Self Improvement

Life Coach Advice: Avoid These 4 Self-Sabotaging Habits


There’s a time old adage that teaches that happiness begins within. While it may seem at times that finding happiness in the right now is impossible, I can’t stress enough how much control you truly have in your own emotional well-being, in the path your life takes and in your experiencing of true joy. To help you achieve joy and happiness, I want to share my list of four self-sabotaging habits you need to stop now. One of my greatest joys as a life coach is seeing first-hand how my clients are able to effectively change their outlooks on life, personal happiness and achieve success. I won’t say that it’s an instant change, because it’s not. But, it’s a change that is entirely possible and that I believe that you, too, can make.

Avoid Autopilot Behaviour

What do I mean by this? Well, there are many behaviours that can easily achieve autopilot status under the right (or, in this case, wrong) circumstances. Some examples are mindless eating, binge watching television, losing hours to vying over your ex boyfriend’s recent trip with his new girlfriend… these are all examples of actions or behaviour that happen without a deliberate intention. They just get into autopilot.

Allowing yourself to carry on a life in which you regularly simply tune out and allow yourself to engage in autopilot behaviours can have a negative, direct impact on your happiness. It’s so incredibly important to be aware of this "brain habit" and consciously catch yourself. This way you can, in the moment, choose different thoughts.

When you allow your life and your mind to be filled up to the rim with unintentional thoughts and actions, you end up without any room for positive intentions. A life filled with deliberate, thought-out and intentional actions will ultimately lead to a much more fulfilling and happy day-to-day.

Avoid Criticizing Yourself

Believe me when I say that everyone experiences self-criticism, just simply of varying degrees. At the end of the day, we are all only human. With that being said, regular self-criticizing behaviour can have major negative impacts on your self-esteem, self-confidence, outlook on life and happiness.

When you feel yourself beginning to pick yourself apart, take a moment to breathe. It’s imperative that you follow that breath with a self-affirming statement. For example, not feeling beautiful today? Remind yourself that you are special (and gorgeous) in your own unique skin. Feeling down because a presentation you delivered at work didn’t go as well as you hoped? Remind yourself that you are capable, intelligent and will rock the next presentation twice as hard.

Avoid Isolation

When you’re feeling down, it can be tempting to throw on the sweats and retreat to a weekend filled with Netflix, delivery food and just about nothing else. Allowing yourself to remain in isolation, particularly when you’re feeling especially down, can have more negative impacts than healing ones. While “me” time can be very fulfilling and productive, the difference between that and “isolation” really comes down to purpose.

The next time you’re tempted to cancel on friends with plans or decline an event invitation, ask yourself if you truly intend to spend the time working towards greater self fulfillment or if there is now a larger likelihood you will feel worse through isolating yourself. Again, I fully believe in recharging by spending time alone but we just have to be careful of when and how we do it.

Avoid Putting Everyone Before Yourself

Have you ever been called a “people pleaser” or thought of yourself a “yes man” or “yes woman”? Generosity and devotion to others is not a characteristic to be ashamed of, nor is it a negative. However, if you regularly put everyone else ahead of yourself to the point that your own needs and wants are not being met – chances are that you’re not as happy as you could be.

Spending time focused on working towards your own happiness will result in a lift in happiness of those around you. Everyone wins when you put your own happiness as value numero uno. This joy has influence and will emanate to those around you.

To your authenticity,

Love, Christine

Want to Become a Certified Dating Coach and Help Others Find Love?

How To Define Success & Achieve It On Your Own Terms


What does it mean to you when you hear the word success? Have you ever tried to figure out how to define success? Does the meaning of success change for you depending on what type of success you’re defining?

Let’s look at success in relationships.

How do you define a successful relationship? What elements need to be present? What is non-negotiable for you to experience success in your relationship?

While there are some elements that will be deeply personal, there a few simple steps that anyone can take to make their relationships more successful.

For starters, we all need to understand that any relationship is an energetic exchange. When two people come together, they are on some level, a match for each another.

Now the part of you that ‘matches’ may not always be what you like about yourself, so when you see it show up in your partner, you’re probably not going to like it in them either!

For example, let’s say that you find yourself to be too judgmental of others. That might leave you feeling particularly sensitive when your partner makes comments to you that sound like he’s – well, judging you.

On the other hand though, you and you’re partner can be mirrors for how you approach life with a clear focus, as a result of that same skill of discernment. (That’s the nice way of saying judgment.)

How you define success in your relationship will vary depending on how you view it, either through a positive or negative filter. The first simple step that you can take is to recognize that you have an impact o n your partner, and how they’re showing up.

In fact, in most cases, I would go so far as to say that the woman sets the tone for the relationship. Therefore, it’s very helpful to have a clear idea of how you define success for your relationship.

Here’s simple step number two. If success for you means feeling good around each other, then you need to make sure that you feel good with yourself first. You can’t show up and expect someone else to make you feel better.

You need to at least be willing to try to cheer yourself up on your own, before asking someone else to help get a giggle out you. If you really can’t shift how you’re feeling, consider taking some time alone rather than engaging with your partner when you know you can’t offer him, what it is that you yourself are lacking.

Simple step number three is to take some time to clarify what it is that you really desire in your relationship. Define success on your own terms and build a mental map of what it looks like so you’ll know it when you see it and experience it.

Too often we’re so busy chasing someone else’s idea of what success looks like, we never even notice it when it’s happening in our own lives. Sometimes the simplest things define success in our relationships and they’re so simple that we overlook them.

Here are a few questions to get you started:

1) What’s the funniest memory you have of being with your current partner, or in a previous relationship?

2) What was it about that situation that is so memorable for you?

3) How can you experience more of that?

I’d love to hear your thoughts so be sure to leave a comment below.

To your authenticity,

Love, Christine

Why You Should Follow Your Passions… No Matter What


Steve Jobs once said, “The only way to do great work is to love what you do” It’s a quote that’s been said many times before Jobs and many times since, and in many different ways. But, the essence remains the same. Find work and activities you feel passionate about as it’s really the only way. Now, with regards to work, I know that many of you may think, “How could I possibly love what I do?” I know it can be hard to imagine loving your job at times. There are likely a lot of days where you feel you work to live, not live to work. I’ve heard it from many people before and I know I’ll continue to hear it again – but I’m telling you that it doesn’t have to be that way.

While it can be scary to think of changing your career, or even making a small change in your current one, your passions are worth following.

Here’s WHY:

You Only Live Once

I hate to be the one to remind us of the infamous “YOLO”, but there’s some serious meaning behind the acronym t-shirts and radio hit pop songs touting You Only Live Once. If you have one life to live, why would you live it doing anything you don’t truly love? Sometimes it isn't convenient or wise to just drop your career cold and follow your passions but in the meantime, you can control how you spend your time outside of your work and those feelings of happiness can change your actual work life. This could mean doing something as small as attending a painting workshop once a week (even though you haven’t painted in 12+ years) or finally buying the guitar you’ve been eyeing for months or something big like going on a tour through Peru and making your way to Machu Picchu!

Happiness Breeds Happiness

So what if you take a job with a slightly lower salary? If it’s a job you love and you leave the office feeling fulfilled and happy every single day, can you honestly put a dollar value on that? Yes, there are financial commitments in everyone’s life and we all need to pay bills – but you may be surprised to learn you probably don’t need as much money as you think you do. And I know you’ll be surprised at the amount of intangible wealth your happiness will breed.

You Might Miss Your True Calling

We’re all born with talents. Some of us discover them at a ripe, young age. Others figure them out later in life. Whatever your case may be, making sure you’re not too sucked up in your daily routine (and that goes double for those who dislike their current daily routine) that you totally miss out on your calling. Sometimes years can go by where you think the same thoughts on your way to work, at work and on your way home from work but you're so busy, it's impossible to create space to try something new! It's important to give yourself some room to discover what your true calling is.

As Dr. Seuss said, "Today you are You, that is truer than true. There is no one alive who is Youer than You".

I’d love to hear your thoughts so be sure to leave a comment below. :)

To your authenticity,

Love, Christine

Couple’s Therapy at a Music Festival. Huh?


Did I ever think that I'd be asked to offer couple's therapy at a music festival? Probably not, but that doesn't mean I don't love the idea! One of my favorite things to do in life is listen to live music outdoors. There is something about the combination of being able to look up at the sky, breathe in the fresh air and enjoy the sounds that is so appealing. I first started attending music festivals back in the Lollapalooza days and was immediately hooked (remember when those festivals first started?! It was such a big deal.) We used to throw a bunch of stuff in a car, hope that we remembered key things like tents and set off on an adventure. It was always a good time from beginning to end.

About 6 months ago, I received an email from a Festival organizer in Portugal asking if I would be open to being a couple’s therapist at their upcoming outdoor Festival. A million things raced through my head:


No, I’m not ready.

Yes, how fun!

No, there’s no way I should do this.

Yes, how could I turn this down?!

No, there’s no way I can guide couples at a festival in Portugal?!

I eventually had a call with the organizer and told her that I was very flattered she sought me out and I needed her to walk me through what the festival was all about and what was expected of me. She dove right in and it felt like she had designed the festival just for me (and 30,000 other people!) because it’s theme is about the feminine, truth, growth, expansion and clarity. It’s a mixture of workshops, music, dancing, swimming and all the best things that festivals have to offer.

I sat on the opportunity for a few more days and eventually went back to my initial gut reaction:


Now as I prepare for my trip, I’m thinking a lot about what I am going to teach and the guidance I am going to offer the couples looking to take their relationship to the next level.

One distinction I will be sharing is around listening, and how despite our best intentions, we often hear our partner but we don’t ‘listen’ to our partner.When you ‘hear’ someone, you are looking to agree or disagree with what they are saying. This is the typical way we listen to most people throughout our day and it’s not because we don’t care, it’s just the way we are wired. When you take time to listen, it means you are focusing far less on whether you agree or disagree and much more on what the person is saying, how they are saying it and what silent context does or doesn’t exist. This takes practice, time and focus. Luckily, the festival organizers are providing me with a pseudo-office under a tree with a couch and everything. This will be a focused area where couples can listen, not hear.

The Festival is in August so I will definitely be sharing more on this adventure mixing my passions of music festivals and helping build connection, so stay tuned!

I’d love to hear your thoughts so be sure to leave a comment below. :)

To your authenticity,

Love, Christine

Why You Should Be Making Sure Your Needs are Being Met

Back porch tea time

A tea on the back porch.

That’s what I woke up thinking about. I don’t seem to spend enough time on my back porch lately even though it’s the perfect place for a relaxing read or a quiet nap. I’ve been working to make it a bit more comfortable by adding in some bright flowers and pillows and tea lights. I call it ‘gardening’ and my sisters call it ‘watering potted plants’ but I’m still proud of the bright colors greeting me as I come and go.

So there I was, having just sat down to take my first sip and I felt a drop of rain on my arm. “No way rain, you are NOT going to take this moment away from me!”. I could have given up and just gone back inside but I was determined. I had to think fast so I raced around locating my table umbrella and hastily cranked it up just as it started to pour.

At first, I thought to myself, ‘seriously? You are going to get soaked and there’s no way you can move until it’s stopped. This ‘getting your needs met thing has gone a little far’ And then just as it was down-pouring the hardest, I took a sip and started to relax. Mother Nature was having her way, freshening up the gardens, cleaning off my car and under this umbrella was the quiet need I thought of when I first woke up. I was following through, knowing how it would impact my day in a positive way.

In 2009, this was shared with me:

The Queen is strengthened or weakened by her relationship to her needs.

It was a powerful statement for me because we are so often fed that looking after our own needs is being selfish or self-centered. It’s quite the opposite:

When a woman looks after her own needs, she is actually able to give more of herself to others.

It may not make sense right away but try to think of it as a long-term investment in your day, week and in your life. You may not necessarily feel it in the moment when you are getting one of your needs met but later that day when a struggle or stressful situation comes up, you are just better prepared and more grounded.

I will be sharing more Queen work with you in future posts as it has had a tremendous impact on my own life and I know it will on yours. Incorporating Queen work into your daily life does not happen over night but little by little, we can strengthen our relationship to our own needs and not discount them.


Think of an example in your life where you sacrificed what you really wanted because it was just easier to do it another way. It could have been something that only affected you in the moment or it could be in a group environment where you went along with the decision to appear easy-going. Now decide for yourself how you are going to handle a similar situation in the future. Commit to adjusting a bit and experiencing what it’s like to stick to what you truly want. In no way am I suggesting Diva behavior – this is more about a woman getting in touch with her own individual desires.

I'd love to hear your thoughts so be sure to leave a comment below. :)

To your authenticity,

Love, Christine

At the age of 17, who were you?


At the age of 17, who were you?

There are some theorists who believe you are the absolute closest to your true self at the age of 17. This is believed to be the age where you are most in tune with what makes you happy, whether you choose to act upon it or not.

After the age of 17, it’s believed you become a lot more influenced by what others want for you rather than what you want for yourself.

When I learned this, I started to think about who I was when I was 17. I was in grade 12 in High School in Calgary, Alberta and had a fun group of friends. I had a job at the mall and I liked boys from other schools. J I remember being in the library one day and flipping through an old issue of a travel magazine. I stumbled across an article that spoke about how you could ski and snowboard on a glacier in Whistler, BC in the summer. I couldn’t think of anything that would be cooler than that. That very night I had a conversation with my parents and they gave me permission to follow my growing adventure-seeking tendencies and move to Whistler right after graduation. Thank you Mom & Dad!

This was a memorable and defining lesson in speaking up for what I truly want, rather than editing myself for what others may want for me. I was introduced to that feeling of wholeness where the life I desired on the inside started matching my life on the outside.

This week I’ve been re-visiting memory lane because I’m in Vancouver and from my hotel room, I can see the bridge leading out to Highway 99. Gosh, how many times did I cross that all those years ago when we used to do day trips into Vancouver?! I have such good memories of Whistler and all the adventures I had meeting others who were drawn to this unique summer-skiing playground.

This week, I started thinking how easy it was to create joy back then and it wasn't even a conscious effort

This week, I started thinking how easy it was to create joy back then and it wasn’t even a conscious effort, I just seemed to pack my days with activities and people I liked!

This universal recipe for joy hasn’t changed much but perhaps as we get older, we think it is something more complicated. Perhaps it can sometimes be a matter of simply re-connecting with how you made your choices at 17 and what influences or influencers you paid attention to.

This brings me to a coaching exercise I encourage you to take on this week:

Find a time to reconnect with your 17 year old self.

Write down what made you happy and why. Write down as much as you can remember about making decisions and the activities/people you felt naturally drawn to. Don’t filter yourself and don’t share your list with others (this is only because they might edit it or cause you to second guess yourself.) Reflect upon this list throughout the week. To deepen this experience, you may even want to dig up a photo from that year and attach it to your list.

I would love to hear how this exercise affected you. Please leave a comment below or email me directly.

To your authenticity,

Love, Christine

4 Steps to Building Self-Esteem


On a coaching call last night, a client of mine asked me, “I’ve become aware I have some serious self-esteem issues and I’m wondering if you can give me some tips around that”. He is someone that has had limited success with women and it’s not because women don’t find him attractive, it’s because he doesn’t believe he is attractive both physically and emotionally.

The main thing I want to point out here is we are talking about building self-esteem and building confidence and I am not talking about “how to wake up tomorrow with the highest self-esteem you’ve ever experienced”. As nice as that would be, you would no doubt wake up the following morning feeling lower than low.  Building confidence (not over-nighting confidence) requires you to lay out a personal growth plan, and as a life coach and relationship coach, here are my suggested steps on how to do so.


Start looking at the big picture. In relative terms you are here on earth for a very, very short time and then….you are gone. That’s it. Do you want to look back on your life here on earth and think, “gosh, I’m so glad I wasn’t able to develop healthy self-esteem and I’m so glad I let that limit my opportunities in life.” No! You want to look back on your life and be grateful you found ways to shine a positive light on yourself and continuously develop your self-esteem on a daily basis so you could accomplish everything you came here to do. Always remember that life is a precious, precious gift and the fact that you beat out all the other sperm/egg combinations to be here is truly miraculous.


Decide on one thing a day you are going to do to build your self-esteem. Do not make a gigantic list. Just one simple thing. I caution you to put something down like ‘go to the gym everyday’ because we both know what’s going to happen on the day you don’t go, you are going to beat yourself up and hurt your self-esteem. It needs to be something very simple like looking yourself in the mirror and smiling instead of frowning at least once a day. Start simple.


Next, don’t avoid people. Learn how to talk to people. Now you may be thinking, “Um, Christine, I know how to talk to people.” My point here is that you need to talk to more people to gain practice in feeling good about yourself when around others. Often that is a trigger, we feel good about ourselves around our own home but as soon as we are at work, on the street, at an event, something happens to our self-esteem. So when I say, learn how to talk to people, I am referring to learn how to talk and interact with people and still feel good about yourself at the same time. This takes practice, just recognize the thoughts that come to mind and do your best to acknowledge them and then ignore them.


Don’t  judge yourself in the process. Sometimes my clients will try one day of building their self-esteem and if they don’t see drastic changes, they say it doesn’t work. Building self-esteem is a skill that you need to practice every single day. Building any skill requires practice and just like if you were a professional athlete, you would have good days and bad days but you are continuously practicing and moving forward. So please don’t be hard on yourself, celebrate your little wins, even if you managed to counter-act one negative thought, that is progress.

These 4 steps will get you well on your way to building self-esteem and building self-confidence. Be kind to yourself and have patience with the process.

To your authenticity,

Love, Christine

Want to Become a Certified Dating Coach and Help Others Find Love?