This is the beginning of a new day.

The Creator has given me this day to use as i will.

I can waste if or use it for good.

But what i do today is important,

Because I am exchanging a day of my life for it.

When tomorrow comes this day will be gone forever,

Leaving in its place something that i have traded for it.

I want it to be a gain and not a loss,

Good and not evil,

Success and not failure,

In order that i shall not regret the price I paid for it.



Received by text, from an NB Elder, September 2015

The Gift of Blessings Received by Text

Hey Chantal

May the warm winds of the sky blow softly upon ur home
May the great spirit bless all who enter there
May ur feet make happy tracks in many hearts and minds
And may the rainbow always touch you in your heart.

May the sun bring you energy by day
May the moon softly restore ur mind and spirit by night
May the rain wash away ur worries
May the breeze blow new strength into ur body
May you walk gentle through the world and know its beauty all the days of ur journey.


Blessings received from an Elder in June 2015

11 septembre 2015

Vendredi soir… premier vendredi soir de cette nouvelle vie. Vie de Chantal. Pas la vie de la mère de… ou la femme de… juste la vie de Chantal. Un peu perdue, je ne sais pas trop quoi être. Un malaise d’identité. Moi qui refuse les étiquettes et les limites, je suis perdue sans mes étiquettes de mère ou de conjointe. À cause???!!! C’est qui qui est là en moi et qui me fait me sentir comme si j’étais une âme errante? Bof… Who cares anyway? Je me sens insignifiante, in-importante. Et pourtant cognitivement je sais que je n’ai besoin que d’envoyer quelques textos et que je pourrai converser avec quelqu’un, que quelqu’un sera là pour moi. Et j’en ai pas envie. J’ai envie d’être seule… tant que je ne me serai pas définie.

Oly… ça pourrait être long ça… Alors on fait quoi maintenant? J’ai envie de me distraire de ce questionnement en essayant de rejoindre quelqu’un. Tout en sachant que ce serait bénéfique d’écrire ce qui se passe en moi.

Ce malaise… il se nomme comment? Désespoir – le désespoir pour moi c’est ne pas avoir d’espoir de rêve d’avenir. Et c’est ce que je vis. Je ne comprends pas cette difficulté à me créer un rêve. Surtout, je juge cette inhabilité très durement. Et je me l’approprie. C’est moi qui est moins bonne, qui n’est plus bonne. Même plus capable de rêver… je vais aller où comme ça? Nulle part… C’est comme une petite mort. C’est comme être de retour à Chantal qui se contentait d’ëtre la feuille dans le ruisseau avant de connaître le film The Secret. Je m’étais promis que cette époque de ma vie était terminée, que je serais au volant de ma destinée. Et maintenant qu’il n’y a plus personne dans l’autobus, je ne sais pas pourquoi je devrais continuer à conduire l’autobus. Pour l’amener où exactement cet autobus? Frig. Comment ça peut être le néant de rêve comme ça? Ce néant me fait peur. Il me fait revoir la Chantal victime de la vie. Et je n’ai tellement pas de bons souvenirs de cette époque. En fait c’est le même gris et le même brouillard on dirait, sauf qu’il y avait du monde autour de moi de qui il fallait que je prenne soin et qui me gardait en mouvement. Maintenant être en mouvement pour le travail, c’est pas très stimulant. Ça manque de personne pour qui ça fait une différence ce que je fais… J’ai peur de ne plus faire une différence. Waow! Ça serait vraiment dur de savoir que mon existence ne fait pas une différence et qu’elle est inaperçue.

Quoi faire pour que je laisse ma marque? Et surtout, quoi être pour laisser ma marque? Je me rends compte que je juge ce que je ne fais pas, ce que je suis incapable de « faire ». Et il y a un bout de temps que je suis dans le « être ». Présentement je me sentirais plus en contrôle si je pouvais « faire ». Mon corps lui ne veut pas « faire ». Il en a sa claque de « faire ». Il aimerait juste « être ». Et je trouve ça insignifiant. En même temps je n’ai pas l’énergie de « faire » parce que je la dépense en grande partie au bureau mon énergie de « faire ». Alors quand je fais finalement le choix de partir du bureau, j’ai seulement l’énergie pour « être »… et je ne me trouve pas cool du tout… je me trouve pas mal poche en fait. Si je ne suis pas dans le « faire » je ne peux pas faire une différence. Wow. Quelle belle programmation! Je sais que le « faire » c’est le côté masculin… et que je suis dans l’apprentissage de mon côté féminin dernièrement, celui de « être ». Donc je me trouve insignifiante d’être plus féminine. Ouch! Pas étonnant que je sois entrain de me frapper la tête! Je suis en plein clash de programmation et d’idées reçues!

Feeling lost = Coming home to myself?

Tonight, after a couple of hours of overtime, I feel exhausted and I feel lost. I don’t recognize me. And I wonder what makes me believe that I have changed. Am I trying to fool myself and the world?

I feel the hunch to reach for Christiane Northrup’s book – The Wisdom of Menopause. As I check the table of content I see this title: Coming home to yourself: From Dependance to Healthy Autonomy. First sentence of the chapter: “The need and desire to assume more dominion over our lives becomes a burning issue at menopause.”

Here I am feeling like I have no control over my life because I can’t define it anymore… I am caught in a heavy stagnant gray fog… and I feel like it will engulf me forever. Hmmm… I don’t like when I go in this “All or Nothing, Black or White” approach to life. It usually last a few hours, sometimes days. Now it’s been a few weeks and I don’t recognize what is going on with me… The intense emotions, the tears, the darkness… This sense of not knowing where I am going, and this inability to dream my life are making me panicky. Where is the Life Coach inside of me? Did she desert me?

As I continue reading I am reassured that I am going through a natural passage in a woman’s life. I understand that I have 2 choices: deny this stage, its awarenesses and emotions, or go with it. The price to pay for denial is health issues, while choosing to go with it promises a new version of me at the other end. Hopefully the end will come soon…

I found this passage in the book comforting. It gave me hope of a brighter me, coming soon…

page 85 – “This empty nest, your altered living space, your disrupted life focus, that directionless feeling – all must first be acknowledged and experienced, with the attendant emotions, in order for the healing process to begin. In the interim, while we experience the upheaval and wait for the new path to become clear, we have to hang out in the “underworld” for a while, allowing our fears and grief and confusion to be fully experienced. Then, and only then, will the fog begin to lift, revealing hints of new doors, new directions, and a new focus for that shining new life.” The Wisdom of Menopause, by Christiane Northrup, M.D.


My first sweat lodge ceremony

Feeling welcomed and seen is how I felt during my first sweat lodge ceremony. I had the pleasure of being surrounded by men. Once more. And to be totally honored for being a sister, a woman, a mother. Wow.

The sweat lodge ceremony itself was very humbling. The complete darkness, the heat, the presence of the spirit of those in the flesh and not, the singing, the sharing, the drumming, the sacred medicines used on the stones, the right to be, the honor of being heard, the honor of being in the presence of those men and boys on this spiritual path, were all incredibly powerful.

Before our entering the sweat lodge, the sweat leader, explained that the sweat lodge itself represents the womb of a mother. The complete darkness , the heat and the moist are as reuniting with the mother. I am always impressed by the importance of the feminine in the autochthones cultures. It wasn’t until we were inside that I could really grasp what it meant.

One of the invitation extended to us before the beginning of the ceremony was to pray for others, and especially for ourselves. This advice resonated very deeply with me. Once I was in complete darkness I knew I could be there for me in the present moment. I didn’t have to perform and to be aware of others looking at me, for they couldn’t see me. They could sense my essence just as much as I could perceive theirs, but they couldn’t see me, which made it easier to be. To be me. To be present to me while being present to them as well.

What happened in the sweat lodge was sacred, yet simple and power-full. The sharing was very touching for me. Those men were just open, raw, real. And the boys! I was moved by their presence, the messages they had and how they shared the songs, by calling upon one another to sing.

When we lined up outside at the end of the fourth round to thank each other, I knew something had shifted inside of me. We then shared food, everyone still present to himself and to the others.

What an experience!

If you would like to find out a bit more about the Sweat Lodge Ceremony, click here.

When my partner can’t accept…

When my partner, a friend, a colleague, my father can’t accept even a simple compliment I give him, as a simple sign of appreciation, I feel like my appreciation is not valued or appreciated.

If my partner can’t receive the attention I give her by doing things for her, making time to spend with him, compliments I give him, it means:

image from Ed Yourdon

  • He can’t receive what I have to offer
  • She can’t receive who I am
  • I can’t feel unconditionally loved
  • I can’t open up
  • I can’t trust that I will be supported
  • I feel rejected for who I am – I’m like the little kid with slumped shoulders, head down, wondering what could be good enough to be loved for who he is. Simply loved.
  • I feel alone
  • I feel I have to do everything by myself – I can never rely on anyone, since no one really cares and loves me for who I am.
  • Separation – not receiving perpetuates the paradigm that we are all separate, that we require competing against one another, which creates aloneness.
  • What would it take to be able to receive and in turn create a nurturing, caring, creative, collaborative environment where I am free to be me and to be loved for who I am?

    Are Your Goals a Source of Inspiration?

    A purpose and its goals are supposed to help us grow and become a bigger and better version of ourself. When we stretch our mind and imagine something new, we do not know all the actions needed to get to where we can enjoy what we have envisioned. There is a bit of confusion. And many times it is where we remain stuck.

    In the absence of clarity we are paralyzed by fear, just like when we were kids and we were afraid to go outside in the dark of night. That is, until we discovered the conforting security of a flashlight. The obscurity had not vanished, but we were comforted to see the few steps in front of us. Likely, our goals are to be our inspiration in the darkest hours, to help us focus on the next step we need to take to reach the next milestone on this map of the journey we created for ourself.

    How do we go about setting goals?
    There are 6 key components to achieving your goals and your purpose: visualizing, planning, acting, evaluating, setting a time frame and writing it down.

    1. Visualization will assist you in making what you have dreamed a reality. It has been proven scientifically that when an athlete visualizes his performance the same muscles, nerves, neurones fire as when he is actually competing. When you imagine vividly, with as many of your five senses as possible, the mind thinks it is real and he then tries to correspond to that reality.

    2. Planning only occurs if you think your dream can be a reality. It allows you to make it feasable, to reduce it to smaller pieces, like the expression that says the best way to eat an elephant is one bite at a time. A plan also helps you to deal with the fear of the unknown. Your past experiences serve as a foundation to stand upon to take your next leap.

    3. Actions reinforce your beliefs in your own abilities and move you forward, closer to your dream. Without action there is no progression, no growth.

    4. Evaluation serves as a measure of the progress and allows you to pick a different strategy if you are not getting the results you were expecting from this course of action.

    5. Setting a date helps you create a sense of urgency and control your tendancy to procrastinate. Without a date it is easy to be nonchalant and postpone your actions indefinitely. A word of caution: if you did not reach your goal by the set date, it does not mean you failed but that the date was wrong. Unfortunately at this point in our evolution we do not have the awareness to predict with certainty when a thought will becomes physically tangible. We are still guessing. And setting a date is just a guess, not a measure of success or failure.

    6. Writing your purpose and your goals make them tangible and give you a reference point when you are going downhill and you get discouraged. It will help you to remember why you are on this journey and to stay focused. Growing is not only a succession of successes. Some challenges are to be expected… That’s what life is all about.

    Imagine a life where you clearly know where you are going. You have seen your target afar and you have hit it with your arrow, to which was attached a rope. Now you only need to hold the rope, take the steps, go around the obstacles and be on the journey. You have faith because you know that it is only a matter of time before you reach your target. It sounds easy, right? And it is the feeling that your purpose and goals will create. You will then be inspired, no matter what, to pursue your purpose and your goals.

    Life as a revolution

    Reading this quote by Anthony J. D’Angelo: “Promise yourself to live your life as a revolution and not just a process of evolution.” I started to ponder what it could mean.

    Not everyone chooses evolution. In fact many people are content with life as it is, which means that they are stagnating. Stagnation is the opposite of growth and change. It’s a step before death.

    According to the Merriam-Webster Dictionary, revolution is “ a fundamental change in the way of thinking about or visualizing something : a change of paradigm.”

    If you were to start living your life as a revolution, what would you like to fundamentally change about your life? What kind of thinking would you love to revolutionize? Your thoughts about money, about being rich vs being poor; or the way you think about your relationships, about your intimate one, your relationship with you; or the way you think about your world, your boss, your government?

    What would it take for that basic thinking to be altered? A drastic event like an accident, a separation, a job loss? Unfortunately, that’s how most fundamental changes happen. To remodel your paradigm is a labor of love that takes time and lots of repetition. And most of the time, when we make drastic changes we hit a wall of fear. We are confronted with our old beliefs and if we don’t have a strong foundation built on repetition we will more than likely revert back to our old ways that feel like an old pair of slippers.

    The revolution could come from being introduced to a new way of thinking and being open to it. However, know that this new idea will only be accepted once you’ve heard or seen it a few times. It’s how we are wired.

    Evolution sounds slower and more passive in this quotation, but it doesn’t have to be.

    Evolution is growth and all things on this planet grow, for a while, and then growth becomes a question of choice. It’s in the choice that we experience “a process of continuous change from a lower, simpler, or worse to a higher, more complex, or better state” (Merriam-Webster’s definition of evolution).

    That sounds smoother, slower and easier than revolution, thus more achievable.  It echoes the saying “Slow and steady wins the race”. Isn’t it what this journey is suppose to be: a game involving endurance and skills? Skills are acquired through adaptation and acceptation of the challenge, which in turns alters the present situation.

    What if evolution was fueling the revolution or change in paradigm?

    After all, our way of relating to life is a revolution if we compare it to life a hundred years ago… And a hundred years on billions of years it took for us to get where we are is a blink in time. From that perspective, we are living our life as a revolution. On a day to day basis I would be tempted to look at it as evolution. What can I say, I’ve come to prefer the gentle way…

    Improve Your Brain Circuits to Change

    In spite of popular belief, new experiences don’t necesserally help us keep an open mind or make us more performant. They could more than likely trigger some negative thoughts like “I wish my relationship was this perfect. If only my boss could notice how hard I’ve worked on this project. I wish I could afford to do that more often.”

    Are we doing ourselves a favor by being all over the place experimenting every new trend? According to neuroscience, probably not.

    Once a negative thought enters your mind, you’re caught in a downward spiral, entertaining a bunch of ideas that disempower you. The new experience just confirmed to your brain that you’re not quite good enough and that trying to find the fault is the appropriate way to react to a new experience. You are hard wiring your brain to react this way, which in turns makes sure that it becomes an automatic unconscious response. It’s like if your brain is thinking “This must be the best way to handle this kind of situation since we do it all the time. Let’s make sure that we continue doing that.”

    To help you change your ways:
    – You need to become aware of these thoughts, usually by how you start to feel and the emotions that surface.
    – Once aware change your train of thought or what you’re doing by choosing to question your perception asking yourself if it’s really that bad or if it’s only your brain playing an old trick on you.
    – It’s now time to redirect your actions or mental processes to something productive and empowering.
    – Take note of what just happened. You will be in a better position to reflect and evaluate your progress.

    It’s only through repetition that you hard wire something and that it becomes a unconscious way of being or of doing something, in other words, a habit.
    Yes, it takes time and effort.

    Is it worth your while? You bet! Improving you, and improving your life is the name of the game.

    Would like to know more?
    Jeffrey Schwartz, MD and Rebecca Gladding, MD wrote a book on this subject: You Are Not Your Brain
    Their website
    Brain World Magazine

    Tell me what habit you’ve tried to change and what you did, I’d love to know!

    From the depths of change

    Have you ever had to make a TOUGH decision? Tough because all options have good logical reasons. And the more you go over the reasons, the more they seem to have validity?

    All summer I’ve been in the limbo about taking over a rather new HVAC (Heating Ventilation Air Conditioning) company. My dilemma came from 2 things: first, I don’t know much about HVAC, and second, I wanted to start my own company in coaching, training and seminar leading. 2 very different options. In one hand I had a company offered to me on a silver platter with business coaching support and the other my budding coaching practice with 3 clients for now with no support and the potential to be criticized for not performing and bringing home THE money. It occupied my mind completely. I started loosing sleep over it.

    That’s resisting change and letting fear of it dominate mind, conversations, feelings. And as more time was spent in indecision, the harder it got to make a decision. The spirit of Doubt was getting stronger and bigger by the day.
    Knowing the mechanism of fear, I was looking at my actions, aware of where it all came from. And, that’s were the awareness stopped. The tools I needed to use to reverse the situation were eluding me, overshadowed by doubt and indecision. I got frustrated because I knew I had the answer somewhere inside of me. Where was it?!

    It would have been easy to go back to “Think and Grow Rich” by Napoleon Hill and re-read the chapter on decision.
    – “You have a brain and a mind of your own. Use them and reach your own decisions.”
    – “Financial independence, riches and desirable business and professional positions are not within reach of the person who neglects or refuses to expect, plan, and demand these things.”
    – “The world has the habit of making room for those individuals whose words and actions show that they know where they are going.”

    At the end of the summer, I chose the HVAC company because of the support and the feeling of legitimacy it gave me. Not strong enough yet to embrace my own dream. Instead I would support someone else’s dream.

    It’s still not easy. I still don’t feel adequate most of the time (the perfectionist in me), but I’m taking decisions everyday, strengthening my decision-making muscle. The doubt comes back when I’m faced with challenges. And then I remember the power of persistence in the midst of all these changes…

    How did you deal with the ghosts of fear, doubt and indecision when faced with a big change? I’d love to hear your story! Do share!