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Welcome to Co-Active Life Design
Your Path to Wellbeing and Empowerment

Greetings, I am Marie Bernardo, a certified well-being coach and trauma-sensitive meditation and mindfulness teacher. I founded Co-Active Life Design with a deep commitment to supporting and helping individuals who find themselves feeling overwhelmed, anxious, exhausted and stressed.

Life’s modern demands

often lead us to a frenzied existence, relentlessly juggling an array of commitments and putting the needs of others before our own. It’s as if we’re running on a hamster wheel, our best efforts seemingly unable to make a dent in the ceaseless cycle. The weight of responsibilities can become suffocating, leaving us gasping for a breath of air, struggling to keep our heads above water. The world might perceive us as paragons of competence and achievement, but beneath the surface rages a storm of self-doubt, a fear of not measuring up, of falling short of expectations. This inner turmoil, this silent suffering, is a burden carried by many, a silent chorus of souls seeking solace.

I want you to know that it’s perfectly alright to feel this way, to acknowledge the storm that rages within. You are not alone in your journey. Through my experience as a well-being coach and a trauma-sensitive meditation and mindfulness teacher, I’ve come to understand that these feelings are shared by countless others. They are a reflection of the challenges and complexities of modern life.

At Co-Active Life Design, I’ve created a haven where you can find refuge from the storm, a place where your well-being takes centre stage. My approach is deeply rooted in empathy, understanding and a profound commitment to supporting your transformation. Through personalised sessions in a trauma-informed environment, I offer you the tools and strategies that have helped me cope with my own chronic health condition. Together, we will navigate life’s challenges, effectively manage stress, anxiety, panic and overwhelm, all while fostering profound self-awareness and self-acceptance for a more balanced and fulfilling life.

Marie Bernardo
Founder Co-Active Life Design

unwavering passion

Transformational Life Skills

I am fuelled by an unwavering passion to empower individuals with what I call “transformational life skills.” These skills, carefully curated and cultivated, serve as a catalyst for self-acceptance and the alleviation of suffering. My ultimate goal is to guide you towards a life lived intentionally and purposefully, where you are the architect of your own existence. Together, we will discard the default mode of living and embrace a design that aligns with your aspirations, where mental fitness is paramount and thriving is the standard.

In this journey, I implore you to shed the weight of guilt and hesitation. Prioritising your well-being is not an act of selfishness; rather, it is a commitment to your holistic health – physical, mental and emotional. By investing in yourself, you become better equipped to nurture your relationships, contribute positively to your communities and embark on a path of profound self-discovery.

The first step towards your transformation awaits. Reach out to embark on a collaborative journey that will propel you towards a life where thriving is not a distant dream but an everyday reality. Welcome to Co-Active Life Design, where your well-being is not just a goal; it’s a way of life.

A little about me

Accredited Qualifications & Certifications

  • Graduate Certificate in Careers Education and DevelopmentRMIT
  • Diploma of Leadership Coaching and MentoringFire Up Coaching – Accredited Coach Training Program – International Coaching Federation
  • Certificate IV in Business and Personal CoachingFire Up Coaching – Accredited Coach Training Program – International Coaching Federation
  • Certificate IV in Training and AssessmentMonash University – Issued by Monash Student Association
  • Advanced Certificate in Guiding and Teaching Meditation and Mindfulness – Specialising in Mental Health & Well-Being and Community & Support GroupsAustralian Centre for Meditation and Mindfulness – Accredited via industry’s professional body – Meditation Australia
  • Strengths CoachingGallup Global Strengths Coaching Course
  • Emotional Intelligence– Fire Up Coaching – Roche Martin ECR, ECR360 & ECR Workshop Certification Course
  • HBDI CertificationHerrmann Asia
  • Trauma-Sensitive Mindfulness: The Introductory Guide to Recognizing Trauma, Responding Skillfully, and Preventing Retraumatization (online)David Treleavan US
  • Advanced Trauma-Sensitive Mindfulness: Widening the Window of Tolerance and Supporting Trauma Recovery (online)David Treleavan US
  • Acceptance Commitment Therapy for Depression and Anxiety DisordersDr. Russ Harris
  • Trauma-Focused – Acceptance Commitment TherapyDr. Russ Harris
  • Acceptance Commitment Therapy for Perfectionism and People PleasingDr. Russ Harris
  • Compassion Focused Therapy: Advanced Clinical SkillsThe Compassionate Mind Foundation UK
  • Introduction to Theory & Practice of Compassion-Focused TherapyThe Compassionate Mind Foundation UK
  • Compassion-Focused Therapy (Compassion Mind Training)Mindful Path
  • Mindful Self-Compassion Training(Developed by Dr. Kristin Neff and Dr. Chris Germer) – MindfulPresence 
  • Archetypal Coaching Mastery 1A – Passion and Purpose CoachingEvolve Now
  • Archetypal Coaching Mastery 1B – Masculine and Feminine Archetypes CoachingEvolve Now
  • Archetypal Coaching Mastery 1C – Matrix Therapies CoachingEvolve Now
DEI Statement

Because everybody matters

Here at Co-Active Life Design diversity, equity and inclusion are values that we uphold, embrace and support. We are committed to supporting and working with all members of the community, people of every ethnicity, age, race, gender, identity, ability, sexual orientation, socio-economic status, physical ability, religion or political belief. Because there is no place for injustice. We firmly believe that a diverse, equitable and inclusive company drives innovation and results in more positive outcomes for all.

Our commitment to uphold these values is the key driver to ensuring that Co-Active Life Design will remain an inclusive and equitable business.

Client Reviews

Nicole Bishops Whiteman

Pickled Willow Flowers
Founder / Floral Designer

5 stars

I found Marie’s well-being workshop very informative and also inspiring.

I have been a business owner and a single parent for many years now and I am always juggling work and family, and everything else going on!

It’s very common for women to ignore their own needs when providing so much to those around them.

Marie’s workshop was a good reminder that we need to nourish and nurture ourselves in order to thrive and be available to those who rely on us.

I loved how Marie’s personal journey led her to the work she does now. Her passion is awesome!

Anna Ramondetta

Luminus League
Alumni XX Founder

5 stars

Marie was a wonderful guest speaker at our Designing Your 2024 Roadmap Workshop for Women in Business. Her ability to engage the audience with her personal journey, transitioning from a high-pressure global corporate role to finding her true calling as a certified wellbeing practitioner, was impressive. She effortlessly drew us in, sharing practical, actionable advice and wellbeing techniques that we could all immediately apply to better navigate stress in our lives.

Marie’s excellent presentation and actionable strategies will undoubtedly continue to inspire positive changes in all of our wellbeing journeys. We are immensely grateful for the invaluable knowledge and practices she shared. We look forward to working with her again.

Magda Trojak

We Rise Network
Bayside Vic Coordinator

5 stars

Marie recently spoke at our We Rise Networking event. She spoke all about well-being and the importance of self-care as an entrepreneur. She left everyone with a number of fantastic strategies and tools to manage our overwhelm and stress. As well as many ways in which we can fit in self-care in our busy lives. Marie was absolutely amazing and definitely showed her expertise and knowledge in this area. She was very relatable, created a beautiful vibe and energy in the room and her whole presentation was easy to understand. Everyone had only positive feedback.

Chrissy De Blasis

Career Revival
Founder and Director

5 stars

Working with Marie was one of the best things I have done for myself. Her sessions were insightful, enlightening and empowering. Before meeting Marie, I thought I was a pretty self-aware person, but the inner strengths, resources and blind spots Marie was able to unearth in me were truly life changing. After completing the Gallup Strengths assessment, Marie carefully and empathetically took me on a journey of self-discovery which has helped me to understand so much more about myself and how I can leverage these strengths to reach my fullest potential. Marie has such a gentle, calming and beautiful nature, she is an amazing listener and really sees and hears you as an individual. I have also completed a meditation session and wellbeing assessment with Marie, both of which were highly valuable sessions that provided me with practical tools and strategies to use when life gets overwhelming or to ensure I maintain a good sense of wellbeing. I have absolutely no hesitation in recommending Marie to anyone I know. She is a remarkable person, with a gift for enriching people’s lives.

Darius Clarion Ilies

Public Sector Commission
Project Support Officer / Strategic Workforce Futures

5 stars

I would recommend Co-Active Life Design to others and quite frankly, the answer to why is: Marie. I have had the privilege of being coached by a number of different people and what sets her apart is her adaptability and well-balance approach. More specifically, the Co-Active Life Design Leadership programme assisted in bringing a new level of thinking to my strengths, values and emotional intelligence skills. In doing so, I gained a structure from which to approach challenges and opportunities. Marie helped me weave strengths, values and skills into all my goals in a way that made them far more tangible.

Co-Active Life Design helped me tremendously on the journey to master myself, and that is true empowerment. If you are looking for someone to tell you what to do, this is not for you. Co-Active Life Design is here to help you reach your potential and give you the tools to decide where you need to be and how to get there.

Try it. It is likely you will be surprised where it takes you. I most definitely did not expect the way in which this positively impacted my professional as well as personal life.

Kathy McKenzie

FIREUP Coaching RTO 22458
Founder and Director

5 stars

I have had the privilege of meeting Marie in our Accredited Coach Training Program and subsequently inviting her to be one of our Associates and Contract Facilitators. Marie has a deeply supportive approach when training and creates a safe space for participants to be vulnerable and curious about other ways of being beyond their current ways of thinking. Her passion to help people move beyond trauma to be the best version of themselves makes her an asset to both individuals she works with and corporate groups. I highly recommend if you are thinking about supporting you or your team’s mental health you discuss with Marie how she can enhance resilience and wellbeing.

Start Now

Ready to Transform Your Life? Let’s Talk!
Embark on your journey of growth and self-discovery with Marie at Co Active Life Coaching. Marie’s expert guidance and compassionate approach have already helped many embrace their potential and make significant life changes. If you’re ready to explore how life coaching can enhance your personal and professional life, we’d love to hear from you.
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