The Best Me
“Self-improvement” assumes that you’re not good enough, that something needs to be fixed. Personal growth through compassionate self-awareness, on the other hand, offers you a way to grow from the inside out. There’s nothing to fix. There’s no ideal way to look or to be. There’s your best way to look. Your best way to feel. Your best way to be.
The Best Me promotes compassionate self-awareness over self-improvement as the healthiest path to transformation and underlying all of our work is a deep respect for, and commitment to, mindfulness practice.
Through our Coaching, whether we’re working with a client who needs to lose weight, a writer who is trying to establish a consistent writing practice, or a person facing a challenging life transition, we teach you how (and why it matters) to slow down and really tune in to your experiences, your habits & patterns, and your inner-wisdom.
We offer individual coaching (1-on-1 coaching can be in person or, thanks to technology, at a distance), online and live learning programs, as well as creative retreats, all designed to help you re-connect with yourself, re-imagine the possibilities for your life, and re-write your story.
In a culture that’s committed to doing and getting everything fast, to going from 0 to 60 in a second, every second, over and over again, we’re here to remind you that all that speed comes at a price to your health, to your creativity, to your feeling a sense of peacefulness and contentment.
As coaches, we’re here to help you find the shortest distance between where you are now and where you want to be, but we’re also poets and, as poets, we’re here to remind you to always follow your heart.
We help you reconcile the two impulses (the hurry up, hurry up pace we’ve been conditioned into, and our essential need to slow down and be present). We teach you creative & healthy strategies to align your inner and outer vision, to align your most authentic desires with the realities of your day-to-day life, to align the serious with your sense of humor.
We believe each of us has a basic innate desire and right to experience good health and to express ourselves creatively, that healthy people create healthy communities, and that creative expression helps keep us connected – to one another, to the natural world, to our inherent goodness, to our inner-child, to the sacred, to that deep down us.
Prioritizing your own well-being is a worthwhile investment, because when you’re healthy (body, mind, and spirit,) you’re able to share your best self with the world.
Cathy received her certification for Holistic Health and Nutrition Counseling from State University of New York (Purchase College) and The Institute for Integrative Nutrition (New York City) in 2009. She studied under such leaders as Sally Fallon (Westin A. Price Foundation), Deepak Chopra (mind-body medicine), John Doulliard (Ayurveda), Walter Willet, MD (nutrition & disease prevention), David Wolfe (raw food), and many more.
To this training, Cathy also brings a 20-year interest in and passion for organic foods, healthy home-cooking, environmental awareness, fitness, and mindfulness. She’s a certified Yoga Teacher and has also trained with creativity expert, writer, and yogi, Jeffrey Davis (New York), to become a Licensed Yoga as Muse Facilitator.
In addition to her coaching certification, Cathy also holds B.A.s in English and Education from The University of Michigan, and she holds an M.F.A. in Creative Writing from Spalding University, where she studied under Molly Peacock, Debra Kang Dean, Greg Pape (former Poet Laureate of Montana), and Maureen Morehead (current Poet Laureate of Kentucky). Her writing has appeared in several national journals and she was recently nominated to Best New Poets, 2012.
Cathy works as a coach and mentor for students in the Professional Training Program with The Institute for Integrative Nutrition and as an Adjunct Instructor of Writing at Mott Community College in Flint, Michigan. She presents in classrooms (for all ages) on the impact of good nutrition, movement, and mindfulness on learning & creativity.
She’s committed to educating others about the negative effects of stress on the body, the positive impact of mindfulness practices on emotional and psychological health, the benefits of eating a whole foods, primarily plant based, and organic diet to quality of life, and the health benefits of maintaining a deep connection with the natural world.
She’s also the mom of 4 healthy kids, her favorite job ever!
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Dave has a handful of degrees in Business, Education, Literature and Creative Writing. He’s had a variety of jobs (bank teller, factory worker, teacher, PR specialist – it’s a long list). He’s most passionate about writing and about helping people who feel stuck find a sense of balance between what they want to do and what they need to do.
He has two Masters degrees (M.A. in Education, M.F.A. in Creative Writing – poetry & writing for young adults) from Spalding University, one of the top-ten programs in the country. He works as a freelance writer, has been an Assistant Student Editor and an Assistant Editor for the national literary journal The Louisville Review, is a certified yoga teacher, certified R.I.P.P.E.D Fitness Instructor, former Varsity Coach, and licensed Yoga As Muse facilitator.
He’s had the privilege to have been mentored by some exceptional writers (like Ellie Bryant, Joyce McDonald, Susan Campbell Bartoletti, Kathleen Driskell, and K.L. Cook and to have workshopped with the late Rane Arroyo, Debra Kang Dean, Kelly Creagh, Edie Hemingway and other rising talents.
Dave writes under the pseudonym, Lafayette Wattles, in homage to his great-great grandfather and to a Native American heritage he’s still learning about. He’s published over 90 poems, received a Ucross Fellowship, and a Poetry Grant from the Arts Council of the Southern Finger Lakes and The New York State Council on the Arts. He’s been nominated twice for the Pushcart prize & for Best New Poets, finished second for Boxcar Poetry Review’s Oboh Prize (poem of the year), and was chosen for Best of the Net anthologies in 2008 & 2009.
He’s currently working on a YA novel (Mr. Bones), a Middle Grade novel (The Short Bus), while getting his volleyball groove on with two awesome adolescents (not an oxymoron).
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