Diane Wallner Pauly

The Book

The Author’s life had been a whirlwind journey, moving from one learning event to another. Diane, as a young child, experienced fun and happiness. She remembers those feelings of pain and suffering from physical, emotional, and sexual abuse from the past. She remembers her life of beatings, a foster home, quitting school, marriage at age 17, an unfaithful emotionally abusive husband, depression, counseling, divorce and no friends or family to lean on. Diane responded to the 1950’s societal expectations dictated for women.

The enormous pain Diane was living finally led her to self-growth classes/seminars, a return to school, and even on to college, which led to a professional career, new friends, joyful times with her four beautiful daughters, a new wonderful husband and most importantly, self-respect. The whirlwind continued but now Diane was in control of her own happiness and joy. She learned how to be the author of the rest of her life.

In a unique style of writing her book, Diane offers concrete suggestions, based on actual unbelievable life experiences, showing step by step, how life can be transformed from Anguish to Joy.

I would like to thank my co-author, Judith Adrian, who wasn’t just an editor, but also my teacher with the patience of an angel. Judith saw more than just an autobiography in me, she also saw my story as a way for giving a guiding hand to those searching for answers to the Why of it all.

Over the course of ten months, Diane and I worked together to configure her life story into written form. We began with early years and moved to the present, her continuing evolution as she says. Diane has a marvelous spirit, a profound curiosity, and a loving heart. All of these characteristics were woven together to co-create ‘A Purpose-Driven Life of Helping Others.’ Judith Adrian


I have known Diane Pauly personally over many years and many situations. In all of these times and situations, I have seen evidence of several essential qualities in Diane. One, is that she sees reality very clearly, in all of its beauty and difficulty. This is especially true on a personal level, as she views her own life and the people around her. However, she has also had a personal experience of a spiritual connection with essential love that allows her to see the difficult realities of her own life and the lives she encounters with compassion rather than judgement. 

In addition, she understands her own life and the lives of others in terms of possibility and transcendence rather than victimhood. She sees the reality of trauma and suffering, but has found enough healing and growth in her own life and the larger life we all share to allow her clarity and compassion, but also healing and growth.

This has led Diane to a deep need to share her own healing and the love she has experienced through a life of sharing and working to heal others. For most of her life, this work has been a direct sharing, using techniques she has learned through her own healing and others that she has learned over the course of her therapeutic experience. She has shared with women who have experienced trauma, but also understands how the trauma we all share impacts the suffering we inflict on others. This has led her to expand her work to include abusers to help them to heal and accept their own trauma, rather than inflict it on others in a vicious cycle. There are other forms of service she has offered that you will read about in this book.

Now Diane has felt called to share her own history of trauma as well as her journey of healing. Diane would be the first to say that she is not holding herself as the model for everyone in recovery, and would share my knowledge that this is not offered for you as a blueprint, but as a story of how you can learn and grow from your own particular journey of healing. It is always an individual journey, but we can learn much from the shared experience and support of others.

One of the strengths of this book is that Diane has distilled some helpful experiences into particular steps that can be applied by others. They are laid out at the end of her accounts of her own experiences, in concrete suggestions for action and understanding. These are suggested action steps she has gleaned from these experiences that she can now share with others.

Dr. Harvey Honig, Ph.D., author of A People’s Guide to An Interfaith Christian Theology in a Time of Transformation

Book Reviews

Here are some reviews and comments by readers of the manuscript.

Peg Hau
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As an avid reader, I love all genres; this book fit into so many: spiritual, narrative, adventure, memoir, self-help.
 Diane shows us how life’s twists and turns and surprises shape our destiny.
 To read this story is like stepping into the shoes of an evolving guru!
Marianne HelmDirector, Wholistic Health Counseling Services, LLC, Retired
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While reading Diane Pauly’s book, “A Purpose-Driven Life of Helping Others: From Joy to Anguish and Back – A Memoir”, I found myself wondering how the bright, successful woman I came to know in her middle years had found her way through the experiences that have left others in similar situations persistently depressed and non-functional.   And then I glanced again at the cover. The subtitle, ‘from joy to anguish and back’ and I understood that her tenacity and strength of spirit had traveled with her through it all; her inner guidance had shown her that a better life was hers if she could only find the courage to keep moving forward. 

I read Diane’s book without stopping.  I found her story compelling, interesting, well written and engaging.  She did not embellish the distressing moments which, for me, indicated a healed woman.  She did not overly celebrate the successes.  Again, for me, that indicated that Diane has emerged well balanced and wise. 
Congratulations Diane on writing your life story that is sure to be on therapists’ bookshelves and in the hands of those still struggling to get to ‘joy.’  You showed us it is possible.

Pamela K. HertelMS, LCSW, LPC
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Diane writes passionately and purposefully of her relatable life experiences, from pain to intense joy! “A Purpose-Driven Life of Helping Others: From Joy to Anguish and Back – A Memoir” is about her journey from victim to survivor to thriver. Pauly is a determined life learner, reframing struggles into opportunities. She transforms her life through self-responsibility and self-empowerment, finding purpose in helping others on their journey to healing, peace and love beyond fear.

“A Purpose-Driven Life of Helping Others: From Joy to Anguish and Back – A Memoir” can help inspire the reader to believe in our ability to create a life of wonder.

Rev Paul FunfsinnCelebrating Life Ministries
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In her very unique style of writing, I found Diane's story, quite fascinating as it captured her early childhood memories of struggles and disappointments that she endured to just survive so many painful lessons of loss in her life. Diane has a free spirit and survives many years of hardship and brokenness. Diane's determination to make something of herself took her through so very difficult relationships, as well as not finishing high school and marrying very young to get out of the house because of the abuse in that household.

Diane was determined to make the best of life, and she did find the man of her dreams after many failed
 relationships. What rose out of the ashes was a strong spiritual essence, a love to be of service to those suffering
 and who were less fortunate. This diamond in the rough has shown her readers that everything is possible with God and that there is a plan for each of us, regardless of our present situations. Diane found that hard work, family, and her love for God and nature have brought her into the Highest form of Grace, which is to Love and BE LOVE! Great Read!