After university, Denise got a job with the Waterloo Catholic District School Board; the board she grew up in. She grew as a teacher and leader over 23 years with the board. Teaching in the areas of Phys. Ed., Religion, ESL, Student Success, Special Education, Denise’s passion to teach grew stronger each year. She knew she was making a difference in the lives of her students and was grateful each day to be working in a job she loved.
In 2012, alongside teaching, Denise started a network marketing health and wellness business. She continued to grow herself through courses, speakers, and mentors. However after 5 years in the business, Denise realized she was not being her authentic self. She was chasing material rewards, rather than focusing on helping others. It was not who she was, even though it was a great learning experience, she decided it was not a good fit for her.
Throughout their marriage, Denise and Derryck struggled financially due to various factors. But they kept taking it one day at a time and made it work. Denise knows what it is like to live from pay cheque to pay cheque while raising a family and how it can affect other areas of your life; these were some of the dark times in Denise’s life. She felt stuck in life and like a failure, she was depressed. After visiting her doctor and advised to take time off work, Denise sought counselling...the BEST thing ever!! She found her personal power after reading the book “The Magic” by Rhonda Byrne. Denise made daily habits of gratitude practices, making gratitude a huge part of her life, which ultimately shifted her mindset from negative to positive. This mindset shift was truly what helped Denise get out of her darkness, finding hope and joy.
Despite financial struggles, at the age of 49, Denise felt a calling to leave the school board and pursue other passions to make a difference in the world, using her teaching and leadership gifts to bring hope to others who were struggling with life’s challenges. Denise was inspired to write a book called “The Fighter Within: Beating life’s challenges one day at a time”. She spoke at schools and other groups as a keynote speaker. It was not an easy move to make, as many nay-sayers had a lot to say about leaving a secure teaching career in times of financial struggles. However, the stress of the job was taking a toll on Denise’s health and it was the right decision for her.
The flexibility of this move allowed Denise to be very present in her teen daughters’ lives which ended up to be a blessing in disguise as it was during this time Denise’s daughters needed her most. Each daughter was struggling with their own mental health issues; Julia, having been diagnosed with Type 1 Diabetes (T1D) when she was 6, was suffering with diabetes burnout and depression. And Lysa was suffering silently with anxiety. Denise lives by the motto “Everything happens for a reason”. She has never regretted taking an early retirement from teaching.
Over the past few years, Denise has taken a keen interest in the importance of mental health. She teamed up with a registered psychotherapist and together they created 2 mental health programs; one called “You Got This!” a holistic mental health program for people struggling, feeling stuck, and needing some inspiration. And the second called “Mind Boost”, a mental health program for people living with Type 1 Diabetes and their caregivers.
It took some time for Denise to find her authentic self again after leaving the school board. It took many trials and errors, she realized things would happen when they were meant to happen, not when she wanted them to. And now, with her passion, gifts and experiences, she is so excited to be sharing her transformation story, not only with her audiences she speaks to, but now as a Miracle Mindset Mentor. Denise is super excited and beyond grateful to serve others this way; to help them find their personal power, shift their mindset and transform their lives in a positive way.