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How often have you stepped into the shallow waters – feeling the warmth and tingling as the water moves through your toes and you feel the urge to walk further – yet something stops you?

Maybe you are reminded of a past challenge or trauma when you felt your foundation wasn’t strong enough and the undertow pulled you down. Maybe you felt like seaweed had wrapped around your ankles and there was no need to keep pushing further? Maybe it was just the unknown – the thought, belief or feeling like if you kept going; you may not be able to turn back.

Maybe as you stood and stepped into the shallow waters — the realization was just that – they were shallow and until you were ready to go deeper you had not met your true self – your unrealized potential – and all the obstacles and wonder that go with it.  Building foundations are key – when we have them – we can jump out of the shallows for a moment – regroup and tiptoe back in. More important though, is to know we will ALL find our truth – our purpose and our destiny when we step into the deeper waters – and when we are ready for that. It takes time.  And we are all working with different measures. Please do not judge your tiptoeing against someone else’s diving.

For all you know they leapt without a foundation to swim back to. Sometimes I feel If I could only scream from all the roof-tops so everyone could hear – that our resilience does not come from total strength and 100% confidence in solutions – but comes from the willingness and ability to break down – to be OKAY with starting in the shallows – to process acceptance and then to develop positive solutions, well I think I might just help hundreds.

In between the horrors of the past and the success of today or tomorrow lies a trap. That trap can be disguised in many ways; a trap to stay put and accept life as it is – a trap to push too hard for a new future when acceptance may be the better strategy  – (at least for the time-being) – a trap that does not allow a person to be present enough with self and surrounding to feel the ground beneath her feet – to feel safe.  So what to do to remedy that trap?  – Well step into the shallow waters. Yes it is start – but a start that fuels the ebbs and flows of energy and awareness.

And from that awareness you can build a strong foundation to jump back onto when even the shallow waters feel too cold or too strong. Foundations are tremendously important. In a house when it cracks or sinks – the house eventually loses value – deteriorates and in worse case scenarios sinks or falls over. People are no different. As long as there is some foundation –you can look up – and keep moving. If you have no foundation – all you can do is go down—fall or sink.

Setting a foundation is the platform from what intentions, goals, strategies, dreams, and visions can be developed. And even if it does crack – so long as you are willing to explore the cause and seek support – it can be fixed and built up again.  So set that foundation – start with your why – why you get up in the morning – who you would like to impact positively and then dare to step into those shallow waters.  Eventually you will have the strength and capacity to go deeper always knowing you have a foundation you can return to.

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Jessi LaCosta is the founder of BlueRio Strategies, LLC and its BlueRio Institute. Jessi LaCosta is a Transformational Speaker, Leadership and Resilience Advisor, Board Certified Coach. Her dedication and unwavering determination in helping others meet their goals and reach for their dreams grew not just from her professional experience and education, but also from her intuitive nature and ability to thrive after multiple traumatic events. These include a car-jacking abduction at gunpoint and several home invasions. Coming from a bright, creative family with some members who suffer anxiety and autism, has inspired her passion for helping others become more resilient whether they face personal or professional crises.

More than ten years ago, LaCosta founded the USA’s First Center for Credentialing and Education BCC-Approved veteran-focused coach certification training program that produces quality, certified coaches who can assist military veterans with life mapping, career transition, and career development. She also has designed and delivered BCC-Approved Continuing Education programs in the areas of transition and resilience and recently launched a new BCC-Approved Leadership and Resilience.

As a Board Certified Coach with special designations in Corporate/Leadership and Career Coaching, she has provided in excess of 3000 hours of coaching to individuals and team.  LaCosta is the recipient of both the H. Mebane Turner Service and the Thomas J. Pullen Outstanding Young Alumna Awards from the University of Baltimore and was honored with a Certificate of Special Congressional Recognition from a Member of Congress, "in recognition of your dedication to support our veterans and their families." She also received the 2013 Women Who Impact San Diego award from San Diego Metro Magazine. She has been featured in local, regional and national press.

For more information, please visit &

This Post Has 18 Comments

    1. I believe you can apply to the site to submit inspirational articles and such. Click on the link that says Become a Luminary. Thank you for reading.

  1. Beautifully written, Jessi. I just love: “Please do not judge your tiptoeing against someone else’s diving.” Ahh! Thank you.

  2. Wonderful post, Jessi. What does a coach do when the opposite too often presents itself? Someone who not only dips a toe into the water but no matter how cold the water or how fierce the waves, dives in deeper.

    I think the answer comes in on your last paragraph: “Setting a foundation is the platform from what intentions, goals, strategies, dreams, and visions can be developed.”


    1. Jonni – Thank you for such a thoughtful post – coaches do have to contend with all sides – those who do not dare to step in and those who step in too quickly and yes – in most cases we can support but helping to set a foundation.

  3. Love the post, Jessi. I think we do judge ourselves and our clients for the shallows. I like that you can also run back out of the water altogether. Some times are meant for stopping, cocooning, reflection, some for action. We often like the action better, but slow and shallow have their integrity and purpose.

  4. Thank you Lissa – love your sentiment “We often like the action better, but slow and shallow have their integrity and purpose.”

  5. Thank you Jessi, I especially love this quote below and your gentle brave nature that shines through your writing 🙂

    “It takes time. And we are all working with different measures. Please do not judge your tiptoeing against someone else’s diving”

    Here’s to embracing the shallow waters with presence, one day at a time.

  6. Tiptoeing is a beautiful way to dance through life challenges; it demonstrates grace and agility. Just like a ballerina we can maintain and find balance if we are in tune to the music of life and listen with our souls ears.

    1. Eva – thank you – this was lovely how you stated “it demonstrates grace and agility.” And I like the analogy of a ballerina – something I actually studied very seriously when I was a young girl.. balance was not easy and yet we found it and used it.

    1. Kayce –

      Somehow I missed these comments all those years ago – and goose-bumps are upon me as I realize we just connected less than one month ago (2022). Thank you for reflecting on my use of words.

    1. Amy –

      Thank you so much. It can be both hard and invigorating to share my perspectives on living our best lives – even in the face of adversity.

  7. Beautifully said and inspirational, Jessi. I’m sure that the words you write and the work that you do will ripple through people’s lives, families, and our culture. Thank you!

  8. Jessica,

    I so appreciate your comments. It is my intention to contribute to the transformation of the world – but by bit and through those who pay it forward – such as you and the work you do as well!

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