About Liz Drance
Life Coach, Dementia Caregiver Coach, and Mindfulness Meditation Teacher
I am a cis-gendered straight caucasian married woman of Jewish and Protestant background, a mother, a psychiatrist, a Mindfulness Meditation teacher & student of Buddhist psychology, and a life-long learner whose most recent pursuit has been my Life Coaching certification through The Co-Active Training institute.
I love journeying with people as they tap into their innate wisdom, clarify what is important to them, and move towards a life that they find meaningful and joyful even in the midst of its challenges. Being with people as they connect with their ‘aha’ moments and clear their path of obstacles is a privilege that I appreciate deeply.
What brought me here
Throughout my career as a geriatric psychiatrist, I have enjoyed exploring new skills and ideas. I became interested in the role of Mindfulness Meditation in mental health and initiated my own meditation practice in 2012. Five years later, I trained with Jack Kornfield and Tara Brach in their first cohort of the MIndfulness Meditation Teacher Certification Program. Since then, I have learned to teach a number of other mindfulness based interventions which I now share in various venues.
I’ve been able to weave a lot of my mindfulness learnings into my most recent work with dementia caregivers/care partners. I continue to practice psychiatry part time at the Dementia Caregiver Resilience Clinic at Providence Health Care in Vancouver, where I facilitate Mindfulness Based Dementia Care(MBDC), a weekly MBDC alumni group and lead other workshops and classes.
Two years ago, I felt a pull to explore Life Coaching. Life Coaching supports people to develop their vision for a meaningful life, and to take wise action as they move towards their values and life purpose. Clients learn to work wisely with the roadblocks that get in the way – many of which are related to the fixed beliefs they carry about themselves and the world. I love the coaching model because it holds people as “creative, resourceful, and whole”(1) – they don’t need fixing! Instead, I walk alongside them as they find their way home to their ever-present Wise Selves.
(1) Co-Active Coaching – Kimsey-House, H. et al 2018 Quercus Books
Who do I coach?
Anyone who is ready to commit to taking bold moves to transform their life
- People in significant life transitions who want to grow through the experience – eg. grief, retirement, career change, illness etc.
- Care partners/caregivers of people with chronic illness who want to equip themselves with the skills they need to care well for themselves and the person who is ill
- Dementia care partners who want to build their inner resources to meet the unique challenges of dementia care partnering (skills, navigation and self-care)
- People wanting to learn or enhance their mindfulness meditation practice in a safe, trauma-informed setting.
Certifications & Training
Mindfulness Meditation Teacher Certification Program (MMTCP) – 2017-2019
Mindfulness Based Dementia Care (MBDC) Teacher Training 2018
Mindfulness Based Cognitive Therapy Facilitator Training 2020- 2021
Certificate of training – Institute for Meditation and Psychotherapy 2020-2021
Mindful Awareness Practices (for Daily Living) (MAPs) UCLA Training 2020
Internal Family Systems (IFS) for Coaches, IFS Institute 2021
Co-Active Training Institute Coach Certification Program 2021-2023
Feeling Tones Program Teacher Training – Dr. Mark Williams 2023
Rather than read more, here are some images that will give you some context to me and my life on Gabriola Island, BC.
Dementia Caregiver Coaching
Filling a gap in the system
I have enjoyed my career in Geriatric Psychiatry, especially the last 5 years when I have been working with family members of people living with dementia at the Dementia Caregiver Resilience Clinic. I have felt honoured to be able to lead Mindfulness Based Dementia Care groups and the CARERs program with dementia care partners, as well as seeing people 1:1.
That said, I have longed to explore how we might support families upstream in the dementia/MCI trajectory. It is my strong sense that if early on in the illness, care partners can develop clarity about their own needs and begin addressing those, as well as learning about Minimal Cognitive Impairment (MCI) and dementia illness pathways, the health care system, and what it means to care wisely for themselves from a very early point in the journey, then their inner resources will be strengthened and they will be more likely to maintain their well-being in the process.
The individualized support I have wanted to explore is something not currently offered in the health-care system, nor is it available through the work of the wonderful community organizations that are supporting family caregivers – such as the Family Caregivers of BC or the Alzheimer Society of British Columbia. If you have been part of programs run by these groups, you will know their value, but you may have more questions or specific issues that you are working with – things needing more care and attention to help you thrive. Be in touch!
Curious? Let’s chat
If you have questions or are ready to connect around coaching or mindfulness meditation training, send me a message and we can set up a 30 minute no-charge conversation via Zoom.