Personal Development


Photo by Justin Veenema on Unsplash

Chapter XLVIII – Only Four Months Left

I am Jude. Where did the time go?

Although it’s still technically summer until September 22nd, we have entered the final quarter of the year. Of the 52 weeks that we were allocated in 2022, only 17 are remaining. 

It’s only when you reflect back on the past, that you realize how much you have grown and accomplished. I am evolving, and in the best ways possible.

I obtained certification from an ICF accredited life coaching program and have created a small business that has begun generating income. I now officially have a side hustle. 

I have met like-minded individuals from around the world who are providing me with invaluable support and inspiring me to Be Better.

However, if I’m going to be honest, I am most proud of the investment I have made in my personal development. I am slowly finding more inner peace and fulfillment. 

I am practicing daily meditation, exploring spirituality and redefining my relationship with myself. I am very early into this journey but my curiosity is already yielding some amazing results. 

I am dedicated to becoming a better version of Jude everyday: a better father, friend, life coach and partner. Even if the upgrades aren’t apparent yet. 

Photo by Danica Tanjutco on Unsplash

But in truth, that was all yesterday. I am only interested in today and how I can create the future I envision for me and my family.

So with that in mind, I have identified some areas of focus for the next 17 weeeks.


Continue cultivating my relationships and creating meaningful connections. This is central to any success I hope to obtain.

Redefine Time

I am seeking to reconsider my relationship with time. I need to be productive and efficient but I don’t have to allow it to direct my life. 

Build my Business

I want to become a better life coach through self study, coaching exchanges, education – and intention. I have set a goal of coaching 50 people in six months and I am well on my way. 

I also need to continue growing and reinventing myself. My belief is that as I become a better version of Jude, I will become a better coach and consultant. PERIOD. 

You are what you Eat

Improve my diet, drink more water and eat more alkaline foods

Get My Mind Right

I will ensure that meditation remains a daily practice and increase the frequency and length of the sessions. I also want to connect with others and explore this new domain.  

Challenge the Chronicler

I have named the voice in my head ‘The Chronicler’ because he is constantly reinterpreting and retelling my life events. He generally gets shit wrong and is quick to direct shame, criticism and self-doubt my way. 

My goal is to challenge the distorted stories I am telling myself, question where the truth lies. I am also seek effective ways to quiet the Chronicler’s incessant chatter. He gets on my nerves. 

Work Your Plan

My father always used to tell me to ‘work my plan’ which translated into doing the hard things that are required to be successful. 

I began the year with goals and aspirations to Be Better and I want to finish the the same way I started. I need to ‘work my plan’. If I do, everything else will take care of itself. 

So, what could you accomplish in four months? Who could you become, what could you learn and how could you change, if you ‘worked your plan’?

I’m guessing you could create some phenomenal results.

Side Hustle – Unshackled Solutions Life Coaching and Consulting 

Regardless of our own unique circumstances, most of us believe that we could be doing more. Maybe it’s a lack of motivation, a search for greater purpose or simply a need for change. 

Are you feeling trapped and frustrated? Is something holding you back? Do you want to find more joy and fulfillment in your life?

We often struggle with altering established behaviors, challenging self-limiting beliefs. taking the first tentative steps towards meaningful change

If you are interested in finding out more about life coaching or exploring what working with me would look like, please contact me directly to schedule a discovery call. No expectation or obligation. 

What is a life coach?

Your Next Best Read – Zen in the Art of Archery by Eugen Herrigel

This book was recommended by someone last week and I listened to it in a day for free on Youtube.  It is a book I never would have chosen myself, however it was exactly what I needed. 

Surprisingly, it’s not a practical guide to archery as its namesake might suggest. Rather, it’s more a guide to Zen principles and learning

The author, a German philosopher, and his wife went to Japan to be immersed in Eastern philosophy and Zen Buddhism in the early 20th century. 

She adopted the ancient tradition of flower arranging while he attempted to learn Zen through the art of archery; his quest lasted six years.

It was my first introduction to Zen Buddhism and an interesting read. I would certainly recommend it to others. Thanks Chayo. 

Positive Reflections – What’s Good?

I had the best weekend ever. It involved friends, family, physical activity, new experiences and a renewed commitment to Be Better.

Wedding Nuptials

On Saturday, we attended a beautiful wedding. People from Nova Scotia and from all across the country came together to witness the consummation of love between two soulmates. 

The weather was perfect, the ceremony was tight, my vegan plate was on point and my wife looked incredible. 

Congratulations Helen and Tyson Desmond and thank-you for allowing us to be part of your special day. It was a great way to close out a phenomenal summer.

The Halifax Shambhala Center

The following morning, I attended the Sunday morning meditation session at the Halifax Shambhala Center

I have been exploring meditation through self-study; primarily through Youtube, audiobooks and podcasts. I have found some real value in getting on my mat and quieting my mind, but it also created a LOT of questions.

So I went to the center to get some answers and to experience group meditation. And I am so glad I did! I received some personal instruction on the rituals of focused breathing, body positioning and becoming a more curious observer of my mind.

The open meditation takes place every Sunday from 9-12pm and is free. I didn’t have my phone so I’m not sure of the exact times but I believe the sittings were for 30 minutes, followed by 10 minutes of walking meditation. 

It was interesting and I am glad I made the decision to go. 

My only regret is that I didn’t hang around afterwards and engage others in some conversation. Best believe I won’t miss that opportunity next time, and there will be a next time

Tango, to the Pointe

The Halifax Fringe Festival is in full swing. It is an annual performing arts festival that takes place over 11 days. It has been featuring theatre, music, circus, dance, comedy, and more for 32 years and lasts for 11 days. 

While I was in Halifax, I decided to go to a show by myself

Without looking too closely at the program, I chose Tango, to the Pointe. A fusion of ballet and tango brought to life by two  dynamic and mesmerizing dancers.

I enjoy live theatre but I have never attended a performance that truly showcased choreography. 

What an amazing surprise. 

The synchronicity, strength and stamina were remarkable. The performance was 60 minutes of non-stop dancing except for momentary costume and prop changes. Just enough for both the performers and the audience to catch their collective breaths.

They were spectacular and that is no understatement. The choreography painted a picture through syncopated movements and coordinated carries.

I have never seen anything like it and it is an experience I won’t soon forget. 

If you have never been to the festival, I encourage you to check it out. It might become a yearly pilgrimage for you too.

Public Announcement

10 km Challenge 

So I signed up for my first road race. 

I have been jogging for at least the last five years. I love competing against myself and the mental and physical challenges you have to overcome. It’s me versus me. 

My running has been sporadic. There have been some extended interruptions due to my respiratory illness, back surgery and some nagging leg injuries but it remains one of my favorite interests.

It’s both a contemplative experience and an effective tool to clear my mind. It requires discipline and resolve and offers meaningful opportunities for Quietude, reflection and focus. It’s peaceful and therapeutic for me. 

And it’s truly a blessing. 

I remember the pain and shortness of breath, the inability to walk and the fears that I would never jog again. It wasn’t that long ago. 

Well, I am back at it. And loving it more than ever.

I have been able to slowly increase my distance, pace and comfort level. More importantly, I have been running without any serious pain – and that feels like a miracle to me. 

This year I have discovered that I enjoy running in the rain. I’m not sure I will to have the same affinity for it in January but I enjoyed it during the summer. 

Just Do It. 

A friend and fellow life coach in Australia recently completed a 10km race. I was looking for a way to commemorate my recovery and a post about her accomplishment inspired me to begin researching the remaining 2022 Nova Scotia race schedule. 

I locked in on the Maritime Race Weekend on September 17th, which at the time was about two weeks away and made the decision to register. However, I procrastinated and unfortunately it sold out. 

So instead, I registered for the 10km Valley Harvest Marathon in Wolfville on October 9th. The date provides me with a little more time to prepare.

What’s interesting is that I have never run 10km before. I have several familiar 5km routes that offer me varying levels of difficulty but that’s about it. I don’t time my runs and the distances are only estimations.

I’m sure it makes more sense to complete a 5km race first, but where is the challenge in that?  

I want to do hard things and this certainly fits the bill. It’s a little intimidating but I’m up for it. I am Jude.

If your goals don’t scare you a little bit, they aren’t big enough. 

Photo by Mārtiņš Zemlickis on Unsplash


Hey Jude,

Like I told you earlier today, you are such an amazing and inspiring man! How wonderful is your way to embrace things and welcomed so humbly the results. You are my Great Smurf! Thank you for being such an amazing colleague an human being. I hope to one day be able to listen and hear others the same way you do and to respond with even just a little of your wisdom.

Thanks Agnes. One of the great things about our team is that we are all willingly sharing our own unique gifts and abilties with one another. You have been a valuable addition to your file and I am glad I have gotten a chance to work with you.

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