Category Archives: Mindfulness

Daphne’s Daily Affirmations for 2015

By Daphne MacNeil – Mindful Leadership Coach

Hi Folks,

I have developed the following affirmations while participating in a comprehensive (12 week) program of self-growth which is part of John Assaraf’s Praxis Now suite of programs.  I am currently completing week #7 of the Retraining Your Brain: Winning the Game of Money Program.

Having access to two highly skilled, knowledgeable and experienced professionals (John Assaraf – Author, Entrepreneur, Mentor and Coach and Mark Waldman – Neuro-Coach) along with a large community of Praxis Now members located throughout the world, is one of the many highlights of this program.

The following affirmations inspire me and motivate me to:

  • begin each day by tuning into the present moment; meditating on what is important to me
  • exercise mindfulness which helps increase my focus and generate space to create and do my best work
  • commit to achieving my goals by taking planned action
  • feel good about the life I am creating and leading; guiding me towards pathways aligned with my life’s passions and purpose
  • achieve success in the areas of my life that are important to me


1. I am living a life that is in partnership with my creator.
2. I am  surrounded by a large community of like-minded people whose energy vibrates at the level of love, peace, kindness and compassion.
3. I shine my light brightly offering it as a beacon to others.


4. I am healthfully feeding my mind, body and soul.
5. I am healthy and living a well-balanced, fun-loving, high energy, focused life.

Leading Self

6. I am creating a life that aligns with my passions, my purpose and destiny.

7. I am living the life I love.


8. I am intelligent, creative and highly skilled.
9. I am using my wisdom daily to create success, happiness and prosperity.
10. I am graciously receiving abundance and giving abundantly.

Growth and Development

11. I am consistently attracting all the right people, tools and resources to help me grow personally and professionally.
12. I am developing critical skills needed to live my best life while supporting others to live their best lives.


15. I am mindful, curious, creative, fun-loving and am experiencing dream adventures .


16. I am a beautiful, deserving, mindful,  peaceful, successful woman, who gently accepts and loves herself now!!

Enjoying the journey…with much gratitude.


22 Powerful Quotes to Inspire Self Leaders

Curated by:  Daphne MacNeil

The following quotes are from individuals who have inspired me throughout my lifetime.  I hope their words of wisdom will inspire you as you reflect upon: your life; the year that is coming to a close; and the New Year that is filled with untapped potential.

  1. “Mountaintops inspire leaders but valleys mature them.” ~ Sir Winston Churchill
  2. “Leadership and learning are indispensable to each other.” ~ John K. Kennedy
  3. “Would you like to save the world from the degradation and destruction it seems destine for? Then step away from shallow mass movements and quietly go to work on your own self-awareness. If you want to awaken all of humanity, then awaken all of yourself. If you want to eliminate the suffering in the world, then eliminate all that is dark negative in yourself. Truly, the greatest gift you have to give is that of your own self-transformation.” ~ Lao Tzu
  4. “Life’s most persistent and urgent question is, What are you doing for others?” ~ Martin Luther King
  5. “Leadership is not magnetic personality – that can just as well be a glib tongue. It is not “making friends and influencing people” – that is flattery. Leadership is lifting a person’s vision to higher sights, the raising of a person’s performance to a higher standard, the building of a personality beyond its normal limitations.” ~ Peter F. Drucker
  6. “It’s not the absence of leadership potential that inhibits the development of more leaders; it’s the persistence of the myth that leadership can’t be learned. This haunting myth is a far more powerful deterrent to leadership development than is the nature of the person or the basics of the leadership process.” ~ James Kouzes and Barry Posner
  7. “I think we need the feminine qualities of leadership, which include attention to aesthetics and the environment, nurturing, affection, intuition and the qualities that make people feel safe and cared for.” ~ Deepak Chopra
  8. “We don’t need giant personalities to transform companies. We need leaders who build not their own egos but the institutions they run.” ~ Susan Cain
  9. “In a gentle way, you can shake the world.” ~ Mahatma Gandhi
  10. “Vulnerability is the birthplace of love, belonging, joy, courage, empathy, and creativity. It is the source of hope, empathy, accountability, and authenticity. If we want greater clarity in our purpose or deeper and more meaningful spiritual lives, vulnerability is the path.” ~ Brené Brown
  11. “Everyone seems to have a clear idea of how other people should lead their lives, but none about his or her own.” ~ Paulo Coelho
  12. “Truly inspiring leaders get results by their own example: They encourage others to be responsible and do the right thing, but not by proclaiming and bragging about their unimpeachable management. They create space for others to be inspired and to achieve their own greatness.” ~ Dr. Wayne Dyer
  13. “At any moment, you have a choice, that either leads you closer to your spirit or further away from it.” ~ Thích Nhất Hạnh
  14. “Only do what you feel called in you heart to do, and then give all of yourself to the task.” ~ Marianne Williamson
  15. “Life will give you whatever experience is most helpful for the evolution of your consciousness. How do you know this is the experience you need? Because this is the experience you are having at the moment” ~ Eckhart Tolle
  16. “We all have the extraordinary coded within us, waiting to be released.” ~ Jean Houston
  17. “As you take a few minutes each day to quiet your mind, you will discover a nice benefit: your everyday, “ordinary” life will begin to seem far more extraordinary. Little things that previously went unnoticed will begin to please you. You’ll be more easily satisfied, and happier all around. Rather than focusing on what’s wrong with your life, you’ll find yourself thinking about and more fully enjoying what’s right with your life. The world won’t change, but your perception of it will. You’ll start to notice the little acts of kindness and caring from other people rather than the negativity and anger.” ~ Jack Canfield
  18. “Where globalization means, as it so often does, that the rich and powerful now have new means to further enrich and empower themselves at the cost of the poorer and weaker, we have a responsibility to protest in the name of universal freedom.” ~ Nelson Mandela 
  19. “How we see and hold the full range of our experiences in our minds and in our hearts makes an enormous difference in the quality of this journey we are on and what it means to us. It can influence where we go, what happens, what we learn, and how we feel along the way.” ~ Jon Kabat-Zinn
  20. “You can only become truly accomplished at something you love. Don’t make money your goal. Instead pursue the things you love doing and then do them so well that people can’t take their eyes off of you.” ~ Maya Angelou
  21. “When one door of happiness closes, another opens; but often we look so long at the closed door that we do not see the one which has been opened for us.” ~ Helen Keller
  22. ” Be very careful what you say to yourself because someone very important is listening… You!” ~John Assaraf

Happy New Year!

What Makes You Happy?

I had made a connection with Leslie Bridger in recent months by attending such events as Momondays – St. John’s (hosted by Barry Lewis Greene and Joel Sweeney) and events organized by “I Am Genie” (hosted by Joshua Dawson and Ingrid Thornhill).  I am so grateful for having made a connection with a growing community of like-minded people who live in and around the greater St. John’s area.

It was at last month’s Momondays event (held at Yuk Yuk’s – Uptown in St. John’s, Newfoundland) when Leslie asked me,  “So what makes you happy Daphne?” To which I quickly responded “It is the little things that make me happy. ‘Being’ here (meaning at MoMondays) makes me happy.”  I like being surrounded by like-minded people who raise one another up as they share stories about who they are, their life’s journey, lessons learned and how they have grown to create better lives for themselves, their families and/or the communities they serve.

Like many others,  I use to think the next big job, a new home, a fancier car would bring me happiness but these days it is all about the little things.  I have come to learn that at some point in time we awaken to the fact that we have all been conditioned (some refer to it as being brainwashed) to believe that we need to acquire many things in order to feel a sense of accomplishment in our lives.  Like a child on Christmas Day, our intrigue in the next new thing creates a level of excitement for a short while; yet these feelings often quickly subside the moment we see the next new thing our friends, colleagues or neighbours have acquired.

I have learned that happiness does not come from the next big purchase or from someone else or something outside of me. Happiness is an inside out job; it is up to me to make decisions and take actions that make me happy. It is up to me to observe my thoughts and reflect upon my behavior to determine whether I am going to serve up greater light or darkness in our universe.

Yes, happiness is all about experiencing the little things that show up in this very moment and being present to receive them. For me, it  can be as simple as taking a mindful walk in nature with my dog, watching as one single bright yellow leaf falls from a tree and gently floats to the ground, listening as birds sing their unique songs, watching as a cat hides in the woods preparing to attack my little dog, Misty; listening to the sound of the river flowing alongside the path I am walking on.  During these mindful walks I am often inspired to write a blog or a poem or to create a meal for my family and friends. This is happiness and peace on earth for me.

I am very blessed to live in a peaceful province (Newfoundland and Labrador) and for aligning myself with a marvellous community of like-minded, mindful and peaceful people.

What makes you happy?

Thank you Leslie, for being the inspiration for today’s blog post.

The Wizard of Awe – Leslie Bridger


A Coffee Shop, Being ‘Stood Up’, and Mindfulness

Sitting in my favourite coffee shop in town, Coffee Matters, waiting for a potential new business associate to arrive. Sipping on my delicious specialty coffee. A steady buzz of conversations surrounded me.  The delicious aromas of home cooked food floated through the air.  I faced the window to welcome the gentle caress of the fresh, warm breeze and I was drawn to the colours of the heritage homes located across the street;  a palette of brilliant colours.

I am tossed back to a time when a certain young Anglican Minister (my dad), his bride (my mom) and family lived on Ordinance Street, located across from the old CN Hotel (later known as the Newfoundland Hotel and Hotel Newfoundland). The Sheraton Hotel currently sits on this site. Memories of this charming, historical neighbourhood which was once home and a playground of intrigue for four little girls; brought a smile to my lips.

As I reflected upon our childhood (our ages ranged from 3-7 years); I recalled the activities and hot spots which formed lasting impressions upon each one of us little girls, these included:

  • walking over to the hotel entrance to play in the ever so popular revolving  doors; the staff greeted us with  friendliness, patience and kindness
  • chatting with the men who frequented the local pub (on Duckworth Street); as they were known to congregate out on the sidewalk on good weather days. Of course Mom would be mortified when she would discover we had ventured beyond the boundaries of our tiny front yard
  • spending quality time with the friendly firemen at the local Fire Hall (Is there a child out there who does not like firemen?)
  • Attending “Dad’s church” (St. Thomas’ Church ~, 1966-68) and church hall activities
  • visiting Rev. Rhodes Cooper and family who called the Anglican Rectory home (the Commissariat House ~
  • our neighbours, the “Morris” family
  • the neighbourhood playground, Bannerman Park ( )
  • Government House; ‘the’ hot spot for young ‘Trick or Treaters’ (
  • attending Bishop Spencer Girl’s School ( – the field day was a highlight
  • enjoying Kentucky Fried Chicken (“finger lickin’ good”) as a special treat every now and then
  • visiting relatives who lived around the greater St. John’s area
  • the steady flow of people in and about our house; many of whom were known to stay for a number of reasons including health, accommodations, waiting for the next boat or train ride home or to enjoy a short vacation with the family

Suddenly, I tuned into the sound of a familiar voice, a public voice. I looked up and into the eyes of Bill Rowe QC, lawyer, past politician, broadcaster and writer who is also a Memorial Graduate and an Oxford University, Rhodes Scholar. While I had never previously met the man, he left me feeling that he was as intrigued with me as I was with him.  We greeted one another with a smile and a quick “hello, how are you doing?” I love this city and province as you never know who you are going to meet up with at any given moment.

I glanced at my watch and thought the lady who scheduled the meeting was obviously yet another’no show.’ The voice in my head attempted to hijack my peace of mind and my sense of joy. It sounded something like this, “Well I guess someone more important than you showed up in her day,” …”Interesting, this happens quite often to you.”  I started to feel like I was about to take that slippery slide down towards a space where I would be left feeling, not all that great, about the chain of events.  I took a slow calming breath and quickly realized I had a choice to make:

  1. either allow the voice in my head to burst my bubble and send me on my sorry little way, spiralling down to that low energy place or
  2. choose to reconnect with the higher vibration of the joy filled journey I had previously experienced.

I am happy to report I chose joy!  Mindfulness teaches us to bring awareness to our thoughts (ego’s chatter) and when we do we realize the mind does a fabulous job conjuring up negative, de-energizing self-talk. Once I became aware of my negative thoughts, I recall thinking, “hello ‘little’ thoughts…good-bye ‘little’ thoughts,” as I imagine them floating by like leaves on a river. I returned to the ‘present moment’ realizing I had free time on my hands, no boss to check in with and a gorgeous neighbourhood to explore!

I left the coffee shop and began walking in the footsteps of my younger self. I captured a few photos of picturesque St. John’s which I have since shared my mother.  She informed me that my great grandfather (her grandfather) had stayed at the Anglican Rectory (the Commissariat House) when he was stricken with appendicitis.  In those days he had to travel by boat from Herring Neck, Notre Dame Bay to St. John’s in order to have his appendix removed.

I offer these full circle moments as I reflected upon that afternoon. I was reminded that:

  • By being present in the moment, I had successfully created space for me to enjoy the deliciousness of my coffee (a hug in a mug), to experience the lovely ambiance of the coffee shop and the picturesque surroundings
  • Being stood up triggered negative thoughts for me.  This event provided an opportunity for me to reflect upon my reaction and to practice mindfulness. The benefit – enjoying a walk down memory lane
  • By sharing my story and pictures with my mother,  it provided her with an opportunity to reflect upon and share one of her family stories

Just for the record, it turned out that the lady whom I thought ‘stood me up’ never received my final e-mail message via Linked-in, in which I had confirmed our meeting time and location. This type of thing had happened to me and others before.  Since then, I have been asking for additional contact information (in particular their regular e-mail address) to ensure all parties receive, read and respond to all messages; minimizing the risk of this type of thing happening again in the future.

My favourite coffee shop


Coffee Matters
Old Victorian Homes
St. Thomas’ Anglican Church (the Old Garrison)
Welcome to the Commissariat House
The Commissariat House (the Anglican Rectory)
Entrance to Government House
Government House – the grounds
Government House and the garden
The garden at Government House
Government House
Government House
Government House
View across the garden – Government House
Government House – Green House
Government House – Beautiful Grounds



Government House – Beautiful grounds
The view from Government House
A second entrance/exit –  Government House
St. Thomas’ welcomes you
The place we once called home
The original site of the CN Hotel