I'm Nancy McKay, and I got sober and survived cancer to live an inspired life.
My life has been one of adversity and the resulting resilience. That’s the thing about life, while you’re stuck in the fucking muck of adversity, you doubt that you’ll ever break free of it, let alone consider it to be a gift later on.
I grew up in a high functioning alcoholic and loving home, where children were to be seen and not heard. I never believed that my desires or opinions mattered. I was spunky until that was scolded out of me. I always had my manners in my pocket. I was a good girl, just wanting to make everyone happy. I walked on eggshells, trying not to disappoint, trying to feel valued, enough, loved. My childhood created a woman who has spent her life coping with trauma in unhealthy ways.
When I first started questioning my relationship with alcohol, I wanted to know I wasn't alone in my struggle. Despite recognizing that my drinking had spiraled out of control, I wasn't ready to quit and needed a support system. If I had access to a coach who could have helped me navigate my limiting beliefs, I may have been able to avoid hitting rock bottom.
However, my wake-up call eventually came in the form of a devastating day on Friday the 13th of March, 2009. It was a turning point where I realized my drinking had become unpredictable and dangerous. I was standing at the intersection of desperation and grace, and thankfully my attempt at suicide failed.
The next morning I sat on our patio beating myself up, feeling the shame of what I had almost done, and trying to figure out my future. I knew I shouldn’t drink any more. I just didn’t know if I could not drink anymore. Willpower has never been my strong suit. I gathered the stack of books that I had accumulated over the years about drinking and quitting. Finally, I was ready to read them. I drank lots of coffee and smoked lots of cigarettes and read and cried. All day. I had known for a long time that my drinking was getting the best of me, I was literally giving chardonnay the best parts of me, and she gave me the best of her in return—for a while. It was fun until it wasn’t. And I definitely wasn’t having any fun. I called my neighbor, Molly, a friend and an alcoholic in recovery. I knew she could help me. Molly took me to my first couple of AA meetings. The first one I went to I cried, sobbed actually, all the way through and thought, So, it’s come to this. I soon found a sponsor and started doing the work.
Getting sober is hard work. I learned that when I drank I was trying to fill up the hole, the void, in my core that began in childhood, though I didn’t realize that at the time. I understood what the phenomenon of craving is. I went to a meeting every day for over a year. It’s scary and frustrating and a pain in the ass. But it’s so worth it. I wouldn’t trade my sobriety for anything. Not anything.
A year or so after I got sober I landed a great job and life was good. I was happy, earning a good living, and everything was going along fine, thank you very much.
Years later, on my 58th birthday, I was diagnosed with early stage ovarian cancer. During my chemo treatment, I lost my hair but gained something invaluable – a newfound inner strength.
The experience changed my perspective on life. I was becpming unhappy with my corporate job and I realized that the power to create a better life for myself was in my own hands. In 2017, I began training for this new career, fueled by the knowledge that I could overcome any obstacle with the right mindset and determination.
Why I do what I do …
My personal journey with alcohol addiction and cancer, coupled with my extensive training, equips me with the expertise, empathy, and skills to guide my clients through their own transformative journeys towards truth-seeking and thriving.
I am humbled to have contributed to three multi-author books, including Ready to Fly – Volume 3 (2020), where I shared my chapter, The Intersection of Desperation and Grace. My contribution to the International Best Seller, Phoenix Rising; Powerful Women Who Rose From The Ashes To Claim Their Place (2021), titled The Gifts of Adversity, and my most recent contribution, Your Inner Wisdom, featured in Corporate Dropouts; From Employee to Entrepreneur (2022), also highlight my experiences of overcoming adversity, launching my coaching business, and embracing a new life.
I share my story widely and frequently with the hope that it may inspire others to make positive changes in their lives. While each of us faces unique challenges, the choices we make in response to them define our journeys.
I served on the Board of Directors for the Colorado Ovarian Cancer Alliance from 2018-2022.
As a Certified Wayfinder Life Coach through Martha Beck, Inc., a Certified Equus Coach® through Koelle Institute for Equus Coaching®, and a Master Facilitator of Equus Coaching® through The Center for Equus Coaching®, I have undergone extensive training to equip myself with the necessary tools to guide women through their struggles with empathy and effectiveness.
My goal is to collaborate with my clients to facilitate profound and lasting changes in their lives. Through my coaching, I aim to empower women to overcome their obstacles and lead fulfilling lives.
You'll notice horses and dragonflies here …
Horses have an uncanny ability to reveal our inner truths, while dragonflies symbolize transformation. Drawing on these powerful metaphors, I specialize in guiding women through transformative journeys by helping them confront the obstacles and limiting beliefs that keep them stuck.
Our coaching sessions will focus on identifying and challenging the thought patterns that may be hindering your personal growth. My approach centers on honest introspection and a willingness to confront difficult truths, paving the way for positive change in your life.
Inspired by the dragonfly's power, I founded Amazing Outlook Coaching, a testament to my own transformational journey from struggling with alcohol addiction to becoming a life coach. I believe that you too can experience a profound transformation, and I am committed to supporting you every step of the way.
If you are ready to break free from the patterns that are holding you back and start living a more authentic and fulfilling life, I'm here to help you find your own amazing outlook.
I have discovered my voice, much to the occasional chagrin of my husband! As a fiery Irish/Scottish woman of a certain age, I sometimes speak like a sailor (a trait I inherited from my drinking days). I am an unapologetic feminist who advocates for equal rights for everyone. My daily mantra is “Wake Up-Kick Ass-Repeat”, which I strive to embody. Although I do falter at times, I remind myself that progress, not perfection, is what truly matters in life. After all, life is a journey taken one step at a time.
I love hanging out with my husband Jimmy, and our two rescued Westies, Maggie and Tommy.