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Who’s your coach?

I am a Glaswegian and a Canadian, and trust me the two don’t always get along. Scots are feisty and independent, happy to forge their own path! Canadians value collegiality and often go out of their way to accommodate.

Navigating contrasting identities has caused me to examine many things including how my survival skills served me in one culture but hold less value in another, and how to blend and use the two ‘cultural skillsets’ to get the best of both.

This fine country of Canada embraced me with open coat of arms in 1987 (there is a wee British flag in the top left corner).  3 years to the date of my application, I made it through one tough exam: the Canadian Citizenship. My recall for dates isn’t my strength, it was senior/high school trauma revisited!

On a serious note, the emotions you see when immigrants go through their citizenship ceremony are every bit as real and deeply touching as the smiles, tears and joy. It is indeed a huge privilege to become accepted as a citizen of this country.  It is also for many a confrontation of what they have left behind, regardless of the reason they left or were forced to leave. The emotions are a mixture of grief, joy and nervous anticipation of life and identity as a Canadian. 

It has taken many years to appreciate dual identities. Your roots never die thankfully, yet your leaves and new growth need sunshine and warmth. You naturally bend and grow towards a light that attracts you. Life and work in Canada became that light. 


A wee bit of professional background

When I immigrated in 1987, Canada needed occupational therapists (OT). I lived and worked in North Bay and Toronto followed by Niagara-on-the-Lake. I worked with children, adults and the elderly. Community mental health became my focus for many years.

In 1997, I returned to North Bay where I ran a successful private OT practice for over 12 years, predominantly for clients with acquired brain injury. I trained extensively in cognitive rehabilitation. Learning how the brain works and what it needs to heal, learn and adapt has informed much of my coaching and mediation work.

In 2005 I transitioned to Executive Coaching and became a Certified Professional Coach through the College of Executive Coaching and took a highly transformational week-long coaching course from Inspiration Coaching International, Destination Coach program.

I added qualifications with Myers Briggs Certification, BarOn EQi and various other psychometric tools that have served my clients over the years. I am certified in Cynergy Conflict Coaching. In 2019 I appreciated excellent mediation training at the Canadian Institute for Conflict Resolution and I certified in 2020 in Transformative Mediation with Community Justice initiatives. In 2020, I also obtained my Foundation and Practitioner Change Management certification with APMG international.