I spent a career making sure that people were being taken care of. As a budding chef, my passion for learning and practicing my craft was far reaching. I loved the sights and sounds of the kitchen - the sizzle of meat and fish hitting the smoking hot grill, the flash fire from pans as vegetables were sauteed over high heat, the hollering and laughing of cooks and servers, and the rat-a-tat-tat of knives hitting the cutting board as we prepped for service. It was a buzz.
As the years passed, my knowledge and confidence grew. I moved up the ranks and started to take on more responsibility. I was getting noticed, and yet inside, I was feeling fear. Fear of being seen as a fraud. Fear of not being good enough. I started to depend on alcohol, crushing work hours and the validation of others as a way to move past those fears. I learned to seek from the external instead of within. I took advantage of any time I could find a bottle or attention. I started to get a different buzz on.
I made a name for myself and everything looked great from the outside, but I was falling apart inside. I was emotionally and physically bankrupt. My drinking was a serious problem, and yet I soldiered on until it all came crashing down. There is nothing romantic about hitting bottom. And I hit rock bottom. And it was at that point that I knew I had to change. Bottom became my buzzkiller.
I cleaned up and recreated myself. I learned to build myself from the ground up. I had to learn to live in my authentic self, even when it frightened me, or when I was unsure. I had to get used to the idea of being comfortably uncomfortable. I had to grow up. And as a father, I had to model to my sons what it was to just be. To live life in a genuine way. And wouldn’t you know it, life started to unfold in ways that I never thought possible. I was helping others. I was working with others in recovery. I had a blog, a podcast, and eventually, a book. “Service” was my new buzzword.
I hit a fork in the road last year, when I realized that the allure of the kitchen, once my playground and canvas, had faded. I had moved up even more in my career, and I was at the peak of my 25 years of cooking and managing. I was a senior chef in a large company. But I felt a calling to do something more, something greater, something that would line up with my new sense of wanting to share even more of myself. And that is when I fell into coaching. And like when I was an apprentice chef, I have been immersing myself in this new path. I am so passionate about coaching and helping others, and more specifically, people like me. People in the industry that let me rise and fall and rise again. The buzz is back.
I am here to help you seek the answers you seek, which are already within you. I am here to hold a mirror up to yourself. I am here to advocate for you. I am here to hold your vision and to hold a space for the emerging and ever-growing you. I am here to serve you.
And that’s the real buzz.