One of my hobbies is taking silly pictures of myself acting weird. It's a thing!

One of my hobbies is taking silly pictures of myself acting weird. It's a thing!

Hey there! 

I’m Vanessa!

I believe that we were put on this earth to be happy and healthy, and to live lives that we love.

(I also believe tongue twisters are much easier to write than to say out loud).

I believe that a happy and healthy life can only be achieved when you finally stop being a shithead to yourself!

(Seriously, that nonsense needs to STOP!)

 
 

I know what it’s like to try all the ways to make healthy and positive changes, looking for "THE magic formula" that will make it all "click"

 
 

Maybe you try meditating, or get yourself into an exercise routine, or eat nutritiously, or read ALL the self help books.

Each small change makes a positive contribution for a short period of time, but nothing seems to get below the surface and really stick.

It super sucks being stuck in all or nothing mode, swinging back and forth between extremes and feeling like you kinda love and hate your life at the same time.

 
 

i too have spent most of my life overthinking, having impossibly high standards and being suuuuper afraid of failing.

basically, treating myself in a way that I would never tolerate from another person. 

 
 

Why would I do that?? I assumed that achieving a fitness goal or being a certain weight or ‘reigning in’ my eating habits would bring me closer to feeling amazing, accepting myself and having loads of self confidence.  

 
 

I thought I could change from the outside in. I wasn’t really aware of how much I was holding myself back.

I even rationalized that being unhappy with who I was kept me motivated to be better. (Spoiler alert: definitely not true, and totally counter-productive!)

 
 

Eventually I hit a wall and had no choice but to start digging into all that nonsense and start learning a new way of thinking- about myself and my life.

 
 

Trust me, there IS a better way and you (yes, YOU!) definitely have it in you to follow through and make this happen.

 
 

So, What’s My Deal?

I'm glad you asked! Just before I turned 30, some Big Life Stuff happened which set me on the path I'm still on today (just shy of closing out my 30s).

I had made a few positive changes in my life, and was pretty happy with how much ass I was kicking.

As I was levelling up, I started taking a new look at my life.

 
 

I had myself gotten to a point where I either had to keep going up - which meant doing scary things to really make my life better or...

I could slide back, and stay in my oh-so-cozy but soul sucking rut I had carved out for myself.

 
 

So... I did the thing. I took The Leap: I ended my out-of-order long term relationship, decided to change my career, invested in some re-education, and start building a life I LOVED.

I succeeded immediately and everyone cheered for me and admired my bravery. I was awarded a medal of awesomeness in the town square.

 

Except, NOPE! *sad trombone!*

All those big changes made me crash so hard I thought I had mono for a while (good news - I was just majorly stressed!).

It took me a long time to pick up the pieces and I needed a whole team- friends, family, cats, therapist, imaginary friends, etc - to keep me up during that time. PS: I think everyone needs, and deserves, a team!

But now I’m through it all and more awesome than ever and I’m here to pass on all my smart knowledge to you!

 
  Yep, I laugh at my own jokes. Hey... I'm pretty funny. If I'm not, you can at least laugh AT me!

Yep, I laugh at my own jokes. Hey... I'm pretty funny. If I'm not, you can at least laugh AT me!

Ha ha Just joking! 

My journey is still going, and it will be forever (phew, that’s a long time!).

Fortunately I have learned TONS along the way and am always happy to share my story if it can help anyone go further along their path.

I’m proud to say that embracing the idea that I will always be beautifully imperfect, and that self love is both a daily choice but not a destination, makes my life brighter and more colourful every damn day.

 

I spent a long time being afraid that being kind to myself would cause me to  lose all my motivation and be the worst.

You know, lack of personal hygiene and entirely too many sweatpants.

I’ll let you in on a secret:

My life is better than it’s ever been. By learning how to be more self accepting, calmer, and positive, I’m more motivated than ever. I feel good in my own body, and when I don't, I now know how to be kind to myself.

 
 

All My Work Hats

My Mom always said I had a ‘good head for hats', so it makes sense that I've worn a lot of different work hats. 

I’ve discovered many (many!) things that don’t work, which led me to figure out what really works (A huge time saver for you!).

My background is in fitness, yoga and nutrition, and I stumbled into life coaching because I really wanted to help people change- and talking to them about lunges and spinach just wasn’t doing it for some reason....

I could see so clearly that my clients needed a Whole Life approach to figuring out how to take better care of themselves and feel better - this piecemeal stuff just doesn’t work!

I mashed it all together and now I’ve got a whole new way of setting people up for lasting success.

Change is a process - it’s an adventure with peaks and valleys and the occasional scary forest, with a mysterious cave or two along the way.  I hate saying ‘enjoy the journey’ because everyone says it, but dang it, it’s true!

 
 

P.S.

I also work at The Centre For Applied Neuroscience (CAN) as Associate Director, and a few other roles (I wasn't joking about having a lot of work hats!)

CAN is where I got my life coaching certification, and now I get to help other people follow through on their dream of becoming a life coach. Circle of life, good karma and all those warm fuzzies!

 
 

Over the last 13 years I’ve gotten damn good at finding the perfect balance of making lasting change: deep self awareness, clear, specific daily actions, and getting real life s**t done. 

Trust me, lasting change is easier and a hell of a lot more fun than you think it is!

 
 

Fun Facts About Me!

 
  • When I was in kindergarten, I broke up with my boyfriend because he wouldn’t let me lift the big blocks. I’ve always been fiercely independent and I don’t take any guff from anyone (except myself, of course, but I’m working on that).
  • Both of my parents are from islands. My Dad is from Malta and my Mom is from Newfoundland. And I’m an only child, which makes me a little like an island too.
  • I love chocolate so much that once when I was little I asked my Mom why there were so many flavours of ice cream, since chocolate is obviously the best and what anyone would want. She literally had to explain to me that some people don’t like chocolate. My tiny mind was blown!
  • I love to read (let’s be friends on Goodreads!) and routinely have a few books on the go at once a mix of fiction and non-fiction.
  • I proudly nourish my inner grandma by going to bed and getting up super early, drinking tons of tea and complaining about loud noises. (But also I have 9 tattoos, which makes me a cool grandma.)
  • I live with my partner and our two cats live in a tiny studio apartment in Toronto. Also my cats have their own Instagram which elicits a lot of eye rolling from my partner who thinks only those with opposable thumbs should use social media (She's not wrong, but frankly I don't care!)