Hi there, my name is Barbara and I’m here to support you to live a life of meaning, joy and deep connection.
I do this by offering spiritual care, emotional wellness coaching, running retreats & trainings, officiating weddings, creating resources like Cards for Self-Care & recording the Be With Podcast!
My life is a deeply resonant expression of who I am and what I love. It’s aligned with my values and talents, and there’s room for play, intimacy, spirituality, politics, community and all the feelings, which I have a lot of.
Healthy vibrant relationships are the heart of it all, beginning with a honest, trusting and respectful relationship with myself. Every other relationship in my life, whether with my wife, or with the stranger on the bus is built on this foundation.
But, it wasn’t always this way.
I immigrated early in life, and struggled to fit in. The once necessary but now destructive coping patterns I’d learned as a child were made worse by cultural assimilation. I constantly adjusted who I was to better suit what I thought others wanted of me. I decided early on that others determined my worth and built up walls around my true self that kept me safe but isolated. Unfortunately this part of my story is all too common.
As someone innately spiritual, I was drawn to religion and wanted to become a pastor by the time I was in high school.
What I didn’t know is that being gay and a feminist was going to be make achieving that dream an obstacle course for my mental health and self-esteem. After a decade of wrestling with institutionalized homophobia, toxic belief systems and my own fear of being who I truly am, I finally left the church.
I made myself a promise to celebrate every particle of my being. It turned out that the very thing that caused others to reject me became the turning point for me to learn to accept myself, unconditionally.
I learned that we can only love others to the extent that we are loving of our own messy and beautiful humanity. I’ve dedicated my life to learning how to help others discover and live into the same liberating truth.
I hold a certificate in Gestalt Psychotherapy, most of a Master’s of Divinity, training in co-active coaching, and more life lessons on picking yourself up and dusting yourself off than I can count. The tools of my trade include intuition, compassion, creativity, and attachment theory. I moonlight as a performance poet and take equity, intersectionality and the arts pretty darn seriously.
I love a good cocktail, a night in with babely wife Tanya, long runs, time spent by the water, and road trips.
I also REALLY love instastories, so come hang with me @bewithcards where I drop truth bombs and share about my own emotional wellness journey on the daily.
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This website is dedicated to every brave & tender heart searching for a way of living that celebrates our humanity, our interdependence and true love of every shape & colour.