Posted in Family, Inspiration, Love, Mags Magazine - Soulful Encounters, Meet Ordinary People Doing Great Things!, Relationships, Women

Meet Emily Cattelan, one of our featured speakers for the launch of Soulful Encounters

Is it possible to find this perfect partner?  I believe so and so does Emily!  It is a wonderful gift to see the love that is shared between Emily and her husband Roger.

In January 2014, I sent out a Face Book request for love stories and ‘what makes you feel safe and valued’ in your relationship.   At that time, I thought I was going to have  an special valentine issue for Mags Magazine.  Emily sent me an article about her relationship and the reasons why she feels safe in her relationship.  I immediately thought “WOW!”  We did not do a publication for Valentine but we thought it was a perfect article for Soulful Encounters! She has hit the nail on the head because what is working so beautifully well for them, are things that most of us want in our relationship!  She clearly does appreciate the many things which Roger does – both in words and in action.  A wonderful example of a positive SOULFUL ENCOUNTER.

Come out and listen to her story on May 25th, 2016 and share in the blessings of love.

Here is a little snippet on Emily:

Roger and Emily

Emily Cattelan has a zest for life and a passion for helping others succeed. She was born in a family of World War 2 Italian immigrants. Her parents, grandparents, uncles and aunts, came to Canada to make a better life for themselves and their children. In this big loving family, Emily was taught to love and respect all living things and to always help those in need. This helped to shape Emily’s belief that our most important role on this earth is to support each living thing in becoming the best that they can be. She believes that this can be accomplished through nurturing, mutual love, respect, and random acts of kindness. She has instilled these lessons in her daughter and she is looking forward to teaching her 2 young grandchildren these same lessons. She is here to share her story of how she found her perfect life partner

Look out for our next featured couple:  Dale and Trevor Stevenson!

Our featured keynote speaker: Laura Traplin


Get your tickets

poster for event






Posted in Inspiration, Motivation, Relationships

Take your power back and stop trying to change other people…


 Over the last few months I have listened to many, many experiences of others expressing disappointment, disillusionment, frustration… not getting what they want or not having love returned to them or not being in the ideal job with the ideal wages or benefits. With age and wisdom, I have come to realize that there are some things we can control and others we have absolutely no control over. I also know that we can choose our battles.
We can control what we do with our time, our money, who we let in our lives, who we have sex with, who we have a relationship with, who we eat with, which charities we give to, how we dress, whether we sit all day on the couch or get some exercise in our day, how many job applications we do each day, which companies we apply to, which university or college to attend,  what type of wine and food we eat… all of these are  within our control.
We cannot control who loves us back, who hires us, who says whatever about us, who chooses not to be in a relationship with us, who likes or shares our social media posts and most of all we cannot control life and death.
I believe that the simplest way to  reclaim and love ourselves  back to wholeness after being disillusioned and disappointed, is to start taking note of the small and big things which we have control over to direct our path the best we can. It is not the ‘things and people’ we need to change to get a different result. We need to change how we think about our situation and to be immersed in thinking and doing things which raise our vibrational energy to the higher vibrations of love, peace, joy… When we feel these strong, powerful emotions the people in our lives also begin to change. Negative people cannot stand being around deeply positive people… they flee away. When they flee away, don’t worry about why they are no longer your friends.  It simply means that you are making space for more beautiful people to enter your life. Sometimes, people are simply not in alignment with our energy at a particular time in life but they resurface at another point.  Our vibrational energy determines who and what comes into our lives.
Take your power back… don’t try changing people… change YOUR vibrational energy. It can begin with something as simple as using positive affirmations daily:
“I love myself. I choose peace, joy, happiness in my life.”
“I love doing things which make my soul feel happy and radiant.”
“I am grateful for my life.  I will use my life to be of service to others.”
“I am love.  I am peace.  I am joy.”
 Personally, I  engage in small acts of love, kindness compassion as much as I can every day.  I enjoy gardening, reading, meditating, praying and writing because these things replenish my soul energy.  I  pay attention to others and compliment them when I see the beauty in what they do because by lifting someone else, I add a beautiful uplifting energy in the world. I  dress beautifully and exercise regularly because I want my body to know that I love and respect it.
If we don’t love and respect ourselves enough, how are other people going to love and respect us?
Live your future now by stop blaming others and start focusing of yourself. YOU are so worth every bit of love and good energy which you invest in yourself.
(Photo credit:  NK Photography, Nyamulola Kambanji – Wow Feature, Immigrants of Ottawa)
Posted in Overcoming fear, Relationships, Women, Work

Are you losing your voice and your soul by being too diplomatic?

Cute girl shouting into megaphone with hand drawn lines and arro“One thing I’ve learned in life is that I can speak for myself, that I can fight my own battles. I don’t like anyone telling me how I’m supposed to feel or think or what I’m supposed to say.”Hope Solo

I bit my tongue several times as my mind whirled trying to find words to articulate my truth and say exactly what I felt.  It was painful as I watched the lies unfold and people diplomatically fluffed their way out of an uncomfortable  situation using their art of diplomacy and power. The empty words of “opportunity” “collaboration”  suddenly seem to lose their true meaning and became a vehicle for deceit, denying the truth, protecting territory, protecting their sphere of control and power.

I left feeling choked, unheard and angry. And these are a few of the emotions which drain us, make us sick, build protective walls around us.  These unheard feelings from the heart and soul leads to war, distrust and ongoing conflict. Anger, very often is portrayed as an unhealthy emotion but I have learnt that when anger surfaces in our lives, we must give it a voice because something led to it.

I have always believed that being diplomatic is essential to get things done, avoid conflict, settle disputes and generally keep you on good terms with every one.  It is a mindset for me to get along with every one! Although I still believe this, recent experiences makes me wonder whether diplomacy also makes us loose our voices, become “YES” people and tolerate what our souls know is not healthy for us or the rest of the world.

Most of our jobs and our lives generally require us to be diplomatic.  What do you do when something is obviously wrong but you have to be the diplomatic person to save the deal, protect the company, protect the image of your colleague, friend, family boss or partner?

One of the greatest energy suckers or energy vampires in not being able to speak your truth for fear of the consequences – losing an opportunity, losing friendships, losing deals, losing promotions, losing long-term gains.  We cover our authenticity with “sweet talk”, play on words, lack of clarity, over promise or under promise… any thing to avoid conflict and direct openness.

But do you know what happens at the end of all this diplomacy from a personal perspective?  We lose ourselves.  We betray our souls. We sell ourselves way too short.  We live half fulfilled lives and in some cases we lose our dreams completely.  Our eyes lose their shine and our energy simply cannot rise to meet the higher levels for self actualization and spiritual depth.

What would it feel like if you simply told the truth? What if you did not have to be diplomatic for one day?  What would you do differently?  Would you tell a few people to F…. off?  Would it release some pressure from your heart and soul? Do you have a responsibility to be authentic to yourself?

For each lie we tell our soul, keeps us further and further away from the life we are meant to live.


Posted in Family, Life Purpose, Relationships

“I wonder if it is that emptiness which swallows our spirit for living?”

218a95fa-f347-470b-8496-0de93e89ca27 They spoke for three hours. Something was weighing on his mind. He was devastated by the number of suicides which he had experienced within his community over the last couple of years.  As they shared their experiences, they both realized that between the two of them, they knew of almost twenty people who had committed suicide.

“What makes them do it?” he asked her.

“I don’t know.” she replied.

“Sometimes I think that we have not learnt how to experience emptiness within us.  There are two types of emptiness – one which last for a short period and one which last for a long period which leaves a feeling of hopelessness within.  Both are normal and both should be seen as healthy but sometimes people can’t cope with that feeling of emptiness.” He answered quietly.

They explored the topic from all angles – from people who have everything and seem to have no clear reason to commit suicide, to people who were stressed by financial, emotional or social challenges…but still, at the end of the conversation, he did not have an answer to justify the deliberate end of a life.

“If you had a serious problem, like debt or you had committed a crime or had been in a situation which made you feel ashamed, who would you go to?” she asked.

He bent his head and got in a pensive mood. “I have no one who could support me if I was in a serious crisis.  No one has time and neither do they have the resources to support someone else.  We are all busy trying to hold our own stuff together.” he replied.

The conversation left a heavy feeling in the air. His body shifted uncomfortably. As she looked closer at him, she saw the sadness in his eyes.  She suddenly became alerted to the unspoken message within the room.  He was close to the edge himself. As he pondered on the grief of others, his own grief of trying to hold it together for so long by himself was beginning to crumble. The tears welled in his eyes and as they streamed down his face. His sobbing was unstoppable. “I am sorry.” he apologized between the sheets of tissue. “It is so hard to keep it all in sometimes.  Just having anyone to listen to relieve the emptiness is so important. I don’t have a problem which I can name.  I have an emptiness in me which seems to be going on forever.  I wonder if it is that emptiness which swallows our spirit for living?”

We often think that problems need a diagnosis.  Maybe most do.  But what if it is just this nagging feeling that won’t go away?  What if the only way to get through it, is to talk long enough?  What if the problem may never be fixed? Depression, anxiety, post traumatic stress, stress, inability to cope with life, cannot always be seen on someone’s face. We may not have the answer to why someone commits suicide and there are some things which we may never understand in this lifetime.

My simple explanation is that it is simply their exit point from this lifetime. However, don’t underestimate the power of a conversation today! You may just be that lifeline to someone.  Also, don’t forget to seek support when that feeling of emptiness seems to be taking away your spirit for living fully.



Posted in Inspiration, Life Purpose, Motivation, Overcoming fear, Relationships, Work

I gave HER an eviction notice today. The End of THAT relationship.

She has tormented me for ten years.  She has cost me money, time and wasted my investments.

Every single time I am about to “launch” that great creative genius inside of me, Frightful Mags pops up her head and tau-®BalfourPhoto-4551nts me mercilessly, leaving me so fearful that I retreat to this small corner where the familiar voices soothe me, reminding me over and over, that my place is just this small, dark corner. Each time it happens, I remain trapped in the dark room, even afraid to open my eyes for fear that the light would burn me.

Today, I had enough of her. Even within the dark shadows of my mind, the light came through burning those walls which has kept me languishing for so long.  She stood up to me.  Her familiar voice rose high but I found the courage to whip her back.  I cursed her up and threw a tantrum.  I heard my voice transcend the prison walls which locked me with the fear of success and saw the bolts of laziness spring out, releasing me to unfamiliar grounds and the determination to free myself.  I suddenly heard the sweetness of a voice that seem to flow out of my mouth – a voice which I barely remembered. The sweetness of the voice reminded me of the time before she built those prison walls around me.  The walls started to crumble, piece by piece. The longer I sang, the more my voice seem to become one with the entire universe.  The light engulfed me lifted me into this effortless vortex where I felt my soul expanded to push me to the outer boundaries where I could hear magnificent voices cheering me on.

But wait.  Just before I leave, I must give Frightful Mags the eviction notice so that she knows for certain that there is a price to pay when she has sucked up my earnings, time and investment for far longer than I should have tolerated.  I could have another tenant.

Dear Frightful Mags,
 This is to notify you that your failure to step up to your success over the last ten years has rendered you in violation of our lease agreement which stated that you were going to:
  • stand up for your life
  • use your talent to generate a million dollar income and not merely just enough to get by
  • get rid of all these self- destructive, sabotaging beliefs such as, “I don’t have time”; I am not smart enough”; “I have not had this success in my past”; “My life is out of control,” I will rise when I win the lottery,” “Other people are not cooperating with me”, “I am no one important.”
  • be a voice for the vulnerable and
  • use your life as an inspiration to help others achieve their dreams.
 The amount due for payment sums up to $10, 000,000.00. You are hereby requested to pay the above-mentioned amount within 1 year and to vacate the  premises immediately. Failure to do so will compel me to file an eviction suit against you. Your cooperation will be appreciated. 
 The outer boundaries awaits.

Who do you need to give an eviction notice to?  Don’t let this tenant occupy free space.  TuneIn to what he/she is costing you and kick their but out of your life so that you can create space for the MAGNIFICENT person you are!

Magnificent Magdalene


Posted in Inspiration, People who inspire others, Relationships, Women

New York!!! New York!!! Friendship, Fun, Synchronicity – Don’t Be Afraid To Dream!

This is a re-blog celebrating one year anniversary of my visit to New York!

For several years my soul friend who lives in England and I have talked about meeting in New York. We have known each other since we were 14 years old and even though we don’t see or talk to each other regularly, we keep each other close within our hearts. Over the last four years, several opportunities have presented itself but none that materialized until the Labour Day Weekend in 2013.  Since I believe in synchronicity and believe that dreams do come true, I thought I would blog about the various events that happened in a whirlwind that made that dream come true.


Four years ago, the idea of the trip to New York came up.  We put it out there to the universe with the intention that we would be able to do this one day.  Margot spoke very dearly about her aunt in New York and I have always wanted to meet her.

Several weeks ago, my friend Gie told me about a bus trip to New York from Ottawa for the Labour Day weekend.  It sounded interesting but I was not sure I wanted to do it.

Several weeks ago, Margot and I explored for me to come up to England to spend summer with her but that did not materialize because of some other priorities.

However, the longing to see each other was there and she was constantly on my mind over the last few weeks.

Last Thursday, August 29th, we spoke over the phone and she suddenly asked, “What about meeting in New York for the  long weekend?”

It suddenly dawned on me that the bus trip for the Labour Day Weekend was happening on Friday (August 30th) and maybe I could get on that trip.  Within 24 hours, we had booked ourselves to arrive in New York.  I would bus for 7 hours and she would fly for 7 hours – the alignment was perfect!!!!  We were on our way to meet each other.


It was a fabulous weekend.  We explored Brooklyn, got lost and  found, had long soulful conversations; caught up on the last 25 years; got beauty treatments; met her aunts in New York;  walked over the Brooklyn Bridge to Manhattan which was  an adventure;  laughed so hard that tears streamed from our eyes; reconnected with someone I had not seen for over 20 years; enjoyed the Labour Day celebrations on Eastern Parkway and enjoyed hanging out without much of an agenda except to be together.  Being present with each other was beautiful.




This experience reminded me how important it is for us to simply have dreams and intentions.  Sometimes, having a specific timeline for things to happen is useful but if we trust that the universe will provide all things to us, then we must also trust that there is also Divine Timing.  Sometimes, it requires sitting it out and being patient; sometimes it requires taking action steps until it happens and sometimes the forces of synchronicity kick into place when that Divine Timing seems to be right. I love it when there is such beautiful synchronicity and all the pieces fall in place effortlessly.

I experience synchronicity regularly  and  each time it happens, it  further reaffirms for me that we simply need to dream and let go.  Every thought we have becomes an intention and becomes a part of our inner world.  The manifestation of those thoughts happen when the universal forces become aligned with our internal world – I trust that Divine Timing happens when all things align from a mental, emotional and spiritual inner space.  The universe cannot respond to us fully, until we are ready ourselves.


  • What are your dreams and intentions for your life?
  • What are your dreams and intentions for the lives of those you love?
  • Who would you like to spend some great quality time with?
  • What would you like to do on this earth before you pass on to the next life?
  • Is there a place that excites you?  Meeting a person?  Playing a sport?  Reuniting with someone?

TuneIn to those soul desires and longings. We can feel those from a deep place within us.  StepUp to put an intention out there.  You can write it in your journal, draw a picture of it, put it on a vision board… create something where you have a strong visual idea of what that desire is.

Take your desire and place it in a bubble.  Imagine that the bubble is floating away with that desire and will create and attract all the right energies to make that desire come true.  Trust in Divine Timing  and trust that the world is full of the abundance required to make that dream come true.




If you believe in yourself and in possibilities, then you will attract that from within your inner world.  Imagine what it would feel like to have that desire happen and imagine feeling this emotion constantly. This is really important because our emotions pull or push manifestations of things in our lives.  TuneIn to desires that will bring happy, pleasurable, soulful joy to you because there is nothing more important to this universe than to have people experience inner joy in their lives.



Posted in Motivation, Relationships, Work

Could “softeners” save your relationships, improve communication on the job or even promote you to a better job?




“Just do whatever you want to do / think whatever you want to think – I am out of here.”   These were my hurtful words to someone after a long, heated argument and I stopped listening to the complete story.  This left us both drained, frustrated and lost for words to repair the damage we had done to each other’s feelings.

The conversation was something like this:

Him: “I think we should use a device to make our presentation more visible to the head table. Maybe if we tried xxxx it would work.”

Me“NO – that is not going to work. One device would not be sufficient.  We do not have the time or resources to do this now.” (My response did not leave any space for a conversation – the word “NO” was definitive and stern.)

Him:  “I have thought about this for a long time.  I think if I tried it, it would work.”  He was still trying to get me on his side. He continued sharing his ideas but I stopped listening, because in my mind, I was clear that whatever this idea was, was not going to work.

Me:  “Just do whatever you want to do / think whatever you want to think – I am out of here.”

This last statement rocked the boat completely. As I read through this conversation, I am speechless with my tone of voice and behavior.  The conversation was happening within a pressured environment with very little time to implement new changes to a planned event.  Generally, I consider myself to be a good communicator, but under pressure, I can be quite flippant. So I did a bit of research on communication techniques and discovered a simple concept called “softeners” which I could have used to communicate my point more effectively and less hurtful.

“Softeners” means a specific language that softens a discussion and has been identified as a skill worth learning by new Canadians since most Canadians use softeners in their communication with others. Softeners ensure that the process of talking about something does not start with a strong categorical, definitive, unqualified position, even when speaker have strong feelings or strong opinions or feelings about an issue.  They use softeners to send less confrontational and dogmatic messages.

Some examples of words and phrases you can use to soften a conversation are:

“Often” “Could” “Perhaps” “Probably” “Maybe”

“From my experience”; “I observed”; “Can we look at another option?”

“I hear that you are saying….”

“I am just wondering…”

“What do you think about?”

“Can you elaborate more on your idea?”

“Did you change your mind about your previous decision?”

Instead of saying: “NO – that is not going to work. One device would not be sufficient.  We do not have the time or resources to do this now.”

I could have said: “Tell me more about what you have in mind.  Do you think we have enough time to implement your idea? How do you think it will affect the timing for the event?  What additional resources do you think we need? Or can you please elaborate on your idea?”

Good communication is an art and requires tact and discipline.  Several research sources have proven that companies lose millions of dollars each year due to communication problems.  It takes a considerable amount of knowledge and practice to get our messages across clearly, concisely, coherently and within the right context!  In addition to the message we must also pay attention to timing as well as the other person’s mind frame and their space during a conversation.

TuneIn to why you may react negatively to how a person speaks to you.  Does it sound too harsh?  Maybe they are not aware of softeners. Let us StepUp and use softeners in our daily communication. It could save your job, your relationships and even promote you to positions which require good tact and communication.

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