Carleton University's Clare Beckton Empowers Women to Get Involved in Politics

This is a question that is near and dear to my heart. Being born and raised in Ottawa, I am very familiar with Canada’s political landscape. From my experience, one key strategy to increase women’s participation in government is through connecting with mentors. For example, at an event in 2014, I had the privilege to hear the Hon. Michelle Rempel, MP, speak. Afterwards, I realized that I was the only young woman under the age of 50 in the room. I emailed her after sharing that fact, and she called me. Over our chat, she empowered me to be the change I wish I to see in the world. Since then, I have been driven to get more involved in politics and encourage other girls and women to stand tall and be change agents too.

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The Instagram Expert Sue B. Zimmerman's Self-Discovery Lessons on Increasing Online Visibility

That teacher is Sue B. Zimmerman who is the industry go-to Instagram expert. I saw Sue speak at Social Media Camp 2016 last May.  She inspired me even before she took the stage, as the stage was filled with fun hashtag signs and brightly-coloured props.  On the podium, Sue inspired the audience with her positivity and passion, encouraging us to be as excited as she is about Instagram! She gave us practical examples for making Instagram simple.  After her talk, Sue was available to connect personally; she taught my friend and I how to take an awesome selfie. Months later, I am still inspired by Sue - as both a role model and teacher.  As my “thank you,” I am introducing you all to her today, as I know many of you are looking for quality resources to amplify your online presence.  

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Image Consultant Michele Charles Gustafson's Self-Discovery Lessons on Finding Your Style

How do you invest in yourself? 

At The Self-Discovery Retreat, we empower each other to develop a positive sense of self. Many of us are caring professionals who spend our days helping others reach their goals and put ourselves second. What I have learned though, is that by putting ourselves first and taking care of ourselves, we will be helping more people in the long run.

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Leadership Consultant Miriam Linderman's Self-Discovery Lessons on Living with Purpose

Simply put, my purpose is to make people’s lives brighter; as a community-builder and researcher, I am always looking for resources to help you shine. Last year, I happened upon an article by Miriam Linderman called, “Thriving Women, Thriving Economies” about her experience at the Vancouver Board of Trade’s B.C. Economic Forum: Women As a Catalyst for Growth event. Miriam, I discovered, is a Canadian entrepreneur who left the corporate world to start her own coaching practice. I loved her advice in the article so I reached out and emailed her. Since then, we have Skyped a few times and I was inspired to invite her to share her insights with all of you - to introduce you to this wonderful woman who is empowering us all to shine a little brighter. 

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CEO & Co-Founder of Bellyfit® Alice Bracegirdle's Self-Discovery Lessons on Caring for Yourself

How do you care for yourself in your busy life? 

If you have been following this blog, you know I am a strong advocate for taking care of yourself and regularly share strategies to remind you to make yourself a priority. Having a positive mindset and a supportive community are key ways to empower yourself daily!   

Alice Bracegirdle agrees! 

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Digital Marketing Professional Bailey Parnell's Self-Discovery Lessons on Achieving Happiness

What skills have empowered you in pursuit of excellence? 

Connection with others is essential to our growth and well-being. The road to excellence can be lonely. Having a positive mindset and supportive crew are key skills that carry you forward.

Today’s guest, Bailey Parnell, knows the entrepreneurial journey well; today, she is sharing how connecting with others played a major role in her success.

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Olympian & Author Krista Guloien's Self-Discovery Lessons on Transitioning from Rowing

Transition is something we can all relate to, as change is universal. Yet such times of major change can cause depression and fear in many, so it is important we talk about the ups and downs of change and empower each other along the way.

My guest today is Krista Guloien, two-time Olympian and silver medalist, who recently released her book, Beyond the Finish Line. As stated in her book summary: “Krista’s forthright tell-all of her journey to the 2012 Summer Olympic rowing podium, as well as what came after, will help you find closure and peace, as well as a safe place to relate, laugh and reflect on the “what next?” after sport.” Krista’s story is so important!

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Stop Hiding & Be You!

Returning after a long absence to my hometown and other cities where I’d spent most of my life, I reflected on how far I’d come in my self-discovery journey; I’ve come to see the world with a new lens. Before, I’d spent so much time hiding the true ‘me.’ Now, though, I’d returned to my roots to pass on what I’d learned to my friends, loved ones, co-workers, classmates, and acquaintances: to remind them to stop hiding!  To take the risk to show their true self to others! Whether this means to open up and share their story with someone, to be more visible online, to wear colour, to put on a bathing suit, to sing out loud, to voice their opinion at a public forum! Whatever! For them to summon up the personal strength to be and show the world who they really are!  

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The Importance of Making a Positive First Impression

What is your best advice for meeting new people at networking events?

As a student or professional, these days we are constantly selling ourselves when we go to networking events and online. Whatever your purpose, you are going there to make a positive impression and connect with people. When meeting someone new, you introduce yourself and describe what you do. This is your chance to set a first impression and leave an impact on the other person. It is a time to celebrate yourself, to speak up about the contribution you’re making to the planet. Trust me, positivity makes a difference!

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Writer Laura Whitfield's Self-Discovery Lessons on the Importance of Defying Small

 Today the featured speaker at The Self-Discovery Retreat is Laura Whitfield, a writer and traveller who blogs at She is the founder of Defying Small, an online community of visionaries worldwide. She is also writing a memoir, called Defying Small, Embracing Small: How Defining Moments Can Help You Live a Bigger, More Passionate Life. Join Laura on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. Click here to read her free, downloadable Defying Small Manifesto.

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Be Brave. Show Up at the Beach. Be Seen.

Did I ever think that the young girl who didn’t like public speaking nor being seen on stage would grow up to be brave and write a blog to share her random thoughts with the world? Truth is, I didn’t.

Becoming an author and blogger was never something I planned. Rather, the idea for this platform to express my thoughts came to me “randomly” in 2010 while taking a coffee, talk, and a walk on the beach in Hawaii with my family.

Relaxing on the beach that day, I looked around: everyone was smiling, having fun, enjoying the surroundings, and at peace. Hawaii was working its magic – it was allowing people to feel free to be themselves. There were men and women from around the globe, all of so many shapes and sizes. But they had one thing in common; they were happy at the beach. As was I. So at the beach that day, I had a life-changing thought: everybody is beautiful.

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Life Coach Katherine Mackenzie-Smith's Self-Discovery Lessons on Shining Bright as an Introvert

Think you are too quiet to make a difference in the world? Over the years, many of my readers have expressed that because they are “shy, quiet, introverted, and/or sensitive,” they don’t put themselves out there to be seen. I was like that too. During my teens I was extremely shy; I had a hard time performing in public as I didn’t want to be judged negatively. I took supportive roles rather than lead ones. I didn’t want to stand out. I didn’t want the attention. Now, look at me!

Today my guest at The Self-Discovery Retreat is Katherine Mackenzie-Smith, a life coach for introverts, an assistant life coach trainer, a writer, and a speaker. Katherine hails from Australia; her light to empower introverts shines so brightly it resonates around the world! I had to reach out and invite her to share why she speaks from the heart.  Through reading Katherine’s story, passions, and life lessons, I hope you will be empowered on your journey to rise to your platform & shine!

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Interview with Amanda Abella - Millennial Business Coach

Money. This is a word that keeps coming up as a source of stress in many of the conversations I have been having so I thought we should talk about it. How does this word "money" make you feel?

To join the dialogue, I invited Amanda Abella, an expert on this topic, to speak to us all about helping us all become our best selves by improving our relationships with money.

Amanda Abella is an online business coach, speaker, and author of the Amazon bestselling book, Make Money Your Honey: A Spirited Entrepreneur’s Guide to Having a Love Affair with Work and Money. She is committed to helping millennials (and anyone who wants to join us) have a better relationship with work and money by means of entrepreneurship, online marketing, and an abundance mindset. Thanks, Amanda, for joining us today at The Self-Discovery Retreat.

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What Matters Most To You in a Relationship?

What matters most in a long-term relationship?

When we talk about relationships – good or bad – we all learn about ourselves; the conversations bring us closer together and connect us. Since Valentine's Day was this past weekend, I was inspired to write a post about relationships.

Many of my friends have gotten engaged and/or married over the past year (Congrats to all the awesome couples) and the question of “what matters most in a long-term relationship?” has been asked many times. When my friends and I get together – usually the main topic of conversation centres around relationships. Just ask my former rowing crew what we would talk about to and from the boathouse every morning!

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Singer/Songwriter Ilana Harkavy's Self-Discovery Lessons on Being Comfortable in Your Skin

Today, singer-songwriter Ilana Harkavy is sharing her story, passions, and life lessons with all of us. I’m so grateful Ilana reached out to me by following me on Twitter so I could be introduced to her awesome music and the Just.Girl.  project – a fiery musical movement that empowers girls to embrace their passions, be blatantly honest, and take ownership of their individual struggles. After checking out her work, I had to invite her to be a guest speaker at The Self-Discovery Retreat to encourage us all to rise to our platforms & shine!

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Psychiatrist Vania Manipod's Self-Discovery Lessons on the Value of Sharing Your Story

Blogging nurtures self-growth; new Southern California psychiatrist Vania Manipod, DO, showcases this. I learned about her blog, Freud & Fashion, a couple months ago through the WordPress blogging community. Vania created her blog while studying for psychiatry, as a therapeutic outlet in her personal and professional development.  Her story is a shining example of how blogging can create positive change in a young person’s life. Today, you’ll hear from Vania herself how blogging nurtured her personal and professional growth as a new young mental health practitioner.

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