A Letter To My Future-Self

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It’s been over 3 years since I wrote the letter to my younger-self where I went back in time and gave my 21-year-old-self some advice on life.  I was attempting to erase any scars, blame, and grief; but as you know, you can’t change the past, but you can create the future.

This letter to my future-self is my next attempt in life, which is an exercise in self-love, a means of preserving and protecting what’s important today and into the future.

So let’s see what age 65 might look like…

 

Dear Future Jen,

Well… you are approaching that magical age of 65 years young, and it’s like all the things you’ve been aiming for are finally coming together.  What an amazing time to be living in Jen.  So many changes have happened in your exciting life and with every ending, there’s been a new beginning. You’ve had to endure some pretty major events in your life, but look at you, here you are; smiling ear to ear, despite all that.

Kids- Some of the greatest milestones after giving birth are seeing your kids graduate, seeing them get married and then seeing them have their first child.  By now, maybe you would have witnessed most of these accomplishments with Justin and Nathan.  They are amazing and intelligent kids, and you are truly blessed.  Continue to be loving and supportive of them so they can continue to be loving and supportive of you.  These kids are your two greatest accomplishments in your life Jen.  Remember to hold them close and show your love each and every day, just like you’ve done all along.  It was a tough road for everyone with the divorce you endured but don’t dwell on the past, you had so many valuable life lessons in there and that’s all that matters.  The relationship with you and their dad has improved with time, patience, and acceptance of what happened.  You are in a great space now and you have the best kids in the world. Be grateful for what you have.

Fears- You used to be afraid of public speaking, but you conquered that one a long time ago.  Now your fears are bigger than that and you manage to hide them well.  The two biggest fears you have are getting cancer and dying.  I think it’s safe to say you are not alone when you admit these, so good for you to be brave enough to say it because now your next step is to do something to keep yourself healthy.  Perhaps others will follow.

Health-Eating and Exercise – You’ve always been very conscientious about eating well and exercising.  There were a few times life was harder on you and you got off track but now you are back on and I’m so proud of you for making this a priority all these years.  Give your body energy by eating good food that fuels you so you can burn it off at the gym.  Also, continue to get enough sleep and take your vitamins.

Self-Care-One thing I can say about you Jen is that you still love getting your hair done!  I don’t think that will ever change and honestly, why should it, right?!  You will never let that gray hair show and that’s perfectly fine.  Remember to practice self-care because it’s important and makes you feel great.  Follow the pull, not the push. Keep it simple, self-care is how you take your power back young lady.

Saying No, Setting Boundaries- I certainly hope that by age 65 you learned how to say “No” and mean it.  And while you’re at it, set some boundaries for yourself.  The ’40s and ’50s are the trial years and you struggle here and there.  Just like I tried to tell you in your ‘20s, “No” is a complete sentence, my dear.  This is still true.  Never, ever settle and walk away from what doesn’t respect you.  You can detect a narcissist from miles away now, what a great skill to have!

Work-It’s been such an adventure at work for you Jen.  Who would have thought that being a nurse would lead to being an expert witness for malpractice cases, then entering the pharmaceutical industry? It has certainly been an exciting time in this regard and you don’t have any regrets.  The work relationships you made along each path have lasted a lifetime and what a gift that’s been for you.  The health care industry taught you a wealth of knowledge that you will never forget.  You chose a helping profession no matter which way you went and that’s because you are a compassionate person and it makes you happy.  You are someone who has always been patient-focused right from the get-go.  My only hope is there is someone like you who takes their work seriously and can care for you when it’s time.

Success/Failure-The best way I can describe success is because of failing at something.  This is where you learned so many life lessons and made the decision to build on them like crazy.  Good for you for having an open mind when new challenges came your way and you didn’t back down.  Failing is never fun or easy but as long as you get back up, you are succeeding.  You are also wise enough to know that being successful doesn’t make you happy, but being happy makes you successful.

Gratitude-As you know, gratitude brings you joy from within; even during the toughest moments of your life when things were falling apart, you managed to stay on track and find things you were grateful for. It’s during the worst times of your life, you need to practice gratitude because that’s what can change your perspective and shine a light in the dark. Continue to journal because it’s working.

Retirement-The time has come to complete your working years.  Congratulations girl, you did it!!  I hope you find a way to celebrate all your years of service in helping others.  Take a moment to pat yourself on the back because you deserve it.  Thanks to an entire team of financial planners and years of hard work!  What a fantastic feeling to be in this position right now.  Knowing you Jen, the only thing you are thinking about right now, is “Where can I travel to next and celebrate this amazing milestone in my life?”  Just remember to spend your money wisely…

Travel-There you go, I was right!  The world is your oyster now Jen, so get that travel app up and running! Time to start booking some trips since you’re still healthy and active.  I can see you traveling with your kids, friends and also some solo trips as you’ve done in the past.  You know people in so many countries, you can visit them as you go.  How exciting is that?  Pick some places you’ve always wanted to visit like New Zealand, Bora Bora and anywhere in South America. Get your passport and suitcase ready!

Relationships-Friends, Family-Another prize possession of yours is your circle of friends Jen.  You have been blessed with loving people in your life both near and far who truly care about you and you about them.  This alone is something huge to be grateful for.  If you are still fortunate enough to have your family and parents with you, remember to tell them you love them.  Spending good quality time with those you love is one of the most important things you can do in your life. Have those conversations you’ve been avoiding, now is the time to get it out.  Communication is key in all relationships and being able to say how you feel is where you begin, so speak up Jen.  Life is very short.  You value honesty, integrity, respect, loyalty, kindness, compassion and attention.  These values drive your behavior and it’s what you look for in others.  Keep going…

Love/Heartbreak-This is the one area of your life that’s never been an easy one for you, unfortunately.  I do hope that by the time you are 65 years young Jen, that you found that special someone whom you love and loves you right back with everything he’s got.  Someone who sees your worth and doesn’t take advantage of you but treats you right because you definitely deserve it.  He needs to take care of you because you will take care of him, that is for sure.  Even though you are a successful woman with all the freedom in the world, it would be nice to share time with someone who adores you in an authentic way.  At the same time, heartbreak has taught you many lessons and by now you know what you shouldn’t tolerate, so once again, don’t play their games and don’t settle, you’re better than that.  The next guy has to be pretty damn amazing and put some effort in, or forget about it.  You deserve a man who will pay attention to you and be there for you when you need it most.  You’ve endured enough emotional days in this area, it’s time for some fantastic days instead.  On the other hand, if the Universe has something else in mind for you to be on your own, then make the best of it and enjoy.  Keep practicing self-love, either way.

Emotional Rescue-If you had a dollar for every emotional roller-coaster you’ve been on since day one Jen, you could have retired a long time ago!  Ugh!!  Thanks to writing and exercising it helped you get out of your funk very well.  Remember this for the rest of your life because you never know how things will go and you really don’t want to look like the crazy one! You’ve come a long way with your “project-self” topics and now you can cope with life even better and take care of you the way you should.  With love and compassion. Keep writing, it is such a great healing tool emotionally.

Unfinished Business-At this point, I don’t know what your unfinished business will be, but if there is any, my advice to you is to complete it and cross it off that list of yours.  This is clutter in your life, that you don’t need, just deal with it and get it done.  You’ll feel much better afterward.

Hobbies/Interests- You wrote a book after your divorce and what an accomplishment that was both mentally and emotionally.  It’s almost like you creatively grieved it.  Kudos to you for doing this and another book is in your future as well.  The topics aren’t 100% clear quite yet but since writing is soul therapy for you, you have to do it.  Not only does it help you, but it also helps others that are in line with your values once again.  One of your latest hobbies is salsa dancing and my goodness, what a great time you’ve had, you are quite the dancing queen!  I think you need to do a girls getaway vacation in South America first!  Arriba!

Goals-Stop doing useless things, start doing new activities, continue doing your writing and travel.  Practice self-care.  Wear sunscreen.  Love with all your heart.  Repeat…

Hopes and Dreams-I hope you are living a life of peace, love, and happiness.  That you have finally stepped into who you truly are and you are owning your life, Jen. That you are surrounded by everyone who matters to you in your heart of hearts, and in your dreams.  In the end, it’s our close relationships that matter the most so take the time to cultivate them as best as you possibly can. I hope you and your kids are healthy and happy.

Advice-Live your life as authentically as humanly possible.  Not because of others expectations, but be brave and do it for you.  Work hard, but not too hard that you miss out on life, especially with your kids.  Always practice a work-life balance.  Be courageous and express how you feel to others.  Put the time and effort into your friendships and family.  Sometimes you need to break out of your comfort zone to be happy.  Feeling stuck in anything with anyone isn’t worth it.  Take the high road and apologize.  Don’t play the victim or rescuer, they are so unattractive.  Say I love you and mean it.  In the end, it’s all about relationships with your kids, family, friends, at work and with yourself.

Regrets-If you follow the advice above, you won’t have any regrets 🙂  Honestly, everything happens for a reason and leads you to the next best thing, so take the good with the bad, it’s ok.

Questions-Let me think about it, I’ll let you know in some years from now 😛

I will carefully store this letter to my future self in a time capsule for later use.  It will be interesting to read it years from now and see what rings true for me.  In the meantime, I will continue to live my best life and honor my relationships with all my heart.  After all, I’ve come this far, and there’s no turning back ❤

Your future looks bright, and you still have a long way to go…

 

Love Always ❤

Jen
XO

**Copies of “Winning While Losing:  The Upside of Heartbreak” are available at online bookstores worldwide.  All my gratitude to you.  Dare to live courageously…

This Is India 2017 – Part Seven

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February 28th, 2017 – Flight Home-Mumbai, India to Ottawa, Canada

The morning of February 28th I caught my last domestic flight from Cochin to Mumbai and had all day to go shopping in Mumbai and take it easy before my flight back to Canada.

Just when I thought my adventures were over in India, little did I know that my flights home were going to be more adventurous than I ever expected.  Some of you have heard this story before and I apologize in advance!  For those who are reading it for the first time, hold onto your seats because here we go 😛

Mumbai, India to Zurich, Switzerland- 1 A.M. IST Feb 28th: Halfway through the flight, I awoke to an older lady in the aisle who got upset because she didn’t make it to the bathroom on time so she started screaming at the flight staff and everyone around her. Passengers tried to help by yelling out to her, asking if she is ok, then the staff tried to get her back to her seat but she refused to sit because she had wet clothes. She walked throughout the plane screaming at everyone, sitting on armrests of other passengers and almost on top of a baby. Her son tried to calm her down and return her to her seat but couldn’t. The co-pilot came by and tried to convince her and couldn’t, he ordered the staff to block the emergency exits and he called overhead for a Dr to come help this lady so luckily a Dr volunteered. After an hour of convincing, he gave her some medication they had on board to calm her down because it was either that or make an emergency landing in Saudi Arabia and get her off the plane. That was a 9-hour flight and we were all happy to land in Zurich.  Whew!!  As soon as I got off the plane, I headed straight for the Lindt chocolate store and started eating chocolate right away!  The fact that it was 7 a.m Swiss time was irrelevant and I bought so much to bring home for my kids because we’re all addicted to it and proud of it 😛

Zurich, Switzerland to Toronto, Canada:  One hour into the flight, another overhead page for a Dr or nurse was made out of panic. Being a nurse, I got up to see what was needed and a lady who had surgery 4 weeks ago was traveling sooner than expected. She had abdominal pain, rapid breathing, increased pulse and was dehydrated from vomiting prior to boarding.  She was also on the flight from India like me so she had already been traveling for a long time.  After laying her down across 4 seats, we contacted a Dr. on the ground and I applied oxygen, took her blood pressure and pulse, started an IV right away and gave Gravol IV. Thank God I got the IV first try because they only had one cathalon on board in their emergency kit and it’s been 4 years since I inserted an IV!  It was either that or make an emergency landing but knowing we were over the Atlantic Ocean I’m not sure where we would have landed; maybe Iceland.  The staff was great with me, they wrote everything down I was doing and I stayed with this lady for the entire 8-hour flight while she recovered. When we landed the paramedics came on board to take her off first and I gave them the full report of what happened.  Air Canada gave me a discount for 2 people on my next flight because I was the only medical person on board and it was a way to thank me for the help which was very nice of them. Next trip will be with my 2 kids and the discount will help for sure.  So 2 back to back close call emergency landings later, I had one more flight to go to get home and I was praying it would be calm!!  As soon as I landed in Toronto I had to eat because I was starving 🙂

Toronto to Ottawa: The usual turbulence but other than that I arrived safely and exhausted.  Thanks to my great friend Diane for picking me up at the airport, I was so dead!  I missed you!!   Back to the chilling cold of Canada.

I’ve been home for about eight weeks now and it took me roughly 2 weeks to recover from the jet lag, my vacation, and the flights.  I started a new job 2 days after getting back so it’s been very busy for me ever since but I am enjoying my time there.

Many thanks to everyone who has been following my This Is India blog adventures, it’s been just as fun to write as it is to read and answer the comments ❤  Many thanks to everyone who played a part in my This Is India blogs, you guys are the best, love you lots!  For those of you who would like to connect with my friends, here are their blog links:

Darshith – https://darshith0000.wordpress.com/

Nimitha – https://nimzrevealed.wordpress.com/

Pratyusha – https://naughtyinnocence.wordpress.com/

Deepika – https://deepikakumaaraguru24.wordpress.com/

Vineet – https://vineetpandeystories.wordpress.com/

Rafat – https://imrafat.wordpress.com/

Rupali – https://lettersandpoetry.wordpress.com/author/missbookthief/

KP –  https://kp14191.wordpress.com/

Karthik – https://powerfuloverflow.wordpress.com/

Noorain – https://theplatememoirs.wordpress.com/

Neerja – https://ametalk.wordpress.com/

Vipul – https://thehorsemanhitsagain.wordpress.com/

Nitin – http://tinytidbits.in/

If you’ve never been to India, you have to go.  If you live there, you are extremely fortunate and if you ever want to get away, please come to Canada and see me 😉

That Was India, 2017.

 

Lots of Love ❤

Jen 🙂

**P.S:  On a different note, my next blogs will be about my upcoming book release which is right around the corner in May so please stay tuned for that, I am super excited to tell you all about it!!

 

 

What I Know For Sure…Now: A Letter To My 21-Year-Old-Self

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Okay seriously, life is full of lessons whether you want to learn from them or not.  When you do learn, you expand your personal growth and development and make necessary changes so they don’t happen again.  If you don’t learn the life lessons, they will keep happening over and over until you do.  They won’t go away on their own.  That’s just the way it is…sigh.

No matter what age you are, something happened to you that affected your life and how you reacted to it changed you.  It didn’t kill you, it made you stronger.   But what if you could have a conversation with your younger self and give advice that would save you time and grief or give you confidence and perseverance in various areas of your life?  I know I’ve thought about this and I’d like to share what I know for sure… now.

Dear Jen,

You are 21 years young now and are studying very hard to become a nurse.  You have chosen a career path that is helpful and compassionate which aligns with who you are and your core values in life. Yes studying is hard, working in the hospital is hard but never give up because you are on the right path; you’ve got this.  Know that every day you will touch a life or a life will touch yours, this is the beauty in nursing.

What if I told you when you graduate you will move to another country to work and travel?  Not just once but twice. Nursing can open many doors for you and later on there is another big opportunity coming up that you cannot say no to, in Qatar.

Don’t always expect to be acknowledged and appreciated for all the hard work you do, people are tired and busy in their own worlds but in your heart, just know you are doing your best and in the end, you will be rewarded by Him.  Know your own self-worth because if you think you are cheap, people will see and treat you as cheap. Try not to control every outcome, just relax and enjoy the ride because you have so much ahead of you, a world of experiences that will blow your mind!

Life Coaching is in your future which is another beautiful helping profession and by walking this path, you learn so much about yourself in the process and it’s an automatic win-win for you and your clients. You will be so inspired, you will really love this but it takes work to get it going.  Don’t give up.

Relationships are complicated but a very big part of your life Jen.  Friendships are to be treasured and respected by both sides otherwise, it’s not worth it.  Everywhere you go, you will meet new friends and connect well with them for life because of who you are.  You have many amazing friends who inspire you so hang on tight they are your rocks during your toughest moments.   Don’t forget to be there for them too and love them with all your heart.  Sadly, one of your closest friends will be diagnosed with cancer and cannot beat it.  However, having known her, changes your perspective on life for the better because you learn to appreciate the little things, slow down and look within yourself for answers to life’s complicated questions.  You have all the solutions inside you, just dig deep because they’re all there.  You feel a deep sense of gratitude for having known her and you miss her.

Family is another important part of your life and you need to show your appreciation for everything they do for you.  Nobody’s perfect and everyone is doing the best they can, just like you Jen.  Perfection is a dangerous thing and not even possible so let it go.  Imperfections are what make people beautiful including you.  It all depends on your perspective, try to look at them as your gifts.  Your entire family loves you unconditionally, you love them too and you get along with everyone.

Ah, romance, romance.  You have met some really nice guys that showed interest in you so far and you have been interested in some of them.   But Jen, you need to have more self-confidence you need to love yourself more.  Learn how to be assertive and stand up to the ones who don’t treat you right and hold hands with the ones who do.  Don’t get blindsided by flattery, take it for what it is which is sweet.  Not every guy will understand your kind heart but that’s ok, it’s not your job to convince him of it.  Never let the good guy get away, easier said than done.  Romantic involvement is complex and fleeting.  Don’t settle for someone, make sure your man adores you, protects you, makes time for you, has the same values as you, has your back on everything and knows how to use a hammer!  This will save you a ton of frustration…

What you really want is someone who makes you smile, is proud of you, supports you and inspires you, is emotionally there for you and treats you like his queen.  Not a man who drains you or takes advantage of your good nature or abandons you.  He will love you with his whole heart by making you his number one priority and not let his external environment control how he feels or acts around you.

He must know his own core values and who he truly is on the inside otherwise he is a chameleon adjusting to every external environment, not a man.

If you are looking for a chameleon, go to Costa Rica.

Make sure he never interrupts you or puts you down in front of other people; he should be singing your praises instead.  You are a fine catch young lady and never forget that!  😉

You put everyone’s needs ahead of your own and deep down, you want your needs met too and why not?  People pleasing and putting yourself last is killing you without you even realizing it.  You need to take better care of yourself so you have the ability to take care of others.  Everywhere you go you are a caretaker.  Learn to set some boundaries for yourself otherwise people will walk all over you as if you were a doormat.  “No” is a complete sentence, remember that my love.  And whatever you do, don’t let the opinions of others influence you to the point of doing nothing.  You’re better than that.

Be very mindful of selfish people and narcissists in your life.  They are your biggest threat because they give subtle red flags and are very good at charming you.  Take off those rose colored glasses so you can actually see the color red.  They are only interested in themselves so don’t kid yourself into thinking they have something to offer you.  They are takers and you are a giver so you are vulnerable in this situation.  Be very, very careful.

I know you can’t see it now but your heart of gold will fall in love with one man and two children over the years.  Unfortunately heartbreak is in your future but this tragedy has its silver lining.  You experience two sides of the same coin but you are a trooper, a real warrior.  Facing these various betrayals are the biggest stressors you will go through but it’s not what happens to us in life that determines who we are, it’s how we cope and react to it that counts and you have excellent coping skills.  Like grace under fire. You are not a victim so don’t play that role, ever.  You might feel like you are all alone in this but you’re not.  You are stronger than you realize and you have God in your corner.  This is a time for self-compassion and practicing self-care, finally.  You have put this off long enough Jen so time to pay attention to yourself.  It’s self-discovery time.  Be a good example for your kids because they are always watching and taking notes.  Learn the lessons here and don’t worry so much, everything is going to be okay.

You really need a vacation, you should plan one.

Writing blogs for you is a positive emotional outlet and an incredibly important way of dealing with stress because getting your emotions out on paper or a screen is cathartic.  A wonderful healing tool for all.  Not only are you helping yourself but also helping others by letting them know we are all in this together, nobody is alone.  An amazing world of bloggers is out there and each person has something beautiful to offer, appreciate each and every one of them from your heart because they are probably fighting a battle of their own you know nothing about.  You learn to write your way out of this betrayal and when writing the story of your life Jen, don’t let anyone else hold the pen, own it.  You get to write your own ending.  On the other side of this fear is freedom so hang in there, you’re doing great.  You are finding your inner voice and are finally starting to use it.  Better late than never girl!

Exercise has always been a priority in your life but during this time you must keep moving more than ever.  The physical, mental, emotional and spiritual benefits are endless.  Exercise helps to get the negative energy out, clear your mind, release those endorphins and make you feel empowered again.  You meet more friends along the way who support you and you can’t imagine your life without them because they are just so fun to be with!  You learn new activities like Zumba and PiYo which you even become addicted to!

As you make your way through the pain with your kids, your vision becomes clearer and you slowly get your strength back, thanks to your family and friends here and all around the world.  Connection has empowered you to stand up for what you believe in and fight for your rights my little warrior.  You are getting to know and love yourself more and more each and every day, the butterfly is emerging.  One of the greatest lessons you can learn is to practice gratitude, forgiveness and surrender.  These are the silver linings in the dark clouds.  You will make it to the other side Jen, you are almost there so don’t give up now.  Music and lyrics inspire you and give you energy.  There’s one song that’s about standing for something and getting stronger which is exactly what you need right now.  You need to stand for you.  Share this song with your amazing friends and in the meantime…ROAR!

To be continued in another 20 years….

And this is what I know for sure….now.

Love,

Jen
xo

LIME: Lifestyle Improvements Made Easy

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For those of you who are already fitness experts, I’m sure you can relate to the time when you first started working out and how energized you felt after.   For the rest who are contemplating starting or have only just begun, let me tell you….it can be very motivating and addicting in a really great way!

I never thought I would hear myself say those words because ever since I graduated high school years ago, my sporting days kind of ended there.  I managed to stay in okay shape because of the career I chose working as a nurse and running all over the place for the past 19 years, but it wasn’t enough.  Allow me to explain why.

The last thing I wanted to do with my aching legs after running around all day was to go and do more physical activity.  My couch was looking so good after every shift and it welcomed me with open arms, literally.  Laying there felt good and my body was so relaxed.  However, my mind could not stop racing and sometimes as a nurse emotions cannot turn off that easily either.  Any helping professional can understand where I am coming from.  People who take care of others seem to have a hard time taking care of themselves or putting themselves first.

Things began to change when I took a step back from nursing and decided to become a Health and Wellness Life Coach which I know is another helping profession but it not only helps others, it helped me a great deal too.  Now I work in both fields and I love it.  My favorite quote is “Put your oxygen mask on first, caring for others requires taking care of yourself first.”  It’s the oxygen mask theory from the flights we’ve all been on.  It’s the same rule in life and no, it’s not selfish.

I made a decision that I wanted to feel healthier by eating well and exercising at least three days a week.  I love walking and I love music.  Luckily I found my old iPod with so many songs I completely forgot about, I charged it, laced up my shoes and went outside in nature.  I thought I would walk for maybe half an hour but because of the music, I went further and walked one full hour seeing flowers bloom in spring, a heron bird with her nest and even a deer crossing my path.  All just steps away from my big comfy couch.  The feelings I had after being outside and walking to all my favorite songs was so motivating and fun, I suddenly realized what a calm mind I had and how happy I was!   Not only was I doing my body a favor physically, but I finally understood why people love exercise so much.  It also keeps your mind and emotions healthy too.  It makes sense why some people who seriously do not need to work out are doing it for other reasons.   I managed to walk ten kilometers a day four times a week until the snow came.  It was official, I was addicted to my exercise routine, I felt great, lost weight and I was so much happier.  Who knew?  Prior to the unforgiving Canadian winter, I became proactive in seeking out a fitness centre that I could go to during the freezing cold months.  In the Ottawa/Gatineau region there is an amazing place called Lime Fitness which stands for Lifestyle Improvement Made Easy.   Not only is the name perfect but so is the team that runs it.  Maggie, Gina, Sylvie and Kelly are four incredible women who run this energizing business and practice what they preach by either running or attending the class right along with us.  The positive energy that is constantly exchanged in each and every class is outstanding and contagious.  Smiles, laughter, encouragement and support make it feel like a family having one big party!  Their mission is simple, “To help you achieve your greater good so that you can live your life unlimited.”  To me, that’s fantastic and was exactly what I was looking for, not to mention the music is very motivating and fun!  They offer classes such as Zumba, PiYo, Cardioboxing, Bellyfit, Kettlebells and one called Insanity!  Each class will bust your stress, lift your mood and make you dance like nobody’s watchin’!  Anyone can join, there is no competition and yes everyone including me is uncoordinated when they try their first Zumba class but who cares?  You will get the hang of it.  Nobody is looking at you because they are too busy looking at themselves and we’re all in our own invisible bubble so not to worry.  You will have so much fun you won’t notice it’s been an hour, this I know for sure.  It’s been five months since I joined, I met new people, I do three classes a week and I can honestly say the staff at LIME have definitely contributed to my lifestyle improvements made easy.   I’m motivated and addicted in a really great way because I put my oxygen mask on first so now I am able to take care of others more effectively.   Thank you LIME!!

I encourage you to visit their website, grab a friend and take them along to Lime Fitness…..you will both be truly amazed!  See you there!

http://limelifestyle.com/

Jennifer Juneau
Jennifer.juneau1@gmail.com

 

Compassion Fatigue and the Fertility Nurse

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I would like to apologize for not blogging these past two months.  Life got busy!  However, I’m back and happy to be here again.  I recently attended the 4th Annual Compassion Fatigue Conference in Kingston, Ontario put on by Francoise Mathieu who is the Owner and Director of Compassion Fatigue Solutions which is an excellent resource for helping professionals.  This year, I was a panel speaker at this conference in early June and it was a privilege to be involved in discussing how coaches and nurses who work in Fertility can unexpectedly cross the invisible line from being compassionate into compassion fatigue if we are not careful. Infertility patients can ride an emotional roller coaster which is completely understandable due to what they have to go through and sometimes without realizing it, helping professionals can find themselves sitting right next to them on that same roller coaster, hoping for the best and fearing their outcomes which can have serious personal and professional drawbacks which in turn does not benefit the patient.  As helping professionals, we need to adopt the same theory as on the airplane, “Put your oxygen mask on first, caring for others requires taking care of yourself first.”  I believe this so much that it is inscribed on the back of all of my business cards as a reminder to others and also for myself.  The goal for helping professionals is to give excellent quality care to our patients and to do that, we have to remember to take care of ourselves along the way because we count too.   This way, everyone benefits.

I would like to share and invite you to read my presentation which can be found at the following link:

https://compassionfatigue.ca/wp-content/uploads/2014/06/Riding-the-Emotional-Roller-Coaster-with-the-Patient1.pdf

If you would like to read more presentations given by other great presenters, please visit the following link:

https://compassionfatigue.ca/blog/

I look forward to hearing your thoughts and comments.  Thank you!

~ Jennifer Juneau
Registered Nurse, Solution Focused Life Coach

Climbing Mount Infertility

couple-climbing-a-mountain[1]    On January 28th, the “Let’s Talk” campaign by Bell has proven to be highly effective in getting people to open up about the stressful situations they are facing in their lives without the guilt or judgement from others.  It’s not just a mental health day it’s more about taking charge of your life and focusing on the solutions.

My name is Jennifer Juneau and I am a Registered Nurse with Fertility IVF experience and a trained Solution Focused Life Coach who specializes in Fertility Coaching and Health and Wellness Coaching.  Do you or someone you know suffer from infertility?  1 in 6 couples are diagnosed with infertility each and every day.  How stressful is this?  Extremely.  It can also feel very isolating because of the social pressures by “well meaning” family, friends, co-workers and neighbours.  Reality is that you are not alone.  Infertility can also impact one’s career due to all the needed treatment appointments, relationships with friends, family and even with their significant other.  Both men and women experience the same emotions, how they deal with them is what sets them apart.  Financial stress is huge given the fact that fertility treatments are thousands of dollars unless you are treated in Quebec. When couples don’t see this coming, they cannot prepare for it and when it hits, it hits hard.

Does stress cause infertility?  It hasn’t been proven that it is a cause but what can be said is that it can contribute to it.  The mind and body are connected and hormones that aid in pregnancy are affected when a person is under a significant amount of stress. Therefore, seeking help during such a fragile time is crucial to get the needed support in a mental, emotional and spiritual way.  Doctors deal with the physical side but there are many things within your control that you can do to feel better such as seeking out a Fertility Coach, a Psychologist, a support group, reading reputable websites on infertility, acupuncture, practicing self-compassion techniques, meditation or even fertility yoga.  The main goal is to decrease your mental and emotional stress to a level that is manageable so that your physical self can relax and let nature take its course.

The journey of infertility can often feel like a steep climb up a mountain but it doesn’t have to be that way.   I am currently accepting new clients who are struggling with infertility and who can use someone as their guide to get them through their treatments in a well-informed way and has an inside track to the fertility world. Emotions can sometimes get the best of us but as your Fertility Coach in your corner, solutions can be sought out to help you cope.  As a nurse and a coach, I will make that human connection and provide my undivided time and attention you desire and help you find solutions in coping better to get through the IVF treatment process with less stress and anxiety.   The result you will have is the feeling of relief to have someone as your guide who will actively listen to you and have that support you may be lacking.  This will help you relax and get through the treatment process with ease.  Fertility Coaching cannot guarantee a baby, but it can certainly help.  I am available to coach you by phone, Skype, or face to face, no need to take more time off work.  The goal is to make it as convenient as possible for you.  I invite you to please check out my website:  www.couragecoach.wordpress.com or email me at Jennifer.juneau1@gmail.com for your FREE 30 minute coaching session.  If you decide you would like to work with me, I offer 3 affordable packages to suit your needs.

I look forward to working with you and getting closer to the summit of your mountain.

Please note that all information is strictly confidential.     ~JJ