Welcome to The LifeWork Co-Lab – where today’s “awake” leaders come to transform themselves and their businesses into a powerful force for good.


This is a place to learn, to share, to connect, and most importantly, to become better humans together.  Because our world and our grandchildren are looking for us to be the pioneers, breaking ground, and forging the path forward to a better future.

The Good News: We can all become better humans and create a better future. This is our LifeWork.

Better humans are committed to making better choices. To choose better work. To create better outcomes. To use our unique, incredible talents and passions to create a better world.

This is what I call our “LifeWork”.

LifeWork is both a sacred promise and a gift.  A promise we make to ourselves, and a gift we give to the world.

It’s about harnessing our unique gifts, talents and experiences in a way that creates value and positive impact – as part of our day job – not as a hobby.

And when we are doing it, we know it, because it feels right.

The Challenge:  The opposite of LifeWork is today’s traditional WorkLife.

For two-thirds of us in the US, worklife is not so good. (Need picture)

The promise of fulfilling, meaningful work gets lost in a most corporate work environments today.

67% of American workers are disengaged at work.

Most people don’t talk about “LifeWork”.  They crave “work-life balance” and the weekend.

And for “awake leaders”, well this almost kills us!  We know it can be better.  And we know we need to make it better.

Being a change leader isn’t easy, but do we really have a choice?

Hi, I’m Melissa O’Mara, and I am a corporate change and innovation leader who almost burned out.

I’m also a mom, a friend, a writer, a partner, a collaborator, a creator, a coach, a sometimes poet, and consultant, and a collective leadership advocate. My life and my work are integrated and aligned with my personal values and evolving worldview.  I am a human, and I am committed to becoming (until I die) a better human.  A better leader.  A better mother.  A better partner.

My passion is my greatest strength and my biggest challenge.

Passion can be addictive. I’m addicted to meaningful work. I’m addicted to birthing “what’s next.”

I’m also a recovering workaholic. (I can admit it, now.)  I know I’m not alone. Maybe you’ve been there.  Maybe you’re still there – because you are driven from within.

I’m still here, and I’m still working on becoming a better human, and on my LifeWork – on helping people to see and create “what’s needed next.”


Because I believe – I KNOW – that it will take “insiders” like us to transform today’s companies into conscious, mission-driven organizations.

And I think you’re here because you know it too. And because MAYBE you need a little help from your friends.

But it’s going to take some elbow grease.

Let’s take stock of the “current state”


It is the best of times; it is the worst of times, it is an age of wisdom, it is the age of foolishness…”  Misquoting Charles Dickens

We are living in a time of great volatility, uncertainty, turbulence, complexity and ambiguity – the VUCA world (Bennett & Lemoine, 2014; N Petrie, 2011).

I’m guessing you know this – you feel it.

Today’s greatest challenges and opportunities cross boundaries: geographic, generational, political, functional, social and organizational – they are complex systems challenges.

This complexity demands innovation and collaboration, right?  There is so much possibility!  Better ways to do almost everything…

However – too often – our best innovators are trapped in pressure cookers, focused on short term growth, profit and incrementalism.  We have created work environments where productivity, employee engagement and business results suffer.

And when the mainstream business gets a cold (e.g. misses quarterly targets), the innovation initiatives get the flu. And people die.

(Oops – I mean they are reassigned, downsized, or stripped of budget.)

Remember the good news?  We can all become better humans and create a better future. This is our LifeWork.

Systems level change and innovation are needed everywhere. In every industry. You know this too… it can feel really overwhelming!

It’s also the opportunity of a lifetime.  My lifetime. Your lifetime. Our lifetime.

My lifetime. Your lifetime. Our lifetime.

Have we ever needed better leaders, innovators and collaborators more than we need them now?

We are always creating outcomes – with our words, our ideas, our work, our purchases, our (conscious and unconscious) choices.

So let’s “co-lab”orate and be(com)e a more powerful force for good.  At work. And at home. Together.


It’s about be(com)ing better humans and creating a better world. Because our lives and our work matter.  And if we aren’t doing our LifeWork – we are missing the opportunity of a lifetime. Literally.

Welcome.  I hope you find fuel for mind, heart, and soul.  And some tools for the journey.

Because we have important work to do.

And none of us can do it alone.