presentsThe Evolving Self
When growth is the only option...

The Evolving Self is an e-newsletter that reflects the belief that growth is a choice that can bring an ever deepening and expanding awareness of who we are and what we are here for. The reader can expect affirmations, quotes, book reviews, insightful commentary and tips that support the growth of the individual.

Affirmation: I am responsible for what I put out into the universe.

Quote:  "The greatest self is a peaceful smile, that always sees the world smiling back." -Bryant H. McGill

Newsletter archives:

March 2017 - The Inner Battle/Re-Parenting the Inner Neighborhood

February 2017 - Ignorance is Bliss/The Flip-side of Ignorance

January 2017 - Powerlessness/Forgiveness


Certified Aromatherapist

I'm getting ready to launch an Esty Store with aromatherapy blends.There will be blends for pain and inflammation, energy boost, skin care and more.  Stay tuned for more information. If you are interested in custom blends and/or coaching along with aromatherapy solutions, please email me at






Smile Therapy

In the classes I teach at Kaiser on stress, anxiety and depression management, the subject of brain and body chemistry is discussed as a contributing factor to these conditions.

I draw pictures on the board illustrating the neuro-transmitter and receptor connections to indicate that sometimes these connections go awry and then ask the class to name things that affect our brain/body chemistry. I get answers such as drugs, alcohol, exercise, food, and sleep. Sometimes people will mention sunshine and the 11 o-clock news. I answer that the things that affect our brain/body chemistry can be summed up in one word, "Everything." This is really true. Everything we do, everything we ingest, everything we think, everything, affects our brain/body chemistry.

I've talked before about the power of laughter therapy and how infectious it is and just how it can completely change our brain/body chemistry. This is also true of simply smiling. When we're stressed, anxious or depressed, it is often the last thing we actually feel like doing, but the good news is, our body doesn't know the difference between a real or fake smile. If you plaster even a fake smile on your face, your brain/body chemistry responds.

For my New Year's Resolution this year, I decided to try an experiment with smiling.  I leave my house at 5:15am in the morning to avoid the traffic as I commute to the VA in Palo Alto. After nearly 4 years of this, I have developed a little bit of an attitude. While I have and will continue to feel deeply honored and rewarded to work with Veterans, the early hour and long days is wearing. The experiment was to smile as I drove to see what affect it would have on my brain/body chemistry, my mood and my attitude.

At first, I really didn't feel like smiling at all and my face resisted. So, I plastered a fake smile on my face driving down the road feeling like a complete idiot. Within a couple of days, I noticed that I didn't have to work so hard at it and in fact, was feeling an improvement in my mood.

At the two week mark a truly amazing thing happened. My boss told me I could leave Palo Alto early and finish my day at the San Jose location enabling me to avoid the afternoon traffic. This was HUGE. This improved my attitude dramatically as I just received about 3 hours/week of my life back.

Since then, I have received several comments from people who say I look really happy and that there is a wonderful energy eminating from me. The best part is, I actually feel better and happier. I feel more excited by my life and my future. It might be worth an experiment for you as well to discover the power of smile therapy.

Making Room

Have you ever set a goal or stated an affirmation and experienced the exact opposite of what you wanted unfolding before your eyes? Maybe the universe was responding exactly as you requested but simply needed to make room for your new vision.

When I was living in my house in Campbell, there were several years in which I was living beyond my means. I knew that things needed to change. I really wanted to keep my house, but it was over 100 years old and needed tens of thousands of dollars worth of renovations. Money I didn't have. When the housing market crashed with the economic downturn of 2008, I worked very closely with my mortgage company to work out a way for me to keep the house. By 2012, it became clear that I needed to let go and move on, which I did.

I was clear when I left the Campbell house that it was the right thing to do, but now five years later, I'm even more able to see why it had to happen the way it did. Even more than keeping the house, what I wanted was to bring my "financial" house back into balance and live within my means. I am now doing that.

To respond to your vision, sometimes the universe has to make room for it by clearing out old ways of being. When that happens, we can mistakenly believe that something negative is happening, when in reality, the universe is actually responding to our request. Marilyn Monroe said, "Sometimes good things fall apart so better things can fall together."

Maintaining a positive attitude is vital to the magic because it can take some time for all of the pieces to fall into place. Trusting that the Universe has our greatest good in mind, but more than anything realizing that we are co-creators of our reality by taking responsibility for what we put out into the universe.

I work with individuals who are interested in learning to living intentionally and deliberately. Please click here: to contact me.

Click here to find out more
Jaqui Duvall works as a coach, mentor, trainer, facilitator and public speaker developing and delivering workshops, leading mentoring groups and working with individuals to help them identify and express their inner spirit and live a life of consciousness and intention. •  San Jose