True happiness… is not attained through self-gratification, but through fidelity to a worthy purpose.
– Helen Keller
Who I Am
I grew up in Wisconsin and was raised bi-culturally, Japanese-American. I had the great privilege to move to Colorado for college. Thanks to a great dating service (AKA Colorado College), I met the love of my life.
In addition to gaining a spouse, I also earned a BA in economics. After a brief stint of teaching scuba diving in Phuket, Thailand, my husband and I returned to Colorado for graduate school where I earned an MA in counseling psychology from the University of Denver.
I am a licensed professional counselor (License #: LPC.0012168). I have advanced my coach training with the Co-Active Training Institute. In my free time you can find me doing Mad Libs with my kids, bantering sarcastically with friends, or dancing in the kitchen. I am the parent of two school-aged children who are my air supply.
I have worked with inter and intra personal dynamics my entire career. I have been a school counselor, private practice psychotherapist, behavioral science business consultant, human resources director, and most recently have expanded my work into executive coaching.
Coaching is especially fulfilling because it allows me to use all of the skills from my psychology, healthcare, corporate, school, and entrepreneurial backgrounds.
What’s with the name, “New Fish Coaching?”
There was a research study done with two different groups of young children. The first group was told to, “draw a fish” and they were shown a picture of a fish to prompt them. Unsurprisingly, the fish they drew mimicked the drawing that they were shown at the beginning of the exercise. The second group was also asked to, “draw a fish.” However, they were NOT given a reference fish. Unlike the first group, their fish were all very different from one another. They were more colorful, creative, and unique. I first heard about this study from Vu Le who delivered the keynote at a conference I attended.
This energized me to think outside the box. It gave me permission to do things differently. It emboldened me to think more broadly and to be authentic. I wanted to draw a new fish for myself. I created New Fish Coaching out of the fertile soil of my previous professional and personal accomplisments.
"Litter Fish" 2022, by my son
I have over a decade of experience offering psychotherapy services to children and their families in hospital settings, schools, and in my own private practice. It is an understatement to say, “I loved this work.” It was an honor and privilege to walk with families on their paths to harmony and healing.
In July of 2019 I was diagnosed with an aggressive form of cancer and had to close my cherished private practice within two weeks in order to begin treatment. After chemo, several surgeries, and radiation, I resurfaced into a world swallowed by the pandemic. I drew a new fish. With no prior business or consulting experience, I was able to obtain a fully remote position for a behavioral science business consultancy. It was an exciting new venture to be in the corporate world working with insurance and pharmaceutical companies.
Then in the fall of 2021 I was diagnosed with another (totally unrelated) rare cancer. I chose to professionally pivot to in-person work and draw another new fish. I shifted into running human resources for an autism therapy start-up, despite having no HR experience. I was steeped in start-up culture and began to fully understand what “wellbeing” did and did not look like. Exhale. Understand my worth, values, and purpose. Time to draw a new fish again.
As I step into 2023, I welcome the fire and passion for my new business. I am here to offer others an opportunity to draw a new fish for themselves.