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I specialize in helping clients who get stuck … and then discouraged. Faced with a range of everyday dilemmas (that they once handled with aplomb), they're suddenly unable to move forward. Normally good problem solvers, they're highly capable as professionals, parents, or business people. They've been busy striving for success and fulfillment in life … and they're perplexed by pervasive new feelings of being overwhelmed and unable to cope … of having lost their enthusiasm for being 'out there'.

Many are 'edgy' or sleepless - some have experienced full-blown anxiety attacks (these are more common than you might suspect). They wonder where their energy and zest for living have gone … why do they start to feel panicky (or angry) at the slightest provocation? They can't remember what happened to the fun, the love of adventure and romance, the calm restful sleeps, the sense of peace.

Above all, my clients want to recapture the energy, confidence, and satisfaction of being at their very best … and they're not willing to settle for less.

By the time they get to me, many of my clients have been feeling this angst for some time - trying a number of different approaches but not finding the insight and assistance they need. Some have begun to retreat into loneliness and fear. Others have been 'diagnosed' and labeled with depression or anxiety disorder. Not surprisingly, this only adds to their feelings of inadequacy. None of them want to spend their lives numbed by medication.

If you are like my clients, one of these situations may seem familiar to you.

  • You used to enjoy work, going in early and coming home late made you feel valuable … and besides, you actually thrived on the pressure. Your new boss, however, is critical, in a hurry, and has the emotional intelligence of a snail. Now you're 'tightening up' when he approaches and this doesn't feel good. Also, you aren't sleeping as soundly as you used to. Others have begun to notice that you're distracted and irritable.

  • You're accomplished, 'together', friendly, and reasonably attractive - yet you have few close friends and no intimate partner, even though that's what you want. And the thought of crowds, strangers, and noisy social situations makes you cringe inside. You need someone to talk to … someone knowledgeable about people and relationships … someone to help you figure out what to do.

  • You're generally a confident person - usually able to handle things by just 'doing what comes naturally' to you. However some significant event (an accident, the death of a loved one, or an unexpected downsizing) seems to have broken your 'cool'. You feel stressed and bewildered by your inability to handle it all. Some days you wish you could just stay in bed … and it's gone on too long.

  • You've worked hard for your achievements … a solid income, an amazing marriage partner, attractive kids, all the 'bells and whistles'. In other people's eyes you're a big success - yet secretly you feel kind of empty. Success doesn't seem to be enough … and you wonder what's missing.

  • Lately you feel 'paralyzed' by normal life decisions - choices about career changes, moving, wedding plans, family events (facing in-laws?). And you notice the tension turning into physical symptoms like indigestion, headaches, or persistent exhaustion. Sometimes it feels like your ability to cope with life is slipping away, and you don't know where to turn for help.

  • Money-talk makes you nervous. Salary, savings, debt - you'd rather just avoid the subject. Your partner has always 'gone along' - 'ignorance is bliss' has worked so far. But things change - suddenly you're both keen to own a condo, boost your careers, even start a family. Initial discussions are a disaster. For the first time you're fighting … and it turns out that you both have very different ideas about money.

These are just a few of the dilemmas I've helped my clients to solve.

"I never really bought into the benefits of 'calming down'. I'm a working mom and multi-tasking was my addiction. Now, I'm more relaxed and happier. I know what's important for me and what I can just let go. I'm a better role model for my daughter. Thanks, Jim!"
- Teresa D. (Burnaby, B.C.)

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