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 choose loving kindness.

Quote: "Listening looks easy, but it's not simple. every head is a world." -Cuban Proverb

Newsletter archives:

October 2019 - Stress in Relationships

September 2019 - Loving Yourself/Inner Child

August 2019 - Rising Anxiety/Calming



Certified Aromatherapist

I have recently completed yet more training and am now a Clinical Aromatherapist, which means I am qualified to work in a healhcare setting as an Aromatherapist and of course, to make custom blends to address various health concerns and skin issues. Many aromatherapy blends also have a quality of emotional support.

If you are interested in custom blends to support your physical and/or emotional health and/or coaching along with aromatherapy solutions, please email me at

Contact me to get your own custom blend!

Loving Kindness

A Veteran who was referred to me when I was working for the VA as a Health Coach arrived at my door. The chip on his shoulder came into the room before he did. When he sat down he stated that he was "sick and tired of being told what to do," and went on to mutter something about the latest "stupid" program he was being referred to.

I said to him, "I can't possibly imagine what you have been through in your life, but I am here now, wanting to hear and understand you and I will never tell you what to do." Hearing my words, his body language relaxed significantly. I worked with this Veteran for the last 6 months of my contract at the VA before the funding ran out. Unfortunately, he was very angry (the system failed him again) that the program that he felt benefitted him the most was being taken away. I was simply grateful that I had a chance for a brief time, to make a difference in his life and the lives of many other Veterans.

I tell this story in honor of Veteran's Day, but also to raise awareness that when we interact with people, we really don't know what's going on inside them. As much as there are commonalites to our shared human experience, we can't really know exactly how another person is feeling. Their feelings are a unique combination of their life experiences, personality and genetic make-up.

I often find that while people can be well put-together and look fine on the outside, there can be a very complex inner world that the outside world is unaware of. When we see people behaving strangely or doing something we don't understand, we are often quick to judge.

Brene Brown says that when you get close enough to another person to see and understand what's going on with them, your compassion is often inspired. But even without getting close to a person, when we choose to be in the present moment, we can step out of our heady thinking and get into our hearts enabling us to engender loving kindness toward others.

Be Here Tomorrow

Another Veteran I worked with showed up one morning looking downtrodden and depressed. I asked how he was and he said, "Do you really want to know?" I said that I did and then he proceeded to tell me of several very challenging things going on in his life. Later, he told me that I was one of only two people that he felt really listened to him. Sadly, he ended his life a few months later.

While I would like to be able to say that listening alone could save a person's life, the truth is, many people have very complex issues that take time and professional help to sort out. Suicide is often referred to as a "Permanent solution to a temporary problem. Depressed people often feel they are alone and the only ones feeling that way. They work at keeping their inner world hidden from the eyes and ears of another which is sometimes challenging to understand.

When a person is depressed and contemplating suicide, their whole body chemistry has changed. Along with that chemical change are thoughts that are often distorted and very convincing.

There is an amazing documentary about a young man who struggled with mental illness and attempted suicide by jumping off the Golden Gate bridge. He survived. His story is compelling and he has dedicated his life to helping others experiencing the same thing. Check it out by clicking here.

If you would like to experience deep listening, email me to learn more about Health Coaching.

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