My StoryEducator to Entrepreneur.
“Self-Care is giving the world the best of you instead of what’s left of you.”
Since I can remember, I have always been the person people come to when seeking solutions to problems personally and professionally. My strength is that I am solution-focused, can see the big picture, and provide a calm, soothing voice of reason amid a crisis. Having spent the past 25+ years in education, I’ve experienced my share of crises. I know first-hand the toll the profession can take on our body, mind, and spirit when we do not take care of ourselves. I found myself in such a place in 2012 while working full-time as a school counselor and part-time as a university professor. In addition, my husband and I were primary caregivers of his 90-year-old ailing grandmother. Maintaining a work/life balance was a struggle. My success-driven life and caregiving responsibilities left little room for rest and self-care.
Like far too many helping professionals, I gave more time, energy, and devotion to the craft and caring for others than to taking care of myself. I was running on empty, drained, exhausted, and nearing burnout. In essence, I was surviving but clearly not thriving. My life was out of balance. The old saying “You can’t drink from an empty cup” is true. As a counselor, I was not practicing what I preached. I was far more adept at recommending self-care to others than prioritizing it in my own life. My life was out of balance. I had to make a change. The idea for Dr. Gwen’s Counselor CAFE comes from this need to help other educators, counselors, and helping professionals….women especially, establish a healthy work/life balance.
I feel empowered to create change, take calculated risks, break the mold, and add greater value to the world. My mission is to support and empower educators (teachers, counselors) to take care of themselves professionally, physically, psychologically, emotionally, and spiritually. Establishing a healthy work/life balance is a self-care MUST do. I embrace my role as a helper and am constantly evolving in the practice of self-care. I have a plethora of resources, tools, strategies, and ideas that are not only useful but life-changing. I am committed to living my best, most authentic life, and my goal is to support others in living their best life too.