Coach. Leader. Veterinarian.From Burned Out, Unfulfilled Working Mama To Designing My Dream Life
Hey There! I’m Dr. Jeni Waeltz, and I want to share my story with you.
Because as a lifelong memory keeper, I believe our stories matter. And in sharing mine, I want to empower you to tell yours.
The short version
I’m a veterinarian, CEO of a 7-figure mobile veterinary practice, and life and leadership coach. When I’m not leading my team and growing my mobile veterinary practice, The Welcome Waggin’, I am out there supporting women to create their most vibrant lives. I specifically support high-achieving professional women just like you. I help my clients stop trying to be and do it all, get clear on who they really are, and develop the courage to believe in themselves enough to turn their dreams into reality.
Before starting my entrepreneurial journey, I spent years struggling with my self-worth, lack of confidence, and anxiety. Becoming a mom changed everything for me. I decided enough was enough and set out to master my mind. So began a lifelong journey of self-discovery. I’ve hired many coaches, went back to therapy, read personal development books, started listening to personal development and business podcasts, and invested in my self-education by becoming a certified professional coach.
I became a better version of myself and in doing so I decided to finally pursue my passions of wellness, personal and professional development, and leadership — ALL ON MY OWN TERMS.
I decided to dream again, go after those dreams, and do the impossible. And in doing so, I want you to as well.
This journey takes courage, commitment, and the ability to go deep within oneself. To let go of all the limiting beliefs and really step into the person you’ve always wanted to be.
There are so many amazing and successful people I admire. One of the things I always wished is that they documented their “before” journey. How inspiring would it have been to have records of what it was like in those early days of people like Oprah, Steve Jobs, Bezos, etc.
My purpose now extends beyond providing the best care for my animal patients and into being an example for women and professionals of what is possible when you step into your true self and raise the consciousness of your mind. I’m committed to telling and owning my story now.
“People who are crazy enough to think they can change the world are the ones who do.”
— STEVE JOBS
THAT WAS THE SHORT VERSION. FOR THE LONG VERSION, KEEP READING…
I’m a veterinarian, previous veterinary recruiter, certified professional coach, and CEO and biz owner of a 7-figure mobile veterinary practice serving the entire Western Chicago suburbs called The Welcome Waggin.
I’m also a mama of two beautiful little girls, two cats, two dogs, wife to one handsome fella, daughter, sister, and best friend.
Oh, and I’ve also spent years struggling with anxiety, lack of confidence, lack of purpose, and letting my perfectionist tendencies define my self-worth in all those labels above.
In fact, I’m a wild soul that hates playing by the rules, needs full autonomy, is a high right-brain thinker, and lover of all things creative. I am a soul that is on a journey to find her best self, to explore and feel and be present for all that the world has to offer (even those painful moments), and to be an example of what is possible when you tap into your true conscious self and go after your big, scary dreams.
As a practicing veterinarian, I’ve been burned out, strugged to gain confidence in my skillset, and thinking to myself: I’m not Mother Theresa. I cannot love all these difficult, angry clients.
I also worked for two major veterinary corporations as a veterinary recruiter, hiring 100s of doctors, hospital managers, and regional team members. I’ve heard countless stories of what people really want out of their dream job and the struggles they face in obtaining true-work life satisfaction. In those positions, I also felt the shame of not being a “real” veterinarian when I wasn’t a practicing veterinarian.
I’ve also felt tremendous highs and excitement as a veterinarian. As a practicing doctor, the impact on the lives of the patients and their pet parents is incredible. I’ve felt proud, honored, and humbled by the experience of being a practicing veterinarian. I’ve had many days running around the hospital in my flow of seeing patients. In my recruiting roles, I was able to tap into the other non-traditional routes veterinarians can take. I loved developing additional skills, traveling the country, speaking to veterinary students at campus visits, and visiting a wide variety of hospitals.
My life, like most, completely changed after kids. I wanted more than anything to stay home but knew I was too passionate about too many things to stay home. I struggled to find the right balance at first and then had the AHA moment: It’s not the balance I’m after; it’s true work satisfaction. I started asking the question: What does that look like for me?
I also started journaling and scrapbooking my kids and my own life again (I’ve been scrapbooking since I was 17!). Having your own life reflected back to you through your own lens is one of the most powerful ways to experience gratitude.
My gratitude practice was growing, and I was starting to feel so amazed by life in general and how incredible this season was with young children.
BUT IT STILL FELT LIKE SOMETHING WAS MISSING IN MY LIFE.
Then in January of 2019 while working the booth at VMX, one of the biggest annual veterinary conferences, I asked a colleague what this dream I heard him and others talking about was? As he told me about his dream, goosebumps rose all over me, and I realized how inspiring his dream and story were.
Then came the next question — “So, what’s your dream?” Any you know what — I had no clue.
I became a veterinarian.
I married my college sweetheart.
I had two beautiful girls.
I bought a dream house.
I had amazing jobs and traveled as often as I could.
All my dreams had come true. I checked off all the boxes.
All those years as a little girl and a teenager dreaming about my adult life: I was living it. This moment right now. I realized then and there that if I didn’t slow down and take in the amazing life I have in front of me and really enjoy my time, the process, and the season I was in, I would wake up 20, 30, 40 years from now and wonder where it all went.
Oh, for those that don’t know, that veterinary conference just happens to be held in Orlando every year. AND I also had my whole family with me, and after the conference, we spent a few days at Disney World — you know — where they say all your dreams can come true!
SO WHAT’S NEXT? WHAT WAS MY DREAM?
These questions rocked my mind.
I came home from that trip and started asking myself some hard questions. Are you spending your time correctly? Are you doing work that truly sets your soul on fire? Are you practicing being present in the moment? WHAT IS YOUR FREAKING DREAM?
And then, I read Traction by Gino Wickman. Traction is about the Entrepreneurial Operating System and the inspiration and development behind the success of the company I was working at. The founders followed the principles in the book to build the amazing company into what it is today. As I read that book, a wave of excitement came over me, and the idea of becoming that entrepreneur I once dreamed about started taking hold again.
I REACHED OUT TO THE UNIVERSE AND ASKED FOR THE GUIDANCE TO HELP ME FIND MY DIRECTION AND MY PATH OF DOING WORK I TRULY LOVE.
So began a lifelong journey of self-discovery. I’ve hired many coaches, went back to therapy, read personal development books, started listening to personal development and business podcasts, and invested in my self-education by becoming a certified professional coach. And slowly I started finding myself and my voice. As a chronic people pleaser, I decided enough was enough. I was going to learn the tools needed to be my true authentic self. You see, I’m not meant to fit in a one size fits all box that comes from society, familial, and my own negative self-critical talk.
I’ve also been obsessed with leadership, communication, and wellbeing since my early vet school days when I was a national VBMA officer and completed the AAHA Veterinary Management Institute certificate program.
In 2015, I sat with a colleague in her car before a University of Minnesota resident dinner and talked with her about my struggles in practice and that one day, I wanted to pay it back to the profession and help those struggling as well. I told her I always thought about getting a master’s in psychology to do just that. During my work with my life coaches and therapist, I started looking into programs and going back to school. I realized by working with my life coaches that although I loved the study of abnormal psychology and healing people what I loved the most was the forward action that came with coaching.
That evening in the car, I had set an intention and now years later that intention has truly manifested.
In the fall of 2019, I became the CEO and Founder of Dr. Jeni Waeltz, LLC. During that time, I became a Certified Compassion Fatigue Professional and was in full intense coach training through the Institute for Professional Excellence in Coaching. And throughout my training, I fell in love with humans again and realized my unique place in offering to support others on their goal-achieving journey.
And then in early 2020, with all the blinders of not knowing a global pandemic was upon us, I began the acquisition discussion of purchasing the mobile veterinary practice I had been working at part-time.
You see, I had spent over 10 years dreaming of owning a veterinary practice. Through my years of struggle and finding my place in vet med, I almost made peace that my dream was never going to happen.
In the final closing days, while the world was going crazy with concern over COVID-19, I was harnessing all my personal power to believe that I could do this. I could own a veterinary practice my way. Not working 50+ hours week. Not being stuck inside a building all day long. Bonding with my clients in the place their pets love most, their homes. THE FLEXIBILITY. THE FREEDOM. CELEBRATING THE HUMAN-ANIMAL BOND.
Well, I did it. That lifelong dream is now a reality. And now I’m still dreaming. I dream of creating a national veterinary company. I dream of a world where more people have the courage to stop playing small and start living their lives fully. Where women choose encouragement over competition and inspire and support one another as we all make our dreams come true.
A wise mentor once told me,
“Your next position and career move is the one that doesn’t exist yet.”
I tell all of you interested in working with me this:
THE NEXT SHIFT IN OUR LIVES TO A JOYFUL, VIBRANT, SUSTAINABLE ONE HAPPENS WHEN WE CHALLENGE THE STATUS QUO AND GO OUT THERE AND CREATE THE LIFE AND CAREER WE WANT. AND THE BEST NEWS — WE DO NOT HAVE TO DO IT ALONE. TOGETHER WE CAN REDEFINE WHAT A SUCCESSFUL LIFE AND CAREER LOOK LIKE.