Monthly Archives: January 2016

In Cathy’s Words: Putting the Spotlight on the OMP Partners!

One would not necessarily expect so much laughter and comfort when visiting the dentist. Well, at Dr. Andrea Stevens Dentistry, that is EXACTLY what happens. I’ve never been much of a napper, but Dr. Stevens’ team takes such great care of me, I’m all but dozing off in the chair! So many people stay away from the dentist because they don’t want THE DREADED NEEDLE!! Well, in Dr. Stevens’ practice, it is a high-tech system that is virtually painless. Trust me, I’ve had a lifelong heart-pounding fear of needles, but not when I’m in this dental chair!

Financial planning may seem like a daunting task, UNLESS you’re fortunate enough to work with the wonderful Colleen O’Connell-Campbell, a senior wealth advisor at Scotia Wealth. Frankly, I have little money or assets, but with Colleen’s expert guidance, I am confident that a great foundation for long-term wealth will be in place. Part of the tool kit Colleen is providing is an iPad which is going to be put good use as I take my businesses forward! And, the happy bonus in meeting with Colleen is they are so comfortable even when discussing my financial challenges. Every meeting ends with a hug and that speaks volumes of the connection we have.

Eating Well Ottawa has been delivering an amazing array of fresh, organic produce and pantry items to my door 2 weeks. Saving the time and effort of shopping! That’s a big WIN right there for me. Having a great variety of ingredients for quick salads or slow-simmered soups or even fresh fruit to grab for snacking at work has made eating healthy so much easier!

Frankly, showing up at Executive Fitness Leaders the day after I won was a big step for me. But, from the moment I arrive, Kyle (my trainer) was ready to get me on the path to better fitness. I will be doing a blog post specifically about this experience because it has been and continues to be pretty powerful. A personal trainer is A HUGE MOTIVATOR to go beyond what you think; it is like having a cheerleader who is not afraid to have you mildly annoyed for having you do MORE than you felt like or thought you could. Lots of great changes happening for me!

EFL has also included 6 hours of massage therapy, so I’ve set-up bi-weekly massages with Jenny Wolfgram and it is 30 minutes of stress-relieving bliss! What a difference this makes. I foresee booking a few one-hour massages over the months ahead and will plan on keeping massage as part of my life beyond the Makeover!

Langevin Morris Smith’s Russ Molot is the legal eagle on this journey and WOWZA x 100, I am so delighted to have his services. For obvious reasons, I won’t share details here, but the first thing I asked when we met was would I be allowed to get my divorce done. He said, “Yes, we can do that.”. Rebecca and I looked at one another and did a very happy high five. Being free of my EX after so many years of him ignoring my efforts to get this done will be CELEBRATION WORTHY!!! Russ is a laid back and humorous fellow – we got along famously and I’m looking forward to having a number of matters handled by him!

Live Well Family Health Centre brought the delightful Dr. Sabrina & Dr. Jason Bercovitch into my world and it is truly a wondrous thing. As a project partner, they’re providing me their LIVE WELL FOR LIFE Program and it is jam-packed with useful information. Dr. Sabrina and I are together weekly for about an hour as we work through the 5 components – EAT, THINK, SLEEP, MOVE, and BRAIN & BODY CONNECTION. I look forward to every single meeting as the Drs. Bercovitch and team are always so warm & welcoming to me. My time with Dr. Sabrina literally flies by (and we do get a little side-tracked at times) but I know that this part of the Makeover will give me a solid education on lifestyle adaptations which are so beautifully in sync with other project partners’ offerings!

Pierrette Raymond has already changed my life! If you are living with clutter, ALL types of clutter – mental, emotional and/or physical, this amazing woman can help. My biggest stumbling block for the past 20+ years of raising my kids has been OVERWHELM on all levels. It is a sneaky companion that takes up residence and slowly puts blinders on you so you don’t NOTICE YOUR STUFF so much. And you adapt to the messy house, the too much stuff, the “I don’t know where to start” and every other block that keeps you stuck!!! When Pierrette and her team came through my house 2 weeks ago, it was a transformation.

Pierrette is also a life coach and I have turned some bright light onto some dark stuff in my world which has truly been a great amount of AHA MOMENTS that have set me on fire to make changes, big and small, in how I live my life and interact with those in my world, personally and professionally! I feel very safe and supported with Pierrette. Certainly makes it easier to be totally honest when I don’t feel or fear I will be judged. That alone is phenomenal!

I will be looking at getting in for a manicure and pedicure to Rinaldo at Carlingwood, in the next week while I’m on vacation. And, Fiorella at Rinaldo on George Street will be given the HOLY MOLEY task of my new and dramatic change in hair style. You will want to see THAT picture for sure. When my divorce is finalized, I will be visiting BOTH locations for pampering before a NIGHT ON THE TOWN!!! A severance that’s been 22 years in the making calls for a party!

Supperworks is one of the coolest concepts I’ve ever seen. I’ve posted a great deal online about my experience with the Kanata store (Susanna, Jason & their team) and most recently the Orleans store (Sonia, Nikki, and their team). Their process is brilliant, the ingredients are fresh and great quality. The time it saves to have a restaurant-calibre work station with everything you need ready for assembly, is one of the best innovations in meal prep I’ve ever seen. As a caterer, I can truly appreciate the value of the TIME SAVINGS of having all the prep work done. I am thoroughly enjoying the meals and the teams at each location have been a genuine delight to work when I visit. One of the most fun parts of the Makeover for sure!

Though I haven’t yet met the Twiss & Weber team in person, they reached out virtually immediately after I won and I will be going to see them at their store in February for a meet and greet. They graciously set-up a PINTEREST page for me to pin looks I like as relates to my wardrobe and what inspires me. I don’t know much about Pinterest, but my darling daughter Rebecca can show me. One of their gifts as a project partner is my REVEAL OUTFIT and the idea of having a custom-made ensemble is pretty exciting. I’m seriously considering asking them to make something for me to wear to Rebecca’s wedding, but need to think about that as I am thinking I would like to keep my outfit for that day under wraps. In any event, this will be a blast because my look is so basic; I wear bright colours and simple lines. However, CATHY WHITNEY 2.0 will mean some bolder choices and changes! I look forward to learning from these amazing women!

Myers Kanata has provided me with a sweet, sweet ride that is mine for the duration of this adventure! Over 30 years of driving and have NEVER EVER EVER had a brand-new car! OMG! 2016 Chevy Equinox – holy moley! It is incredible! Handles so well; floats along and even has WI-FI, so that is a bonus. I practically hug it every day when I come outside and see it. The wrap and logos are so tastefully done, but I keep the car clean and shiny so the Ottawa Makeover Project is always well represented. We always name our cars, so the Equinox is called Selina, as in Selina Kyle aka Catwoman – sleek, sassy, stylish and spunky!

TRUEdotDESIGN is a great project partner. I had a few challenges initially with my blogging and other web-related stuff, but Lianne was quick to respond and direct. Shelley True contacted me immediately and they have done a fabulous job of keeping the website updated. I will be getting more blogging done, video and written so there are more regular updates from my perspective.

I met with Stayci Keach of Eyes on Ottawa a few weeks ago – she knows so much about video/media production, it is boggling to me! She has already provided me with training on using my iPad for shooting video updates. Before that, she captured video of my DECLUTTERING day, where I cried while I spoke and then again on December 22nd at my workout, again, I cried. To me, the tears illustrate that a) I’m really a mushball and b) that Stayci has a presence that invites trust and being real. That’s what her message is to me – keep it real, be myself, that’s why I was chosen!


Cathy’s Financial Resolutions with Colleen O’Connell-Campbell

It is the time of year when many of us take stock of what we have accomplished and what we have yet to accomplish. Some of us make resolutions that last a few hours or a few days. Some of us make resolutions that last a few months. Keeping in mind that a resolution, by definition, is a firm decision to begin doing something or to stop doing something. We often feel like we have failed if we don’t stand by the resolution.

So you say, “What does this have to do with Cathy Whitney and her Ottawa Makeover Project journey?”. Frankly, why be constrained by the commercialism of the holiday season and the standard calendar? Your resolutions do not have to be tied to the start of a new year, you have the power to invoke positive change in your life at any time – so why not right now?

It is easy to make the decision to change but much more difficult to make it stick. So, you call on coaches, consultants, cheerleaders, and fans to support your decision, the subsequent journey, and all the ups and downs along the way. That – in a nutshell – is precisely what the Ottawa Makeover Project is all about.

Cathy has given me the green light – without hesitation – to share some of the financial parts of her Ottawa Makeover Project journey. So, while still respecting her personal privacy, I am going to highlight what we have uncovered thus far.

During our very first encounter, Cathy repeatedly apologized for her previous lack of investment and financial planning. We had to set some ground rules right away… No more apologizing! We cannot change the past but we can develop an understanding of ourselves, look to the future, and look to uncover how and why we made particular choices.

While we worked together to explore Cathy’s financial position, I directed her to prioritize her financial goals and used a wheel to illustrate, on a scale of 1 to 10, how close she was to achieving those goals. This exercise allowed us to begin to see Cathy’s financial “big picture” and our plan began to form.

I gave Cathy some homework to do. She needed to gather all the details about her assets and liabilities (i.e. her net worth), income and expenses (i.e. her personal cash flow) so we could establish her current financial “State of the Nation”, giving us a clear picture of what her financial situation looks like now, so we can plot a course for her future.

Now we know where we stand and where we want to be. We will work together to build a better understanding of what money represents for Cathy and define the ways in which she will honour what she values most. Cathy wants to plan a trip to Disney and she has her sights set on a thriving independent business and financial security. We can get there and though it might now seem like we are at the base of Mount Everest, getting to the top and to those goals is really just about the planning, the training, and the doing.

We have more work ahead on our journey together and I am looking forward to experiencing the positive shifts with Cathy as she transforms from version 1.0 to 2.0. With any luck, Cathy will be empowered to make more confident decisions about how she spends, saves, and shares her wealth – wealth defined not simply as financial abundance but also of humour, talent, and time.

– Colleen

Colleen O’Connell-Campbell is a Senior Wealth Advisory with Scotia Wealth Management. Learn more about Colleen and her team at

In Cathy’s Words: Ottawa Makeover Project Two Months Down…

As the founder of the Ottawa Makeover Project, it is also my personal quest to help guide and support Cathy throughout this journey. I cannot wait to see Cathy 2.0 slowly develop over these next months as she takes the advice and direction from all of the businesses involved in this project. Please join me and the rest of the Makeover Team in sharing positive messages with Cathy during this time!

– Dr. Andrea Stevens

I am so emotional as I craft this message. The statement above from Dr. Andrea Stevens makes me tear up because Dr. Stevens’ commitment is unwavering; that she truly cares about me and my experience is so apparent as is the fact that she has the respect of all the project partners who are all so happy to be part of this initiative Andrea – you’re truly an earth Angel.

The OTTAWA MAKEOVER PROJECT is a MONUMENTAL effort on all fronts – rather overwhelming for me at times, but so totally worth it. I could never thank-you enough, Andrea, for being the catalyst for change that this Makeover represents for me! Thank-you, thank-you, thank-you!

We’re 2 months into the journey and it has been, and continues to be, INCREDIBLE.

The partners have ALL stepped up to ensure my experience is truly wonderful. It is like an entourage of experts who are committed to helping me discover CATHY WHITNEY 2.0!!

More to come…