Initially, I wanted Michele to be an affirmer and fan of my pre-formed aspirations, but I quickly learned that she would not let me stay comfortable in my safe plan for life. Michele was very aware of my weaknesses, and wanted me to fight to live a better life. I didn’t believe in myself as much as Michele believed in me.
Now, I feel like I can fully be myself. I am much more able to articulate my strengths, weaknesses, wants and needs because of Michele. She is dedicated to the things she speaks about, and dedicated to me. Because of Michele’s role in my life, I know I will always be learning; she wouldn’t let me stop.
I first started meeting with Michele as a result of a recommendation by a friend. I’d heard from many people how excellent she was at helping people with direction, and I had just graduated from college and was in need of this kind of assistance. I had fairly high expectations in getting together with Michele, especially since she came so highly recommended, and she far exceeded what I had even imagined. What I found in Michele was a person who was interested in helping me become the best me possible. Michele is a wellspring of great insight and information. She has helped me focus my ideas on what I want out of life, and helped me make decisions in important areas. The questions she asked me, and still regularly asks me, were very valuable to figuring out who I want to be, both professionally and in my relationships. With Michele’s guidance, I am learning how to recognize who I am, what I want to be, and how to get there.
When I went to Michele’s workshop I had recently returned home from about a year of travel and was exploring various opportunities for being back in the States. Michele helped me to transition from a lot of chaos and to lay out a flexible, yet well-reasoned and practical path to accomplish new goals and dreams. She challenged us to think about ourselves in a fresh light with some simple exercises and used those to push us to identify our priorities and from there, our goals, creating a stealthy momentum of thought-processes.
Michele has a gift for relating to people and for cutting through a lot of chatter and muddled thoughts and emotions to call out the best in people. I think the hardest thing about a “life journey” seminar is not feeling drowned in the big picture, as I often do. Michele provided insight and attention to the big picture in each of our lives, but also provided really tangible ways to send us off on surer footing than we had before.
I really like to sugar-coat things, to make words and confrontations easier, and avoid the mess of life. But journeying with Michele helped me to acknowledge those things don’t work. They didn’t make me feel better, they didn’t answer deeper questions of life, and they didn’t result in more fruitful relationships.
Michele saw hidden potential in me that I hadn’t known was there. She saw through my words and did not give me permission to beat up on myself. She pursued me, and dared to say things that were honest. Michele would always name the hard thing and then take me to a deeper level of understanding about it.
I find Michele to be a deep source of advocacy and authenticity. Michele pushes me to be the best version of myself possible; she believes in me. It feels good to be believed in, doesn’t it?
When I first met Michele, I was dealing with a lot of things having to do with my identity and confidence as a person. My big inner questions were things like: How do I be who I am, empower others and lead well? In Michele I was hoping for a kind of mix of listener, encourager/motivator and a wise soul. I had a lot of pent up thoughts and a desire for something/someone to help frame those and push me to see them as a structured beginning to the message I have to share.
I could tell right away I was going to learn a lot from my time around Michele. To work with her is to work with someone who is committed to being herself and sharing her life. She has a wonderful gift of opening a space for me to be fully myself. Hers is a presence of invitation. Invitation to explore my own gifts and open myself to relationship. My work with Michele never seemed to be about particular battles, but the lifelong pursuit of authentic life and relationship. Because of the I am continually reevaluating how I can be a person of invitation in my own way.
I was working through a really hard time and was in a deeply anxious period of life. I was feeling stuck in many ways like a car spinning its wheels in the mud, unable to gain enough traction to move at all. I don’t know how aware I was of this feeling even at the time, but in hindsight, it is very clear to me. I began to hope that Michele would be like a light in my life, shining on me with her questions and observations. She brought things to the surface of my mind that I hadn’t wanted to talk about or wasn’t even conscious of. And as I saw that she was completely in my corner, I knew that I could trust her because she always has my growth as her goal. Michele has been a wise and trustworthy guide, and I would not be who I am today without her caring and shaping presence in my life.
When I met Michele, I was at a point of transition in my life that was starting to feel a little bit too big to handle. Honestly, I think that I was hoping I would go to Michele’s seminar and a few hours later walk away with the rest of my life completely planned out. Needless to say, that didn’t happen. And I’m glad that didn’t happen, because what I did walk away with was so much better – a renewed sense of confidence and self-knowledge that has allowed me to consider my many options and choose the path that is best for me.
Michele doesn’t ask easy questions, and she definitely doesn’t accept the easy answer. She expects you to dive in deep and really figure things out. It’s not always painless, but it results in a foundational knowledge of yourself that allows you to stand regardless of your surroundings and circumstances.
Michele has given me the tools to succeed in my future, but even more importantly, she has given me the knowledge that I have a friend who will help me to succeed.
Anyone who is lucky enough to encounter Michele will walk away knowing herself and knowing the kind of life she wants to lead. And that is truly a gift.
I can confidently say that I would not be the same person if it weren’t for Michele’s presence in my life. She has been a never-ending source of wisdom, encouragement and inspiration. When I think back to the most profound conversations and “a-ha” moments I have had, Michele was the person sitting across the table. She has an uncanny ability to ask the most challenging and necessary questions that require me to dig deep for my responses. She knows when to push and probe and when to simply listen. She offers candid insights and without fail, I walk away from our sessions encouraged, challenged and empowered.
Not only has she coached me along in the big-picture sorts of things, but she has also offered advice on the everyday-ness in life. From flowcharts for implementing systems in my business to tips for interviews and e-mails, Michele has played a huge part in my professional development as well. Bottom line: she is deeply and whole-heartedly committed to seeing me succeed in my career, in my relationships and in life. And she is always seeking to help me become more of who I am called to be.
I think there are times in your life when its just not worth it to keep going down the road you’ve been on, and even when change means pain or discomfort or some other cost, the cost would be greater to continue as you have been going. Michele advocated a kind of love of others and self that was in many ways foreign to me, a kind of truth-telling that was both bold and gentle, and a recognition of the unique qualities in me that were worth pursuing and validating.
I consider Michele a truth-teller in my life. I feel safe in Michele’s presence, and also a sense of anticipation, knowing that she is eager to get to the heart of the matter with me. Michele believes in me and wants what is best for me. She has a way of speaking words that brings clarity and light to a situation in a non-judgmental, graceful way. Because of Michele’s words to me, some of my closest relationships changed for the better and continue to be places of growth and joy for me. I am empowered and encouraged to trust the gifts that make me unique, and seek wholeness in myself and my relationships with others.
I met Michele at a transitional time in my life. I had grown up in a family structure that avoided conflict and struggled to communicate. It is difficult to work through deeply ingrained issues, and it can be even harder to trust that an alternative way will actually work. But even when I didn’t trust the new way, I trusted Michele. Michele gave me a safe and gracious place to work through the reality of who I was, and who I wanted to be. She has walked with me on the journey, giving support, encouragement, and new strategies along the way. She has consistently provided me with tools to create wholeness in my life. I have found that using these tools to create new patterns in my personal identity issues, relationships and professional pursuits is a long road, but one that is worth it.
I am still on the journey, but working with Michele has already brought great freedom in my struggles with self-esteem and identity, in my family relationships, and in my relationships with other women. I know that this process is like slowly opening a window, flooding a room with light, breeze, and the promise of a new day. Michele has helped me open that window inch by inch.