I received my B.A. in French in 1991 from the University of Oregon and my M.A. in Counseling in 2000 from the University of San Diego. I am a National Certified Counselor (NCC), a Board Certified Coach (BCC) and a Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC) in the state of Texas. If you are looking for ways to become more authentic in your own life, we may be a good fit.
I offer career coaching where I help clients not only learn more about themselves but also how to verbalize their strengths. We all have different gifts, talents, skills and interests. Being aligned with and accepting of who you are and how you are wired is the first step in narrowing down your career choices.
Life coaching may be a good choice for you if you are ready to move forward and accomplish your goals. You’re past the stage of thinking, processing and trying to decide what you want to do. You just need help to get there. We partner with each other and come up with specific steps as well as strategies to overcome your obstacles.
I also offer therapy for a variety of challenges. Many of my clients are having a quarter-life crisis where they feel that something just isn’t quite right. There is something missing. We work together to unravel your thoughts and figure out where the discontentment is coming from and how you would like to proceed. Do you need better boundaries? More fun? A better support network? A new career? Let’s work together to figure it out.
MY MEANDERING CAREER JOURNEY
I became a career counselor by chance. As an undergraduate, I majored in French with no goals, strategies or any direction what-so-ever. Why French? Do you want the real answer? Well, I don’t recommend this strategy but, I picked French because I had to graduate in 4 years. My advisor looked through the classes I had already taken and, based on that, said (my senior year no less), that I could complete a French degree. I said, “Magnifique!”
I joined the Peace Corps and lived in a French speaking country for 3 years. I still didn’t know what I wanted to do, besides travel, so I moved to Japan where I joined the JET Program and taught English for 2 years. I decided to go back to school, based on a friend’s recommendation, and get my Master’s in Human Resources. I took one HR class and realized in no short order, that was not for me. Fortunately, it was an HR/Career Counseling track. I never imagined myself as a counselor but once I took one class, I was absolutely hooked. I couldn’t wait to go to class, do my homework, go to my internship….I had never experienced that before.
If I had to do it over again, in order to minimize my level of stress and have a specific direction I would have taken some assessment tests and had a career counselor go through the results with me. I also would have gotten an internship. Although I don’t regret traveling at all, I think I could have been more strategic if I had someone to help guide me. I could have really figured out some goals for myself before I left the country. I would have done informational interviews with expats who lived in the country; maybe even positioned myself for a career in international business. I am not sure what doors being intentional would have opened for me. Hindsight is, of course, 20/20.
My own personal experiences are what have really helped me empathize with my clients. I’ve been there. I know how stressful it is not to know what to do or how to figure it out. The outside pressure of having people ask what you plan on doing certainly doesn’t help either. A lot of my clients wonder why they can’t figure it out on their own. For one, there are a lot of factors to consider. What are your skills? Interests? Values? Motivators? All of these are involved in picking a role where you will be happy.
I actually love it when clients come to me without a plan. I don’t tell clients what to do but I really, really listen and then ask them questions about the information they have provided me. For example, I had a poli sci major come to me thinking he had go to graduate school in order to work in health education. We started brainstorming together and I referred my client to an educational health conference where he made connections and is now interning. What I love most about my job is helping others, brainstorming possibilities with them and having them land great jobs where they are happy.
We spend so much time at work that investing in your own happiness is vital for your overall well-being. Kahlil Gibran states it beautifully when he says, “When you work, you are a flute through whose heart the whispering of the hours turns to music.”