A Formula for Living Life with Intention

A Formula for Living Life with Intention

My father-in-law once wrote a book on epiphanies. In it, he waxed and waned about what epiphanies are and where they come from. It was an interesting book written by a man who was open to the philosophical, but never the spiritual. Although he was appreciative of my introspective, introverted manner, he simultaneously could never understand or respect those who spend “too much time navel-gazing.”

my father-in-law and my son

He died 3 years ago. One sunny November afternoon, while leaving the library doing errands, he simply dropped dead of a heart attack on the sidewalk. His untimely departure left me to muse on my own epiphanies – and how I would honor his life by elevating my contribution in the world. Not long after his passing, I suppose I had an epiphany of sorts.


As long as I remember I have always had a sincere desire to create change in the world and help others lead more satisfying and fulfilling lives. After 20 years of being a therapist and professional coach, working one person, or even one program at a time wasn’t making the impact I longed to create. Spawned by the loss of my beloved father-in-law I felt compelled to take my teachings as a coach and turn them into a community of coaches trained to deliver my programs. And it was an epiphany that had me develop a way of life called “Life Design” in the first place.

I remember the night like it was yesterday even though 12 years have gone by. I had been struggling internally for some time; feeling a calling to do more, wanting to speak and teach and write rather than doing work with one person at a time as a therapist or a coach. I had been writing my daily “letters to God” where I asked for guidance and repeatedly received the simple message, “Teach what you know.” What did that mean? What did I know? I wanted things flushed out a little more. And let’s add an action plan, too! I was stymied.

Then one November night in 2008, as I was laying my head down on the pillow, anticipating the lovely reprieve of sleep, it came to me. A formula for living life with intention, by design, that changed me forever. It became the basis of the Life Design Course, with very little alteration since that night when I got up and frantically wrote it down. An epiphany, I suppose.


I have now walked thousands of people through the Life Design process and continue to be amazed at the life changing nature of this work. Yet, when I try to tell people about it – to explain the ins and outs of what it actually entails, far too often their eyes glaze over, and they can’t quite grasp how something so simple could create such a life-altering change. So, now I’ve made it super simple to explain. You can design your life with three simple steps. And these three simple steps answer the biggest, the most important questions we all ask ourselves:

  • WHO AM I?

Yup, one course answers all of those… well, the truth is that YOU answer them, but the course gives you the structure and guidance to do so with clarity, power, and ease.

AS SIMPLE AS 1, 2, 3…

What are these three steps? Let me explain:


In this phase, you get intimately clear on what’s working and what’s not about your life in every way. Super important to determine this before you go about a process to design and build a new life! It’s where all change processes need to begin. It’s in this phase that you learn your life purpose. How cool is that?


This is the creative phase. Super fun, super exciting, and it’s where you answer the question of who you are, what you value and where you are going.


In this phase you learn the most essential element of all – no matter where you say you want to go, you must take the journey in a particular way. Nothing in life changes until you change your consciousness and perceptions – but most people have no idea how to do so. It’s not so hard, really. But it is the crucial difference that makes all the difference.


Mickey was a successful lawyer, working in a busy practice in Chicago. She was married and had two beautiful teenage daughters. She was physically fit (although a bit overweight) and felt she had accomplished all of the things that were “supposed to make her happy.” The problem though was that she wasn’t happy, not at all, not in the least. Although reluctant to admit it, she hated the work she was doing and wasn’t at all fond of her colleagues. Her marriage was on the rocks, and she was already divorced once. She didn’t see anywhere near enough of her girls and felt guilty all the time because of it.

She heard me speak at a conference and was drawn to my clarity and the way I framed decision-making and self-empowerment. She hired me to be her coach and over the following next 4 months, I walked her through the Life Design process. By the end of our time together, she had taken steps to change her career, improved her financial situation, her marriage went from a constant struggle, to one where she and her husband were enjoying each other again, feeling not only hopeful but excited about their future.

What changed? Her consciousness. Her perception of herself and her life. Her committed actions toward living her life by design rather than by default. To make that shift really isn’t that hard. Anyone can do it. Yes, you can do it too.

What would your life look like if you could design it?

What would your life be like if you lived it on your own terms?


Life Design coaches help you transform your life in as little as 3 months.

And if you’d like to become one of our coaches – get in touch.

Life Design has been a gift for me.  I have struggled with depression, anxiety and addiction for most of my adult life. Life Design coupled with my coach’s guidance gave me the tools I needed to break free from the bondage of my ego and open the door to discovering the power of my true essence.

Cindy McKay Santos

Life Design provided a structure to reevaluate all the areas of my life.  I now see clearly what I came here to do and what talents I could use to be of further service in the world. If you are feeling that your life lacks focus and meaning, Life Design is a great place to try look through a different lens with a strong life coach and powerful tools of transformation to shift your levels of awareness and your life.

Ruth Cook

In the Life Design program, I found an inner strength and confidence. Four years since completing Life Design I have paid off back taxes, doubled my income and have become a Licensed Teacher in my Spiritual Center. I have found the Life Design Program such an integral part of my growth and well-being that I have also become a Certified Life Design Coach. I am doing and accomplishing things now that before seemed like just a dream.

Tom Paolini

I took Life Design several years ago. It is a expansive, and impactful coaching process. Truly life changing! So much so that I became a certified life design coach. I would highly recommend this.

Karen Leavitt

I have taken Jackie Woodside 's Life Design program twice. The process is transformational. What I love is that it combines concrete activities to assess and change your life to reflect your desires and provides easy strategies to shift the negative underlying limiting beliefs and fears which impact the experience you have of your life.

Amanda Coburn
Phone: (508) 333-5520
52 Western View Drive
Marlborough, MA USA 01752