Client Spotlight: Debra Jonasson-Young
Debra Jonasson-Young is the Executive Director of the Stu Clark Centre for Entrepreneurship at the University of Manitoba located in Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada. She sits on an advisory board with a past Frame of Mind Coaching™ client, and when that client shared her experience, our coaching model resonated with Debra right away. “What I liked about the FOM Coaching™ methodology is that it’s holistic and looks at the whole person,” she says, “because I’m not just a stage in life – I’m an entire person.”
Debra wasn’t interested in therapy; she was looking for a coach who would challenge her thought processes. “If I have 20 to 30 more years left, I want to make the most of it and not get in my own way,” she says. “For the first time ever, I found something that understood me.”
To date, Debra has had a fulfilling career in senior leadership roles and loves working, but had found herself thinking about what’s next. “What am I going to do after this?” she would ask herself. “How will I find meaning and purpose?” “The uncertainty would frighten me!” she says.
The same day that she found out about FOM Coaching™, she got in touch, and we followed up right away with the perfect FOM Coach for her – Wanda Slater. “Even when Wanda and I had challenging conversations, I always walked away knowing that I was on the right path,” says Debra. “Having someone listen to what you normally say to yourself and challenge it… what a gift!”
Debra describes Wanda as joyful, relatable, trustworthy, energetic and humorous. “Wanda doesn’t back off of difficult topics either,” says Debra. “She’ll challenge you to rethink what you’re saying and she’ll pick up on your verbiage to give insights on how you’re thinking.”
Wanda helped Debra gain the confidence to know that whatever happens next for her, she’ll be okay. “She helped me see that I’ve always managed to land on my feet; why would I think I wouldn’t do the same in the next stage?” she says.
Debra says that as a result of her coaching experience, there is no question that she now thinks differently. She doesn’t make herself as miserable as she used to, she’s a happier and more contented person and she put things into perspective more easily. “What made the difference was internalizing the FOM Coaching™ Principles and having a coach walk me through that process,” she says.
In the past, Debra constantly ruminated on negative things. Now, with Wanda’s help, she’s able to recognize when she slips into a rumination pattern. “That’s why I love being in the ongoing maintenance program,” says Debra. “I’ll be thinking negative thoughts, but until I discuss them with Wanda, I don’t realize their impact.” Through coaching, Debra has gained the skills required to have that level of awareness and to turn herself around.
Debra is now a huge advocate for FOM Coaching™. “I wish that I had the gift of FOM Coaching™ 40 years ago,” she says. “I would have been more at peace my entire life. I’ve had a great life, but I made it harder than I needed to. By being at peace with myself, I’m better for other people too.”
In her personal relationships, especially as a mom and Amma (Icelandic for Grandma), she’s much more at ease. In her professional life, she used to be an autocratic, ‘command and control’ leader. “Now I’m more flexible and conscious,” she says. “I don’t feel like I have to get everything done right away. I can take time and work on developing people to nurture them and watch them grow.”
Debra describes FOM Coaching™ as transformative. “I didn’t want someone to help me, I wanted someone to help me help myself,” she says. “That’s what I love about FOM Coaching™ – it teaches you to change or accept things. The FOM Principles are applicable to every facet of your life.”