A summer of uncertainty leads to exciting news!

A Summer of Uncertainty Brings Exciting News!

Dr. Kimberley O'BrienBlog, Lifestyle 20 Comments

Forest and canoe

Change is in the air! I have plenty of exciting news to share with you today but this has definitely been a summer filled with uncertainty for me!

At the end of June, the clinic that I had been practicing at for the past two years merged with another clinic owner and it was decided that they would focus predominantly on sports medicine going forward. As my naturopathic practice focuses primarily on the treatment of fatigue, digestive disorders, hormonal imbalances and infertility my services were no longer aligned with the clinic vision. The reorganization of the clinic meant that I had only a few weeks before needing to relocate my practice.

While I could have been upset about these changes, I actually felt relieved when I received the news and I was almost immediately excited about an opportunity to create something new. I had intuitively felt that the clinic hadn’t been the best fit for my practice but I had been living in my comfort zone by continuing to practice there. Things were working (sort of) and it scared me to leave in search of new opportunities. What if I regretted my decision? Thankfully life gave me a nudge out the door when I couldn’t muster the courage to take that first step myself!

I have absolutely amazing patients and I truly love what I do!  Although I knew that I needed to find a new practice location as soon as possible, I also sensed that it was very important to allow myself to steep in uncertainty for a few weeks prior to making any big decisions. This was a pivotal opportunity for me to consciously shape my life and career over the next few years. So, I took off to the mountains (my go-to place for both inspiration and reflection) and while soaking in the sun and fresh air I started asking myself the following questions:

Does my current lifestyle align with my core values?

Of all possible paths my life could take, have I been walking the number one path I would choose?

If I could do anything this year, what would I do and why?

What do I love about my life?

What’s missing from my life?

These are important questions and I encourage you to reflect on your answers as well!


The greatest mistake in life is fearing you will make one

For myself they evoke my lifelong dream of living in the mountains with a dog (or two) and a garden. I dream of waking up early and canoeing on a calm, clear lake…or of simply enjoying a hot mug of tea on my front porch before anyone else wakes up. I envision campfires and stargazing in my backyard and picking plums to eat straight from the tree.  

Although I’ve craved this lifestyle for years (and so has my husband), we have always chosen condo living in the city instead. Why is this, despite an undeniable magnetism towards living in nature and enjoying a simpler way of life?

The greatest mistake in life is to be continually fearing you will make one - Healthy Life Redesign

After a lot of reflection I’ve determined that our biggest holdback has been fear.  From external fears like not being able to find enough work to sustain ourselves financially in a small town, to internal fears like just how much we will miss our families by living further away. 

We have also worried about what others would think and if they may say that we are idealists living in a dream world.  We have feared that surely pursuing such a “crazy” dream would lead to regrets once reality sets in.  After all, would it truly be as magical as we dreamed or would we inevitably be left disappointed?

Many recent conversations between my husband and I have led us to decide that we would rather try and fail (or marvelously succeed) than to live our lives as dreamers instead of doers. Once we owned our desires and created a clear vision of what we truly want from our life, amazingly the right doors slowly began to open for us (although we have also had to go through what felt like several “tests” to ensure we were fully committed!).

The most dangerous risk of all...spending your life not doing what you want on the bet you can buy yourself the freedom to do it later - Healthy Life Redesign

Our Big Decision! 

This brings me to my very exciting announcement that in only two weeks from now we will be moving to the beautiful mountain town of Nelson, BC!  Nelson has had a gravitational pull upon us for years and we are thrilled that we will soon call it home.  I recently shared photos from our road trip to Nelson this past spring and I can’t wait to share all of the adventures that are still to come with you!

Although I will be living in Nelson, I am beyond thrilled to announce that I will still be practicing in Calgary!  I am all set up in a brand new practice location and am now available for naturopathic consultations with both new and existing patients.  I will be flying-in to practice in Calgary on a monthly basis and will also be available in between via phone consultations.  

While I’m in Nelson I’m excited that I will have additional time to focus on Healthy Life Redesign and the Elimination Diet Meal Plan.  There will be more recipes, articles and programs launched this year as I pursue these passion projects!  I also plan to offer health and personal development retreats in the Nelson region very soon!  I’m thrilled that this move is not only enabling me to live a nature-fuelled lifestyle but that it’s also opening doors for me to pursue my career dreams.

If you haven’t joined my Healthy Life Redesign email list, now’s the time to get on board and sign up to receive all of my recipes, blog posts and event information delivered straight to your inbox! You don’t want to miss it!

I’ve truly realized over the past few months that when one door closes another one opens…but you have to knock!  And in all likelihood more than one door will open for you…you will then have to choose which door you want to walk through.  Through my experience over the past few months I know how scary it can be to commit to that choice.  

The Universe opened several doors this summer that I had to consciously and deliberately close in order to move forward with my decision to move to Nelson.  I’m extremely excited about what’s to come, but to be completely honest I’m also nervous!  If I allow it, the uncertainty and doubt still comes creeping in.  The fear hasn’t gone away but I’m working with it instead of letting it get the best of me!  

Everything you want is on the other side of fear - Healthy Life Redesign


I’d really love to hear from you today!  Have you been in a similar situation where you’ve been faced with a head versus heart decision?  Which did you choose?  Please share with me in the comments below!


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About the Author

Dr. Kimberley O'Brien


Dr. Kimberley O'Brien is a Naturopathic Doctor in  Nelson, BC with expertise in the treatment of digestive disorders, fatigue and hormone imbalances.  She is the founder of Healthy Life Redesign and creator of the Elimination Diet Meal Plan and the Real Food Recharge online programs.  Her mission is to help you own your health and live a life you love!

Comments 20

  1. Best wishes for every success. I am excited for you. You are an amazing writer; so descriptive. I am so glad to have gotten to know you, even if it has been for a short time. I hope we can stay in touch. Enjoy the beautiful life you are carving out for yourself.

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      Thank you so much Elaine! It’s been my absolute pleasure getting to know you as well and I definitely hope to stay in touch. You and Chuck will have to let me know if you’re ever out in Nelson. Hopefully we may also cross paths the weeks that I’m in Calgary. Big hugs to you!

  2. Wow, what a post, Kimberly! Congratulations on your decision for follow your dreams and your heart to Nelson. It’s a really cool town, I’ve spent a lot of time there over the years. 🙂 I look forward to meeting you in person tomorrow and learning more about your new adventure!

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  3. Good for you for following your dreams! I agree that it’s better to take a chance on what you really want to do than to live out your life having never tried! Nelson sounds like a beautiful place, and I’m sure you will be happy there. I wish you all the best in your new endeavors!

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      Thank you Janet! I’m definitely looking forward to all that smaller town living has in store! Nelson is full of restaurants, cafes and live music so I know I will fare well. I can’t wait to explore it as a local soon!

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  4. So thrilled and happy on your new life path! We’ve been to Nelson last year, on our tour of the Okanagan valley, and just adore it! I bought a pair of yoga pants that I’m wearing now and that are my favorite! Thanks for sharing your thoughts, I am often stopped by fear of the unknown, but when you pass that point, beautiful opportunities and doors open for you!

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      Nicoletta, I love that you have also been to Nelson and that you adore it as well! Let me know if you’re out that way anytime in the future…I’d love to meet in person! In the meantime, I’m going to need details on these great yoga pants that you found 😉

  5. I hope all your dreams come true. It is always exciting to journey on a new path.
    I wish you both great success on this journey.

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  6. Congratulations Kimberley! That’s great news, and I wish you all the best in Nelson. It’s a great town, and I’m sure you’ll find an eager clientele, not to mention a wonderful community. I was reading your thoughts and musings and I appreciate your honest approach to things – I think the inertia of life can be such an overwhelming factor that we become terrified of switching tracks. But once we change directions (preferably to embrace or stay with our passions), things generally tend to go our way. After all, inertia can carry you where you want to go, but it can also carry you right off a cliff! Cheers, and I can’t wait to see what your new direction (and your proximity to Okanagan fruit!) leads to in the future.

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      Thank you Sean! I agree with you. By nature I love change…but the longer I stay put in one place as I get older, the more difficult it becomes! However, there is so much to look forward to and I’m filled with excitement as long as I focus on what I’ll gain versus what I’m leaving behind. For example, I can’t wait to share fresh from my garden recipes next summer…I’ve definitely set my intentions on having at least one fruit tree in my yard!

  7. Great post, Kimberley. Looking at change as opportunity can open up so many doors and I’m happy for you that it has. I did a similar move many years ago by moving from Vancouver to an acreage in the Okanagan. It was scary but so worth it. You will love Nelson, by the way. (I was born and raised there). 🙂

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      Hi Colleen! Nelson would be a fabulous place to be raised with the beautiful scenery and the warm and welcoming people who live there. Although I would have to say that an acreage in the Okanagan also sounds amazing! I have also lived in Vancouver, and while I loved it, I think that being surrounded on an acreage by nature and trees is the way to go! Thank you for sharing your experience!

  8. Nelson is quite possibly my favourite city in BC. I have spent so much time there and it’s so beautiful and laid back and the artistic and creative community is thriving. Plus, the best bowl of tortilla soup I’ve ever had is at a little Mexican restaurant in an old house in Nelson. So good. I hope you’re both happy there for a long time!

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      I’m happy that you share my love for Nelson, Melissa! You will most definitely need to let me know when you’re there for your next visit so we can explore a restaurant or two together! Thank you for the well-wishes 🙂

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