I was born into a deeply committed Christian family. Many of my ancestors were ministers, missionaries, and chaplains going back to the Revolutionary War. So Christianity runs deep in my family and in my bones.
When I was 10, my father changed careers from being a Teacher and School administrator to being a Protestant Minister. This change profoundly affected my life. Over night, I became a PK, a Preacher’s Kid. As my 10 year old mind saw it, I now lived in a “fishbowl”, transparent for everyone to see. I felt the pressure to be “good”, to be an example of Christian virtue and to be the perfect Christian Family. I felt everyone’s eyes on me and my family, watching to see how to we lived life, how we followed what the Bible and the Church told us to do and to be, as if we were a role model.
Taking on the role of PK was the single most defining aspect of my life for the first 35 years. Somehow at age 10 I decided that I had to be “good”. I did (for the most part) what I was told, became what I assumed others wanted me to be and played the roles of Good Brother, Dutiful Son, Happy Pew Sitter & Conformer. I adopted a particular philosophy of life that didn’t leave much room for other beliefs, thoughts, questions, or doubts of my own – a conditioning so ingrained that I never really learned to trust myself, ask questions or explore beyond the rules, roles, and expectations that I believed were being placed upon me.*
I went into a deep sleep. I was asleep to my True Self. Rather than being empowered to become myself, I felt like I was in a straight-jacket of passivity, always waiting for God to open a door here or a window there. I didn’t trust that I could make smart choices. I lost my willpower to create my life the way I desired. I waited for God to guide me and never identified who I was and what I wanted. It was hard to think about my future because I didn’t dare wish for something – I waited for God to reveal it.
In this process, I had lost my individual power of choice. I had given it away by allowing my early conditioning to take over my own free will to choose the life I really loved! In the midst of this fog of conditioning I made a very big decision – instead of pursuing the one thing I dared to hope for, becoming a builder/contractor, I “decided” to go into the family business and become a Minister myself. I was closed off to advice and was unable to share my inner struggles, questions or feelings. The support from my family was universally positive. Of course Jim would go into the ministry. It’s so obvious!
During my first ministry position I was faced with a difficult question posed by a teenager in my youth group, “Is my Muslim friend going to Hell?” This jolted me awake! For the first time in my life, I couldn’t give the answer I knew was expected. For the first time in my life, I questioned what I had come to believe was the right answer. And so I answered, “I don’t know”. From then on, I began to question all the indoctrination and programming of my childhood conditioning. So there I was at the age of 35, beginning my journey of discovering who I really was, what I really believed and what I really wanted in my life. I was in for a real surprise! Soon after this experience I resigned my ordination and began exploring other spiritual traditions, philosophies and ways of being that helped me uncover my true self.
I bought a motorcycle, grew out my hair and went on a fabulous 12,000 mile road trip. I got myself into therapy. I joined the Men’s Movement and started drumming and doing ritual with large groups of men. I released patterns, broke through various blocks and addictions, healed my inner child, let go of conditioning, worked on my family of origin issues and cleansed my lineage. I studied Kabbalah, Tree of Life, the Chakra system, Inner Child work and Family Systems.
Eventually I began to co-lead intensive psycho-spiritual trainings with my partner, helping people to find their Mission and Purpose and break through anything stopping them from living life to the full. We help people realign their personal Tree of Life and balance their body, heart, mind and spirit. We utilize creative techniques like shamanic journeying, ritual, meditation, drumming, psychodrama, journaling and conscious inquiry to help others break through their old patterns and conditioning.
For 30 years I have been continuing my journey of self-discovery, reclaiming my own power to make choices and being an active co-creator in my life rather than passive bystander. I have triumphed over so much of my programming that was keeping me asleep and creating unhappiness.
I know firsthand the importance of overcoming outer conditioning and inner voices that stop us from fulfilling our dreams. Because of my own life experiences I am passionate about helping others wake up to who they truly are.
For the past 30 years I have also been honing my skills as a Mentor, Coach, Trainer, and Facilitator. I am now a Certified Life Coach and Certified Parenting and Family Coach. I am certified on the Myers Briggs Type Indicator® (MBTI®) assessment. I run In Search of the Sacred Masculine, an initiation program for men and I co-lead a weekly Kabbalah School with meditations and exercises to achieve inner peace and spiritual awareness. I am an Ordained Interfaith Minister, Ritual Leader, and was Faculty of Communication Skills and Public Speaking at The Chaplaincy Institute.
My story would not be complete without reference to my family. My partner, Megan Wagner and I have been together for 40+ years. And together we have an amazing son, Jake, who is now 23 years old. I am blessed.
I am committed to walking with you through whatever transition or transformation you are facing in your life. I am committed to helping you
- Break through limitations, old patterns and programming
- Get back on track physically, financially, emotionally, spiritually
- Find your confidence, joy, passion
- Create the life you truly love!