Doktor Wald (German)

(This is a simple and slightly provocative poem by a German forest ranger that seems to address what I coach by: The power of nature!)

Doktor Wald

Wenn ich an Kopfweh leide und Neurosen,
mich unverstanden fühle oder alt,
und mich die holden Musen nicht liebkosen,
dann konsultiere ich den Doktor Wald.
Er ist mein Augenarzt und Psychiater,
mein Orthopäde und mein Internist.
Er hilft mir sicher über jeden Kater,
ob er von Kummer oder Cognac ist.
Er hält nicht viel von Pülverchen und Pille,
doch umso mehr von Luft und Sonnenschein.
Und kaum umfängt mich angenehme Stille,
raunt er mir zu: “Nun atme mal tief ein!”
Ist seine Praxis oft auch überlaufen,
in seiner Obhut läuft man sich gesund.
Und Kreislaufkranke, die noch heute schnaufen,
sind morgen ohne klinischen Befund.
Er bringt uns immer wieder auf die Beine,
das Seelische ins Gleichgewicht,
verhindert Fettansatz und Gallensteine.
nur – Hausbesuche macht er leider nicht.

Förster Helmut Dagenbach, 1986

Doctor Woods

(Freely translated by Manuela Zeitlhofer)

When I have a headache and neurosis
feel misunderstood or old
and the lovely muses don’t caress me,
I consult Doctor Woods.
He’s my ophthalmologist and psychiatrist
my orthopedist and my internist.
He sure helps me over every hangover
whether it’s from grief or cognac.
He doesn’t think much of medications and pills,
but all the more of air and sunshine.
And no sooner does a pleasant silence envelop me,
he whispers to me: “Now take a deep breath!”
If his practice is often overcrowded,
one runs oneself back to health in his care.
And the patients who are still panting today
are without symptoms tomorrow.
He keeps getting us back on our feet
and restores our mental balance,
prevents fat deposits and gallstones.
however – unfortunately he does not make house calls.

Forest ranger Helmut Dagenbach, 1986

I am a Lady

… most of the time just from the inside.

I should probably start by define my interpretation of the term: A “lady” is stylish, unique, a bit eccentric, but not annoyingly so, who is not following trends but creating her own. That is me. Normally, I would not refer to myself as a lady tough, because I spend a lot of time doing things that I would not consider typical for a lady – like fixing roofs.

Last Thursday, I was fortunate to go to a small music event. And there, surrounded by inspirational music, beautiful people, and the gorgeous backdrop of our river, I did feel like a lady. The setting reminded me of a similar event in London (Great Britain) in 1993. It was called “Music in the Park”, and there I was introduced to the fine art of enjoying myself and the company I was in, in a natural setting, sitting on blankets, surrounded by picnic baskets and beautiful old trees. It all felt so exquisite that it stayed with me all this time.

When do YOU feel exceptionally yourself?

The Beauty of Weeds

I found those beautiful flowers by the side of our house. They are tough in many ways: tough to pull out, tough to give up during a drought, tough to give up in a dry location, tough to walk on, tough to mow over with the lawnmower. Yesterday, I walked around the house to find some of them in full bloom. That made me think of the (often) hidden beauty of things we label as undesirable.

What was the last thing, plant or animal in nature that astonished YOU?

Your Vision

Imagine you had a vision. Somewhere you want to be. And you keep postponing to do something about it, because – well – life is busy.

Imagine further that in order to implement your vision, all you had to do was start moving. All you need is to listen to the voice from within, and a little bit of courage to start moving.

Does it matter if you start out and take a few steps in the not-quite-right direction (do we ever literally walk or drive in a straight line to our destination?). No, it does not! Just get up and move! Your path will unfold and road-signs will appear as you come closer. I can assist you with that.

Send me a note!

Nurture with Intention

I love my house. And I love my garden. My property is surrounded by wilderness, I have started o draw a line of where my endeavors end and the freedom of the wild space around me begins. In some way, that is also where my freedom (the freedom to enjoy instead of trying to control and modify for example) begins. I cannot help it. I pull out the grass from the well-fertilized garden beds, and I start grass on the less fertilized and sandy soil around. “Of course”, I thought yesterday, “the grass wants to grow in my garden beds – that’s what I nurture. I have to nurture the grass where I want it to grow.”

What do you want to nurture in your life? And do you do that with the intended outcome in mind?

Meet the Coach

My name is Manuela Zeitlhofer.

I was born in Austria, Europe. When I was a young adult, I left Austria to immigrate to Canada. It was not so much that I did not want to live in Austria, it was more the strong desire to live in the wilderness that led me to Canada – more specifically to the Yukon Territory.

At first, I worked as a tour guide. I was very fortunate to guide tourists into the most pristine parts of the Yukon Territory and Canada. The winters were quiet and long, and so I started teaching as a substitute teacher during the winter. After several years of guiding tourists in the summer and teaching little kids in the winter, I decided that I wanted to be a teacher. It seemed only natural, as in my work as a tour guide, I was also the advocate of nature, guiding and coaching people how to respect nature while enjoying its beauty.