Who is Mark Gibson?

I believe my unusually full and diverse life history stems from the early development of my self-confidence and independence blended with a restless spirit for adventure.

Water is the first love of my life (I first fell in love with it when I was about eight years old), and it is the single most influential force that has continuously shaped my physical and spiritual development for more than half a century. In college, I became an All-American springboard diver during the same year that I became certified in SCUBA diving. Some years later I earned my masters degree in marine biology and took up underwater photography. Publishing articles and magazines eclipsed my science career, and in the early 80s I became a full time travel photographer. Today my wife Audrey and I live at the base of the snow-capped Mt. Shasta in northern California where I constantly energize myself in the sparkling “temples” of pure wild fresh water scattered throughout the local mountains. I connect with my Spirit every time I take a deep breath and plunge down into the crystal clear cobalt blue water where I drift motionless, suspended weightlessly in the cleansing silence of time and space.

While water gives me life, once it nearly took my life. As a result of a SCUBA diving equipment failure combined with human error (mine!), I almost drowned under the ice in a lake near Detroit in 1971. My apparently lifeless body was pulled out of the icy water by the only two people within yelling distance – a doctor and my diving buddy (who was a first aid attendant in an ambulance). I guess my time wasn’t up since, while in the hands of these two expert caregivers, I was revived in about four minutes by heart massage and mouth-to-mouth resuscitation.

After serving two years in medical research for the U.S. Army in San Francisco, I noticed that my life was not working to my satisfaction. I had developed several unhealthy habits. My interpersonal communications were inconsistent. Intimacy was a joke. I had considerable trouble finding stable employment. And, most importantly, I lacked honesty with myself and others. Upon introspection it became apparent to me that, as an adult, I had devoted no energy to creating a personal value system to guide my choices in daily life. Also missing was a spiritual orientation that would help me remain centered in my (then un-discovered) Higher Self. I started to suffer from severe claustrophobic nightmares.

Then something clicked: I decided that I did not want to spend the rest of my life floundering around because I lacked a personal mission that embraced my inner truth, needs, and goals. So, in the mid 70’s I officially launched off into a new adventure of self-help psychology (before coaching was “invented”) that introduced me to the idea that I can take positive control of my mental and emotional conditions as well as my physical destiny. I soon recognized that I needed to replace depression, avoidance, jealousy, resentment, insecurity, confusion, and emotional instability with acceptance, accountability, success, self-discovery, forgiveness, spiritual development, and peace of mind. Harry Browne’s classic book (I call it “my bible”) How I Found Freedom in an Unfree World was my springboard for me to identify and grow my beliefs and values into actions that would give me the life that I really wanted.

Since 1975 I have been a continuing education student of personal growth at ULD (the University of Learn by Doing). During this “era of assimilation” I looked for ideas that I could incorporate into my unique life needs – but only after I had exercised considerable effort to identify and organize what my values and needs were.

In more recent years, as my personal and spiritual growth paths have matured, I have moved into the “era of coalescence” where I have been able to organize my life philosophy into the concept I call Living Unconditional Love. My recently completed book of this title is undergoing its first edit, and I have greatly enjoyed conducting public discussion groups to explore the value of my ideas about the processes of living unconditional love with people who seek greater life fulfillment through sharing, honesty, forgiveness, and self-discovery. I believe that the people who live the most fulfilling lives are strongly committed to these values. From my reflection, I see that me unconsciously living these values to a considerable extent created a unfolding path that lead me to eventually enjoy the numerous benefits of being self-employed for virtually my entire life.

My transition from informal “guru”, as my friends have called me, to a trained and certified professional life coach was a natural progression in an area that I have a passion for. I enjoy a wonderful feeling of fulfillment when I facilitate someone else’s expanded self-discovery and empowerment. Creating Win/Win outcomes between my self and the rest of the world is a personal goal I consciously strive for everyday. My top coaching career priority is to share my enthusiasm and wisdom with my partner clients so that they can grow (sooner, not later) to consistently create their own Win/Win outcomes by living well, ultimately through their enhanced abilities for self-coaching.

“It’s not wisdom until I share it.”

Mark E. Gibson