My name is David Johnson. I live on the island of Maui in Hawaii, though I was born, raised and spent the first 40+ years of my life in the UK. In my late twenties I spent 7 years living in a Buddhist community studying meditation with a Tibetan Buddhist teacher. I use techniques that I have learnt studying Buddhism, coaching and in men’s work to help people gain confidence in themselves and in the lives that they wish to live. My niche area is working with the quieter folk. That includes the introverts, highly sensitive people, those who are shy, and those who whatever reason lean towards a quieter, more introspective way of life.
I identify as an introvert and highly sensitive person. I have always felt different in some way. When I was younger I had no reference for my personality type, I just knew that I was at my happiest reading, spending time in nature and in my own thoughts. I was a late developer and when my peers started socializing after school, I felt left out. Coupled with not understanding my personality, I became quieter and shy.
My adult years have been about understanding who I am, what I want to do in the world, moving out of my shyness and building confidence. I can be, and probably am, the quieter one in the room. Nevertheless if I know you, I can happily talk until late into the night.
Below I share a bullet pointed snapshot of my life, both a short and long version. Through the articles on this site, my hope and wish is that you will get a flavour of who I am and how I view and experience the world.
If you have any questions or are interested in working with me, please head over to the Contact page.
Over on this page are a some words from people who have worked with me.
Here is the short version of some of the hats that I wear:
- I am a Life Coach, and trained with the Co-Active Training Institute.
- I am an INFJ personality type.
- I work with Introverts and Highly Sensitive People.
- A niche of my coaching practice is working with men who identify with one or both of these personality types.
- I am a Buddhist, the foundation of my practice being the Gelug-pa tradition of Tibetan Buddhism.
- I sit in a men’s group that meets on a regular basis.
- I co-facilitate Men’s Mentoring circles in the local jail here on Maui.
- The group of women and men volunteers is called in Hawaiian, Ka Ipu Ha’a (in English, The Humble Vessel).
- Ka Ipu Ha’a’s website is here.
- An article about my life’s journey appeared in The Maui News.
Here is the slightly longer version, in the order that it has happened:
- I was born in Bristol, England.
- As a kid I lived in Seattle, USA for 1 year, and Jamaica for 2 years.
- In my teens, I taught myself to program a Commodore PET that use to sit on my parents’ dining room table. My uncle lent the computer to me from his place of work.
- I have an undergraduate degree in Computer Science, BSc.
- In my early 20’s I spent three years traveling, including a short trip home to “refuel”, through New Zealand, Australia, Pakistan, India, Nepal and China. Those years changed my life.
- I have practiced Buddhism, particularly within the Gelug-pa tradition of Tibetan Buddhism, for 30 years.
- During the early part of those years, I lived in a Buddhist Community in South Wales for 7 years, where by Tibetan Buddhist teacher lived.
- I built an award winning ecological house next door to the community and lived there for 10 years.
- That little corner of Wales where I spent 17 years of my life is still very dear to me.
- I have a Master’s degree in Transpersonal Psychology with a concentration in Ecopsychology, MA, from Naropa University.
- While studying on that Master’s program, I met my future wife.
- On getting married I moved to Portland, OR and had a wonderful 8 years there, living a very urban life, walking and biking everywhere.
- I graduated from Co-Active Training Institute’s Certification, CPCC, program.
- Reading about the personality traits of Introversion and High Sensitivity, I closed a bit more of the circle of understanding about who I was and how I ticked. As a man, I was particularly interested in how men who identified with these personality types, navigated through their lives.
- My wife had lived on Maui for 18 years and during our time in Portland, kept a house there. So we visited at least once a year. After 8 years in Portland we moved back to Maui and 2 years later moved into a new house that we built.
- In 2015 I went through a workshop with the ManKind Project, and in doing so felt as though I had filled in a missing piece in my life, men’s work. As I have heard a number of times over the past few years, “For centuries men have been sitting in circles…”
- Towards the end of 2017 I started a monthly men’s group for men who identify as Introverts and/or Highly Sensitive.
- I recently appeared on the Micro Monday podcast, Episode #59, being interviewed by Jean MacDonald.