About Margie and TSJ

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Welcome to the Shared Journey!  

My nickname is Margie (officially-Margaret). The Shared Journey is a dream come true for me.

I am a certified life coach who believes in the power of positive connection. Connecting in meaningful ways strengthens our ability to live authentic lives with a sense of well-being even when challenged by life’s troubles.

Sometimes we are aware of various divisions within ourselves. For example… we say things like – “Part of me is independent but part of me wants to be cared for” or “Part of me loves parenting, painting, writing, managing etc. but part of me wants…”  We long for a well integrated sense of wholeness. We don’t like broken or missing pieces!

When I retired as a school psychologist I had completed my coaching certification and knew I would find meaning and joy in opening up my own coaching practice. I named it The Shared Journey (TSJ) because of my belief that – as humans – we all need each other and are gifted with ability to learn from one another’s experiences. I also believe in a God who is our Chief Shepherd. 

My passion and commitment to God is to encourage people. I call myself an encouragement coach.  Encouragement helps us find the courage (or heart) to bridge the gap when there is a difference between “what is” (current experience) and what we desire. 

We all have a story and we are a story.  We are living stories. And as has often been said, shared experiences do increase our joys and reduce our burdens.

I warmly embrace each person’s story and and am dedicated to helping people draw from the well of their inner strengths and wisdom while discovering their unique gifts on their journey to wholeness. My life experiences of being shepherded through many tough times adds a personal touch to my work/play as a life coach.

 What is your story?

Are you confused? Worried?  Is your emotional, spiritual or physical fuel tank running low? Need a tune up? . . .  or . . . a jump start?

At The Shared Journey you will find the power of shared story and wisdom. In my coaching practice people have found renewal, hope and fulfillement as they experience being deeply listened to and feeling understood and heard rather than judged and condemned. In the safety of love and encouragement they find their way home to their inner wisdom and compassionate hearts. 

Professional Info . . .

I graduated from Houghton College with a bachelor of arts degree (BA) in elementary education. After teaching, becoming a mom, and working in a mental health clinic for several years, I returned to school and earned a master of science degree (MS) and certificate of advanced studies (CAS) in school psychology from SUNY Oswego.

Before retiring as a school psychologist, I earned a certificate of life coaching (CLC) from the Institute for Life Coach Training, accredited by the International Coaching Federation.

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An additional note:  My late husband’s death (Tom Cole) on Dec.15, 2014 has become one of life’s experiences that helps strengthen my belief that what really matters above all else are three things:  “Faith, hope, and love..” (1st Corinthians, chapter 13 in the Bible).  We need all three in so many ways. But now more than ever, I also realize what the rest of the verse means when it reads … “The Greatest of these is love.”  Love never dies. 

A year ago I remarried and now live in a small home with John who has also known grief as his late wife passed away two months after Tom.  Together we are forging a new life that is supported greatly by the forever love of our late spouses and happy memories. Just as “Mr. Tom” was my encourager in TSJ, “Mr. John” faithfully holds the torch of being my encourager. And I believe it makes Tom “do a happy dance” in heaven.

Meet Solomon and SJ

The Signature Solomon Smile

Meet the rest of the The Shared Journey Team.

As I have mentioned, I believe in the inherent power of story to help people tap into their inner wisdom. My goal has been to stay in touch with TSJ readers with a frequent blog that comes into subscribers’ emails on most Wednesdays.  It is called Wednesday Wisdom or WW for short.

To help me teach various wisdom stories I use an adorable and irresistible stuffed sheep I named Solomon.  He has “a story” here at TSJ too.. . .

Mr. Tom knew of my desire to have a coaching practice that has a theme of shepherding running through it and that I wanted it to be both playful and serious.  He found Solomon and bought him when I was in need of encouragement. At that time, I was riddled with back pain. Wanting to do something to help me feel better, he did something atypical for Tom –  He found Solomon on the internet – and ordered him.  Days later, when Solomon arrived the joy came into TSJ immediately. I called my sister and giggled like a child. I knew the sheep would be my assistant and encourager!

Since I like the metaphor of shepherding, which involves knowledge, practiced skills, quality care and wise leadership, it seems like a grand idea to have an earthy creature (sheep) represent us “mortals.” It took a couple of days to decide on a name.  But I named him Solomon after King Solomon of biblical fame, who was reportedly the wisest king who ever lived.  And that is how Solomon became our TSJ symbol of wisdom.

It wasn’t long before it was clear that Solomon needed a partner so I relented.  I bought him a little one to look after. He was added to our imaginary team.  His name is Solomon Junior (SJ for short) and SJ is filled with Wonder as Solomon is filled with Wisdom.  So you will hear from both of them.

SJ Receiving Solomon Type Wisdom.
SJ Receiving Solomon Type Wisdom.

 SJ helps highlight the child within us who tends to need some maturing and refining and Solomon represents that quiet, soulful voice we have such a hard time listening to in the hustle, bustle of our busy lives.

So, let your imagination roll. Experience the joy of learning life-lessons in light-hearted ways.

As fun and lighthearted this approach sounds, I do want to assure you these characters are used mostly in writing and will not insult our need to take seriously the work we must do to experience renewal and understanding of ourselves and each other.

I warmly invite you to become a TSJ subscriber.  We all have those days when we face tough challenges and need extra strength and wisdom or a simple story to touch our hearts. And WW can be a midweek reset when energy runs low and demands run high.

I also invite you to go to the Contact page if you would like to connect with me by phone or email!

As a subscriber, sometimes you will also be notified of new things happening at TSJ headquarters such as mini retreats or book studies and new office hours etc.  Those things do not show up on the blog site.

But remember, Solomon does not come without being invited! Wisdom calls for respect…not coercion or intrusion.

Happy Shepherding,

Margie. Solomon and SJ

PS.  We also have a special consultant on our fantasy team.  His name is Sigmund and he stands for the more factual, scientific information that represents the brain- behavior connections in human beings. Guess which one is Sigmund in picture below!