Rochester Woman Online June 2023 Edition

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Sherylanne Diadato



Chris Atkinson



The Rutland Twins



98PXY’s “Moose”


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Our latest cover woman is coming back to her alma mater, 30 years later and as the new Principal for Our Lady Of Mercy all females middle and high school. Please give a huge welcome to Dr Sherylanne Diodato as our fabulous June 2023 cover story and for sharing her role on empowering our future women leaders.

PLUS, you won’t want to miss our “Influential Man”, creator of UR Worth It and the patented Mito-Prime, Chris Atkinson and so many more incredible features and inspiring women (and men) in this edition.

Did you know Rochester Woman is so much more then just an online publication? We host events, provide branding and marketing for clients, do LIVE video showcases and more. We are all about providing our community of women everything they need to be successful!

Know someone who would be perfect for a cover, a feature, or a spotlight? Do you have a business that is you want tot promote to an audience of over 100k? CONTACT ME TODAY at


We are honored to have the new principal for Our Lady Of Mercy all female Middle and High Schools, Dr Sherylanne Diodato on our cover shot on location by Julie Oldfield Photography.

“Feminism isn’t about making women stronger. Women are already strong, it’s about changing the way the world perceives that strength.”






Kelly Breuer

Marisa Zeppieri & Christine Piacentino

Kelly Breuer

Julie Oldfield

Robyn Baty

Julie Oldfield

Brandon Vick Photography Lightimpressions


Lisa Ireland

Robin DeWind

Lisa Wagner

Hannah McGoff

Denise “Karma” Clifford

Beth Parry

Suzanna Dutro

Christine Piacentino

Maya McNulty

Kaitlyn Vittozzi

Lori Bruton

Karen Putz

Kristen Messina

Dr Sherylanne Diodato

Rebecca Candelaria




Kelly Breuer

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In our June 2023 edition of Rochester Woman Online, we thought it fitting, as the school year draws to a close, to feature Dr. Sherylanne Diodato, the new principal for Our Lady of Mercy (all women’s) Middle and High School as our latest cover woman.

Sherylanne not only graduated from OLM 30 years ago herself, but she now is leading the next generations of women and empowering them to build their own personal and academic confidence. She is not just a principal, but a true role model for these young ladies.

We were excited to talk with Sherylanne about her background, influencing the younger generation, what the future entails and more. We hope you enjoy what we discussed.

Please tell our audience a little bit about yourself and your background . After graduating from Our Lady of Mercy High School in 1993, I attended the University of Rochester, and in 1997 I received a Bachelor of Arts degree in Biology and Psychology. While finishing my Bachelors degree at the University of Rochester, I continued to expand my education by enrolling in the 3-2 School Counseling Program at the Margaret Warner Graduate School of Education and Human Development at the University of Rochester. In 1998, I received a Master of Science in Education with a concentration

in School Counseling and in 1999; I continued to pursue a concentration in Community Mental Health Counseling. As a life-long learner, in 2006, I received a Certificate of Advanced Studies in Educational Administration from SUNY Brockport. In addition, I pursued a PhD in Educational Administration: Education Leadership and Policy from University at Buffalo and was conferred with this degree in 2014. While pursuing my PhD, in 2010, I earned a Certificate of Advanced Studies in Teaching and Leading for Diversity from University

has been an honor and a privilege to take on this position as an alumna and role model for the girls I lead. I feel that because of my education and faith, I am able to be a mentor, active listener, and a trustworthy leader who helps to guide and lead our young women to their highest attainable successes.

What do you feel are some of the qualifications that you possess that have better prepared you for this position?

at Buffalo. I worked in the Rochester City School District as a teacher and then as a School Counselor for 20 years. I was the Dean of the Middle School at Our Lady of Mercy School for Young Women for 3 years and was appointed principal this past February.

What has it been like taking over the role as Principal for Our Lady of Mercy?

As the principal of an all-women’s Catholic Middle and High School, it

I feel that through my 20 years of experience in Counseling in the Rochester City School District, my many years of Catholic education, and continued education and research, I have developed an educational philosophy that calls me to have an open mind and understand multicultural differences. This philosophy helps me as a leader to recognize that each individual in the educational system has a specific role to play in the development of our students. Every stakeholder deserves to be heard, and has a responsibility to provide high expectations and high levels of support for our students in order to help them become empowered to focus on their strengths and develop their talents.

Who are some of the strong women that you feel have inspired you?

My mom, Carol, was an educator at Mercy for many years. She was my teacher, mentor, and friend. She showed me how to love others and


talents, which will lead to their personal and academic CONFIDENCE. ”

It is important to EMPOWER young women through a strengths based educational model. Through this model female students will DISCOVER an increased awareness of their abilities and

understand the needs of others. She helped me build my confidence and taught me to never give up.

How do you empower yourself and the young women around you?

It is important to empower young women through a strengths based educational model. Through this model female students will discover an increased awareness of their abilities and talents, which will lead to their personal and academic confidence.

In addition, female students will be able to transform this awareness into further growth, as they develop interpersonal relationships and collaborate with their peers. Through this collaboration female students will support and motivate each other as they work to achieve their present and future endeavors. For young women, the beginning of adolescence can present many challenges physically, emotionally, and socially. The growth mindset is fostered as young women begin an academic and spiritual journey in our community at Our Lady of Mercy. As an educator who has a wealth of knowledge about social emotional care, I share this knowledge with the young women at Mercy. This knowledge coupled with a strengths-based growth mindset educational model will enable the young women of Mercy to have agency.

The young women at Mercy will feel empowered to develop problem solving and enhanced communication skills that will enable them to overcome the challenges of adolescence. Through

this empowerment young women will begin to develop self-awareness and self-confidence spiritually, socially, emotionally, and academically. These personal strengths will allow young women to become self-advocates, understand cultural differences, and be accepting and advocates for others. This empowerment will also help adolescent young women to become strong leaders in their personal, spiritual, and educational journeys.

What is one thing people don’t know about you?

I just learned how to ski and feel that even though this is a challenging activity, I love celebrating this accomplishment.

. What is one piece of advice you have been given that you have never forgotten ?

Never give up and take one step at a time.

What’s the most important risk you have ever taken? Would you do it again?

Going into a PhD program in Educational Leadership and Policy at the University at Buffalo at 30 years old. It took me 9 years to complete, but I completed it. I would do it again because I learned so much about myself and I gained so much knowledge to help me be the leader I am today.

How do you balance your personal and professional responsibilities as a leader?

It is very important for me to have

balance in my life. First and foremost my Catholic faith is what helps to carry me through the celebrations and challenges of my day. My family and friends are very important to me, they help me to be able to celebrate life. For relaxation I enjoy going to local theater and music events, going to the lake, gardening, and traveling.

How do you cultivate a strong and supportive team culture?

I cultivate a strong and supportive team culture by listening to people and recognizing and celebrating individuals for their strengths.

How do you approach decisionmaking and problem-solving as a leader?

When making decisions I always ask myself who does this decision impact and how will this decision impact these individuals. I am mindful of how the outcomes of the decision will impact the organization positively or negatively. For me as the principal of Our Lady of Mercy School for Young Women, it is also really important when making decisions that I think about the impact and outcomes through a mission driven lens.

How do you handle stress and pressure in such a demanding position?

My faith helps to ground me in stressful situations. Also leaning on my teams as thinking partners helps me to work through challenging situations and problem solve to come up with solutions that will encourage growth and understanding.

“Through this empowerment young women will begin to develop self-awareness and selfconfidence spiritually, socially, emotionally, and academically.”

“I cultivate a strong and supportive team culture by listening to people and recognizing and celebrating individuals for their strengths.”

How do you balance short-term and long-term goals?

I believe short-term goals help you develop and accomplish long-term goals. I always start with the end in mind and develop my goals according to what outcomes I hope to achieve within 1-5 years.

How do you stay motivated and inspired?

I am motivated and inspired by our students at Mercy. They are resilient, inquisitive, highly motivated, and leaders. They encourage me to have these qualities, even when challenges arise.

What does a typical day as principal of an all girls school look like?

There is not a typical day. Every day is different and filled with new learning and experiences that help me to think critically and purposefully.

What do you see as the top issues facing girls’ schools today?

Whether you are in an all girls school or a coed school, today, our young adolescent women are impacted by mental health challenges.

As educators we need to be aware of our student’s needs and help to empower them to find the skills to

overcome these challenges.

How should schools empower young female voices today?

At Mercy we empower young female voices by encouraging them to Lead by Example. It is important for young adolescent women to have a growth mindset that empowers them to find their inner voice by participating in extracurricular activities and find success in their academics.



Rochester Woman Online recently had the opportunity to interview founder and creator of the UR Worth It brand, and patented mito-prime (also known as ‘the Longevity Vitamin”) for our Influential Man feature and you won’t believe what he had to say about his incredible journey.

Can you share your personal journey of how you got started in direct sales and built your own business? What inspired you to pursue your current career path, and what were the key factors that contributed to your success. Network Marketing gives the average person a place to earn above average income. Someone like me, who literally made minimum wage and yet still began to earn 7 figures annually. One main thing that helped me to see success is when I understand that have an accountability partner in business is beyond vital. A person to call each day for guidance, mentorship is really important and Network Marketing has that built into its system.

What is your background? Why start a sales company in the health and wellness arena?

My background consists of jails, institutions and near death due to the fact I never controlled my diabetes. I have now been sober for 23 years and live by a mantra of People Helping People. So when a proprietary ingredient named MitoPrime was

presented to me I knew we had to pursue something special with it. What could be a better way than allowing individuals to capitalize financially instead of just allowing a box store to make the income. That is People Helping People!

You have a patent for Mito-prime. Tell us what that is, and why you got the patent.

MitoPrime is the longest lasting

and fat conversion?

With nearly 60% of Americans and Canadians being listed as obese we knew we needed to help and we are indeed doing that! Why mitochondrial support? Well it effects everything, so why not go to the source to make the biggest impact possible. Many companies play small or safe, we decided to attack to make a big difference in people’s life and now we are.

How do you believe your products in the direct sales industry contribute to improving people’s overall health and wellness?

With so many testimonials pouring in daily after just two years in business it just makes you smile. Things from lower cholesterol reports, lower A1C and blood pressure readings. People who had pains and aches that now do not and so many more. It truly is life changing to know you are helping.

deepest reaching antioxidant known. It does not just work at the cellular level, but at the Molecualar level, It has been dubbed the Longevity Vitamin in the Scientific community so we believed the patent was more than necessary as the patent states for increased lifespan

What inspired you to create products specifically focused on mitochondrial support, nutrition,

What differentiates your nutritional products from other offerings in the market?

Pain stacking research. MitoPrime was 10 years in the making with over 100 Doctors and Scientists from 10 countries which tells us that it was an honest team effort around the world. Another item for us we use the daily recommended doses of each ingredient. Others have been known to put a little dab of this or that so they can market it, Nope we believe in transparency.

“My background consists of jails, institutions and near death due to the fact I never controlled my diabetes. I have now been sober for 23 years and live by a mantra of People Helping People.”

As an influential figure, what advice would you give to young individuals aspiring to make a positive impact in their respective fields?

Training and Mentorship are key, not just a company training. You need to outsource and discover trainings in the fields of personal development and speech. When we learn to become better communicators we learn to respect ourselves more which in turn allows us to help others better.

Could you provide some examples of success stories from customers who have benefited from your mitochondrial support and fat conversion products?

As far as the fat goes, we turn the stubborn white fat into brown fat. You see the brown fat is was we can burn as energy. So when you are able to target the stubbornness it becomes a blessing. Many stories of people like Frank S. who lost 70 pounds in 8 months and Pamela G who went from a 4X to a medium in less than a year and was able to ditch her walker and wheelchair. As far as mitochondrial support how about ridding people of arthritic issues, the ole trigger finger getting resolved in less than a month. However one of the most rewarding is helping individuals with digestive and/or gut health problems. You see when MitoPrime enters your system it is able to get transported to the areas of most need it truly is an amazing ingredient and that is why we put it in all of our products.

What kind of research or studies

have been conducted to support the claims of your products?

Well over 800 studies and research articles have been listed so far. Recently Harvard completed a multi year study on humans that stated the higher the level of MitoPrime you have in your system the longer a life you can live. Remember we have the Longevity vitamin.

How do you educate and train your direct sales representatives to effectively communicate the benefits of your products to potential customers?

We love to train. First we give our representatives all the tools for FREE. Websites with training video’s, Apps to use, weekly and daily trainings. Now we have also begun focusing on a real fun part of it all--Live In Person Events. So in essence we offer multiple avenues for training since networking allows you to work with all different personality types, which is just so amazing!

What strategies do you employ to build and maintain a strong network of independent sales representatives? One main focus, Communication. Yes we have tools, but tools do you absolutely no good, actually they are worthless if you are not willing to physically communicate with your representatives often and well ALWAYS.

How do you stay up to date with the latest advancements and research in the field of mitochondrial support, nutrition, and fat conversion?

Support, no one individual can do all things. The greatest minds in the world always have a supporting cast. So at UR Worth It we have a staff of medical professionals who stay on top of all the research and developments. We use formulators from around the globe so we increase our connections and judgement processes, we also have a tech team who’s focus is real simple- always be open.

Can you describe the process of developing new products and how you decide which areas to focus on? Need, what will help more people. Every two weeks we have meetings to discuss products and ingredients. When we do decide on a particular product the best part for me is the trials. We never use the same people and we always begin development with multiple formulas. When then trial, tweak and trail again. Sometimes the trails take months upon months as we will never deliver anything that is less than AMAZING.

How do you maintain a balance between your personal and professional life, and what strategies do you employ to manage your time effectively?

This is always a fun question. First of all their is no such thing as balance that is a term that was just literally made up. Secondly is having a loving and caring support group and or individual. For me it is my wife and son’s. The carry life with the same motto I do, “PEOPLE HELPING PEOPLE” maybe we were a match made in heaven and I can defienetly

“Why mitochondrial support? Well it effects everything, so why not go to the source to make the biggest impact possible.”

accept that for it allows us to work together to help even more individuals. However you still must have the day or that moment in time when you put your phone down even if its just for a short time.

Can you share a pivotal moment or decision in your life that shaped your outlook and contributed to your growth as an individual?

Steve Thompson, October of 2004! Is that specific enough ha ha. He become my spontaneous mentor and still carries that title today. He opened me up to learning and listening.

Sometimes we look in the wrong places for answers and then sometimes God puts the answer directly in our paths. Secondly or maybe first- it is 7-28-01 my first day without alcohol or drugs, and with Gods grace it remains as my last day as well.

How do you address concerns or skepticism that some people may have regarding direct sales companies and their products?

I never try to convince anyone. People are capable of making their own decisions and their are some who do not believe in working hard for

a few good years and then taking the rest of their life off while the income continues to grow and help their family.

In your experience, what are the key challenges and rewards of being a direct sales company owner and creator? Challenges are always technology as it changes each day so keeping up with it is more than a full time job. The rewards always out way any challenge and the rewards are helping people. In my short career I have helped more than 20 individuals earn more than $1,000,000

‘ MitoPrime was 10 years in the making with over 100 doctors and scientists from 10 countries which tells us that it was an honest team effort around the world.”

and helped countless people earn more than $25,000 annually. Such a rewarding feeling.

How do you incorporate customer feedback into the improvement of your products?

From time to time we send emails with questionnaires, we send cards with our products asking for them to reach out and/or mail them back in. But soon we will be hosting zoom meetings for our customers to give them a forum for discussion. After all customers are the backbone of any industry so you better learn to treat them with as much respect if not more.

Have you faced any regulatory challenges or obstacles related to your products, and how have you overcome them?

Nope, our facilities are FDA approved, our compliance department scours the internet daily for any abnormalities and since we always keep an open line of communication it allows things to operate very smoothly. However our biggest certification truly helps which is from the NSF, the National Sanitation Federation. You see from the Covid experience we recognized that this is truly a valuable asset.

As a leader, how do you approach decision-making, and what factors do you consider to ensure the best outcomes for your team or organization?

Field FIRST, it is never about me our the companies bottom line.

What future developments or innovations do you envision in the field of mitochondrial support, nutrition, and fat conversion? Oh, now this I can not speak on. I mean you have to allow people to have a moment of anticipation. However I will say this, look forward to having the ability to take a simple and inexpensive test to prove to yourself just what our products are doing for you. Yes innovation is one of our focuses at UR Worth It.

How do you ensure the sustainability and long-term success of your direct sales business?

Leadership, everything in life rises and falls on the ability of leaders. So to this day I remain being teachable and coachable. I personally have a life coach and a business coach as I choose to never allow myself to think I have so -called arrived. By doing this I am alwyas reminded of the importance of Leadership and so this helps me to do things with the leaders so they have access to the same information for their own growth.

What is your favorite product and why?

UR Vitality and it is because of the results. Being a type 1 diabetic i have always struggled with things like Cholesterol, high blood pressure and my A1C readings. But, no longer. No more pills now to help with blood pressure or cholesterol, just good ole UR Vitality!

Tell us one thing people don’t know about you.

The last 10 minutes of my day is spent with just me and God. A few short minutes of reflection to stay connected and in peace.

Looking back on your journey, what would you consider your most significant achievement, and what lessons did you learn from that experience?

Crawling my way out of multiple home foreclosures, car repossessions and bankruptcy which where all totally self inflicted incidents causes solely by myself, I learned that when you stop being so self centered thinking you are all you need and begin to allow others to help you and guide you that it can open up a new world that you probably never even imagined. Once I learned and accepted this financially everything changed. One year I made just over $6,000 then I learned my lesson. The next year I earned over $200,000. Now let me be clear making money is not everything but it does rank right up there with oxygen.

“No one individual can do all things. The greatest minds in the world always have a supporting cast.”


If you think you are seeing double when Flower City 1872 plays, you’re not.

That’s twins Maya and Taylor Rutland running around on the field, who keep trying to make life difficult for the opposition.

They’re twins, talented soccer players who have a history of attacking the goal. The Kendall, N.Y. residents might look alike, but bring different skillsets to the table, or in this case, to the pitch.

Taylor is an attacking midfielder, a creator. On many occasions in her career, she has set up Maya, a forward, for goals. Maya, incidentally, is older than Taylor by a minute, if you were wondering.

Because they have trained and played together since being introduced to the beautiful game when they were some two decades ago, they know each other’s moves.

They could probably do it blindfolded.

“It helps us because normally with new teammates, it takes a while to build that chemistry,” Taylor said. “We just have that instant connection. We don’t even have to talk. I know what run she’s going to make. She knows where I’m going to play the ball.”

Maya added: “It’s always so nice having a teammate that knows the type of runs you make. I know the type of ball that she likes to play. So, it makes for good chemistry on the field.”

And sometimes for some beautiful goals.

The 24-year-olds scored one for Kendall High School, a Section V Class C power, years ago.

“She had taken a free kick from almost half field,” Maya said. “She sent it into the 18 for me and I had a backwards header into the goal. We were behind and we tied up the game.”

To be successful in any sport, it takes talent and years and years of practice.

playing in college,” Taylor said. “It just really motivated us.”

Their passion for the game grew, watching games on TV, the U.S. women’s national team in the Olympics and World Cup and attending the games the Western New York Flash. That team over the years had a bevy of international stars, including several Americans players such as Rochester, N.Y. native Abb Wambach, Carli Lloyd, Alex Morgan and Samantha Mewis), Canadian legend Christine Sinclair and Australian great Sam Kerr, and Brazilian icon Marta, among others.

“Our grandpa took us there. Our mom and us would go watch a lot of their games,” Taylor said. “That just inspired us to keep going. Seeing women play at a higher level, it just really motivated us to be like them.”

Needless to say, their passion and love for the game grew on other levels as well.

The Rutlands started playing soccer when their parents signed them up around three- or four-years-old, the sisters remembered. They climbed the traditional ladder from recreation teams to travel sides and eventually high school. When they were high school sophomores, the twins wanted to face greater challenges. So they joined the Rochester Junior Rhinos, necessitating about a 30-mile trip into the city southeast of Kendall.

“We had a really good coach there and he inspired us to just keep playing and

“It brings a lot of different people together,” Maya said. “You get to meet a lot of people that you maybe wouldn’t meet if you were just not playing soccer. It’s a good way to get exercise.”

The sisters didn’t just focus on one sport. When they weren’t playing soccer, the Rutlands ran track for the high school team, mainly sprint races.

Taylor set four individual school records in track for the 400- and 200-meters runs, high jump and shot put. And she qualified for the New York State high school track and field championships three times.


Maya set five school records in the 100 and 800.

They also were members of the 4 x 400 relay team that was ranked the ninth fastest in the nation at the 2012 National Junior Olympics, and were on the 4x100 relay, 4x400 relay and 4x800 relay teams that set Kendall H.S. records.

Sometimes they ran against each other in the same race, such as the 100 meters.

“It just depended on the day; sometimes she was faster than me some days,” Taylor said. “I was faster than her. So, it’s pretty even.”

Running track helped build sprint speed for soccer.

“Part of the training for sprinters is weight training and also different exercises to work on your fast twitch muscles,” Maya said. “It helps to build speed and it helps to get your legs moving faster. In soccer, you’re able to move your legs faster in order to do more skills with the ball and have better control over the ball and increase your speed on the field.”

It should come as no surprise that the twins were three-sport athletes. They also played basketball in the winter and had their moments there as well. For example, Taylor sank

a three-point shot with a minute remaining to lift Kendall to a 28-27 victory over Lyndonville in a Genesee Region game on Dec. 11, 2015. She finished with five points in that game, Maya with four.

Having a training partner year-around certainly didn’t hurt.

“It’s always nice and especially with training like when we’re in the offseason, you always have somebody to train with and always have somebody to push you and motivate you to do better on a daily basis,” Taylor said.

They eventually attended Roberts

“We’re improving and I feel like was a new team. We do have a lot of young players.”


Wesleyan University and played four years on the soccer team, helping the side to an East Coast Conference semifinalist finish in 2016, a top 10 national ranking from the National Christian College Athletic Association that year, a big win over a top 10 ranked team Mercy College in 2018 and a victory over a reigning NCAA national championship team at the University Bridgeport. The Redhawks reached the NCCAA Final Four in 2019.

Maya and Taylor graduated with Magna Cum Laude honors in May 2020, Maya with a degree in history and Taylor with one in homeland security and applied intelligence.

After the COVID-19 pandemic shut down most sports, an opportunity opened up for the sisters to play for Galway WFC in Ireland in January 2022.

“It was definitely an interesting experience,” Taylor said. “At first it was a big adjustment just because the style of play is different over there. The culture is different. It took maybe a week or two to adjust and especially with the time difference, but overall, it was a great experience. The game over there is very tactical, so I think it helped us develop the game on more of a tactical level. It helped to sharpen our soccer IQ as being over there.

“We’ve always wanted to play at the highest level we could possibly play.”

“It was also pretty cool,” Maya added. “We played against teams that played in the Champions League for the women’s side.”

As for Galway, a city with a population of 84,000 and located on the west coast of Ireland, it was a classroom in itself for the Rutlands.

“It’s a mix between that modern culture and also very traditional,” Taylor said. “There’s much culture there.”

Given her college degree, Maya certainly felt at home.

“I’m big into history, so that was nice going over there and being able to see the more traditional side,” she said.

If there is a sibling rivalry, you would never know it, except for when a pair of Spanish giants clash in La Liga or one of the big cup competitions.

“We get along pretty well,” Maya said. “There was still always a little bickering, little rivalry there.”

That’s because Maya is a big Barcelona fan, while Taylor roots for Real Madrid.

Go figure on two sisters who are so close.

“Growing up, I was a huge Neymar fan,” Maya said. “I liked watching Barcelona when they had the trio of Neymar, Messi and Suarez. that was fun to watch. It’s funny because Taylor

was a Real Madrid fan. So during the El Classico, it was always interesting to see who was going to win.”

Whoever won, that sister got bragging rights until the next time those two titans met.

Taylor said that her “personal hero” was Isco. “I liked the way he would move the ball around in the midfield, especially since I’m a midfielder,” she said. “That really inspired me and made me want to play like him.”

They returned home and an opportunity to play just a bit closer to home with Flower City 1872 was born. The team played as the Rochester Lady Lancers through 2021, until Flower City Union acquired the United Women’s Soccer rights to the squad.

Flower City Union head coach Jordan Sullivan, who played at Roberts Wesleyan, told the Rutlands about the women’s team and the opportunity was too good to resist.

The women’s side lost its first two matches, most recently dropping a 6-1 home defeat to FC Buffalo last Saturday. Taylor Rutland had the honor of scoring the first Flower City 1872 goal in history, firing a 35-yard shot into the net in the 14th minute.

“At first we did struggle because of numbers and girls being away at college, but more people are filtering in,” Maya said. “We’re improving and I feel like was a new team. We do

{ FLOWER CITY 1872 }
“For me for right now it is to focus on Flower City 1872 and then possibly look to go back overseas and just keep developing and trying to play at the highest level for as long as I can, as long as my body’s going to hold up,” Taylor said.


have a lot of young players. It’s to be expected that we have more growing to do and things to work out.”

Taylor agreed.

“It was a learning curve at first, but I think the team is slowly starting to gel together,” she said. “Like with every new team, there’s going to be hiccups along the way and you’re not going to always start off the greatest, but I think we’re starting to really come together, and the team is gelling better together. I think you could see stronger performances from us in the future.”

Flower City 1872(0-2) plays at FC Buffalo on Friday night.

When they’re not training together or playing in games, they have lives off the field.

Taylor is a substitute teacher in the Kendall Central School District.

“I feel like it’s the perfect job for me at the moment because I can pick and choose my hours,” she said. “When I want to get in an extra training session, I can do that and then maybe pick another day to work. It’s been very convenient so far.”

Maya, a history major at Roberts, has gone down a different path.

“I planned on doing teaching, but then I decided to go down the veterinary route after everything happened with COVID and the pause because I

had time to think about things,” she said. “Being a veterinary technician was always in the back of my mind in high school. So, I decided to go down that route instead.”

After this season, the world is open for the Rutland twins.

“For me for right now it is to focus on Flower City 1872 and then possibly look to go back overseas and just keep developing and trying to play at the highest level for as long as I can, as long as my body’s going to hold up,” Taylor said.

Given their history, it wouldn’t be surprising if Maya and Taylor Rutland teamed up somewhere else someday.

check out the latest schedule at

{ FLOWER CITY 1872 }
“Whoever won, that sister got bragging rights until the next time those two titans met.”


Living Longer, Living Better: Why Longevity Is More Than Added Years

Some time ago I stumbled on Kelyn Soong’s article for the Washington Post, where track athletes anywhere between the ages of 40 and 80 share their insights on how to stay fit and achieve new milestones in their chosen sport. This in turn got me thinking: today, people of the older demographic all around the world are doing feats of strength, endurance and fitness that no one could’ve imagined prior.



It is our universal desire to maintain an active lifestyle, preserve our physical well-being, and remain engaged in our passions, work, and relationships. These aspirations form the core of our mission at the Longevity Science Foundation (LSF). Our objective goes beyond simply adding years to our life; it includes breathing vitality into every year we live.

Several months ago, the LSF adopted the tagline: “Adding Years to Our Life and Life to Our Years.” I think it perfectly encapsulates not only our mission, but the intentions of most people in the longevity field. The tagline’s essence is twofold, with both components being equally significant. As we strive to support groundbreaking innovations in longevity research that extend the human lifespan, we are equally dedicated to enhancing the overall quality of our lives.

Physicians, researchers, and longevity supporters worldwide are engaged in various initiatives and discussions aimed at optimizing humanity’s lifespan and healthspan, with the latter encompassing cognitive, physical, and emotional well-being. We will highlight some of those below.

Diagnostics and predictive medicine

play a crucial role in healthspan and lifespan optimization. While not always considered traditional pillars of longevity, diagnostics are instrumental in saving, prolonging, and improving lives by identifying individuals’ biomarkers and genetic predispositions. By spotting our vulnerabilities in a timely manner, we can intervene and mitigate serious impairments that would otherwise arise.

various types of depression, and other illnesses. Utilization of psychedelics for therapeutic purposes holds a great promise in combating severe mental health impairments, and we are proud to be at the forefront of such research.

The field of therapeutics has made significant strides thanks to the efforts of an expanding community of enthusiastic researchers in gerontology, biotech, chemistry, and big data. In recent decades, numerous breakthroughs have been made, including the discovery of chemical compounds with lifeextension properties in animals, cell reprogramming through gene manipulation, and various rejuvenation techniques. While dualpurpose therapeutics, senolytics, geroprotectors, and other interventions hold great promise, uncertainties remain regarding the ideal dosage for humans and potential risks associated with these compounds.

Mental health optimization is another important aspect in our pursuit of a long and healthy life. Many of our fellow scientists are currently exploring novel approaches to tackle treatment-resistant conditions and complex diagnoses, including anorexia, post-traumatic syndrome,

As we continue to unravel the complexities of aging, we strongly recommend focusing on healthspan and lifespan extension methods that may appear trivial but are in fact the most significant anti-aging interventions. Prioritizing physical health and fitness, adopting healthy eating habits, ensuring restful sleep,

“Adding Years to Our Life and Life to Our Years.”

nurturing social connections, and living purposefully greatly surpass any therapeutic intervention in terms of their impact on slowing down aging. If you need an extra boost to start considering exercise, look no further: physical fitness is our golden ticket to longevity. The reduction in the risk of death associated with high cardiorespiratory fitness far outweighs the increased risks linked to smoking or having diabetes. Moreover, some of the physical strength metrics alone can contribute to a three-fold decrease in overall mortality risk.

We are diligently striving to bring exceptional longevity research out of the laboratories and into the real world. Ensuring accessibility to longevity care for all is our primary

objective. However, until we gain a clear understanding of what works and what doesn’t, we urge you to make mindful choices that prioritize your vitality, physical fitness, well-being and overall awareness. Consider fostering strong connections with your healthcare providers and engage in meaningful conversations about longevity with individuals in your network.

As we identify and fund promising longevity R&D we expand our audience, inspiring people to join us on our mission of giving humanity longer years filled with vitality and a high quality of life. Your support is crucial to us in helping early-stage longevity research. Venture capital, angel investors, nonprofits and longevity enthusiasts drive our field forward with

their contributions, bringing us closer to our common goal. Together, we can unlock a newfound freedom of choice as we enter our golden years and offer future generations the opportunity to lead longer and healthier lives.

“As we continue to unravel the complexities of aging, we strongly recommend focusing on healthspan and lifespan extension methods that may appear trivial but are in fact the most significant anti-aging interventions.”


On-Air personality for 98PXY, “Moose” talks radio, coming back to Rochester and more with Rochester Woman Online.



Tell us a little bit about yourself and your background.

I was born and raised in Rochester NY. I attended Greece Athena High school. After I graduated I went on to receive my associates degree at MCC in Communications and then later went back to take acting classes and to be a part of their theater program.

How did you get the name Moose?

It was always a nickname. My last name is Musumeci which is very italian. When I started in radio at 18 people started calling me Moose for short.

What made you choose 98PXY and Audacy?

When I was 18 I was working at Doan Buick, a car dealership in Greece. Sandy Waters who was the co-host on 98PXY with Scott Spezano at the time came in to pick up her vehicle. I was introduced to her by one of the car salesmen. I was offered an internship at the station and the rest is history. I have always loved 98PXY. Not because it’s a heritage station in the city but I love top 40 music and the station represents who I am. It’s Fun, energetic and entertaining.

You moved away for a while to California. Why, and what made you decide to come back to Rochester, NY?

I moved to LA in 2011 to pursue my acting and writing career. At the time I was already with 98PXY doing mornings for a little over 9 years with Spezzano and Sandy. I had been living in Hollywood for almost 12 years when I was offered the opportunity to have my own show back on 98. Anyone

who has lived in a major market city like New York or Los Angeles will tell you it can not only be expensive but emotionally exhausting at times. I was once again ready for a change. I don’t see myself doing anything other than entertainment. I was given an opportunity to come back home to Rochester, a city I not only love but a city that’s helped mold me into the person I am today. I was given the chance to entertain and do what I love on a daily basis and I couldn’t see myself saying no to an opportunity like that.

What is one thing people don’t know about you?

I have this weird ability when it comes to interior design. For whatever reason I’ve always been good at it. I was hired by a couple of people in Hollywood to decorate their homes when they moved in and I actually did a really great job.

What is the best thing about what you do?

I get to wake up every single day and work with someone who is becoming a best friend (Breezy). I get to spend a majority of my mornings laughing, entertaining, having the time of my life but also getting paid to do it. I feel like when it comes to narrowing down what success looks like, in my mind this is it. Doing what you love every day and it not feeling like work.

Are you comfortable talking to people on the radio without seeing them? · Yes because it’s almost the same feeling you get when talking on the phone.

The audience in the people who listen to us, I feel I have developed almost a friendship and close relationship with them, even though I can’t see them. After doing it for so long you become really comfortable with it.

What are some of your personal favorite radio shows and why?

I had some close friends who do a morning show at the legendary 95.5 KLOS called the Heidi and Frank Morning show. They have the same humor as myself and I enjoy listening to the way they are able to develop content that sucks you in. That’s what I inspire PXY Mornings with Moose and Breezy to sound like. A show that offers a little bit of everything where anyone listening can relate to what it is we may be talking about. I also really enjoy Mojo in the morning in Detroit. They’re another reputable top 40 morning show that understands their market and how morning radio should sound.

What do you think is the most important skill for a radio presenter to have?

Being a great listener and paying close attention to detail. It’s one thing to be able to tell a story and throw out opinions but the most successful skill is listening to what others or your co-host is saying. You need to be able to be engaged at all times and that’s difficult to do especially if the topic is not interesting to you or it’s 5:30am and you’re exhausted.

What has been the best piece of advice you have ever been given?

“I have always loved 98PXY. Not because it’s a heritage station in the city but I love top 40 music and the station represents who I am”


My acting coach in Los Angeles Barry Papick really explained to me the importance of being able to celebrate the small victories in life. I took things seriously when I wasn’t where I wanted to be at times within my career. He really taught me the importance of being grounded. Sometimes in life we are our own worst critic. You have to learn to have some grace towards yourself and be patient. Not everything we want in life is always on our timing. Everything works out exactly the way it’s supposed to when it’s supposed to so there is no need to stress or worry. My life has gone in a completely positive direction after practicing these simple ideas.

How often do you listen to the radio?

I split my time up between the radio, podcast, and my own personal playlist. If I had to guess I would say I am listening to live radio maybe 2-3 hours a day which does not include my show.

Who are you outside of your radio personality?

To be honest I like to think of myself as the same guy. What you see is what you get. Not much changes about me when I turn those mics on.

What inspired you to pursue a career in radio?

I have always loved entertainment. I grew up listening to 98PXY as a child and was always fascinated with these guys playing music and doing prank calls and couldn’t believe that most of them made their living that way. After I got an internship at 18 with

98PXY and got my feet wet, I knew this was the start of pretty much the rest of my life.

What do you think sets radio apart from other forms of communication?

I still look at radio as one of the most popular means of communication, used by an overwhelming majority of people. Not only is it very affordable but can be used anywhere. Unlike TV you have the option as soon as you get into your vehicle to go straight to the radio.

What do you think is the most challenging thing about working in radio?

It’s a form of entertainment that is constantly growing and evolving and that can be both good and bad. People today have more options than ever. Most people would go straight to the radio for entertainment especially in their car on the way to work. Now you can listen to thousands of different podcasts, you have spotify, pandora and the ability to listen to a wide range of different shows on satellite radio. It’s a lot of pressure to have to come up with content that is going to catch people’s attention in the first 2 minutes of listening. People know they have options. Lots of stations are going with pre-recorded shows to save cost. There are a lot of markets who use syndicated morning shows or afternoon personalities who are not even in the studio or in the same city. This makes having a career in radio scary at times because you’re faced with the uncertainty of what the future holds.

What do you think is the best way to make sure that your broadcast is successful?

Prep, prep, and more prep. I write 3 hours a day to prepare for the next day’s show. The best thing you can do is be overly prepared 100% of the time. Having good content and knowing how to execute that content is what makes for a good show. You always need to be prepared.

What is your favorite thing about your online radio partner?

She has the ability to make me laugh on a daily basis. We are a great team and work well together. Breezy reminds me of myself when I was younger starting off in radio. She’s truly talented and people tend to gravitate towards her charm and sense of humor.

If you could do one thing over in the past ten years what would it be and why?

I think I would have spent more time creating my own opportunities instead of waiting for someone to knock on my door. I felt like I wasted a lot of time over the years just waiting on people. The most success I had in the entertainment world is when I started writing and making my own films. It was only then that I started getting offers from agents, managers and casting directors. Most people don’t start because they don’t know how. I understand, I’ve been there. Sometimes all you have to do is just start with what you have and the rest will follow. That goes for anything in life.

“I get to wake up every single day and work with someone who is becoming a best friend (Breezy).”

Where will we see you next?

Aside from being on PXY mornings with Moose and Breezy mondayFriday 5:30am-10am I also do a segment with my co host on Channel 10 news every weekend call PXY Around Town which gives people in

the city of Rochester a look at fun and entertaining things to do that weekend. As for now I still have 3-4 films I’ve done that are all currently up on Amazon Prime. The one I am most proud of that has won a number of film festivals is “How To End A

Conversation” , a short film that I was lucky enough to write, produce and star in.

“It’s one thing to be able to tell a story and throw out opinions, but the most successful skill is listening to what others, or your co-host is saying.”
“ You have to LEARN to have some grace towards YOURSELF and be patient. Not everything we want in life is always on our TIMING.


Challenges and Rewards of Becoming a Foster Parent

Across America, there is a pressing need for foster (and adoptive) parents, with nearly 400,000 children in care and 117,000 waiting for a forever family. In New York State alone, approximately 3,000 children were in foster care during the 2019-2020 period (AFCARS report). However, the shortage of foster parents and the increased needs of children, including those with serious or aggressive behaviors and mental health issues, pose significant challenges. Nonetheless, foster parenting can be a rewarding experience, despite the hardships involved. This article explores the process of becoming a foster parent in New York, the requirements, and the critical role foster families play in supporting children in need.

Becoming a Foster Parent: To become a foster parent, individuals must be determined, ready, willing, and have a desire to foster. They also need to decide whether they want to be a trained foster parent within a county or opt for a smaller agency with a therapeutic foster care program. The latter caters to children with higher needs due to challenging behaviors or mental disabilities.

The Application and Certification

Process: Upon contacting a foster care agency, the process begins with a New York State Office of Children and Family Services (OCFS) application. Background clearance

checks, including fingerprinting, are conducted, along with screenings against the State Central Registry (SCR) and the staff exclusion list (SEL). All these components are regulated by the OCFS of New York State. Agencies such as CAP (Children Awaiting Parents) are monitored by the regional OCFS office.

A “home finder” staff member visits the potential foster parents’ home to discuss the process, complete

essential information and training skills. CAP utilizes trauma-informed care principles to enhance the training to help manage the challenges of fostering and adoption. The program is facilitated by trained staff who bring in guest speakers and hold parent panels.

Home Study and Certification:

Once the training and regulatory paperwork are completed, the home study process begins. This involves in-depth interviews with the family, exploring their childhood, relationship dynamics, parenting skills, and beliefs. The home study allows agencies like CAP to thoroughly assess potential foster families and ensure the safety of all children. For adoption, the home study is the connection to the selection process for a desired child inquiry.

necessary paperwork, and conduct a safety check. If any repairs or changes are required to meet New York State OCFS safety regulations, the foster family must address them during the training period before certification can occur.

Certification training: this is a crucial step and involves enrolling in and completing the 10-week New York State required program called GPS II MAPP. This training equips foster and adoptive parents with

After completing the home study, an interview is conducted by a licensed master social worker or another trained professional to assess the family’s readiness and preparedness to foster. A final check of the home for safety compliance is conducted to ensure the family is ready to accept placements.


Care and Support:

When a child referral comes to CAP from a custodial county, the agency reviews its foster care roster to find the best placement. Matching the child with the right foster family is crucial, although emergencies may preclude this process in certain cases. Foster care is a temporary support system


“Fostering is a rewarding experience, despite its challenges. Our system needs help, and our kids need families.”

designed to help families address the issues that led to the removal of their children. Supports are put in place for both the child and the family, including visitation to facilitate reunification.

If reunification is not possible, CAP supports adoption or provides services for young adults leaving foster care. It is important to debunk the myth that foster parents do it for the paycheck. Families earn a very modest daily stipend for basic care, and they are responsible for meeting the child’s care and financial needs. Foster parents will not become wealthy from fostering and may face financial and emotional challenges due to the high-impact

needs of the children in their care. Our CAP staff provides intense and in home support to help our foster and adoptive families succeed.

Fostering is a rewarding experience, despite its challenges. Our system needs help, and our kids need families. Too often children are moved repeatedly due to a giveaway mindset, and this traumatizes the youth even further. Kids already come into care due to some type of trauma, abuse, or neglect. To create a healthier next generation, we need families who will jump in, stay the course and care about a child.

Our kids need you!

If you want to help, make a difference, but don’t know where to start – please reach out to Children Awaiting Parents (CAP)! Contact us at 1.585.232.5110 or email us at




“I hustle to hit my goals! I want to be the best version of myself and am constantly looking for new ways to improve and perfect my craft.”


Tell us a little bit about yourself and your background.

My name is Samara Clar, I go by Sam. I am 31 years old and currently live in Livonia, NY. I moved here from Indianapolis, IN 11 years ago and have worked in sales since I was 16 years old. I started at retail jobs in the mall, worked up to a job in retail banking, and have spent the past 9 years in the automotive sales industry. I have been a Certified Sales Consultant for Chevrolet since 2014 and have loved every minute of it!

#2 What made you decide to go into the car sales industry?

I’ve always loved the “new car” feeling and thoroughly enjoy sales. Helping people find a vehicle they love that works with their budget is very exciting to me! I am also a people person and love getting to meet new people on a daily basis. I enjoy working a commission-based sales job because I love having complete freedom and control over my income and my success! I don’t ever have to ask for a raise or a promotion, all I need to do is sell another car

Why did you choose the Bob Johnson Dealerships to work for?

I actually worked for the Doan Family of Dealerships that was acquired by the Bob Johnson Auto Group in 2018. I am so grateful for the acquisition because this is by far the best company I have ever worked for! Bob Johnson’s main philosophy is that it is a “Better Place

Who are some of the strong women that you feel have inspired you on your journey?

I am inspired by the lives of Oprah Winfrey and Dolly Parton. Both of these women overcame very difficult upbringings and have found a way to let their light shine through the

darkness and lead them to the path of success. They are both heavily involved in helping others and sharing joy and positivity in the world.

What makes you “hustle”?

I hustle to hit my goals! I want to be the best version of myself and am constantly looking for new ways to improve and perfect my craft.

What has been your biggest hurdleto overcome working in a male dominated field?

Initially, I had a really tough time getting people to trust that I know what I’m talking about when it comes to vehicles. At the beginning of my career, I had a customer request a male sales person because he questioned my product knowledge in regards to trucks. This hurt me deeply, but it also encouraged me to work really hard to learn everything I possibly can about both light duty and heavy-duty pick-up trucks and cars in general. I am now very knowledgeable and confident in my product knowledge and trucks are my favorite thing to sell!

Tell us about some of your goals and dreams you want to achieve in the next year

My goal for 2023 is to hit 300 units sold and delivered! This equates to 25 units per month, roughly double the national average.

What is one thing people don’t know about you?

“I live my life by the “Golden Rule” - treat others how you want to be treated.”

I love “creepy crawly” animals! Chameleons, snakes, tarantulas, bats etc.

. If you could do one thing you have never done what would it be and why? I would love to try sky diving sometime! I’m a bit of an adrenaline junky and think it would be awesome to experience at least once.

What is one piece of advice you have been given that you have never forgotten ?

I live my life by the “Golden Rule”treat others how you want to be treated. I always keep this in the forefront of my mind and it has certainly made an impact on my sales and my personal life!

What’s the most important risk you have ever taken? Would you do it again?

The biggest risk I have ever taken was deciding to move from Indianapolis, IN to Rochester, NY. It was scary to move to a new town that I had never been to, but I am so glad I made the move! Rochester has such a unique culture, beautiful landscape, and I love living near the finger lakes! I love all of the local food options as well as the vast selection of breweries and wineries to check out and explore. I met my husband here and started my career here, so I am definitely happy with my decision and would do it again in a heartbeat.

How do you continue to constantly grow both personally and professionally? What are some secrets to your success?

I focus on learning something new every day. I am always reading books, articles, watching videos, listening to podcasts and “picking peoples brains” about any topic I come across! I put a lot of time and energy towards being the best version of myself possible, both in my home life and at work.

What is your favorite thing about what you are doing?

My favorite thing about what I do is making people happy! It is so rewarding to see the happy faces of my customers when they get to take delivery of their new ride. I am so grateful that I can help people accomplish their goals, whether it be finding a bigger family for their growing family, getting their dream truck or sports car, or even just finding something that is a better fit for them or their budget. I love getting a new vehicle and am honored that I can help others do the same!

What strategies do you find the most beneficial when selling vehicles to potential clients?

My best strategy is to live by the Golden Rule and treat others how they want to be treated! I would never make a major purchase under pressure, stress or duress so I would certainly never treat a customer in that manner. I expect people to make the decision that is in their own best interest and if the offer doesn’t make sense, I do not expect the customer to move forward. My job is to simply educate the customer on their options and facilitate the process of moving forward only once they have decided

they are fully comfortable with all of the parameters of the deal.

What are your plans for the future? My plans are to continue to build my repeat and referral business here at Bob Johnson and to continue to grow my year-over-year productivity numbers to the best of my ability. This is my career and I am in it for the long haul!

“Helping people find a vehicle they love that works with their budget is very exciting to me!”

Tell us a little bit about yourself and your background.

I was lucky to be raised by mom, who was single mother, and her twin sister and partner. These three women are the ones that guided me to who I am today. I did not know my father until I was 17 and today we have a wonderful relationship. Growing up I loved to play basketball and was honored to go to States three out of my four years in high school, which was an experience of a lifetime. I am “MoMo” to a wonderful 4-year boy, Avery and he is my life.

What made you decide to go into the car sales industry?

It’s funny to see life come full circle after times of uncertainty. My junior year of college I was getting really good grades and navigating the idea of my career after getting my degree in human services. I went on a cruise that year and met a lot of amazing people, one of which was an older man that I really connected with and was owner of numerous car dealerships in Michigan. He then said, if you ever want to sell cars, come to Michigan and work with me, full circle. After I graduated, I completed an internship through a school district in the city of Rochester. Though I was dedicated to helping my community, the hardship that came with the job was heavier than I expected. I was fortunate to have a family friend in the car sales industry that helped me

pace environment that pushes me to achieve my best on a day-to-day basis.

Who are some of the strong women that you feel have inspired you on your journey?

My mom, Paula, Aunt Pam and her

partner, my Aunt Holly. Each of these women have characteristics that played a major part in making me the strong woman I am today. Holly started from the bottom at Verizon Wireless, with her persistence and dedication she moved up to be the director of the North East region. She was one of the few females in that position. They say it takes a village and I was so blessed to have these women. I was fortunate enough to naturally learn the meaning of strength, through love, support, encouragement, hard work and dedication to life for myself and others around me.

What makes you “hustle”?

If you asked others around me, they’d say hustle comes naturally to me. One of my strengths is that if I set my mind to it, I’ll do whatever it takes to accomplish it. That probably started with basketball. The love for the game taught me to play hard but work even harder. Professionally you have to know that car sales are a competitive business. Although I want everyone to succeed, I want to always be my best. Seeing my name at the top of the leader board pushes me monthly to grind and give my all. My hard drive pushes me to put in the time and effort to succeed. Toward the end of my best months, I remind myself that it’s hero to zero, the month is about to start fresh and my hustle is what pushes me to have a better month than the last.

“I was fortunate to have a family friend in the car sales industry that helped me get my foot in the door, to what would be the start of an amazing career.”


“Bob Johnson is an extremely well-known and successful business in town. I knew I would do best in a fast pace environment that pushes me to achieve my best on a day-to-day basis.”

What has been your biggest hurdle to overcome working in a male dominated field?

Walking into this business, I had to remind myself that I wasn’t just a woman in a man’s world, it’s all about the mindset and attitude towards the drive for greatness. However, understanding that this industry is very fast paced and the need for adapting quickly is a necessity.

Tell us about some of your goals and dreams you want to achieve in the next year

I want to continue mastering my craft of understanding all types of individuals. Not only personally but professionally. This will help me determine the wants and needs of every customer I engage with and how to navigate the way to making their experience nothing short of fun and refreshing.

What is one thing people don’t know about you?

I am part of the LBGTQ+ community and have been lucky enough to not have the struggles on coming out due to the support of my family. I have always been honest about myself and who I wanted to be because of my upbringing.

If you could do one thing you have never done what would it be and why? Learning to experience life through different lenses. Spending more time in different environments while being unplugged from social media.

What is one piece of advice you

have been given that you have never forgotten ?

“Love the one you’re with”. A quote that reminds me to always be genuine. You never truly know what a person is dealing with, so being completely authentic and transparent reminds people that love and sincerity still exists. Being present, showing up, listening and loving anyone you encounter, speaks volume to a person’s character.

What’s the most important risk you have ever taken? Would you do it again?

Letting go of my degree to experience growth in a different industry. After four years of schooling to decide to change fields, is definitely intimidating. I made this change right around the start of covid. Navigating a new career at such an uncertain time was a little scary. I would absolutely do it again because it has taught me so much and contributed to the person I have and am still becoming.

How do you continue to constantly grow both personally and professionally? What are some secrets to your success?

I want to continue to grow and expand my relationships. Showing up for people in not only ways that benefit me, but also them. I want to give everyone my best and I always strive to do it genuinely. Continuing to expand my knowledge of life and business is very important so I can be prepared for whatever is thrown my way.

What is your favorite thing about

what you are doing?

One of my favorite things is having my customers leave happier than they came. laughing through experience both good and bad, connecting on a personal level is very important to making the car sales process feel like more than a transaction. If I helped every customer and made them happy by making it memorable and fun while still personalizing each and every experience based on my customers need, then I played my part. Building a healthy repour and extending my business through families is a very rewarding feeling.

What strategies do you find the most beneficial when selling vehicles to potential clients?

The first 30 seconds are the most crucial point of a sale. Ensuring someone feels like I have their best interest from the start is an extremely beneficial strategy to my business, it is even more rewarding because I do it genuinely.

What are your plans for the future?

I want to continue to grow my career with Bob Johnson and hopefully one day be in a leadership role. My passion is to get more into marketing, public relations and feel with my personality, commitment, drive and creativity I will be there one day.

“I ant to continue mastering my craft of understanding all types of individuals. Not only personally but professionally..”

T h e S u m m i t w a s a n o u t s t a n d i n g e x p e r i e n c e , w h i c h p r o v i d e d m e w i t h v a l u a b l e t o o l s t o g r o w p e r s o n a l l y a n d p r o f e s s i o n a l l y

- M e r e d i t h T a y l o r , F t D r u m , N Y


When we intentionally focus on developing ourselves, we increase our chances of standing up, making changes, and reaching our full potential. Take this one weekend to help make sure you have the tools necessary to thrive, be present, and grow in meaningful ways

Topics Covered: Boundaries, Goals, Communication, Intuition, Core Values, Emotions, Creativity, Mindset, Leadership, Connection, Self-worth, Self-Compassion, Self-Trust, & more

Friday, Sept. 29 - Sunday, Oct. 1, 2023

Collegian Hotel & Suites, Syracuse NY

D e v a n ' s S u m m i t w a s a n u n b e l i e v a b l e a n d b e a u t i f u l e x p e r i e n c e ! I w e n t t o s u p p o r t a f r i e n d a n d t o l e a r n t e c h n i q u e s a s a b u s i n e s s o w n e r t o b e a b l e t o c o a c h m y t e a m , b u t i t b e c a m e s o m u c h m o r e

- A l i c i a H o l l e n b e c k , W a t e r t o w n , N Y

T h e S u m m i t w a s a m a z i n g - t h e r e i s n o t a d a y g o e s b y t h a t I d o n o t t h i n k a b o u t m y t i m e a t t h e S u m m i t -

i t m a d e a h u g e i m p a c t o n m e ! B y t h e e n d o f t h e S u m m i t , I h a d t h e c o n f i d e n c e t o a p p l y f o r a p r o m o t i o n t h a t I n e v e r t h o u g h t I w a s g o o d e n o u g h f o r

- K a i t l i n G u z z a r d i , C h i c a g o , I L

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Please tell us a little bit about the new Chapter Aesthetics Studio in Pittsford NY. The Pittsford location opened in the end of 2022, and we are excited to be in the greater Rochester community. Our warm and welcoming studio design is intended to greet guests with an inviting space for gathering and relaxation while also offering the latest technology in comfortable, yet elegant treatment spaces. For added enjoyment, we’ve added a bar and social areas for people to unwind.

What made you decide on this location? What started as one studio in Fargo, ND, is now an exciting effort to making medical aesthetics accessible to everyone. When people think of medical aesthetics, they think of Los Angeles, Miami or New York City, and a certain look. That’s not what we’re doing here at Chapter Aesthetic Studio. We want women and men to have access to quality aesthetic treatments and to feel empowered to look and feel their best, no matter where they live. The company has aggressive expansion plans across the United States throughout 2023 and 2024, focusing on communities where medical aesthetics options are limited.

There are 17 Chapter Aesthetic Studio locations across the country, including the studio in Pittsford. This is our 5th studio in upstate New York. To find other locations, visit www.mychapter. com.

What is the mission behind Chapter Aesthetics? Tell our audience a little about the services you provide.

Chapter is a leading aesthetic studio where everybody can realize the benefits of non-surgical, cosmetic treatments. Our guests want to express the best version of themselves every day, and our team makes that possible. Skilled in the clinical practice of face, body and skin treatments, they are also visionaries, artists and caring confidants, who listen to your goals and help you bring your personal beauty story to life. Chapter offers a full range of face, body and injectable aesthetic treatments. Some of the most popular treatments include Botox, dermal fillers, CoolSculpting, laser hair removal, medical-grade facials, and peels, micro needling, PRP therapy, and laser skin rejuvenation.

What is your favorite thing about what you do?

I like to help people meet their goals. I feel like it’s somewhere between art and aesthetics to have them achieve their goals. All guest’s goals are different. Some people it’s helping them with anti-aging and others are more emotionally driven. We had a 23-year-old patient come in whose lips were receding. She wanted to look younger, and we rebuilt her lips with filler since she didn’t have teeth for 4 years prior to receiving dentures. When I rebuilt her lips, she became emotional because her lip structure had been compromised and she had such thinned-out lips due the teeth loss. It was satisfying because it made this girl feel different about herself because this was something that bothered her for years and I was able to help her.

What are some of the services you offer that are different from traditional med spas?

What differentiates Chapter Aesthetic Studio is our approach with creating aesthetic plans for our guests through our MAP process. Our evidence-based approach to medical aesthetics helps our guests get the treatment plan that is custom for the goals they are looking to achieve.

The key difference to our approach is surrounding the experience while receiving their services and how guests feel during their treatment journey. Small but thoughtful touches like greeting our guests by name and offering them a beverage while waiting for their appointment. We want our guests to walk in here and have a different experience. Some med spas are really like a doctor’s office whereas we want it to be an experience where people feel welcome and relaxed.

Additionally, all our providers come with strong medical backgrounds, and all go through 12 weeks of hands-on medical aesthetic training at Chapter University in Fargo, ND. This rigorous curriculum was designed to ensure every guest receives the same high level of care in all locations across the country.

What are some of the main skincare products that you absolutely LOVE to promote to your clients and why?

Chapter carries medical grade product lines that not only maintain but enhance the results of treatments. The Chapter line provides a variety of prescriptionstrength products that are effective in treating a variety of different skin conditions: anti-aging, sensitive skin and acne. Formulated with higher purity

“I like to help people meet their goals. I feel like it’s somewhere between art and aesthetics to have them achieve their goals.”


“I help people believe that anything is possible. I have great Faith and live each day as a reflection of that Faith! I genuinely care about people and want to help them reach for their goals. “


and potency, our pharmaceutical-grade skincare is clinically proven to improve the look, feel and health of your skin. We also love that we can prescribe a skincare regimen that will help guests achieve their goals for their specific skin type. For example, guests looking to boost collagen production and combat aging will love our anti-aging products. We also carry AlumierMD and Colorscience products along with skincare devices like Dermaflash and NuFace, which are designed to help maintain the results of our treatments.

What is the M.A.P. service?

The My Aesthetic Plan (MAP) is a complimentary one-on-one consultation is provided to all new guests. A Visia® skin scan is a key part of every guest’s MAP experience. It gives you a realistic picture of the skin’s current condition, going beneath the surface to reveal six areas affecting skin health and appearance. Our Aesthetic Advisor is highly skilled at using this industryleading technology to identify concerns, help our guests’ set goals and MAP out a customized plan for achieving them. We help our guests define their goals, customize their plans, start their journeys and finally, love their results. Guests leave with a customized aesthetic plan that maps out exactly what treatments and products their body needs to get measurable results. The skin scan is more than an assessment tool. It’s a conversation starter, a relationship builder, a way to track progress, see results and celebrate successes. It is also how we hold ourselves accountable to our guests.

What is the Trilogy? What sets this apart from other services?

Chapter Trilogy features three skin transforming services that work together to reset and restore the skin above and below the surface with no downtime:

• Skinwave – A hydrating facial that cleanses, nourishes and awakens the skin.

• VirtueRF – A radio frequency micro needling treatment that stimulates new collagen production to tighten and tone for a lifted appearance.

• Cool Peel – A resurfacing CO2 laser that improves skin tone and texture to brighten and smooth the skin.

The Trilogy service consists of 3 appointments with the 3 treatments performed at each appointment.

What are you top 3 ways of promoting Chapter to new/potential clients? We love referrals! We are constantly getting guests referring their family and friends. We love that they had such an amazing experience and want them to have the same experience. We also love when our guests leave us reviews on social media and Google, because it allows potential guests to see the experiences that they will receive when visiting a Chapter Aesthetic Studio or before/after photos so people can see the results from our guests. People can follow Chapter on Facebook and Instagram to keep up with the latest trends, sales, promotions and educational content. We also love getting out in the community and spreading the word about Chapter. We love partnering with

other businesses within the community, hosting events like girl’s night, health and wellness nights and overall engaging with fellow business owners in the Pittsford/Rochester communities. Everyone is welcome for a tour and a complimentary MAP consultation. We want aesthetics to be accessible to everyone, no matter their age or gender.

You help others look and feel beautiful by offering a variety of beauty services. What is your favorite?

I love doing Cool Peel because within less than a week you have skin that just feels totally different! Cool Peel is a CO2 laser treatment that reduces fine lines, sun damage and pore size while improving skin texture with no real downtime. The results are great!

What makes you different or sets you apart from other Med Spas in the area? why would clients want to come to you?

What differentiates Chapter Aesthetic Studio is our approach with creating aesthetic plans for our guests through our MAP process. Our evidence-based approach to medical aesthetics helps our guests get the treatment plan that is custom for the goals they are looking to achieve. We also offer our guests the opportunity to become a part of our Chapter family through our Circle membership. We call it The Circle because Chapter’s membership program connects our guests to a community of people who share a love of aesthetics — how it makes them look, but more importantly, how it makes them feel. And then of course, there are the exclusive benefits:

“Reject the diet mentality. Restricting doesn’t work.” YOU ARE ENOUGH.
“What differentiates Chapter Aesthetic Studio is our approach with creating aesthetic plans for our guests through our MAP process.”

member-only discounts, free monthly B-12 injections, invitations to memberonly events, first-to-try products and early access to new treatments.

How do you manage your work-life balance?

I think working at Chapter respects the work/life balance. It’s been a whirlwind starting at Chapter with the training and traveling to Chapter University in Fargo, ND. I manage work/life balance by taking time almost quarterly to step away and have a vacation or you know, just sit on a beach or even just stay at home and get some things done. So that for me, work/life balance is making sure even quarterly, I take some time to recharge.

What do you enjoy most about what you do? What do you find the hardest about it?

It’s such a different aspect of medicine for me working in medical aesthetics. So, it’s a constant learning journey, but I love to take it back a step further. I love the training that chapter gave me because I feel like if I did that on my own, it probably would have taken me 10 years. And I’m not even kidding that part, even outside of even working, that gives me the foundation of feeling comfortable with what I do., the best part, I mean, it’s kind of the same thing. It’s just helping people reach their goals. It’s talking to each person individually and seeing what their needs are. Having the time to do that is huge because I know that other places don’t allow you to do that.

What’s your definition of success both

individually and for the business? Well, they’re probably the same. I’m very goal oriented. I have always had short term and long-term goals. So personally, short term goals have always been continuing my medical aesthetics training. There are always new treatments, techniques, products and it is important for me to continue training and always learning. My long-term goal is growing the business at Chapter Aesthetic Studio, growing out of the space that we have and needing a bigger facility and needing more staff. And personally, I’ve always been the same too, even when I’ve flipped houses there are short term and long-term goals with flipping it and then selling it. I love being goal oriented in the gym with weight training and then seeing my kids meet their goals.

What has been your most satisfying moment for you since opening your doors?

See the story above about the patient with dental issues.

Do you have any new things in the works?

We just launched our Chapter Mini Kits, which is allows people to take their favorite Chapter skincare products on the go. They are TSA approved and perfect for keeping your skincare routine while traveling.

Tell us a little bit about the Chapter training, and what you have to go through to work with Chapter. All Chapter providers, who come to the company with strong medical backgrounds, also go through four to 12 weeks of hands-on medical aesthetic

training based on their role at Chapter University in Fargo. This best-in-class training is unmatched in the aesthetics industry.

The curriculum was developed by our learning and development team specifically our Clinical RN Trainer Lindsey Glaspell in conjunction our Chief Medical Officer, Dr. Ben Wood, Melissa Rogne and other top providers at the company.

My role as Managing Clinical Directors (our nurse practitioners) and RNs receive training for 12 weeks. Our Aesthetic Advisors and Licensed Medical Estheticians receive seven weeks of training with our Guest Services team receiving four weeks of training. We receive special courses specific to medical aesthetics like laser physics, facial anatomy etc. Also, our clinical leaders are trained by specialized trainers from Allergan (makers of Botox and Juvederm) and Cartessa (our energy and laser devices), who give intense trainings on the products, injection techniques, treatments and services that Chapter offers.

What is your WOW?

Just seeing people happy and being so thankful after their treatments. People have been so genuinely wonderful here in the Pittsford community. We’ve had the nicest guests and so I never come into the studio not looking forward to my day. I love getting to help people feel amazing and help them achieve their goals, so they look and feel their best.

“Reject the diet mentality. Restricting doesn’t work.” YOU ARE ENOUGH.
“ I manage work/life balance by taking time almost quarterly to step away and have a vacation or you know, just sit on a beach or even just stay at home and get some things done.”

Embrace Every Chapter.

Love the Skin You’re In!

We’re inviting all in the Pittsford community to enjoy next-level aesthetic services, a best-in-class experience and a promise for real, remarkable results. Visit Chapter Aesthetic Studio in Pittsford to bring your best self to life.

But don’t just take our word for it...

See what our guests have said about how Chapter made them feel:

“The best I have in years.”

“Comfortable and refreshed”

– Lori L.

– Ashton M.

Join The Circle For Future Savings Become a member of the Chapter community for exclusive benefits and savings: Members-only discounts Early access to products/treatments VIP event access & more There’s No Reason to Wait From Botox® and laser hair removal to hydrating facials and skincare packages, we have the services and expertise to help you meet your goals. *Offer valid only for guests who are new to Chapter. Offer cannot be used with packages, referral credits, membership discount, promotional cards, or any other discounts. Must be used with first service appointment. 50% Off Your First Service* We’re on a mission to help you look and feel your best. Book your appointment today. 2790 Monroe Ave. Suite 501, Rochester, NY 14618


Tell us a little bit about yourself and your background.

Hi ! I’m a Single Mother of a 23 year old amazing son which has been my proudest moment I’m 48 years old and have been into fitness my whole life ! I’m also an Insurance Agent for 26 years for Andy Ocasio Allstate Agency which I hope to call my own soon! I have been teaching classes and training for about 10 years! I started with the Ymca in Penfield than started teaching and training clients at Chuck Valente’s gym who is also my coach as well for 8 years now !

As a single mother, my proudest moment has been raising my amazing 23-year-old son. I have poured my heart and soul into providing him with love, support, and guidance. At 48 years old, I have also maintained a lifelong passion for fitness, dedicating myself to a healthy and active lifestyle. Alongside my role as an Insurance Agent for the Andy Ocasio Allstate Agency for the past 26 years, I have been teaching fitness classes and training clients for a decade. It all began at the YMCA in Penfield, where I honed my skills before branching out to teach and train at Chuck Valente’s gym. Chuck has not only been my coach for eight years but also a source of inspiration and mentorship. With my experience and dedication, I hope to one day have my own insurance agency.

What made you decide to be a Fitness Instructor and Personal Trainer?

My girl Gina took me to my first Body Pump class at the Ymca and the rest is history !

My fitness journey started when my friend Gina introduced me to my very first Body Pump class at the YMCA, and from that moment on, my passion for fitness ignited. I stepped into that class with curiosity and excitement, not knowing that it would be a turning point in my life.

Who are some of the strong women, or men that you feel have inspired you on your journey?

The energy, the music, and the intense workout challenged me in ways I had never experienced before. It was a defining moment that sparked a fire within me. Since that day, I have embraced fitness wholeheartedly, constantly seeking new challenges and pushing my limits. Gina’s invitation to that Body Pump class changed my life, and I am forever grateful for her introducing me to a world of health, strength, and personal growth.

I’m surrounded by many and feel so honored and lucky! My girlfriend Gina Carra who started my fitness journey as well as Heather Koch , Jessica Specht and Tim Dougherty to name a few. My girlfriend Chantiza who I did my first body building show with and now my bestie! Last but not least the man who has shown me everything and been my biggest supporter Chuck Valente !! Of course my family and son as well as many more friends along the way! Again I’m so thankful I am truly blessed to be surrounded by an incredible circle of people, and I feel honored and lucky every day. It all began with my girlfriend Gina Carra, who not only sparked my fitness journey but also continues to be my source of inspiration and motivation. Her unwavering support and belief in me have pushed me to new heights. Alongside Gina, there are other remarkable individuals who have played instrumental roles in my fitness journey. Heather Koch, Jessica Specht, and Tim Dougherty have been there every step of the way, offering guidance, encouragement, and friendship. And then there’s my girlfriend Chantiza, with whom I embarked on my very first bodybuilding show. We have since become best friends, sharing

“Since that day, I have embraced fitness wholeheartedly, constantly seeking new challenges and pushing my limits.”


our triumphs and challenges as we chase our fitness goals together. And I cannot forget to mention Chuck Valente, the man who has shown me the ropes, guided me through my training, and provided unwavering support. Chuck has been my biggest supporter, pushing me to go beyond my limits and believe in myself. Of course, I am also grateful for the unwavering love and support of my family, especially my son, who has been there every step of the way. Additionally, I have been fortunate to have many more friends who have cheered me on throughout my journey. Each of these amazing individuals has played a significant role in shaping who I am today, and for that, I am immensely thankful.

What is your main mission behind your training strategy?

To stay consistent and build my training and diet into my everyday lifestyle.

My primary goals revolve around consistency and integrating my training and diet seamlessly into my everyday lifestyle. I understand that achieving lasting results requires a commitment to consistency, and I am dedicated to staying on track. By making fitness and healthy eating a natural part of my daily routine, I aim to create sustainable habits that will benefit me in the long run. Whether it’s finding time for exercise, planning nutritious meals, or prioritizing selfcare, I am determined to make these practices a priority. By embracing a holistic approach to wellness and

maintaining a balanced lifestyle, I am confident that I can achieve my goals and continue to grow both physically and mentally.

Tell us about a time in your life that changed you and your perspective When I became a mother and realized how important it was show my son to be strong and independent and successful which he is and I’m so proud

Becoming a mother can be a profound and transformative experience, shaping one’s life path in unexpected ways. The moment I embraced motherhood, it opened my eyes to the importance of nurturing and guiding my child the wisdom to become strong, independent, and successful. Embracing motherhood has undoubtedly been a life-changing moment that has guided me on a path of fulfillment, empowerment, and deep pride.

Tell us about some of your goals and dreams you want to achieve in the next year

Continue doing pro bikini competitions but also to own my own insurance agency as well.

I have two distinct aspirations that hold great importance to me. Firstly, I am passionate about continuing my journey in pro bikini competitions. The thrill of stepping onto the stage, showcasing my hard work and dedication, is an experience like no other. I want to push my boundaries, improve my physique, and inspire

others through my dedication to fitness and discipline. However, alongside my fitness aspirations, I also hold a strong desire to own my own insurance agency. With years of experience in the industry, I aim to translate my expertise into building a successful business. I envision a future where I can combine my passion for fitness with my entrepreneurial spirit, creating a harmonious balance between my two passions. Striving for excellence in both realms, I am determined to work tirelessly to achieve these goals and make them a reality.

What is one thing people don’t know about you?

Hmm besides selling insurance half my life lol probably that I like sweets .

Here are a couple of fun facts about me in relation to selling insurance for half of my life. Firstly, it’s quite remarkable that I have been involved in the insurance industry for such a significant portion of my existence. It’s not every day that someone can say they have dedicated a substantial part of their life to a specific profession.

Secondly, amidst the world of insurance, there’s one thing I love more than what I have talked about above - sweets! These fun facts serve as reminders that even in a professional setting, we all have our unique quirks and pleasures that add flavor to our experiences.

What do you do when you arent working as a persoanl trainer, or preparing for a show?

“I am truly blessed to be surrounded by an incredible circle of people, and I feel honored and lucky every day.”


I work full time as an Insurance Agent as well as manage the office. I love my Sundays off.

One thing I absolutely love the most is having my Sundays off. It’s a precious day that allows me to unwind, recharge, and indulge in activities that bring me joy and relaxation. With no work obligations or deadlines looming over my head, I can fully immerse myself in the simple pleasures of life. Sundays off provide a much-needed break from the hustle and bustle of the week. It’s a day to cherish, savor, and create lasting memories that replenish my spirit and prepare me for the week ahead. Sundays off are truly a treasured gift that I hold dear.

What is one piece of advice you have been given that you have never forgotten ?

To love yourself first because you can’t love others if you don’t love yourself first

Loving oneself is the foundation for any meaningful and fulfilling relationships. It begins with recognizing your own worth, embracing your unique qualities, and appreciating the person you are. By nurturing selflove, you cultivate a strong sense of self-worth and confidence, allowing you to bring your best self into any relationship.

When you prioritize self-love, you become more attuned to your needs, desires, and boundaries. This enables you to set healthy boundaries, make choices that align with your values, and

establish fulfilling connections with others. Loving yourself first empowers you to engage in relationships from a place of authenticity, vulnerability, and emotional well-being.

What’s the most important risk you have ever taken? Would you do it again?

Starting again at 45 on my own but sure why not I feel the best I ever felt .. so empowering.

Embarking on the journey of starting all over again at the age of 45 has unequivocally been the best decision I have ever made. It takes courage and resilience to embrace change and step into the unknown, but it has opened up a world of possibilities and new beginnings. Starting afresh has allowed me to shed the limitations and expectations that had accumulated over the years, giving me the freedom to rediscover my true passions and pursue my authentic desires.

At 45, I have gained a depth of wisdom and self-awareness that has guided me in making choices that align with my values and bring me genuine fulfillment. I have embraced the opportunity to reinvent myself, to rewrite my story, and to redefine what success means to me. This journey has brought forth a renewed sense of purpose and a stronger connection to my true self.

While it may seem daunting to begin again later in life, the richness of experience and the lessons learned along the way have equipped me with

valuable tools and insights. I have come to realize that age is merely a number, and it’s never too late to pursue dreams, take risks, and create a life that truly reflects who I am.

Starting all over again at 45 has allowed me to break free from the confines of societal expectations and embrace the path less traveled. It has been a transformative experience filled with personal growth, resilience, and the joy of self-discovery. I am grateful for the courage to make this decision, as it has opened doors to endless possibilities and a newfound zest for life.

How do you continue to constantly grow both personally and professionally? What are some secrets to your success?

I see what I want in my future and it keeps me working hard to get there and not slowing down. I try to give myself a new goal every year to go after!

Having a clear vision of what I want in my future fuels my determination and keeps me consistently working hard towards my goals, never allowing myself to slow down. To ensure continuous growth and progress, I challenge myself by setting new goals every year, creating a sense of purpose and excitement as I pursue them. This cycle of envisioning, striving, and achieving empowers me to constantly push beyond my limits and embrace a path of continual self-improvement.

“I am truly blessed to be surrounded by an incredible circle of people, and I feel honored and lucky every day.”


What is your favorite thing about what you are doing?

Helping others reach there goals and seeing them accomplish it!

Being a personal trainer brings me immense joy because it allows me to assist others in reaching their goals and witnessing their accomplishments firsthand. The satisfaction that comes from helping individuals transform their bodies, improve their fitness levels, and achieve what they once thought was impossible is truly rewarding. Seeing the positive impact I can have on someone’s life through fitness and witnessing their growth and success is what fuels my passion for being a personal trainer.

#14 Knowing what you know now, is there anything you would have done differently in your career?

I actually love everything I do so maybe continued my college education in the early part of my career while I was younger.

What is your favorite type of persona to train and why? A positive person with a goal they are looking to accomplish and turn it into a lifestyle!

As a personal trainer, I love working with individuals who possess a positive mindset, along with a clear goal they are determined to achieve, and helping them transform it into a sustainable lifestyle.

Name 3 words that describe you and why. Strong.

Indepedant. Giving.

I’m a strong woman physically and mentally and have grown to be independent and take care of myself and I love to give to others when I can it makes me feel so good

What strategies do you find the most beneficial for promoting your business?

Social media pretty much and living the fitness lifestyle.

To promote my business and share the fitness lifestyle, I employ various effective strategies on social media. Firstly, I create engaging and informative content that resonates with my target audience. By sharing valuable fitness tips, workout routines, and nutritional guidance, I aim to inspire and educate my followers. I also utilize eye-catching visuals, including photos and videos, to capture attention and showcase the benefits of living a fitness-oriented life.

I actively engage with my audience by responding to comments, addressing inquiries, and fostering a sense of community. Building a strong online presence involves consistently posting relevant content and leveraging popular hashtags to reach a wider audience. I strive to provide value through regular updates, ensuring that my followers feel supported and motivated on their fitness journey.

Lastly, I leverage social media advertising to boost the visibility of

my business. By strategically targeting specific demographics, I can reach individuals who are more likely to be interested in my services and the fitness lifestyle. Through compelling ad campaigns and enticing offers, I aim to convert social media users into potential clients, allowing my business to thrive.

How do you feel you inspire others? Again but living the fitness lifestyle and that it’s never too late or too old to start

Living the fitness lifestyle has been my greatest inspiration, as it has transformed not only my physical well-being but also my mindset and overall quality of life. It serves as a reminder that it is never too late to start prioritizing health and fitness, regardless of age or previous experience. The journey of embracing a fitness lifestyle is a constant reminder of the resilience of the human spirit and the incredible potential for personal growth and positive change at any stage of life.

“Striving for excellence in both realms, I am determined to work tirelessly to achieve these goals and make them a reality.”



Carol Durant is an - Author, Playwright, and Poet Extraordinaire! With a life full of twists and turns, Carol has embraced each challenge with grace. She has emerged as a true force to be reckoned with in the arts.

Tell us about your childhood and where you grew up?

I was born in Manhattan at a now defunct hospital in Harlem. My mother wanted her children to grow up outside of New York City and my father obliged. My father was an avid crossword aficionado and my mother loved to read magazines and garden. Our family moved to a small town in Orange County, New York. It was a rural environment that has evolved into a bustling suburban haven from the boroughs. Due to my mother’s job, we moved to a rural hamlet in Central New York, north of Utica.

As a young child, I was encouraged to read and recite poetry, which developed my love for literature and the arts. My parents instilled in my brother and I the importance of education. I continue to believe that with every fiber of my being to this day.

I can remember when my family moved further upstate. Starting high school was a life changing event. I was more than disenchanted; it was the bullseye of a broken heart. For a period of time, I fully embraced being a disgruntled teenager. I left behind friends and struggled with making new ones. It was daunting but later it worked as a positive. I learned to adapt, thrive and cherish new lifelong friendships. I took to heart learning outdoor activities

such as stacking wood, shoveling snow, hiking trails and snowmobiling.

What was your most memorable life changing event?

In 2017, two drastic life changing events occurred which involved getting off of the couch. The first event was publishing my first poetry book and concurrently auditioning for a play. The experience was so invigorating that I spent hours of research regarding the publishing industry and specifically on self-publishing, resulting in my first book, Whole Phat and Gluten Free Poetry. I auditioned for the play, As You Like It by William Shakespeare and was cast as Phoebe performed at Sand Lake Center for the Arts, a community theater production. It was challenging and energizing to meet new people. From the director to the large cast and crew everyone was new to me. I had to memorize the lines, learn the blocking and how to act in front of an audience. Iambic pentameter is not for the meek. I stumbled but didn’t fail to remain vigilant. I had a book being published that was a secret until it made its debut in September. I had book signings and ended up performing in Harriet Tubman Visits A Therapist by Carolyn Gage. It’s an one-act play with two women confronting the horrors of racial oppression. Directed by the dynamic Jean-Remy Monnay, who produced and is the founder of Black Theater Troupe of Upstate New York, f/k/a Soul Rebel Performance Troupe, which is another stellar part of our local theater community. It’s a play that gives the actor a Mach 10 emotional roller coaster ride. I had the pleasure of acting in two separate productions. Acting has led to stage managing, playwriting and

becoming a Board member and Managing Director of All Abilities Productions of Upstate New York, a theater company focused on inclusion and creativity. Even though this was a major learning curve, I persevered.

What challenges did you overcome and how did you pivot?

The pandemic presented the globe with a new set of challenges, but I was determined to keep my creativity flowing. I quadrupled my resolve to keep mining for positivity while the world was stressful, painful and negative. My book, Cold Pressed and Just Brewed Poetry was being printed and awaiting new purchasers and book signings. People were worried about paying bills, eating and staying healthy. It was difficult for me to cancel my original plans for book sales while being stuck in the house with a vast reservoir of creativity, and inventing new opportunities. I developed an online interview show called Stage & Stanza. It’s a collaboration with Opalka Gallery and Theater Institute at Russell Sage College. We interview local creatives in the Capital District in theater, poetry, film, and artists via Zoom. Accepting technology allowed me to reconnect with friends and new audiences, launch and share my poetry and watch my plays be performed. I introduced talented creatives to each other and found a new reservoir of creativity.

What’s your biggest takeaway?

My short list of takeaways from life experiences are priceless: listening, communication, positivity, recognition of self-worth, identity, importance, research, knowledge, faith, visualization, movement, friendship, actualization, sleep, response,


food, consumption, smiling, laughing, consistency, exercise, love and hugs (with consent).

What does it mean to be a resilient woman?

This is my true and tested example of a resilient woman who values herself and her boundaries with a sense of adventure. A resilient woman knows that her space and place is ever present, effervescent, wild, profiled, substantive, profound, and represented with dignity. There are days she is boxing with shadows, hysterical and wrestling at night with or without the light, but she keeps moving forward. No matter what obstacles she may face, she’ll always find a way to keep moving forward. With just a little bit of humor, wit,

and laughter along the way, she’ll discover that the journey is just as important as the destination.


Maya McNulty is a successful business woman, author and patient - led researcher. Her tenacity for advocacy, passion for travel and outdoor adventure allows her to speak on global stages and experience different cultures other than her own. A positive mindset and attitude are the cornerstone to Maya’s resilient lifestyle. She has been featured on ABC, NBC, CBS, WebMD, Medscape, Healthline and many more.

Twitter: Linked In: in/mayamcnulty/

What you have in store is Fear no more, Your time to shine has appeared today; No more internal stop and stay. Wringing hands and dry of mouth; To drop your vision and massage the doubt Inner strength is rising forth and bursting past The negative thoughts

We have each other on the path; ascend like Sherpa’s toward horizon’s peak Your quest is fueled by goals in reach. With your plan in hand, run the table and bask at last.

“As a young child, I was encouraged to read and recite poetry, which developed my love for literature and the arts.”
Poem by Carol Durant: From the book, Whole Phat and Gluten Free Poetry Creative Ladies



I had an epiphany the other day when something happened that made me remember what is a triggering event for me, even though I thought I had forgotten all about this feeling.

It also made me realize how my gut health had gotten so out of wack over the years.

I want you to keep in mind that triggers come up because traumatic memories are stored in a different part of the brain than other memories are. They are more on the surface level and that is why you can be triggered so easily.

So in my past, my ex husband had a drug problem that resurfaced after we had gotten married, and after we had two children, and after we had purchased a house and acquired two dogs.

We were living our life but unbeknownst to me, he had a hidden drug addiction that I was not aware of until it had resurfaced, shortly after our second child was born.

We were living our life…..but I wasn’t living the same life he was living apparently.

Over time, he was getting deeper into the addiction and I was completely unaware due to the fact that I was not ever introduced to drugs and was unaware of how it all worked or what happens to a person when they’re using or any of it.

He was falling off the wagon that I didn’t even know existed, so to speak, and I

was living my life, thinking everything was great.

Other than the fact that he seemed a little bit distracted and I felt that something was going on with him, I just wasn’t sure?

In any event, that led to several years of living with a drug addict, all the ups and downs that come with it and being completely traumatized by his behavior. Worse yet, I had to watch my children suffer the pain of losing their father day after day.

It was years of me watching my children suffer by his behavior, not showing up for things, making promises he never kept and basically lying his way through life in order to stay ahead of his drug addiction.

I was upset on a daily basis…I was in fight or flight every single day.

So of course, after that all ended I realized that I had done so much damage to my gut health. As time went on, everything that I ate was a problem in one way or another. Not putting two and two together, I didn’t realize that all of my stomach issues were stemmed from the root cause of the emotional trauma and from the upset I was under all the time.

I just thought that I could no longer eat certain foods because I was getting older or those foods didn’t agree with me, or one of the many “self diagnosed” reasons I was telling myself.

I tell you all of this because recently we had an incident where my ex-husband, who we have kept in close contact with and who is still suffering with alcohol addiction, kind of went under the grid for a few days and was missing.

Now we still talk to him and my children still have a relationship with him and we try always to be as compassionate as possible with him because we realize it’s an addiction and a disease.

The kids had texted me to ask if I had talked to him because they couldn’t get ahold of him

In that moment, that sick feeling hit my stomach like a ton of bricks. That feeling of me, not being able to find where he was and me calling the hospitals and trying to figure out how we could find where he might be, was so triggering because those are the things that I had to deal with when I was living with him.

Just understand that it was 30 years ago, but just seeing that text message got my stomach all upset again and it made me realize that this is how easily a trigger can resurface, even after all of that time.

“That was in my past and I am in my present” is what I repeat to myself and is how I can deal with that emotion.

It is important to understand where your triggers come from so that you can address them.

Now remember life is 50/50 and we have to take the good with the bad.

“ We were living our life…..but I wasn’t living the same life he was living apparently..”

Understanding what your root cause was, and separating it from your present, makes dealing with past emotional wounds so much easier.

Would I have been upset if I found out that he had overdosed or worse yet, died? Of course I would, he is the father of my children, but I also would be able to put it all in perspective now.

Back then, I would have spiraled out of control and not been able to deal or I would have buried it all down to be a strong mother for my children or who knows what I would have done. I definitely would not have done the thing that would help my nervous system balance itself out.

I definitely wasn’t equipped with the tools that I have now, to deal with triggers or healing emotional trauma or any of that.

I did try to do it all alone, I didn’t want to reach out for help because I was too scared of EVERYTHING. “What would people say, what would people think, what would this mean for me and my children, would I lose my house?”

So many things went through my head that were not healthy.

We tend to engage in low level coping skills as well. Back then I used to smoke cigarettes. All I could do is smoke, smoke, smoke and smoke. That could not have helped my health and I certainly wasn’t eating healthy

either. I am not a stress eater, when I am stressed I don’t eat. Not Good. Can you see the connection between the things that have happened in your past, that put you in survival mode and the difficulty you are having now navigating your life?

If you are out of your abusive relationship or out of your toxic relationship and you’re still struggling with certain things, it might be because you haven’t healed a part of you that was deeply wounded.

Now that I think about it, I probably never did address those feelings because I swore I would never be with someone who made me feel like that again and I did a really good job of staying away from people who have addictions.

Here is the reality check, that doesn’t fix the problem (the root cause) and that doesn’t heal your emotional wounds.

Me realizing that the problem wasn’t mine and that it belonged to him and that I could rebuild my life from there, without blaming anyone for what happened, is how I began to heal.

Did it suck while it was happening? It sure did. Was it painful and did it leave emotional wounds? Absolutely.

Should I talk about it all the time in an attempt to feel better or should I move forward from it and create the kind of life that I would like to have?

I did find a safe environment and I

did find safe relationships and I did find purpose in my life.

Those are the 3 things that are known to heal emotional wound, safe environments, safe relationships and purpose in your life.

That is how I am able to deal with these things when they come up because I can put my life into perspective now and know that I am in charge and I took back my power and control.

My purpose in life is being the life coach that helps survivors take their power and control back.

I want to help you take back your power and control.

Always remember that you are capable and powerful enough to overcome anything that has happened to you in your past. I can help you get there. Please reach out by going to

“I was upset on a daily basis…I was in fight or flight every single day..”


Rose Kennedy once said that life isn’t a matter of milestones but moments. There are a few moments that come to mind. The first one is when Jonathan was being wheeled into the operating room at the hospital to have a biopsy to determine his diagnosis. Jonathan was only 4, sitting cross-legged on the gurney, surrounded by nurses and doctors in surgical garb and masks. Jon wore bright yellow pajamas, red footy socks, and a vast blue surgery cap on his little head. He had a massive smile like he was going on an exciting adventure. My husband and I were nervous wrecks and pacing while we were waiting. We knew that the biopsy results would determine if Jonathan had Duchenne. On December 31, it was confirmed that Jonathan had Duchenne. In 1997, a complete gene sequence of a blood draw could not be performed. The blood work came back inclusive, and a biopsy must be completed to obtain the diagnosis. To this day, Jonathan has a 2-inch scar on his upper thigh. This would turn out to be the first biopsy of five.

The other significant moment in Jon’s life came ten years later. Jonathan was 14 and had the opportunity to participate in a clinical drug trial amenable to the specific genetic mutation that caused Jonathan to have Duchenne. Jonathan’s mutation is called a stop-codon or nonsense mutation. It causes the protein that creates new muscle tissue to stop production prematurely. The drug is called Ataluren. There were three clinical drug trial sites in the country—two on the east coast and one on the west coast. The east coast trial sites were full and not taking participants. The west coast site was enrolling participants. After

much discussion, the family decided to try to register. Jonathan’s participation would be considered Phase III of the clinical trial cycle. There are 4 phases in clinical trials. Phase 1 through Phase 4. Below is an explanation of each stage in a typical drug trial. During Phase 1 studies, researchers test a new drug in regular volunteers (healthy people). In most cases, 20 to 80 healthy volunteers or people with the disease/condition participate in Phase 1.

Phase 1 studies are closely monitored and gather information about how a drug interacts with the human body. Researchers adjust dosing schemes based on animal data to determine how much medicine the body can tolerate and its acute side effects.

As a Phase 1 trial continues, researchers answer research questions about how it works in the body, the side effects associated with increased dosage, and early information about how effective it is to determine how best to administer the drug to limit risks and maximize possible benefits. This is important to the design of Phase 2 studies. Approximately 70% of drugs move to the next phase. During Phase 2 studies, researchers administer the drug to a group of patients with the disease or condition for which the drug is being developed. Typically involving a few hundred patients, these studies need to be more significant to show whether the drug will be beneficial. Instead, Phase 2 studies provide researchers with additional safety data. Researchers use these data to refine research questions, develop research methods, and design new Phase 3 research protocols. Approximately 33%

of drugs move to the next phase. Researchers design Phase 3 studies to demonstrate whether or not a product offers a treatment benefit to a specific population. Sometimes known as pivotal studies, these studies involve 300 to 3,000 participants.

Phase 3 studies provide most of the safety data. In previous studies, less common side effects may have gone undetected. Because these studies are more extensive and longer, the results will likely show long-term or rare side effects. Approximately 25-30% of drugs move to the next phase.

Phase 4 trials are carried out once FDA has approved the drug or device during the Post-Market Safety Monitoring.

It’s important to understand that Jonathan might not have been able to participate in this clinical trial; he needed to be evaluated to determine if he met all the inclusion criteria. Jonathan was one of 36 boys with Duchenne accepted into this initial Phase III trial. This investigational drug would not replace the medications and supplements he was taking. This would be in addition to all his other medicine. There would be additional trials in this phase as trial protocols were being reworked. We were fortunate. Jonathan did meet all the inclusion criteria. The study was a double-masked placebo study. We didn’t know if Jonathan was receiving the actual drug or not. However, meeting the inclusion criteria and fully participating in the trial required flying from Rochester to Salt Lake City every six weeks. My husband bore the brunt of those trips. In addition to the travel and the evaluations at the trial site in salt


t lake, the trial protocol required two more biopsies. One in each foot. This was to determine if the drug was working. We enrolled in the trial. Mainly to make sure that we could delay Jonathan’s decline. We didn’t think that it would be a cure. But help protect the lungs and heart and possibly delay the need for a wheelchair. Jonathan had participated in the trial for three years when the study was suddenly stopped. We had seen a delay in his decline. The analysis was stopped for six months while the protocol was reworked. During those months, we

saw a decrease in his ability. We were anxious to have the study restart. We hoped that when Jonathan could be back on the drug, it would help maintain his current capacity.

The trial protocol was updated, and he could obtain the drug again. As a result of the additional protocols, two more biopsies were required, this time in his upper arms. We saw stability in his function, and he is still taking the drug. This drug still isn’t approved by the FDA. However, Jonathan is still taking this

drug. Jon lost his independence when he was 22. However, he has near-normal lung function at 29. This is unheard of in Duchenne. This drug in the United States is still an investigational drug. However, Ataluren is approved in the European Union and Brazil as Translerna. Later this month I will travel to Dallas to understand the next steps for approval in the United States.

“Rose Kennedy once said that life isn’t a matter of milestones but moments. There are a few moments that come to mind.”


Naked Dove Brewing Company was established in 2010 as the first brewery in Ontario County since Prohibition. Much has changed in the New York brewing landscape since we opened, but the one thing that has not changed is Naked Dove’s commitment to making a wide range of world-class, award-winning beers. Naked Dove brews a wide variety of styles so there is something for everyone. There are 14 beers on tap in our tasting room ranging from a variety of IPAs to lagers as well as fruit and malty beers. Drop in to our casual, relaxed Tasting Room for a flight or a pint or two and grab some beer to go in cans, crowlers, growlers or kegs. The Tasting Room also has fabulous apparel and glassware for that someone special. Come down and experience for yourself the difference Naked Dove’s passionate commitment to the Art and Science of Brewing makes in our beer and be a part of the Naked Dove family.

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“Modey was one of the most affectionate dogs I had ever met, and I quickly learned firsthand why he was such a favorite among staff. ”


My name is Jesse O’Conner and I’ve recently adopted Asmodeus, affectionately known as Modey, from Animal Care Sanctuary. We met about 5 months ago when I started working there as a canine caregiver. Modey was one of the most affectionate dogs I had ever met, and I quickly learned firsthand why he was such a favorite among staff. He was a joy to have with us and, by almost all rights, was a model dog. He was very loving, great on a leash, unreactive toward our resident working cats, and AMAZING with other dogs.

When we had playgroups Modey would be in the yard with anywhere from 4-6 other dogs running around and playing freely. He has a rare dog to dog style that we don’t see too often in the shelter. He can be hyper and playful with puppies and other energetic dogs, yet gentle and calm with shy or scared dogs. In fact, his best friend was a little Dachshund named Rocky. Modey would get down on his level and play so carefully with him. He knew Rocky didn’t like being crowded and would throw his body weight around to clear other dogs out of the way if he noticed Rocky was getting overwhelmed. The way he

so diligently watched over his little friend melted my heart, and the sight of a 90-pound lab being silly with such a little dog was a trip.

Modey came to ACS back in the summer of 2021 from Best Friends Dog Rescue. He spent over 500

ever gave him a chance past the first impression. We all knew what a heart of gold was lying under that fear, and it was heartbreaking to see him fail. Fast forward 5 months, and I had the opportunity to buy a house where I had the space for him. I knew the moment I decided to move that I was busting Modey out and finally taking him home. Since he’s come home, he’s made friends with my fiancé, my parents, and our other 3 dogs. To no surprise, his new best friend is our Chihuahua/Pug. Since Modey has been given the space to meet new people responsibly and at his own pace he has proven to warm up faster each time. Once Modey gives you his heart, you’ll have a loyal friend for life.

days waiting for somebody to take him home. His only hang up was that he feared strange people. Due to this underlying fear of strangers, Modey never had a successful meet where he didn’t try to nip at potential adopters. Although he warms up to new people rather quickly, nobody

He is truly a joy to have around and loves nothing more than laying with his head in my lap and snuggling. We go on lots of walks through the woods or down the walking trail by my house. There is also a swimming hole in the creek across the street where I can’t wait to take him this summer, he LOVES to swim. I am overjoyed that he has transitioned so well into our family, and excited for the many adventures in store down the road for both of us.

“He is truly a joy to have around and loves nothing more than laying with his head in my lap and snuggling.”


Radiance exudes confidence and happiness. Radiance shines and lights up the room and others light up too.

“You’re beautiful just the way you are. Shine on. And dare anyone to turn off the lights.” – Mandy Hale

There was a time I did not believe I was radiant. My light was dim. My name and voice were not ‘a joyful sound’ to me.

Do you love your name? Have you discovered the meaning of your name? For so long, I didn’t like my name, especially the scolding tone in which my mother spoke it sometimes.

“A person’s name is to him or her the sweetest and most important sound in any language.” – Dale Carnegie

When Les Brown used the letters of my name to help develop The LORI Factor, it gave my name a new meaning. I heard it and saw it differently. Then, I began to see myself differently.

Courage and boldness rose up. That opened up opportunities to speak, be seen, and be heard and share my message of hope and how to live the life you were born to live.

How has your name affected your life? What meaning does it hold for you?

Here is what was divinely revealed to me personally. What a precious proclamation God sang to me:

“A cherished child of mine, a soul I

gently sustain, “Lori,” crowned with laurel, my victory she’ll embrace. And “Jane,” my gracious gift, with love, I’ve filled her space.

Your life reflects my grace, a testament for all to see. Embrace challenges with courage, for I’ll never leave your side.

Let your light brightly shine, a beacon of my love, in a world that’s oftentimes unkind. Through your name, I sing of my favor and victory. Lori Jane, my beloved, walk in your destiny.”

I share this intimate, personal message with you, not to impress you, but to impress upon you that you too are precious and cherished by God the Creator, Name Above All Names.

When you look in the mirror and see your reflection, what do you see? Look in God’s mirror and your reflection will be seen through His eyes.

You are beautiful. Get a larger vision of yourself. Let the light of your heart shine through and overflow onto others. Just imagine what a difference you will make. The twinkle in your eyes and the smile on your face will truly light up every place. Speaking life into every soul you meet is a sweet treat.


Transformation is possible. Wellness is essential. The key element on my transformation journey that supports my physical, emotional, and mental health is using natural products and resources from a particular company.

Partnering with this company has enhanced my life significantly. I feel better using these health solutions, especially when I travel.

You can pursue your wellness journey and discover physical, emotional, spiritual, and financial solutions that will empower you. It may be the answer you’ve been looking for. Find more details here: https://1084061.


How will you show up? Where do you want to go?


I decided to step up and show up. My book signing at a local bookstore provided a place to shine and meet amazing people. I am thankful that I accepted the invitation to speak at Kelly Breuer’s 2023 Influential Woman Health & Wellness Expo on June 17th at Perinton Square.

Seize opportunities to show up and add value to people’s lives. Start conversations. You never know where it will lead and what relationships will be formed.

As I continue on my wellness journey, I share my message and results to give other people hope and solutions.


Embarking on my transformation journey has given me great experiences with amazing people. I have opportunities to speak, travel, learn, and teach.


More book signings for The LORI Factor are being scheduled. I co-authored a chapter in 100 Most Inspirational Women in the World, which launches July 7th.

Also, I am a co-author in the next volume of Cracking the Rich Code with Jim Britt and Kevin Harrington (from Shark Tank), endorsed by Tony Robbins.

Make the most of every opportunity. Partner with God. I have an opportunity for those who want to be a co-author in Cracking the Rich Code, email me for the details:


What impact do you want to make before you leave this earth? Where do you want to go?

“Investment in travel is an investment in yourself.” – Matthew

Writing books, blogs, and articles is fun for me. Published author status is an accomplishment. What really lights my fire is travel writing. Specifically, getting

to travel on press trips to write stories.

Travel is also a key element in my wellness journey. Travel is good for your mental health.

The World Travel & Tourism Council says: “Mental health is as important as physical health and requires nurturing and active maintenance.

Travel is a great way to maintain mental well-being, and, by extension, it contributes to a happier and more fulfilling life.

Travel is great for relieving stress and improving your general outlook on life. According to a 2013 study with people aged 25 to 70+, 80% of respondents said travel improves their general mood and outlook on life with 75% of respondents also saying travel helps them reduce stress. Time away from work can increase your energy and productivity at work.” I can attest that personal travel adventures for pleasure make me happy. I can explore solo or with a community of other travel enthusiasts. This affordable option has

given me more opportunities to enjoy more travel experiences.

Recently, my travel adventure in Riviera Maya, Mexico, at an all-inclusive resort was amazing. I got to partake in a 10-course meal created by Michelin Chefs. That was a luxurious VIP experience.

Speaking of luxurious, getting pampered at the spa was exquisite. There is a hydrotherapy circuit, massage services in art-themed treatment rooms. Immersed in the art of Van Gogh, Picasso, Matisse, and more added to the ambiance of the experience.

The extra perks we got by traveling the way I did made it all possible.

What are you waiting for? Email me to find out more: lorisstories2022@

“We travel not to escape life, but for life not to escape us.” - Anonymous

“Travel is a great way to maintain mental well-being, and, by extension, it contributes to a happier and more fulfilling life. ”



Question: to wear? Is there a color that when you wear you receive compliments?

simplicity, layers, calm or invigorating? Think about how a space makes you feel first rather than what it looks like!

Putting these elements together can be the perfect starting place for creating he home you actually want.

I often suggest taking a global approach to your home. It should have a continuous feeling of well-being ad you enter each room. Having a room or two done will not have the dame impact ad a well curated coherent home. Home integrity is the key to the good feeling home experience

“There are several things you can do to figure out what your favorite style is and whet is




J e s s i c a F a b u s C h e n g c o m J e s i c a a b u C h e n g c o m I n s t a g r a m @ M r s N Y I n t l I n s t a g r m @ M r s N Y I n t l @ P o w e r O f Y o u r S t o r y @ o w e r O f Y o u r S t o r y

O u r l i v e s a r e a n O u r l i v e r e a n i n t r i c a t e d e s i g n o f s t o r i e s W h e t h e r i t ’ s a j o u r n e y t h r o u g h i n f e r t i l i t y , r e c e i v i n g a c a n c e r i n t r i c a t e d e i g n o f s t o r i e s W h e t h e r i t ’ s a j o u n e y t h r o u g h i n f e r t i l i t y , r e c i v i n g a c a n c r d i a g n o s i s , b a t t l i n g a c h r o n i c i l l n e s s o r d i s e a s e , c r e a t i n g b a l a n c e a s a m o m , n a v i g a t i n g o u r r e l a t i o n s h i p s , o r d i a g n o s i s , b a t t l i n g a c h r o n i c i l l n e s s o r d i s e a e , c r e a t i n g b a l a n c e a s a m o m , n a v i g a t i n g o u r r e l a t i o n s h i p s , o r s i m p l y m a n a g i n g t h e m a n y d a i l y " u p s a n d d o w n s " o f l i f e , w e A L L h a v e P O W E R F U L s t o r i e s t o s h a r e t h a t c a n s i m p l y m a n a g i n g t h e m n y d a i l y " u p s a d d o w n s " o f l i f e , w A L L h v e P W E R F U L t o r i s t o s h a r t h a t c a m a k e a d i f f e r e n c e m a k e a d i f f e r e n c e w h e n w e u n d e r s t a n d h o w t o R E V E A L t h e m w h e n w e u n d e s t a n d h o w t o R E V E A L t h e m

T h r o u g h T h r o u g h t h e P O W E R o f Y o u r S t o r y t h e P O W E R o f Y o u r S t o r y , I ' m h e l p i n g w o m e n a n d y o u n g l a d i e s o f a l l a g e s a n d f r o m a l l b a c k g r o u n d s , I ' m h e l p i n g w o m e n a n d y o u n g l a d i e s o f a l l a g e s a n d f r o m a l l b a c k g r o u n d s u n d e r s t a n d h o w t o r e v e a l t h e p o w e r o f t h e i r s t o r i e s t h r o u g h m y s i g n a t u r e u n d e r s t a n d h o w t o r e v e a l t h e p o w e r o f t h e i r s t o r i e s t h r o u g h m y s i g n a t u r e R E S T M e t h o d : R e c o g n i z e , E m b r a c e , R E S T M e t h o d : R e c o g n i z e , E m b r a c e , S h a r e T r u t h S h a r e T r u t h W h e n w e u n d e r s t a n d h o w t o r e v e a l o u r p o w e r , w e ' r e b e t t e r e q u i p p e d t o f e e l W h e n w e u n d e r s t a n d h o w t o r e v e a l o u r p o w e r , w e ' r e b e t t e r e q u i p p e d t o f e e l c c t o w a r d s o t h e r s a n d t o c r e a t e p o w e r f u l t o w a r d s o t h e r s a n d t o c r a t e p o w r f u l c o n n e c t i o n s c o n n e c t i o n s i n a w o r l d u n i t e d t h r o u g h a c c e p t a n c e a n d u n d e i n a w o r l d u n i t e d t h r o u g h c c e p a n c e a n d u n d I f y o u w o r k w i t h a d u l t w o m e n o r y o u n g l a d i e s , l e t ' s c h a t a b o u t h o w w e c a n h e l p t h e m t o r e v e a l t h e I f y o u w o r k w i t h a d u l t w o m e n o r y o u n g l a d i e , l e t ' s c h t a b o u t h o w w e c a n h e l p t h e m t o r e v e l t h e t h e i r s t o r y ! S c a n t h e Q R c o d e a b o v e ! t h e i r s t o r ! S c a n t h e Q R c o d e a b o v e

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“I’m not sure I could have done it without you”, is a phrase I’ve repeated quite often. Looking back over the years I realize how important my kids “bonus” mom truly has been. Being a blended family sure wasn’t always easy. Especially at the beginning. When feelings are still raw and the wounds of what was are still healing. It’s not the easiest thing to share your children with another woman, especially when your children begin to adore her. But, that’s what you want, even though your children’s family now is not the traditional one, isn’t it the love and compassion that’s most important?

Broken family doesn’t quite sound right, I feel like even my family grew. Not only in size, but in life lessons, and emotional ties. Broken sounds so tragic, when my children have 2 moms now and another brother and sister added to the space in their hearts.

I remember when Roan was little, and everything was new. A new house that dad lived in, a new schedule of life between 2 homes, a new woman who he was afraid to love but wanted to. Many nights after the kids went to bed, I would go past his room and he would be laying there awake. These were moments Roan and I had a lot of emotional talks about his fears, his hopes and his heart. He asked me if I like Christine. He asked me if it made me sad when they enjoyed time with her and her kids. He wore his heart on his sleeve, and he has always been my closest emotional link of all three of my children. He explained that he was afraid to love her, because how could he have enough room in his heart for me, if he started to love her? Such an innocent wonderful question, and it

brought tears to my eyes. I told my son, the great thing about love is, the more you love the bigger your heart becomes. You have more love to give, and the more people you love the more love you have. I’ll never forget this conversation we had, and the look on his face when he asked me if it’s ok to love Christine too. That it wouldn’t make me sad, In fact it would make me happy. Happy because then I know that my children will be taken care of, just as if they are her own.

And that she did. We parent very differently, And I think that gave my

my own, Christine never batted an eye when the kids became full time residents briefly with her and their father. She didn’t question what would happen, she just took on the role and pushed through the struggle that it was, and then we worked together to become stronger. For the kids. I parented my children with a sense of discipline, and Christine was the voice of reason for many of the teenage battles.

There were texts, phone calls and tears, but there was always love. She never once looked at my children as outcasts or another person’s kids, they too were hers. She was there for football games, soccer games, lost retainers that we CAN’T tell dad about, dance recitals, dance lessons, and dance rides. There was a lot of dance that became, I feel a second life for her. Ella’s hair I could never get right, but Christine could, and misplaced shoes at a recital that we had to talk Ella off the ledge from. To driving lessons, graduations and goodbyes to little kids becoming adults.

children an extra view. It also gave them a safe place to vent, and boy would Ella vent. There were times Christine would know more about Ella than me, and I’d feel pushed away, but had to Remember moms don’t always need to know everything, and her needs were more important than being included. Christine took on roles such as dance mom, secret keeper and peace keeper, all while raising her own two children single handedly. I began to watch my children flourish in what some would call a broken home, and form bonds with a whole new family.

Once when I had personal struggles of

Through all the trials we have overcome, she never gave up and she never turned away from being the other mom, they needed so much. Because they did. Looking back over the last decade and more, Christine was always the one I turned to to talk about the problem at hand with the kids. Do we tell their father about this one, and then how to go from here? It was a learning curve, but we always learned together. There is no step in family, and it’s true. “I don’t know how I would have done it without you.”

““I’m not sure I could have done it without you”, is a phrase I’ve repeated quite often.”


According to the Alzheimers Association, an estimated 6.7 million Americans age 65 and older will be living with Alzheimer’s Disease (AD) in 2023. The percentage only increases after the age of 75 to 73% of people with AD diagnoses. Studies show that Alzheimer’s is more prevalent in women than men. One in every five women over the age of 45 will be diagnosed with AD, and one in every ten men. In this article, we will discuss the risk factors and preventative measures that may decrease the onset of AD.

Alzheimer’s Disease is a neurodegenerative disease. This means the nerves in the brain and nervous system slowly degenerate. This degeneration process starts slowly and progressively worsens over time. The exact progression of the Disease will vary from person to person. AD symptoms can vary from mild symptoms of difficulties remembering an important event to mood swings, problems with language, disorientation, or at worst aggressive behavioral issues. Risk factors associated with AD start with age. The older you are, the greater incidence of cognitive decline. Family history and genetics is also a significant risk factor. Studies have shown that if you have a direct family history of AD diagnosis, you have a seven times greater chance of developing the Disease. There are also some diagnoses, including stroke, diabetes, hypothyroidism, and cardiovascular disease, that show a greater link to the AD diagnosis. Many lifestyle habits have a direct link to AD, including

smoking, dietary needs, and lack of exercise.

Unfortunately, you can not change your genetics or family history. You can, however, make lifestyle choices that will support your body and decrease your risk of developing AD. While there are no direct studies that prove one thing works better than another in the prevention of AD. Scientists continue to conduct many studies on ways to prevent AD or delay the progress of AD. Let’s discuss some of the findings. Exercise: Increasing your activity is essential for managing many diagnoses. While exercise has not been directly linked to preventing AD, it has been linked to reducing the risk of chronic conditions, including Stroke, Diabetes, Hypothyroidism, and cardiovascular Disease. Each of these conditions has been linked to an increased risk of AD. Exercise has been shown to improve performance on cognitive tests and slow cognitive decline. So what type of exercise is the best for your brain?

Cardiovascular exercise is definitely in the top runnings for a better brain. Cardiovascular includes walking, running, biking, swimming, and specific group exercise.

High-intensity exercise has improved executive function and the ability to plan and organize. Exercise increases the blood flow to the brain and can stimulate and strengthen neural connections in the brain’s cells. It has also been shown to improve fine motor coordination and may protect against cognitive decline. Exercising at

least 150 minutes a week may reduce your risk of Alzheimer’s and dementia. If you have been diagnosed with AD, Physical therapy is a great way to improve your brain health. Specific exercises can improve balance, motor planning, and daily functional movements. The more you exercise, the more independent you can remain. So, we all knew exercise was great for your body; now we know it is also great for our brain!

Cognitive exercise: “Cells that fire together wire together.” This means that you can change your brain through a process called neuroplasticity.

Most learning involves rewiring or making and strengthening connections between neurons. Learning new skills increases your brain’s ability to adapt to change. You can challenge your brain by doing puzzles, brainteasers, taking a new route, learning a new language, etc. The more you repeatedly practice a new activity, you strengthen the brain’s neurons.

Diet: While there is not a lot of research directly linking your diet and the prevention of AD, many conditions have been linked to an increased risk of developing AD. These include cardiovascular disease and diabetes. The Mediterranean diet has been associated with improving brain health & preventing cardiovascular Disease. The Mediterranean diet is based on fruits, vegetables, legumes, whole grains, and fish and uses olive oil as the primary cooking fat. Other tips include avoiding high alcohol intake and


avoiding smoking. We can all agree these are great tips for any diseasepreventative measures.

Other Lifestyle factors: Sleep is so essential for your brain health. Sleep is the only time that our bodies heal and recuperate. It is also time for our brain to rest and organize what it needs to do to prepare for the following day. Without proper sleep, the brain can not create or maintain the ideal level of neural connections. Many factors can interfere with your sleeping pattern and quality of sleep, including medication, sleep disorders, schedule, stress level, and more. You can improve your quality of sleep in a few different ways:

● Set a schedule: Go to sleep and

wake up at the exact times of the day.

● Set the perfect atmosphere: You can do this by keeping a cool room temperature, keeping your room free of electronics, and keeping your room dark. The darker, the better.

● Watch your caffeine intake: Everyone metabolizes caffeine differently. However, caffeine after 2 pm can wreak havoc on your sleep quality.

Having a healthy, well-balanced routine at home is a great way to keep your brain happy and healthy. There’s strong evidence that healthy lifestyle habits — such as diet, exercise, and getting a good night’s sleep — may

play a role in reducing your risk of Alzheimer’s Disease and other types of dementia. Developing a great team of people to help guide you on your path to improved health and wellness is also a good idea. Wellness 360 is a great place to start regarding brain health and exercise. Our physical therapists specialize in neurorehabilitation. It is our specialty. We can guide you on the appropriate exercise and cognitive function to make the most significant impact on your goals and your health and wellness.

You can check out more at www.

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“Alzheimer’s Disease is a neurodegenerative disease. This means the nerves in the brain and nervous system slowly degenerate.”



“Don’t give up your own welfare for the sake of others’ welfare, however great. Clearly know your own welfare. And be intent on the highest good.” – The Dhammapada

Do you find yourself on your computer late into the night, trying to catch up from whatever didn’t get done during the day? If your boss calls you during your day off, can you let it go or does it nag you for the rest of your time off with feelings of guilt and anger? Do you find any creative projects just overwhelming because you can’t get out of the weeds?

We know that if we can put some boundaries between work and our time away from work, it leads to more connected time with family, lower stress levels on mind and body, and it also prevents burnout which would let us flourish at our job a bit more. Leaving work at work can actually increase our attention span because we’re not trying to be in two places at once. Our mind’s don’t really multitask they just switch. Here are some practices to put into place for an overall better work life balance for YOUR health.

If you are in the boat of not being able to prioritize the life balance piece of the work life balance, go ahead and read your job description or the ethical code for your profession if you have one. It might mention advancing the profession – which you are certainly are not doing if you are suffering from burnout.

Monotasking: While at work, try not to start a new task until the first one is done. The easiest example of this – and possibly the way to expose how incredibly difficult it is for us to give up multitasking is to monotask by trying to finish something up in one browser tab or one excel sheet before clicking into a different screen. If you feel like you are actually getting tasks accomplished at work, you’ll be less likely to take it home. If you feel like you’re working after hours because you can’t focus during the day with everyone in the office, see if you can start your day with some of those tasks.

Allotting Time: If you do need to take tasks home, set a timer for how long you are actually going to do them, focus in and do them and then stop when they’re done. Much like the tabs above, at home I can find myself walking between the coffee pot, my work on my laptop and random blog posts which just spreads out the length of the task and takes away from my free time. That’s it on the work front. Odds are your ability to drop work at home are more internal than external.

Equanimity: Trust me, I have had some of THE WORST bosses with no boundaries and I was able to make peace with my schedule before I was self-employed. Sometimes it’s not leaving your job, sometimes it’s learning how you BE with that job. Can you create a sense of equanimity? Equanimity doesn’t mean that life and job stressors won’t get thrown

at you, just that you can maintain your peace rather than let them get under your skin.

Prioritizing self-care: The same way that we plan to get work done, prioritize what needs to be prioritized for your self-care. When I was working in corporate retail I made sure I got my exercise in in the morning or the evening, walked my dog, eventually added in 10 minutes of meditation, cooked a meal for myself and THEN if I needed to, take care of extra work. Therapeutic Approach: Also, before you start to pick up work tasks at home, listen to your body to see where this is coming from. I like to use the first four themes of Phoenix Rising Yoga Therapy: befriend your body, awareness, acceptance, choice.

Take some deep breaths and listen to the sensations of your body. What’s there right now? Stress? Pressure? Your bosses’ voice in your head? Fear of putting food on the table for your kids? Where is that showing up? If you listen to your body, what do you need to do right now? If you feel like you really cannot leave work at work and this article is complete rubbish – you need to practice acceptance. Really get in tune with what it feels like to not leave work behind, see where it shows up in your body, observe how it impacts your social interactions and your passion projects. Once you really embrace the writing on the wall, you may be able to let it go.

Practicing self-compassion and enoughness. Paraphrasing, Stephen

“Leaving work at work can actually increase our attention span because we’re not trying to be in two places at once.”

evine says we all have a sense of unworthiness society gives us that we are trying to overcome. Our ego tries to over-do and overachieve to try to play catch-up for that sense of self-doubt. Before I was self-employed, on many Sundays, I would log on to my work laptop and put in a few extra hours to try to make Monday less terrifying. It doesn’t usually work. What if I took those hours and said “Kaitlyn, you are doing your best of juggling three jobs right now. You are a wonderful person who deserves

rest and joy and to read a good book without feeling guilty? You are smart, you bring in a lot of money for that company, they should be appreciative of all your effort. Nobody is perfect, nobody has ever perfectly pleased any manager. It is not your job to please everyone.” Try it on. Saying this out loud for the first time, I was nearly in tears. What is a positive affirmation you can take with you in this?

Practicing Presence: When you are with the people and experiences you

want to spend more time with, put your phone away! Practice empathetic listening – not listening to converse but listening to listen and understand. Ty reflecting back what you heard them say. It makes your limited time away from work so much more rich!

This is just the 1000 foot view of these strategies, so if you have questions please reach out at I would love to troubleshoot these with you.

“Don’t give up your own welfare for the sake of others’ welfare, however great. Clearly know your own welfare. And be intent on the highest good.” – The Dhammapada


My mother was convinced that her neighbor was sneaking into her apartment and stealing her books. She has bookcases dedicated to her favorite authors. If my mother was not watching her beloved New York Yankees, she would have her nose in a book.

It was her routine.

My brother and I were annoyed with her accusations. Her insistence was troubling, but for months we ignored this clear sign that there was a thief in the night, and it was not the neighbor.

The hallucinations became more detailed. From the middle of the night hysterical phone calls, convinced there was an intruder, to insisting dogs and small children were hiding in her home and would not come out. Something was wrong.

Mom was diagnosed with Lewy Body Dementia in the spring of 2019. It is the perfect storm of Alzheimer’s Disease and Parkinson’s that packs a punch to the stomach when you hear the news and see the doctor’s face. My business had passed the critical three-year, make-it-or-break-it point, and I was finding my professional stride as a solo business owner. It was easy to be selfishly consumed with all the good things to enjoy about everyday life.

Making a living on my own terms, watching my daughter play high school sports, and renovating my home filled my days.

I even got a puppy.

I could never have prepared myself for the imaginable experience ahead. They say it takes a village to raise children, but when faced with an Alzheimer’s diagnosis of a loved one, you are somehow living on an island alone.

You are too sad to share and the only control you have left is the ability to complete tasks.

I won’t go into the painful details of trying to care for a parent or a loved one with this awful diagnosis. If you are in the middle of it, you know the frustration, confusion, and suffering experienced by both the person and the caregiver.

Managing doctor’s visits, finances, legal documents, grocery shopping, laundry, house cleaning, and prescriptions are easy things.

Suddenly thrust into multiple visits a day for care, while trying to maintain a small business became mentally exhausting.

There was no family leave, no vacation days to take. It became about surviving each little crisis and figuring out how to still get the job done back at my desk while trying to stay one step ahead of a disease that had more stamina than I did.

It was death by a thousand cuts, with no time to mourn.

But something unexpected happened. I changed the way I looked at life, my relationships, and my business.


At the beginning of my mother’s diagnosis, I would insist on being correct about the time of day, what she ate for lunch, and when I would return.

I remember still believing that Christmas day had to be ‘the day’ we would celebrate as a family and open our presents together.

To her, it was just another day.

Instead of asserting my rightness – I decided to pick my battles in this awful war.

Most times, all she wants to do is lay in bed where it is safe and talk to me. Sometimes in life and in business, you must meet people where they are, not where you want them to be.


Every morning I wake up with a to-do list. As the weeks and months progressed, Mom’s list became longer. A slip off the couch, having to unpack the bags she packed in the middle of the night, or search the house for missing keys thwarted my best-laid plans for that day. She took more time, and that meant I had to adjust. Life is not 9-5. Some days, my ability to get all my work done, and be a mother, and caregiver suffers.

Stay mentally flexible. Let go of what


you did not get done and celebrate what you did.


Mistakes happen in business and in caregiving. You must own up to them and move forward.

I thought my mom was having a “good day.” Preoccupied with work and wanted to skip an afternoon visit to finish up a project. I had left her pills out for her to take from the pill box. I called and told her to just take Mondays. I told her I would be over in a few hours.

When I arrived, she had taken an entire week’s worth.

Self-forgiveness is hard, especially when you are pulled in so many directions. Incredibly Mom was fine, besides needing to sleep for two days.

In life and at work, there is no need for finger-pointing, especially at yourself. Learn from the losses and celebrate the wins.

Learning to forgive yourself allows you to lighten up on others.


Being unwilling to take a step back, take a vacation, or take a day off is

just stupid.

I became so wrapped up in trying to run my business and care for my mother that I lost myself. Time off was a luxury I could not afford.

My daughter was graduating from high school, and I had mentally missed

mom, my daughter, and my clients, I need to care for myself.

When loving someone with Alzheimer’s it is a priority.

To endure the stress, take a break, unplug, and refresh, even for a day.


There are so many times I want to give up, cry, throw something, or make someone else do it.

That statement holds true for my business, parenting, and caregiving.

Tomorrow is a new day, with new priorities. Count on it. I choose to look for emotional victories these days. Connection and clarity matter more.

An out-of-the-blue call from a client I thought had gone elsewhere. A funny text from my daughter lets me know she still misses home.

most of her senior year dealing with my mom’s daily issues. I had promised her a vacation but as April approached, I had no idea how I could leave.

Professionals wiser than I intervened. Remember the airplane takeoff speech. Put your oxygen mask on first, so you can help others. To care for my

And a conversation with my mom leaves me feeling like she is still in there. She’ll say, “I don’t know who you are, but I know that I love you.”

Everything changes, and that’s okay.

“She’ll say, “I don’t know who you are, but I know that I love you.””
“ Sometimes in LIFE and in business, you must meet PEOPLE where they are, not where you want them to BE. ”



Being gentle with ourselves, especially as women, can be challenging and occasionally nonexistent for long stretches of time. Society has taught us that the “ideal woman” is quiet, tough, nurturing multitasker who moves through life without complaint. We clearly know this is far from the truth, yet we easily can fall back to the way we’ve been conditioned to see ourselves as flawed and not enough. So, how can we create a more loving way to be gentle with ourselves? To see the real “me” that is wanting to burst forth and feel a peaceful knowing that we are exactly who we should and were always meant to be?

Think about first and foremost how many times a day you use negative self-talk? We punish ourselves for not being our best even during difficult life circumstances or as a motivator to “do and be better.” The mental berating and self-sabotage bring us unrest, pain, anxiety, and/or depression due to feelings of never being enough. We forget that when we choose to live in that space of fear that we are not only punishing our adult selves, but we are also speaking that way to the child within us. We damage them every time we say, think or believe negative thought patterns and ruminate on them. We give them energy to swallow us whole if we get lost in them.

When you have those low moments, can you imagine yourself instead speaking to your 7-year-old self? How must she be feeling when you say detrimental,

unkind things? As a child, I used to have people in my life that weren’t always kind to me, and I felt damaged and unlovable. There was a feeling of never being safe or held. I yearned for that deeply and promised myself that my children would always feel a sense of safety and peace in our home. (No pressure there.) What I forgot along the way was that I still needed that for myself, especially as an adult.

The psychotherapy model of Internal Family Systems* states that their goal is [to help] “people heal by accessing and healing their protective and wounded inner parts.” They maintain that our core “self” (which I call my truest essence), is what should lead our thinking and steer the other parts of our subpersonalities “to achieve balance and harmony within the internal system.” That core self is where creativity, calmness, curiosity, compassion, confidence, connectedness, courage, and clarity are traced back to and where we feel the most centered when we wholly tap into them.

My greatest tool to remember how to come out of this darkness is to not only imagine my inner child but also my kids and my five-month-old granddaughter. How could I ever speak to them that way? I never could nor would I even dream of it. I shower them with love, compassion and acceptance while creating a safe place for them to be their authentic, most beautiful selves. I see them for who they truly are-perfectly enough and more. It’s powerful and takes me out of the ruminating about the big lie that says how I wasn’t enough or worthy. I can get off the gerbil wheel and take deep breaths while I picture their beautiful selves in front of me. What

am I modeling? How is my behavior not only hurting me but deeply hurting them and misshaping their self-identity? Talk about a positive motivator!

While amid pain, try switching your dialogue to asking that sweet little girl what she needs right now and how can you be there for her? I like to tell her she’s enough, beautiful, smart, funny, and safe. That I will always be here for her, and she no longer needs to hide in order to feel secure. I’ve got her back. It’s incredibly healing and deeply loving not just for her but for my heart. Being of service to ourselves in this way grants us to lead the way for others to do the same self-loving practices. It’s a joyful ripple you are consciously creating for all beings. That is profoundly powerful and needed today. It also gives you the power to change and shape the hearts and minds of those seven generations before and after you in a way that is healthy and positive. Seven generations!

Becoming mindful about our thoughts, actions and words can also support our self-love rituals. Taking deep breaths or taking that split second to check in and see the next right action should look and feel like. Answering an irritating or hurtful text/email once you have quieted your mind instead of immediately replying creates space for you to come from a place of love and curiosity. Not from anger or agitation. Simple actions like this can grant you the ability to calm yourself and operate from a higher vibration. It diffuses not only your initial fight or flight responses but also acts as a buffer that creates a kinder space for all parties to navigate more lovingly. You create the change you want to see in the world and become a light in the


“What is the greatest gift you can give yourself? It is to fully understand your boundless value.”

What is the greatest gift you can give yourself? It is to fully understand your boundless value. You have been created in God’s perfect image. You are infinitely loved and supported in every trauma, joy, and accomplishment. It’s okay to lean in and allow them to hold you when you can’t find the strength to take one more step. They await your requests with only love and a deep desire to walk alongside you. They wish for you to use the gifts you’ve been uniquely given without fear or apology. It is what you are meant to do and be; your highest and most loving self. Being of service to yourself opens you up to standing alongside others that now can no longer continue without loving guidance and a soft place to fall. Getting aligned with love by checking

in with what it is your soul values and following that path opens your heart to growth and healing. Give yourself what you need and live fully alive each day in whatever capacity is available to you. Even small loving actions are triumphs.

Decide today to begin a journey of gentleness. Try any or all the above steps, baby step by baby step and journal how it is beginning to change your vision of who you are. Share with a trusted person what you are doing and ask them to come along for the ride (if you feel comfortable with that). Have them gently hold you accountable when you use negative terms about you or something you made a misstep on. Let them help cheer you on and create a safe place for you to

grow and flourish. Have fun and use creative means to get there. Take a fun art class, learn something you’ve always wanted to know how to do and dive in. Find what works for you to feel as though you are steeped in inexplicable joy. Then repeat. Add on. Expand that practice as you begin to grow. You will then be able to stand proudly in that light knowing you stepped up and did the work to find yourself again to feel the peace it brings to your heart. You’ll never want to leave.



Rejection is an undisputed fact of life. We all face rejection, in one form or another, throughout our lives.

Some of us may face more episodes of rejection than others. Obviously, those of us who are hypersensitive are more likely to encounter more frequent periods of rejection. If we tend to overpersonalize neutral events in our lives, we will also be more likely to interpret them as incidents of rejection.

We feel rejection when we face the loss of something that we deeply valued or wanted. Rejection has been defined as the act of pushing someone or something away.

There are many possible explanations for why we encounter rejection in our lives. It’s important to remember that, many times, rejection is unrelated to who we are. However, it may reflect that someone else does not accept a specific type of behavior that we have exhibited.

Rejection is painful because it violates our fundamental need to belong. Experiencing rejection is so painful because it destabilizes our basic need to be a member of a social group. In fact, experiencing social rejection activates the same brain pathways that are activated when we experience physical pain. It is “hard-wired” in us to belong to one another, to need each other in meaningful, reliable ways. When this fails to happen, it hurts.

Those of us who have secure attachment styles are more likely to be resilient after

facing rejection. Attachment styles refer to those models which form the patterns of how we view relationships in our lives. These attachment styles are typically provided by our parents, or primary caregivers.

Personally, I’ve recently been challenged by rejections in my personal and professional life, neither of which was pleasant to deal with at all. After only having met with me for one session, a teletherapy client chose to transfer to another therapist. I was never informed about the reason why. Perhaps she didn’t like my theoretical orientation, or maybe our schedules simply failed to line up. I try to focus my energies on working effectively with those clients who do choose to work with me, rather than to waste my resources on trying to figure out why I’m not a good fit for someone.

Also, I recently decided to reach out to a college friend, someone whom I had not been in contact with for thirty years; he chose to not respond to me. I decided to graciously wish him well, and simply let this issue go. Again, I have decided to direct my limited energy towards those individuals who have expressed interest in maintaining an ongoing, bidirectional friendship. Life is far too short to focus on those who fall away along the way, in my humble opinion.

How we choose to respond to rejection is incredibly important. Healthy responses to encountering rejection involve the following steps: 1). Fully acknowledge that the rejection has occurred (don’t

try to deny it); 2). Attempt to learn something valuable from the experience (no experience need ever be wasted in our lives, even if painful); 3). Process your emotional reaction to rejection (feel sadness, anger, and/or anxiety); 4). Practice self-compassion (be gentle with yourself, and acknowledge that rejection means that you were willing to take a risk); 5). Engage in healthy practices (eat healthy, get enough sleep, exercise, and hydrate); and, 6) Be willing to risk taking another chance in the future (don’t assume that a previous experience of rejection will inevitably be repeated in the future).

One essential means of buffering one’s self against rejection involves improving your self-esteem. Doing so will help you to become more resistant to feeling upset when others fail to include you in valued events or activities. Make a list of your positive attributes, your valued personality traits, your meaningful contributions, etc. Doing so will help raise your self-esteem, as well as potentially reveal deficits to work on remedying.

Although we rarely recognize it immediately after it takes place, sometimes rejection can be the very best thing that could ever possibly happen to us. That’s because it redirects our path in an entirely different, but ultimately better, direction.



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