...

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Why Is It So Hard To Change?

Transitions & new beginnings

What I’ve learned and why I wish I’d had a life coach My own life, like so many others', has been the exact opposite. Either through destiny, chance, or life choices, I have been challenged to start over and redefine myself many times. I predict new beginnings will continue to happen. I sometimes wish my life had gone in a straight line. I’m sure you’ve heard about people like that. People who...

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Our Values. Our Life Guide.

Our Values. Our Life Guide.

Quick! Name five values that are most important to you. Did you easily come up with five or are you stuck at two or three? Do you have more than five? Are you clear on what a value truly is? Your values are the things that you believe are most important in life. They are the principles that guide the way you live and how you work. Values can include many different things, such as family,...

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Menopause transition

Menopause transition

The untold story of menopause: One of the hardest transitions in a woman’s life Life is filled with transitions. And some can be particularly hard as they challenge us to adapt and change to new and unknown realities. At the same time, transitions can also provide opportunities for new possibilities — ones that we may never have imagined before. Menopause is a transition that all women...

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Want to learn more? Email Claudia to find out how she can help.