Who’s Minding the Store?

I frequently hear from readers, listeners and clients that they are encouraged and gain even deeper insight when I share my personal ups and downs. They learn how to sustain faith and hope while treating themselves with respect and compassion when they too stray from the path.

A Zen mistress living a perpetually serene life
in a mountain retreat would soon be
of little use to anyone living in the real world.

Based on yet another experience, it would appear I have little risk of transitioning to that sort of existence any time soon. Hallelujah, opportunities will abound for the foreseeable future!

Here’s the story. Recently, during what could have been a fun-filled group outing, I found myself feeling unloved and ignored. If you’ve read chapter six of my book, Choose Your Energy: Change Your Life!, you’ll recognize those feelings as a perfect storm to activate the core fears of my ‘personal board of directors’—I DON’T MATTER and I AM POWERLESS. Uh-oh!

So, what constructive, compassionate
response did I choose when I was feeling
uncomfortable at the outing?

I binged on potato chips at the after party to distract my heart by momentarily delighting my taste buds and helping me to hold onto my body armor for protection in the form of extra layers of fat. How human and un-loving of me.

Who's Minding the Store?

When I returned home, I immediately recognized my old dysfunctional coping mechanism and tried to process it with non-judgmental respect, curiosity and compassion rather than self-loathing and shame. Unfortunately, when the original frustration and sadness persisted, I added insult to injury by gorging on popcorn and animal crackers while watching TV in a state of utter exhaustion based in too little sleep for too many nights in a row, pressures of launching a new radio show this week and emotional overwhelm due to severe, prolonged health challenges four loved ones are experiencing. Guess what? That didn’t make me feel better either.


Here’s what came to me the following morning. The way I treated myself the previous night was far more insidious, considerably more disrespectful and decidedly more unloving than whatever slights (real or imagined) I thought I had experienced at the hands of others. Because I KNOW WITH EVERY FIBER OF MY BEING that overeating junk will not return the sense of generous, effortless, gracious flow that I was longing for. Junk food is not a journey of lasting faith, hope, prosperity, peace and joy. The initial bliss of eating the chips didn’t even carry me through the rest of the evening because I felt I needed to give it another go when I returned home.

The core lesson (and first of fourteen tools for fostering flow shared in chapter 7 of my book): PAY ATTENTION.

If I’m not feeling as loved as I’d like,
the first relationship to examine
is my relationship with myself.

Am I demonstrating unconditional love for myself by nurturing, encouraging and delighting myself IN HEALTHY WAYS no matter what my circumstances or companions?

My own carelessness and inconsistency in showing up for myself with love is often the primary contributor to any sense of love deficit I may be experiencing at any time. When I can trust myself to be ever mindful and unwavering in unconditional love, respect, curiosity, compassion and gratitude for myself and every aspect of my journey, I am not so easily tossed about by circumstances and the good health, good mood and goodwill of others. It is not statistically reliable to depend on others to 1) know exactly what I need in each moment and 2) be willing and able to provide it at just the right time 24-7. Not because they lack compassion or competence but because they already have their hands full managing the one life for which they are completely response-able: their own.

My latest little detour is a great reminder that if I pay more attention to recognizing what’s happening with me and engaging consciously and constructively to support my optimal functioning physically, mentally, emotionally and spiritually, I’ll experience a more consistent flow of faith, hope, prosperity, peace and joy than if I just keep hoping someone else will show up to make it all better for me.

Fortunately, my job description
for this lifetime doesn’t
include perfection as a
requirement or even a goal.


In every situation, love yourself enough to pay attention to every aspect of your life. Respect everything you are experiencing—what you are thinking, feeling, deciding, saying, and doing. Determine whether the energy underneath is love or fear. If it’s love, you are probably on your authentic path. If it’s fear, demonstrate compassion for yourself. Foster gratitude by reminding yourself that everything is an opportunity. Then further neutralize the fear by bringing curiosity to bear. Explore every aspect of the situation, especially your internal landscape, and identify all of the opportunities available to you through this unique experience. As with any new skill, practice will help this way of being become a healthy new habit—your automatic response to every situation.

Note to self—there’s always another opportunity
to start fresh and make better choices.

Today is that day. Every moment is that moment. You are loved and loving, blessed and a blessing. And so it is. Namaste. Amen. Blessed Be.


FREE Coaching Opportunity
($250 VALUE)

If someone offered you a precious gift for an hour of your time, would you be interested? That’s what I offer with a Complimentary Coaching Session. A comp session isn’t a brief demo or sample. It’s a full 45-minute coaching session focused on current real life challenges of your choosing plus 15 minutes to discuss your experience and any questions you may have about my approach to coaching.

There is no expectation or pressure to hire me as your ongoing coach. Providing meaningful, substantive comp sessions with no obligation is one of the ways I demonstrate gratitude and give back to the Universe a small portion of the abundance and opportunity it bestows on me daily.

The real value of a comp session? PRICELESS! 

Those who have experienced comp sessions will tell you, when you come to your session open to the possibilities for transformation and fully committed to your own growth, big breakthroughs can happen!

FREE Coaching Session

What clients say about
the power of coaching with Deborah 

“I knew Deborah before she became a Professional Life Coach. I’ve been amazed at how she has changed her life. When I decided it was time to begin making decisions about the next phase of my life, I knew immediately that Deborah was the person I wanted to work with. Her personal and professional experiences help her guide clients through coaching in a way that is individualized and delightfully eye-opening. Her warmth and sensitivity are immediately apparent, even over the phone. With gentle encouragement and permission, she will guide you through an examination of your life, including difficult experiences. She will help you gain insight from your past choices and then explore possibilities for moving forward in less encumbered ways. When you work with Deborah, your life will take on new meaning and your potential will be limitless!” Chris

“The work I did with Deborah continues to change my life. While I have learned many valuable lessons from her, the greatest was the deep insight that is available to me when I listen to and learn from my own inner wisdom. Her intuition, discernment and encouragement have taught me to trust my own intuition—creating new paths and possibilities for my life. One of Deborah’s great gifts is helping others respect and connect with their inner guidance and through that connection, to form a deeper, more meaningful bond with the collective wisdom and energy of all.” Ryan

Click here to sign up for a 60-minute
complimentary coaching session with Deborah.


What readers say about
the impact of Deborah’s book

“With the same energy and determination she applied in the professional world, Deborah has taken her considerable expertise in human potential and has now set her sights on the largest co-op in the world, humanity. ‘Choose Your Energy, Change Your Life!’ tackles what I believe are the most important questions we each must ask: who am I, where did I come from, why am I here, and what’s love got to do with it (cue Tina Turner)? These are not trivial or philosophical questions for the answers change what we do, why we do it, who and what we love. I am grateful for the opportunity to walk with Deborah on this critical journey.” JD Messenger, Award Winning Author of “11 Days in May: The Conversation That Will Change Your Life”

“To me the great thing about Deborah’s book is how ‘accessible’ she makes the ideas. The Oxygen Mask is probably the single best example. As with so many of the ideas in the book, she explains the principle in such a simple way that it’s got universal application to virtually any reader. I can imagine people having multiple moments of ‘Oh….I get it!’ throughout the book. The stories from her own life as well as stories of her clients’ experiences become stories about all of us—stories about which the reader will think, ‘I am living my own version of this.’ Well done—bravo!” Joe Calloway, Author of “Be The Best At What Matters Most”

Click here to explore Deborah’s book.

© Copyright 2015 DJW Life Coach LLC. All rights reserved.

About djwlifecoach

I am retired from 40+ years of helping individuals and teams build lives and organizations they love. One of the great joys of my retirement from professional practice is having greater bandwidth to donate my professional and creative talents to support and promote animal and social welfare charities. During my 30 years as an organization transformation consultant, I served as a senior partner in four of the world’s largest, most prestigious global professional services firms. In 2005, I took a five-year sabbatical to find healing and peace because non-stop work had taken its toll. My recovery from burnout led to finding my purpose guiding others on their journeys. As a board-certified coach, author, consultant, radio host, Reiki Master and EFT/tapping practitioner, I share hope, possibilities and empowerment with the world. 111419 DJW Sid CH Pet Corner Photo ShootI help clients achieve rapid, extraordinary, sustainable results by connecting who they are with what they do, a connection often lost through stress and the sheer busy-ness of daily life. Courageous self-awareness and unconditional self-love lead to honest choices based on priorities that nurture you and those around you on a journey to wholeness. Decades in coaching, consulting, change management, organization development, human resources and mixed media artistic expression honed my business sense, professionalism, creativity, intuition, leadership and communication skills. The result? Practical tools that help you become more insightful, creative, committed, productive and fulfilled. Even the most dedicated and hard-working individuals can shift from frustration to a sense of futility when their values, passion, work, and lives become disconnected. One of the problems with not taking care of our health is that the effects of ignoring it are often slow to show up. We continue to juggle family responsibilities, work and finances until we lose ourselves, waking up one day 50 pounds heavier in body and soul—no good to ourselves or anyone else. I love working with people who are ready to take life-changing action to make their dreams a reality. At each moment, you have inside you all the wisdom you seek to choose your life and your way of showing up. Limiting thoughts, beliefs and feelings can block you from moving forward. An absence of love and concern for yourself can result in negative head talk that holds you back with discouraging messages about who you are and what you can do. By listening and caring deeply, I guide you in connecting with your own inner wisdom. We identify the way you’d like to live. We determine what’s blocking you and release you from the hold those blocks have over you—unleashing the positive energy that will fuel you forward. Together we develop a plan to move you closer to your heart’s desire. My books, blog, radio show and signature coaching programs help individuals and organizations harness the transformative energy of love to turn unexplored possibilities into fulfilling realities and step into their greatness. What’s love got to do with it? Everything! My book, Choose Your Energy: Change Your Life! (Hay House/ Balboa Press 2013) shares my story and the stories of 10 of my clients along with my signature Discovery Framework. For fun, I love reading, sewing, knitting, yin yoga, afternoon tea, opera and movies. I live in Williamsburg, Virginia with my spouse, Wilson Abney, and the cat who runs our life, Maisy Jane.
This entry was posted in All My Blog Posts, Curiosity, Respect & Compassion, Mindfulness, Meditation & Peace and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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