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Media Appearances: Your Guide to PR Professional Dress

Guest Blog post

As a PR professional, knowing how to dress for media appearances is of utmost importance. There are few departments who represent a company more directly then the PR team themselves. Though preparing yourself for an appearance with the media can be a bit stressful in the beginning, creating your wardrobe is essential. When you prep for your next media appearance, be sure to use the tips below as your guide for PR professional dress.

Embody Your Company

First and foremost, your attire when you step out into the eye of the public should always embody your company. Whether your office wear is business casual or completely casual, onlookers should be able to tell who you work for from your dress. Ask yourself if someone else in your workplace would be comfortable in the same outfit you plan on wearing in front of the media; if the answer is yes, you’re probably on the right track with your look. Remember that you are the direct link between your audience and your company. Allow your audience to get a glimpse of all your business has to offer through the professionalism of your look.

Play it Safe

Going in front of the media is not the time to step out of the box with your attire. While it might be tempting to make a bold outfit choice in order to stand out, playing it safe is always your best option.

Keep your look simple, modest, and clean. Whether you opt for a simple button up shirt or sleek black capris, stay to what’s familiar to you. Most name brands offer in-season looks that will keep you feeling professional and prepared.

Online thrift shops like thredUP even have great names like Madewell to help you save on the perfect top as well as anything else you might need.

Avoid clothing with large pockets as they might tempt you to store clunky items on your person. Bring a small briefcase or purse with you to the appearance to store those extra items you need with you and leave them in the greenroom or wherever it’s safe to store them during your appearance. Being free of pocket items such as your phone and wallet will give you clean lines and leave you feeling more comfortable and less weighed down when you address the public.

Be Color Conscious

The colors you wear can tell a lot about you and about your company. If the branding of your organization revolves around a specific color, it doesn’t hurt to incorporate it into your professional look.

Stay away from bright and bold color choices along with excessive patterns. Opt for safe and simple neutral tones that won’t leave your audience feeling distracted by your look.

Allow the colors you wear to compliment you as it will make your words have more of an impact. A neutral tone of red, like burgundy, is both a subtle and powerful example of a color that will help you feel brave and bold in front of a crowd. Be aware of colors that might show off sweat stains, or end up being see-through. Choose a color that you feel confident in and you’re sure to make a great impression on your listeners.

Know Your Location & Audience

While your professional dress should always embody your company, it should also take into account the environment of the media appearance. Always consider the location of your appearance and who your audience is. An outdoor conference will more than likely mean you should opt for sensible and simple footwear.

Check the weather outlook for the day to be prepared for the heat, rain, or a cold spell. The more prepared you are, the more professional you’ll look to your audience. Access the age range of your viewers as well to ensure your outfit remains timeless. The more you let your look speak for itself, the more comfortable you’ll feel as you represent your company.

6 Weird Ways to Get a Reporter’s Attention For Your Business

Guest post by Victoria Green

Getting media attention – especially the right kind of attention – is something of an art. Whether you’re a celebrity, a business owner, or a politician, it’s all about finding an angle. And not just that – you have to be able to get a reporter’s attention in the first place. This can be easier said than done.

Bear in mind that reporters and media journalists are solicited hundreds of times a day. Their email inboxes are virtually overflowing. So if you want their attention, you need to go about it in the right way. You need to stand out from the crowd – even if that means taking an unconventional approach.

With this in mind, here are 6 weird ways to get a reporter’s attention. (See also: 9 Steps to Be a Thought Leader — and Become a Media Darling).

Start with Google

Google is an amazing resource to unearth useful information about the reporter, what they cover, and how they like to be approached.

A good place to start your ‘Googleathon’ is social media. See how they interact with others online, and whether they regularly interact with others pitching them ideas. You can also look to their work bio to see if they specify preferences.

There are different schools of thought on the best way to approach a reporter with an idea for a story. They may prefer email, Twitter, or a good old-fashioned phone call. In the unlikely event that they aren’t present on social media, you can defer to phone or email.

HOT TIP: look out for any pet peeves they regularly complain about. Take note as well of the current issues that they’re tweeting or retweeting. See if there’s any common ground you can use to help build a connection. Maybe you have a product that might help? Or maybe you feel the same way about a social issue?

Ultimately, if you already have a feel for the reporter and what s/he likes and dislikes, you have a better chance of reaching out to them successfully.

Weird ways to get media attention. source: pexels

Take a lesson From Tinder

The more I think about it, the more I realize that attempting to reach out and get the attention of a reporter is much like modern dating. Thanks to online dating, we often have a chance to find out about someone before we decide to approach them. When we do decide to make a move, the opening line is critical.

Tinder lines can be hilariously terrible. They can also be downright dull. Mastering the art of a good opener is paramount if you’re serious about looking for love online. And if you’re serious about getting your story picked up by the media, then it’s equally crucial.

‘Hey, how are you?’ is a great way to get ignored by a journalist. It does nothing to spark their curiosity. It lacks creativity and fails to disclose your reason for getting in touch.

Powerful subject lines for an opening email are:

  • Concise
  • Engaging
  • Unambiguous
  • Personalized
  • Value-driven

Remember, your pitch must immediately rouse the reporter’s interest. An effective subject line really is half the challenge. Check out these top 10 email subject line formulas for inspiration. You  may be surprised to learn that in some cases, “profanity f*cking works”.

Journalists also love data — so put your best foot forwards and give them some awesome data for free. Running an ecommerce business? Why not send out some surveys to your customers via social media and email to find out more about their habits? From family life and holidays, to food habits and leisure — there are plenty of useful insights and stories lurking out there.

Play it cool

Yep – the online dating metaphor still stands. When you’re building a relationship with a reporter, timing is important. Journalists are busy people with full schedules, and your clinginess will not be appealing to them.

Be respectful of what the reporter already has on their plate. Realize that when you send them a pitch, they’re probably not going to be able to respond right away – unless you’re very lucky and caught them at exactly the right moment. Give them at least a few days to respond before following up.

If the story is especially time-sensitive, then you need to make this clear when you reach out to them first time around. Conveying urgency is another great way to get a reporter’s attention.

weird ways to get a reporter’s attention. source: pexels

Send them a video

Video is changing how we create and consume news. Journalists know it, and if you can help them source quality video content, then they’re going to be very happy with you indeed. Here in 2017, video content represents 74% of all internet traffic (Source).

So if you want to give your story a boost and make it more likely to hit the headlines, consider sending a video along with your pitch. 4X as many consumers would prefer to watch a video about a product than to read about it – and the same goes for news stories. News publications love video because it encourages readers to stay on the page for longer.

Making a vaguely professional-looking video doesn’t have to be hard. There are lots of great apps out there for making videos, including iMovie, PowerDirector, and LumaFusion.

Be willing to let it go

With time stacked against them, most reporters will probably require a follow-up a few days after you’ve pitched them your story. In most instances, they’ll probably appreciate the reminder — always with added ‘new’ information that’s of value to them — not, “Did you get my email about…”.

However, if you’ve already chased them a couple of times and received nothing but stony silence in return, you might need to try a different approach, angle, or twist on the topic. You can also ask if your pitch might be a better fit with someone else at their organization.

The risk is that you may not necessarily get the answer you’re looking for. But by putting it out there in a gentle way, such as “seems like this wasn’t a perfect fit for you – unless I hear otherwise, I will run a different idea by you soon.

If you are looking to promote something time-sensitive like a product launch or a new ecommerce venture, you are going to have to plan ahead and be mindful of editorial deadlines you can tell them that you’re offering it to them first. And if they pass you can move on to the next top person on your media list. Whether you build a store from the ground up, or invest in a readymade one, make sure that your branding and content is on-point enough to appeal to busy journos. A good pitch from a badly formulated brand may go to waste — so make sure you cover all bases.

Go bananas

Of course, if all else fails, and you really will stop at nothing to get that reporter’s attention, you can try one the following:

  • Hire a banana costume and do a little dance outside their office window
  • Pay a movie theater to play a pre-recorded video of your pitch after the ads at a movie you know they’re going to see (because they posted about it on social media)
  • Accidentally bump into them on the bus while holding a basket of kittens
  • Heroically save them from falling into a pond

Disclaimer: These methods are not tried and tested. I hold no responsibility for them going wrong.


We need the attention of reporters for all sorts of reasons. Maybe you’re trying to make a story or piece of content go viral. Perhaps you just bought an online business and you want brand coverage. Possibly you’ve found yourself in the public’s bad books, and you need a bit of good publicity. Whatever the reason, it helps to know how to go about it. Hopefully these suggestions have been useful.

Got any other great ideas? Let us know!

Victoria GreeneVictoria Greene: Brand Marketing Consultant and Freelance Writer.

Vicky is a freelance writer and ecommerce marketing consultant. She loves being part of the brand growth hacking process and producing real, measurable results. In her spare time, Vicky shares her knowledge by writing for a variety of digital publications.

Prepare For Your TV Interview With The 25 Best Beauty + Anti-Aging Products

Here’s what I know. Most of my clients and course participants are terrified when they get booked to be a TV guest. Much as they want it, it insecurities rear their head— starting with how they look. So I made it my mission to unearth the best products to whip a bod and face into form for a guest spot on a TV show. We start  six months out and cover  you right up to your moment in the green room.

Typically you don’t have six months to prepare so best to start now.. The goal is to look your best. And more importantly not to focus on how you look so you can be your most engaging and engaged self.

I heard comic and actress Jessica James on Terry Gross on Fresh Air discussing her audition for the Jon Stewart show. She said Stewart told her, “Here’s what you need to know. I already saw your tape. I already think you’re really funny. The only thing that you have to worry about is just being present with me. That’s all I want is for you to be present with me.” James said, “And just for this guy to just release me and just be like, hey, just be yourself, it’s fine, was really, really liberating.”

So I recommend the same to you. Be present and be yourself. It’s the most important gift you can give to those who are watching you. And your audience can see who you are in less than 1/10 of a second. It’s called thin slicing. Your audience knows whether they like, trust, believe and will buy from you in less than a blink of an eye.

Of course you want to have your sound bites prepped so you can integrate them into the conversation naturally. Keeping in mind to “be the message you want to give” as well as delivering the content of the message in an easy to understand manner so you serve your audience’s needs – and the host/show’s goal of creating a lively, entertaining and informative show.

Prepping your face, neck, chest and body before a media interview is as important as prepping your mindset and messages. If you look and feel good from the inside out then it’s easier to focus on the message you’re here to give.

If you’re fretting about bulges or imperfections you’re doing a disservice not only to yourself, but to those looking to be entertained by or to learn something from you.

When you fully focus on what you’re here to give versus how you look or what you’ll get out of it, then your generosity of spirit carries a lot further than perfect hair, clothes, and make-up. That said, I’m focusing on making the most of your natural beauty and showing you how to enhance the skin you’re in.

A quick note: Some of the products I’m reviewing are ones that I’ve used for a long time and love and trust. Others I’ve received recently and have been trialing them and giving them to others to test as well.

To be as accurate as possible with my results I tried products in succession over a four-month period using different products on my (different parts of my) face, neck, chest, hands and body. They range from a few dollars to hundreds.


anti-aging chocolate

esthechoc anti-aging chocolate

1. esthechoc Anti-Aging Dark Chocolate

What I love most: Ummmmn….it’s dark chocolate!

The science: After 10 years of extensive research, scientists at Cambridge Chocolate Technologies have developed the world’s first chocolate to protect skin against the aging process from within.

This is my very favorite anti-aging product for three reasons.

  1. It’s absolutely delicious.
  2. It’s something I can do every day with no effort.
  3. It’s anti-aging from the inside out so I’m nourishing my insides while getting a glow.

“esthechoc is the world’s first (patented) nutricosmetic with a strong, scientifically proven impact on the metabolism of aging skin,” states Cambridge Chocolate Technologies who developed this delicious and effective wrinkle buster.

One square of esthechoc‘s dark chocolate has just 38 calories and 2 grams of sugar. But there is one big problem….it’s so delicious that you want to eat the whole box all at once! I’ve been consuming it for three months now, one square at a time, and my skin is markedly different.

The place where most people use Botox – the frown lines and the lines in my forehead – have diminished about 50% and the lines around my mouth have softened as well. esthechoc is well-known in Europe and is rapidly becoming a favorite anti-aging “nutricosmetic” in the United States as well.

A few facts: One 7.5g piece delivers as much flavanol activity as an entire large bar (100g) of dark chocolate. It also contains as much of the plant-based antioxidant astaxanthin as a full serving (8oz) of wild Alaskan salmon.

Astaxanthin is considered by many experts to be the most powerful antioxidant on the planet. esthechoc bars are natural, vegan, gluten free, diabetic-friendly and work for all skin types. Results have shown that it slows aging, boosts circulation, oxygenation and detoxification in as little as 21 days. Scientists say it can make skin look up to 30 years younger. I sure look forward to that.


anti-aging Red Light Therapy

Joovv Full Body Red Light Therapy

2. Joovv Full Body Red Light Therapy

What I love most: Joovv works from the inside out in 5 minutes a day.

The science: Why and how red light therapy works.

Joovv is first in-home, full-body, red light therapy device designed to treat your entire body in less than 5 minutes. Because of its ability to enhance ATP production at the cellular level, red light therapy helps reduce wrinkles, repair sun damage, fade scars, enhance muscle recovery, increase collagen production, and many other benefits.

Before Joov, most consumers had to use small handheld devices or pay for expensive services offered only in spas. Now, you can use Joov in the comfort of your own home and follow in the footsteps of fitness hackers like Dr. Mercola and Dave Asprey and dozens of others who are using this cutting edge therapy to hack their health.

I’ve been using it for about a month now for an average of 10 minutes a day and it’s cut my use of Advil in half after a hard Aikido (Japanese martial arts) work out. I recover faster and feel more energized on a daily basis.

You can stand in front of it naked or with clothes. If this seems time-consuming let’s reframe that as you can use your time in front of the Joovv effectively to prepare for your media appearance.

Suggestion: You can record your sound bites ahead of time on your phone and then play them back to yourself to help get them ingrained. Also, keep saying them aloud until they become second nature, like you’re talking to your bestie. You’ll heal your bod and your anxietyat the same time.

Oh, and you’ll also get a kind of mini-facial and weight loss boost as the Joovv works on those wrinkles, increases collagen and helps wash away fat cells and decrease your appetite.

Attention men, this also helps up your testosterone.

Joovv is my new groove. Here is my routine. I stand in front of it and:

  1. Meditate (standing so no leg or neck crinks). I do a simple meditation from Dr. Brian Alman that connects the breath with your goal that I highly recommend for you too and share in this webinar.
  2. Visualize and send out good feelings and healings to those I love and those I don’t yet know. Making this a practice will shift your attention from yourself and help you focus on serving your audience – which is the essence of good publicity. If you don’t know where to start you can recite this Buddhist prayer for compassion in action that helps heal yourself and blesses you to gain the capacity to heal others. Om Tare Tuttare Ture Soha
  3. Practice upcoming speeches and sound bites for my new program True Shield: Verbal Self-Defense For Girls. I’ll be meeting journalists and producers in person at the Publicity Summit in New York in October and want to use my time most effectively with them. Your verbal pitch should be about 20 seconds. And your written one about 100 words. Now is the time to practice out loud.
  4. Watch Aikido videos on my phone to improve my technique – which needs quite a lot of help. I set it on the top of the Joovv and enjoy.

You can choose to watch videos of people you want to emulate and/or of yourself so you can see what it working well for you and what you want to change for your next on-camera interview.


Best anti-aging Marine Collagen

Skinade Marine Collagen

3. Skinade Marine Collagen

What I love most: Beauty from the inside out.

The science: Active ingredients boost your body’s natural production of collagen and hyaluronic acid in as little as 30 days.

Skinade increases collagen in the bloodstream by adding 7000mg of hydrolysed marine collagen peptides (smallest molecular weight on the market of 2kDal) from each bottle (daily dose), which triggers the body’s own collagen production by firing up the fibroblasts, our own “collagen factories.” In essence you’re giving your skin a boost to manufacture more collagen every time you sip.

Since I can’t tolerate sucralose I gave Skinade to my sweetie’s personal trainer who has tried a number of bovine collagen products, which she called “gross” and can have a funky taste. Skinade uses marine collagen peptides sourced from fresh water fish but there isn’t any fishy flavor. She’s used it for a month and loves the tangy taste.

She says that her skin is softer and more vibrant. And, “I felt like I was doing something good for myself by drinking it.” Skinade uses an advanced technology with a “Patent Pending” formulation that delivers essential nutrients in a “liquid formulation promoting high absorption and bioavailability.”

You can get this product for 30, 60, or 90 days pre-bottled or in concentrated liquid sachets so you can just add water – which is the ticket when you’re traveling. Skinade’s tag line is, “better skin from within.” Instead of taking a pill or shot you can drink your way to more beautiful skin. Bottoms up.


PMD Personal Microderm

PMD Personal Microderm

4. PMD Personal Microderm

What I love most: You only need to do this once a week.

The science: See the results of clinical trials.

The instructions for this device say, “The PMD is a serious skin care tool and there is a learning curve.” That said, it’s quite a quick curve. I was fearful at first to use such a device as I’m a pain weenie. But I followed the instructions to a T watching THEIR video first, not other videos on the Internet many of which are inaccurate. And it looked like it was a cinch.

The concept is clear. Once you’ve followed the skin cleansing instructions you choose the white training disc to start and then graduate to the gray disc. Once your skin becomes acclimated you can graduate to the other discs depending on your tolerance for dermabrasion.

You move the PMD quickly across the surface of the skin in an organized manner following the video and diagram that’s included and do not make a second pass over the surface you’ve covered. I’ve done it four times so far on my face, neck and chest and the instructions state that after a series of 8-12 treatments you’ll see a reduction of fine lines, wrinkles, blemishes and age spots.

What I suggest is that you use this device to exfoliate to increase the effectiveness of any of the anti-aging products as they’ll get absorbed at a much deeper level after these microderm sessions, so your beauty routine will produce results faster.


anti-aging Exfoliator

TwinMedix X Smart Exfoliator + Pro Travel Kit

5. TwinMedix X Smart Exfoliator + Pro Travel Kit

What I love most: No fuss or mess.

The science: Skincare innovations in ingredients and delivery.

Who ever heard of a cleansing routine that’s fun? I was really tickled by several of TwinMedix’ products in their Pro Kit which travels well.

Exfoliation, starting at least three weeks ahead of your TV guest appearance, will create a smooth surface for your moisturizer and make-up. All products work better after exfoliation so this is an essential step in your beauty routine. TwinMedix Pro: Essentials X smart exfoliator gel removes dead skin cells with the smoothing power of Dead Sea Salt.

It beads up and rolls right off. It was kind of like an unexpected magic trick. I used Costco’s Baby Wipes for a quick clean up. Don’t forget your neck. You gently massage your face in circular motions and voila! you’re done. I like this as it was super fast – 30-60 seconds and super fun. So your total time from start to finish is two minutes to get your skin prepped for their A-15 serum.

Beyond the fun factor, my skin got kind of luminous. So I admit I found myself marveling in the mirror for a few moments. #notvain.

I also loved their O2 Oxygen Facial Mask that was equally funtastic. You squirt it on, lather it on your face, neck and chest and it foams up white and then dries clear. You rinse it “once you feel the bubbles ‘pop’” away and you suddenly look more awake and alive. Brilliant.


anti-aging MesoLyft


6. MesoLyft

What I love most: It doesn’t hurt.

The science: Reinventing the wheel with micro-needling and area specific serum.

MesoLyft is a new take on Mesotherapy. I’ve had Mesotherapy treatments from Dr. Lionel Bissoon, who brought this famous French beauty secret to the US, with subtle and dramatic results. Celebs sneak into his office before big galas to youthify and this treatment is a natural and effective alternative to fillers and Botox. Mesotherapy also excels in the treatment of cellulite, weight loss, body sculpting.

It works by delivering vitamins, minerals and homeopathy with hundreds of tiny pin pricks under the middle layer of the skin (meso) so your skin naturally produces collagen and rebuilds. Over time you look better and better, so people would just comment on how relaxed or radiant I looked several months after treatment.

Since Dr. Bissoon is in New York and I’m here in California and haven’t had a treatment in years, I was thrilled to try MesoLyft, the dermatologist approved, fragrance free formula that is delivered through a micro-needle wheel that you can easily control. Just pump and roll. Simple as that.

Since the wheel is small you can get to “hard to reach” places like between your eyes and bridge of your nose. Also, you can control the pressure of the needles.

How does it work? MesoLyft creates small micro channels in the skin that allow the skin to repair itself naturally while also providing a deeper infusion of ingredients than traditional products alone; all without damaging the skin. See how easy it is here.

When I conversed with the publicity rep and she exclaimed, “It doesn’t hurt!” Their pain free delivery system was designed along with top scientists at MIT and Harvard to introduce a sleek yet pain-free way to incorporate serums and exfoliation into one easy-to-use device. I had my doubts. And was curious to try.

To my delight she was right! I used this daily around my mouth for a month where I have deep lines above and below my lips where and I’d almost given up hope of an improvement. Now, I rarely think about these bothersome wrinkles that are much less deep. MysoLyft has become one of my favorite beauty secrets.


Magnetic Eyelashes

One Two Magnetic Eyelashes

7. One Two Lash™ Magnetic Eyelashes. (Whaaat?)

What I love most: Takes less than 30 seconds to get the false eyelashes on. In a word: Godsend.

The science: Two tiny magnets sandwich your natural lashes between two ultra-lightweight fiber strips.

I read about these eyelashes on Popsugar and my first thought was, “I must have them.”

I don’t know about you, but I’m a total spaz with glue. I recommend false eyelashes to all my women clients for their TV appearances. Why? You want to illuminate your eyes and draw attention to one of your most expressive features. This helps keep people focused on your message.

The more people are distracted by your expressions, movements, hair, and clothes the less they hear and absorb your message. We want your audience fascinated and focused on what you have to offer.

One Two Lash™ has several different types. Original, bold and accent. You might use the original for magazine shoot and the bold for media appearances. You can add in the accents to get the exact look you want. But either the bold or original will work fine depending on the look you’re going for.

Go for bold if you’re looking for a more lush, dramatic look, like Rachel Maddow. I recently wore the originals, geared more toward the everyday, to lead a media training workshop and after a few minutes after I’d put them on I forgot that they were even on. No more glue. Whew.


Alana Mitchell 4-1 cleansing sponge

Alana Mitchell 4-1 cleansing pod

8. Alana Mitchell 4-in-1 Cleansing Pod

What I love most: The ingenious packaging.

The science: Committed to true claims.

This 4-in-1 Cleansing Pod looks like puff ball in a bag. It’s a cleanser, exfoliant, sponge and masque all in one. You dampen the pod and squeeze it to activate it. There’s enough of the ingredients in each pod for your face, neck and chest so you can also treat your décolletage. After it dries and you let the mask set for 10 minutes to intensify the “brightening effect.”

After that you simply rinse with water and voila, you’re done. It’s good for 2-5 applications. I admit my face looked rather radiant. Do this the day of your on-camera interview to brighten your face.

I also liked the Quick Comeback Masque which was inspired by Korean beauty and contains two chambers; pop the top chamber and the liquid reacts as it combines with the lower chamber, resulting in a fresh mask that delivers tightening effects to the face for up to 48 hours — so use this the day of your on-camera appearance. It went on super easily and peeled off like Saran Wrap – with zero mess. This is a real winner for traveling.


Anti-aging Instant Face Lift

La Difference Instant Face Lift

9. La Différence Anti-Aging Moisturizer + The Instant Face Lift

What I love most: The moisturizer light and absorbs easily.

The science: Triple Stem Cell Plant Therapy: Veegum, Acai Palm, Chinese Basil, White Oak.

I used this moisturizer which contains a proprietary 6 Peptide and Resveratrol Complex formula not only makes skin appear younger, but hydrates and moisturizes on my neck daily for a month and it plumped out the chicken-neckness that was developing and made it less noticeable. Also, the spot at where the collar-bones meet was getting a bit saggy and this took out much of the sag.

Many TV news commentators interviewed via satellite, or other less experienced media guests often pay little attention to the neck — which can prove a major distraction given wrinkles, flab, and uneven make-up. So prepping this area in advance with La Difference will allow you to do a better job of using make-up that matches your face to include your neck, chest and décolletage. Remember, we want your ideal audience focused on your delightful presence and important message, not on sags and wrinkles.

The Instant Face Lift, which comes in a syringe like tube, dramatically lifts and firms the skin, provides instant results, tightens and strengthens skin and contains antioxidants to fight free-radical damage so use this first before you moisturize.

Created in a FDA-approved, scientifically-advanced laboratory, La Différence Cosmetics Instant Face Lift and all LDC™’s products use plant stem cells as well as clinically-proven ingredients that work on a cellular level to provide instant rejuvenation and hydration of the skin, while powerful tightening actives work to reduce visible fine lines and wrinkles. An excellent combo.


Anti-aging Osmosis StemFactor Growth Factor Serum

Osmosis StemFactor Growth Factor Serum

10. Osmosis StemFactor Growth Factor Serum

What I love most: It works.

The science: Faster, deeper delivery of real human stem cells into the skin.

The newly formulated Osmosis StemFactor Growth Factor Serum contains over 540 uniquely identified proteins and a higher concentration of growth factors that help erase fine lines and wrinkles.

This product boasts that it has 350% more growth factors and skin proteins than the closest competition, and the company recently discovered a new method for accelerating the stem cell output of growth factors to rejuvenate the skin.

Can you say, “skin superhero?” This might like a sound a bit of science fiction, but no worries, the micronized compounds making up this powerful serum do not contain any animal-derived collagen or highly processed ingredients.

What the formula does contain is actual human stem cell-derived molecules of collagen, elastin, SOD (superoxide dismutase), fibronectin, and the star ingredient, tropocollagen.

Rather than begin Frankensteinian, it’s quite the opposite as all of these are components that our skin produces naturally, making it easy for the skin to recognize and incorporate these proteins back into the system.

I applied this turbo-charged super serum to my forehead, frown lines and the crease at the top of my nose. Nothing I used before this seemed to effect that stubborn crease — until I used this. There was a significant difference in depth of that crease and frown lines. Happiness. Now I look less “worried” and more alert. I’ll be continuing to use this product as it’s proven itself.


Livad Anti-Aging Cream

Livad Anti-Aging Cream

11. Livad Anti-Aging Cream

What I love most: Creamy but quick-drying.

The science: 92 Percent of women surveyed in an 8-week study agreed that their skin felt smoother after using this cream.

You’ve heard of bio-identical hormones, right? Now there is a bio-identical moisturizer. Bioidentical vitamins A, D, and E are naturally found in your body, which means less irritation and more long-term benefits for you. The formula works beyond fine lines and wrinkles as well and naturally blends into your skin’s biome for long-term improvement.

What you won’t find: ingredients that artificially plump and cover. Instead you’ll get a “naturally occurring vitamin cream that smooths fine lines and wrinkles,” according to Dr. Janet Prystowsky considered one of Manhattan’ top (board certified) dermatologists who created this cream for the general public. In addition to improving skin smoothness, over 60% of women in an 8 week study said their skin’s elasticity, brightness, and firmness also improved!

One of the key benefits is that this can be used more often than creams with retinol, which can be drying and irritating. Since this cream is thick and rich I’ve been using it on my cheeks for a month and it’s plumped and smoothed them. So count me in as one happy camper along with those gals in the 92% and 60% studies.


Lumion™ Skin Natural Hydrating Oxygen Mist with HOCL

Lumion™ Skin Natural Hydrating Oxygen Mist with HOCL

12. Lumion™ Skin Natural Hydrating Oxygen Mist with HOCL

What I love most: So refreshing and light.

The science: Infection-fighting compound found in the human body’s immune system protects skin and treats ailments.

The first of its kind, LUMION utilizes hypochlorous acid (HOCL), an infection-fighting compound found in the human body’s immune system to fight bacteria, smooth wrinkles and treat skin aliments (including eczema, rosacea and acne) without ever introducing foreign, potentially harmful chemicals into your bloodstream. HOCL compound originates from electrically charged Dead Sea salts, water and oxygen.

Take this mist with you when traveling or on the TV set to hydrate and refresh your skin. The beauty of this mist is that you can use it before or after you’ve got your thick TV make-up on. Spray it on before to wake up your skin. Spray it on after to set your make-up or just to refresh and revive when you need a lift.

Often after I’ve been the guest on a TV show my face breaks out from all the make-up products that I don’t normally use. Lumion™ helps fight bacteria and prevent breakouts so you’ll be ready for another guest spot the next day. Their motto, “Let your skin breathe.”

One other thing I love. They give $1 for every bottle bought to Lonely Whale Foundation. Bravo.

Want to be “instafamous”? Tag and hashtag them on Instagram @lumionskin #LUMIONlife. Good luck!


Eminence’s Strawberry Rhubarb Hyaluronic Serum

Eminence’s Strawberry Rhubarb Hyaluronic Serum

13. Eminence’s Strawberry Rhubarb Hyaluronic Serum

What I love most: Vegan friendly and smells as good as pie.

The science: Eminence Organics uses the best natural, organic and Biodynamic® ingredients.

Eminence Organics Skin Care provides natural products with rich benefits from the earth – many ingredients are grown on their organic certified farm. For centuries, Europeans have said that rhubarb is also beneficial to healing bruises, reducing redness and swelling. Not only is rhubarb a magical addition to your beauty counter, but it is also a superfood that can benefit your diet as well. (I’m a big fan of strawberry rhubarb pie, you?)

As an important national TV interview or book tour arrives your added stress might lead you to the candy jar. Stop! Sugar has been known to be harmful your skin and can contribute to jowl area sagging, deep crevices around the laugh lines and discoloration of the skin. Instead, do something good for your skin with this nourishing serum.

I had so many products to test on my face I decided to use this on my hands – even though it’s a serum designed for the face. I’m getting some age spots which this lightened considerably in a month, so you wouldn’t even notice the light sprinkling of my freckles or spots.

If you’re doing a cooking show or doing a product demonstration expect close ups of your hands as you chop veggies, hold or point to an item. A manicure goes without saying, but dry skin and age spots as well as rangy cuticles can be distracting. I love the company attitude as well as they state, it helps your skin “Bounce back to its youthful glow.” I’m all for that.


Scrubz Cherry Almond Burst Sugar Scrub

Scrubz Body Cherry Almond Burst Sugar Scrub

14. Scrubz™ Body Cherry Almond Burst Sugar Scrub

What I love most: Instant smooth skin top to bottom.

The science: Emu oil’s qualities.

“All the ScrubzBody products are handcrafted with love in small batches — and you can tell. Makeup, sunscreen and other products work much better on polished skin. Whether you’re preparing for a photo shoot or TV show appearance, and you want skin to be supple, smooth and moisturized this scrub could become your instant favorite.

It is whipped with pure Shea Butter and Emu Oil (in the Scrubz+ products only) in addition to the 8 natural botanical oils included in all their scrubs. Roberta Perry, the Founder and President of ScrubzBody™ Natural Skin Care says, “No other moisturizer is necessary and your skin will be clean, smooth and soft.” So true.

It’s a good thing that on the Cherry Almond Burst Sugar Scrub jar it says, “Not for consumption.” Because the smell of this will make you want to eat it on the spot. When my sweetie sniffed me fresh out of the shower after using this scrub he said, “Yum, you smell like candy. I want to bite you.” No worries if you’re not keen on smelling edible. The scent wasn’t detectable the next day, so it didn’t compete with my perfume.

While salt scrubs can be drying sugar scrubs are kinder to the skin. You don’t want the camera picking up any flakes or scaliness on your skin. Use this the night before you’re on-camera — your lips included — which we often forget to exfoliate. Be sure to pat yourself dry instead of rubbing so the oils have a chance to sink into your skin and you’ll look gloriously moisturized.


L’eggs Silken Mist Control Top Panty Hose

L’eggs Silken Mist Control Top Panty Hose

15. L’eggs Silken Mist Control Top Panty Hose

What I love most: The comfort and silkiness.

The science: Soft, silky innovative knits.

If you’re looking to control those little (or big) bulges on your tummy, hips, thighs put on a pair of L’egg’s control top hose. I was grateful that these were so comfortable. I was also amazed that this covered my veins, bruises and discolorations so my legs looked smooth and glowy — and minimized those chunks at the tops of my thighs.

The brand uses soft, silky innovative knits with a control-top panty to provide the smooth look under dress skirts and you can wear these under pants as well to smooth little lumps, elongate your legs to create a slimmer profile and take off five pounds.

You can get seconds on sale for less than $5 that is such a good deal you don’t need to worry about snagging. That is way less than you would pay for any body shaper. Before L’eggs I was a staunch Donna Karan fan – and still am. And these rival Karan’s at a fraction of the price.

I remember one client telling me that she wore a body shaper to her first media interview so she could take off those 10 pounds that television puts on. But there was a small problem: she could barely breathe. It created a distraction that kept her from being her best. In these stockings you’ll breathe easy.


The Brow Gal™ by Tonya Crooks

The Brow Gal™ by Tonya Crooks

16. The Brow Gal™ by Tonya Crooks

What I love most: You can use this wet or dry.

The science: Beautiful, innovative customized brows.

This eyebrow “powder” comes in a sleek black case perfect for travel and included a “spoolie” an angled brush on one end and mascara-like wand on the other. The convertible brow, created by Tonya Crooks, a makeup artist who works with Megan Fox and Cara Delevingne, comes in three compacts, with a full size, double ended PRO:

  • Dark Hair 01
  • Brown Hair 02
  • Light Hair 03

Each compact contains a warm, neutral, and ash tone to allow you to mix and match your perfect, custom color. Once used wet, the pallet will revert back to powder consistency, ensuring the product does not dry out.

I wetted the lightest color brown and mixed it with the slightly darker brown of The Brow Gal to not only create a higher arch, but it was easy to “paint” in areas where my brow was thinning. I could make my brows look thicker and still natural. If you want highly stylized “fashion model” or “instagram” brows you can create those too. Not sure how to shape or fill-in your brows? Watch the tutorials.

I first use Maybelline Brow Drama to cover the stray grays and give my brows a bit of texture, even out the color and give them a bit of stiffness to hold their shape.

You can use the spoolie to brush your brows upward if you want less stiffness. For your TV show appearance you want expressive brows that are a bit fuller than what you might create for a magazine shoot or a speaking engagement.


Sea Radiance Rapid Eye Lift

Sea Radiance Rapid Eye Lift

17. Sea Radiance Rapid Eye Lift

What I love most: It feels fresh and grease free.

The science: Unique nozzle that prevents antioxidant destruction.

Sea Radiance Rapid Eye Lift was created by Dr. Debra Jaliman, a board certified dermatologist with a private practice on Fifth Avenue in Manhattan, and a celebrity following. It’s made with Sea Elixir, a unique blend of organic sea flora, organic botanicals and peptides with more than 100 times the antioxidant power of Vitamin C.

Brides and their makeup artists love it because they see immediate improvement for fine lines and wrinkles and this is also perfect for an on-camera interview. It comes in an easy to carry tube that you gently squeeze to release a small amount of the cream. Its unique nozzle dispenses the product without allowing air to enter the tube and destroy the antioxidants and prevents waste.

Lots of under eye potions that promise to get rid of my dark circles and wrinkles just haven’t worked — until this one. After one week my sweetie said, (with no prompting…) “Your dark circles are disappearing.” Then he tried to scam me to give him my Sea Radiance Rapid Eye Lift that I would not relinquish. Since he sees me every day I considered this big progress. By using this product you’ll lessen the amount of under-eye cover up make-up you’ll need to use so the camera doesn’t pick up those dark dips. A find.


G.M. Collin Instant Radiance Anti-Aging Eye Patches

G.M. Collin Instant Radiance Anti-Aging Eye Patches

18. G.M. Collin Instant Radiance Anti-Aging Eye Patches

What I love most: Quick eye repair.

The science: The hydrogel texture is formulated of a unique mixture of ingredients, providing a feeling of comfort to the eye area.

These eye patches make your eyes “pop “after use. In 20 minutes my crow’s feet had plumped up and gave me a more relaxed look. These can be used on the plane, before bed, or right before a TV show appearance. They immediately and visibly reduce the appearance of fine lines, wrinkles, puffiness and fatigue.

The unique mixture of active ingredients sink into the skin, leaving the eye area hydrated and rejuvenated. The packet comes with 5 pairs which you can use two weeks time before you appear on TV for more of a transformation, or individually, the day of your on-camera media interview.


LOVEBUD Puff Puff Past Eye Cream

LOVEBUD Puff Puff Past Eye Cream

19. LOVEBUD Puff Puff Past Eye Cream

What I love most: Lose that under eye puffiness.

The science: LOVEBUD products are made using hemp seed oil (not cannabisoil), which makes them 100% legal in all 50 states.

LOVEBUD Puff Puff Past Eye Cream uses hemp seed oil as the main active ingredient. Hemp seed oil is quickly gaining recognition as a natural anti-aging superfood for your skin. It is high in Vitamins A, C and E and has a concentration of Omega-3 and Omega-6 fatty acids that our skin loves. All LOVEBUD products are vegan and cruelty-free. They are also PEG and Paraben-free.

Originally formulated to solve the under-eye puffiness problem associated with aging, the Puff Past Eye Cream also eliminates under-eye puffiness caused by lack ofsleep. If you have a restless night before your big national TV appearance you can put it on in the morning and expect to see results in as little as 20 minutes.

While it has natural active ingredients such as phytoplankton extract, green tea extract, arnica oil common in other eye creams hemp seed oil is the star here as the phytosterols reduce inflammation and redness, which is why puffy eyes disappear almost instantly after applying the cream. You can look bright eyed even on a few hours of shut-eye.


MOA Aphrodite Facial Oil

MOA Aphrodite Facial Oil

20. MOA Aphrodite Facial Oil

What I love most: The intoxicating rose-geranium scent.

The science: Rosehip oil is nature’s retinol.

Magic Organic Apothecary’s Aphrodite Facial Oil from London: Made with a Rosehip Oil base, and enriched with precious Damask rose essential oil helps dry, sensitive skin that is prone to redness and blemishes. Rosehip oil is very rich in vitamin A, C and essential fatty acids. The natural skin regenerative properties have been revered in folklore over the centuries all across the globe.

This magical “dry oil” blend, suitable for all skin types, promotes cell turnover to reveal radiant, balanced skin — which we all want.

One thing you might not know: Rosehip oil is nature’s retinol, but without the irritant. In addition to Rosehip, Organic Yarrow (hero ingredient in all MOA products) is added to help to even skin tone and calm irritation so if you have any kind of flare up this and marshmallow extract will soothe and calm. Use this 3-6 months prior to special event for best results.

Confession. I don’t use sun block. It burns my eyes no matter where I put it on my body. So my chest has quite a few freckles. I wasn’t aware of how many I had until my photographer, Abigail Huller, did a light touch up on that area for my final photos. (My face is not retouched. Much as I’d like to look 10 years younger I wanted my photo to really look like me, flaws and all.)

But the chest freckles were distracting, hence the editing. I used this marvelously scented oil for a month and my freckles are barely noticeable and now look like a sweet sprinkling. So you can use this on your face or hands as well. I tested it on my chest so I could get an accurate read on the result. Thumbs up.


Skindew Propitiation Luxury Body Oil

Skindew Propitiation Luxury Body Oil

21. Skindew Propitiation Luxury Body Oil

What I love most: It sinks right into my skin and lifts my mood.

The science: Vitamins, omega3 and antioxidants.

Right after my shower, after toweling off, I shook up the Skindew Propitiation Luxury Body Oil’s gorgeous black glass bottle containing this luxury body oil, and sprayed it on all over my body. It absorbed right in without leaving any slick residue on the surface of my skin. I experimented with it in the morning and my skin drank it right up. So Skindew Propitiation absorbs equally well on dry skin.

I also tried adding it to my go to Beauty Without Cruelty Fragrance Free Hand and Body Moisturizer and while I liked the effect I preferred using it solo. It actually made my arms glow and helped lessen the psoriasis on my elbows as it is full of hydrating oils like argan, avocado, meadowfoam seed, and rice bran oil – and preservative free.

Use this the day of your interview to turn dry skin silky and enjoy the hints of aromatherapy that “stimulate a positive mood.” The scent is also heavenly and light and it actually did make me feel happier each time I rubbed it into any part of my body. Love it. A true luxury.


Travertine Quattro Olii body oil

Travertine Quattro Olii body oil

22. Travertine Quattro Olii body oil

What I love most: Plumps the skin.

The science: Healing and rejuvenating ingredients.

To smooth and moisturize your arms “rapido” Travertine’s Quattro Olii body oil is an emollient body oil that restores and nourishes the skin. I like this oil because it absorbs faster than a cream and doesn’t leave a residue so it won’t get on your clothes.

If you’re planning to go sleeveless, for those of you with Michelle Obama arms, this is excellent product for any skin type and can also aid in the healing of eczema, psoriasis and acne (and those annoying bumps on the back of your arms).

The oil is packaged in premium violet glass to protect the ingredients from ultra-violet light. This method dates back to ancient Egypt. Plus, the bottle is TSA 3-1-1 liquids rule compliant, so you can carry it on, jet anywhere and reuse this bottle for future media appearances.


Inlight Intensive Line Softener

Inlight Intensive Line Softener

23. Inlight Intensive Line Softener

What I love most: Award-winning 100% organic skincare from UK handcrafted by homeopathic doctor.

The science: Clinical trial in Rome, Italy shows remarkable reduction of lines in just 28 days of daily use.

This luxe anti-aging product uses chlorophyll-rich spirulina and barley grass, both with powerful anti-ageing and antioxidant properties, argan and bitter cherry oils with their legendary capacity to “mop up” free radical damage. Less like a cream and more like a solid oil, it’s been formulated to specifically nourish and stimulate the skin’s collagen production and regenerate deep lines revealing radiant, smoother skin.

The creator, Dr. Mariano Spiezia makes a point that I agree with when says, “Ageless beauty doesn’t have to be a complicated affair; but it can be a divine, luxurious ritual.” This product moisturizes the skin and gives it a velvety feel while reducing “dark marks” and makes you feel like you’ve had a spa treatment. I also love that it’s 100% organic, free from synthetics and chemical fragrances and smells divine.


Paleo Pro Protein Powder

Paleo Pro Protein Powder

24. Paleo Pro Protein Powder

What I love most: Pure grass-fed beef protein vs. beef collagen protein.

The science: 26g of protein per serving. No sugar, whey, or soy, hormone, antibiotic and gluten free. Pastured grass-fed beef.

I can’t decide which flavor I like better the Ancient Cacao or Aztec Vanilla. Both were yummy and satisfying. There are enough Paleo protein powders on the market to make your head spin. And many that claim to be Paleo aren’t. What makes this one different? It’s literally “Farm to Shake” with three ingredients: grass-fed lean beef protein, egg protein, and your liquid of choice.

The lean-beef protein here is essential. Paleo Pro is very high in naturally occurring beef collagen, around 70-80%, but it also contains lean tissue protein, just as if you were to eat a steak, this is key, which is a complete protein source vs. collagen. Why is this important? If you’re on the run and supplementing your diet because you need higher protein needs, using just collagen will not fulfill the need and can actually be harmful, not helpful.

Additionally, absorption and consequently assimilation of these amino acids after digestion is much higher when complete proteins are present. In short, this shake will sustain and nourish you properly as a snake or meal replacement when you’re on the go.

Vegan? No problem. There’s the Paleo Greens powder for you. Need to recover from a work out or day where you feel depleted? My sweetie, who works out weight lifting, likes that he can add these high quality carbs (from the sweet potatoes) to his post workout protein drink so it jump starts his recovery.

Pack a pouch of portable Paleo Protein into your make-up bag to instant sustained energy — which you’ll need to pull you through a TV appearance. This is the sane solution when you don’t have time to eat or when your energy flags (which often happens when you’re on tour madly jetting from TV studio to TV studio in a time crunch).

Carry your BPA free plastic cup “blender” with you, which comes with one of those silver balls to smooth out the lumps in the powder with your liquid of choice. I prefer almond milk, but you can use coffee or any hemp nutmilk, tigermilk (just discovered this) or even water for a quick mix. You can pick up an unrefrigerated box of Almond Milk at Trader Joes or Whole Foods so you can easily tote it along.

Certified Clinical Nutritionist and Founder of Hudson Valley Nutrition LLC, Christina Towle says, “As a busy professional and mom I like to have a this shake to stay slim, vibrant, and youthful.”




25. BodyworksBall

What I love most: It hurts so good.

The science: The design earned the S.T.E.P. (Science, Technology, Engineering, Production) Award by the Manufacturing Institute in Washington, DC.

One of the most important wellness tips to maintain optimal health is to focus on muscle recovery and mobility. The BodyworksBall, a portable self massage tool (picked by Oprah for her “O List”), can help at home and on the go so you’re relaxed and pain-free as a TV show guest.

I wanted to try this as I’m a big fan of regularly using two tennis balls taped together (or put into a stocking) that I roll on to relieve tension in my back.

With the BodyworksBall™ I don’t have to get on the ground. Instead you use it up against a wall. It kneads out those kinks and crinks so good. So you could actually sneak in a session in the green room to loosen up before you go on-camera. Get rid of “tech neck,” aching hands and feet, shoulder knots and get instant relief in less than a minute.

Originally designed for elite pro athletes to use when traveling which required a special non marking rubber, to not damage the walls of the Four Seasons and the Ritz Carlton. It won’t wreak any walls while you decompress. Made in America and create by a female. Go girl!


Rosehive Super Foods Box

Rosehive Super Foods Box

BONUS! Rosehive Super Foods Box

What I love most: Surprise! You don’t know what goodies you’ll get, but they create instant delight.

The science: Nutrient-packed superfood snacks, herbs, cooking ingredients and recipes delivered to your door every month.

Every month Rosehive Superfoods has a new theme and is co-curated by someone in the health and wellness industry and includes super delish stuff. “I’d like to think of us as the super delicious, energizing, packed with greens morning smoothie versus grandma’s boring brussel sprouts,” says superfoodie organizer Jillian Berswick.

Here are a few things that came in mine….

Take along the Lakanto Monk fruit sweetener so your glycemic index doesn’t spike and then drop. The zero calorie, zero glycemic sugar replacement comes packaged like giant Pixie Stix (remember eating those as a kid? I confess I still love them and brought a bunch to Bali to give away to kids and then poured most of them down my own throat during the wee hours of the night when the chanting and cock crowing kept me up.) Shame.

When I first saw the bag of Cocoburg vegan coconut jerky, chili lime I thought, “Yuk.” I’m a carnivore and couldn’t imagine any vegan jerky measuring up. Fact: I ate the whole bag in one sitting. Bring this satisfying snack with you to chew on to calm your nerves and relax your jaw before you go on-air.

The other superfood that is a perfect “carry with” is K’ul energy artisan crafted superfood bar that’s 70% dark chocolate and loaded with cranberries, cherries, pomegranate, raspberries and maca root for stamina. In a pinch this can suffice as a mini meal and can help you recover from “oxidative stress.” I’m not sure exactly what that means, but I do know that right before you go under the hot lights you’ll want to calm down. And if this little bar of goodness can help I’m all for it.

Love the metal straw that was in my box. I prefer to drink my protein and green drinks from a straw. You’ll want to as well to preserve your lipstick and to make sure you don’t unknowingly have a green or “milk” mustache. Whenever you can, conserve time and energy so you can spend your time relaxing and focusing in the greenroom, before your moment in the spotlight. The last thing I want to be worrying about is my make-up, hair, and clothes. I want to focus on connecting with the host and the audience.


What I noticed first when these anti-aging winners arrived on my doorstep was the packaging, the first impression. Most were sumptuous, luxurious, elegant, hinting at the promise inside. A few arrived rather disappointingly drab or sloppily assembled. Packaging is important. It’s the first impression, the first look and feel even before a product comes out of its box.

So while beauty comes from within we first see you as a whole “package,” your overall presentation. That’s why this piece focused on taking care of all the details of your appearance.

One of my favorite things to say to my clients is, “Practice your sound bites so you’re free to be spontaneous.” The same goes for your appearance so your energy is freed up to focus on enjoying the moment and connecting to your host and audience.

About Susan Harrow: For the past 27 years, Susan has been the brains + heart behind Harrow Communications, a media coaching + marketing agency based in the San Francisco Bay Area. She has trained thousands of people in verbal and non-verbal communication so they can grow their business and be true to themselves.

She’s the author of the bestseller, Sell Yourself Without Selling Your Soul (HarperCollins) a marketing book for women, is a former teaching tennis pro, and has a black belt in Aikido.

Recently, she’s created a program called, True Shield: Verbal Self-Defense For Girls that teaches young women 12-24 how to protect themselves in 10 of life’s most difficult and dangerous situations that they’ll likely encounter — and stay safe.

Her newest offering is a woman’s empowerment course called: Braggart, Bitch or Ball Buster™: How to avoid being called the 3 Bs and get what you want.

Disclaimer. Some of the products come from my private product stash. Others were sent to me to trial. I get no monetary or any type of reward or affiliate payment for any of the products I’ve reviewed. This article represents my frank experience and opinion.

I am an affiliate for the publicity summit, an event that I am attending in New York this October. I only recommend products or services I stand behind, use personally and believe will give you tremendous value. Enjoy!

Do You Dream of Being Famous? Act Like You Are

Sherry Reichert Belul

Live the life you dream of now

By Sherry Richert Belul

I was taking a walk with my good friend, Tricia about six months ago and we were talking about our dreams. (Not nighttime dreams, but the “this-is-what-I-would-love-my- life-to-look-like dreams.)

At one point in the conversation, we realized that whenever we talked about our dreams, they were always “over there” or “far away.” They were places in our lives we hadn’t gotten to yet. They were accomplishments or goals we hadn’t yet reached.

Our dreams were outside of our lives.

I remember us literally stopping, looking at one another, and saying, “This is not right. What if right now, right here, we began to look at everything about who we are and what we are doing as part of our dream lives?”

What if we are living the dream now, but perhaps it is the tiniest seed of the dream? Still, it is the dream and we can recognize it as such. Like if we were growing lettuce and we just planted a small lettuce pod. It wouldn’t look like lettuce and we couldn’t yet eat it for dinner, but we’d know for certain it was lettuce.

We would love our little lettuce pod by tending to it. We’d learn about the best ways to nurture it— how much sunshine, nutrients, and water it needs— and then we’d do whatever it takes to help our lettuce thrive. We wouldn’t whine or cry about not having lettuce for dinner. We’d know that it’s growing in our own backyard. Right here. Right now. Our dreams are just like that.

That one conversation changed my life.

Practice who you want to be daily

Living my dream life is a practice, not a goal

When I got home that day, I started a practice I call, “Livin’ the Dream,” which is an intentional daily practice of noticing and noting the myriad ways in which everything I want in my life already exists.

Here’s an example: My work in the world is about helping people celebrate themselves and the people they love. I created something called a Love List, which is a no-cost, all-love gift that someone can give which details all the reasons they love and appreciate someone.

Before I die, I want 1,000,000 people to give Love Lists as gifts because of my writings/teachings. Every day that someone writes to tell me that created a Love List for someone, I take a screen shot of that letter and I pin it on a secret Pinterest board called “Livin’ the Dream.” I write a little note about how happy I am that one more person created a Love List and one more person received a gift of love they will certainly cherish forever.

That one Love List does not make me someone who has yet inspired 1,000,000 lists. But it is a part of that larger goal, isn’t it? And we’re on the way.

I also pin things that underscore my good health, happy relationships, and creativity because each of these things plays a role in having exactly the kind of life I’d always imagined.

We live in a culture that is focused on what’s wrong and what’s missing. Advertising and news encourages us to look for the negative. What if, instead we took charge of our own happiness and started scanning all the time for what is right, what is working, how love is showing up in our lives, and the ways we are living exactly the life we’d always dreamed about?

Sherry Richert Belul says write love lists and shows you how

Don’t tether your happiness to something outside yourself

Right now I’ve got myself on an “advanced course” of learning for the Livin’ the Dream practice. I’m awaiting news on something that is deeply important to me. I spent about six months last year focused on writing a book proposal to submit to a contest for Hay House, a publishing company that I absolutely love.

This is a BIG dream of mine to be an author for Hay House. I truly did my best on the book proposal and spent a lot of time imagining myself as one of their authors. Even as I write this, I feel the adrenaline pulsing through my body. I want it so bad! But what if I don’t get it? I want it. But what if…?

As you can imagine, my monkey mind wants to have a field day with this. It wants me to believe that winning the book publishing contract IS the dream. And if I get it, I’m living the dream. And if I don’t, I’ve lost the dream.

My practice is this: I am livin’ the dream, no matter what.

I refuse to let my happiness be tethered to something I have absolutely no control over.

Here’s what I do instead: I am spending every moment of every waking hour living as if I am already a Hay House author. What would a Hay House author wear to lunch with a girlfriend? What would a Hay House author write in her newsletter? What would a Hay House author have for lunch?

Create a custom celebration book for someone you cherish

Do you see?

I get to have the experience of being a Hay House author by inviting in all of the feelings and experiences NOW. Because it’s not about achieving “the thing.” It’s about having the feeling of getting the thing. And not just for one moment, but sustained, over moments, hours, days that then turn into a lifetime.

Truth be told, why is it a dream to be a Hay House author? Because I want to have a wider reach. I want to be more engaged. I want to have an audience of people who respond to my work. I want to have a community of writers with whom I share ideas and support.

When I keep the “why” in mind, it allows me the room to step into that vision right now. I simply ask, “How can I have a wider reach today? How can I touch more people?” And I listen to the response that life gives. Then I go do what it says. Voila!

Suddenly I am engaged and participating in exactly the way I dreamed. But it isn’t outside of myself. It isn’t over there. It isn’t “I’ll do that when…” It doesn’t rely on someone outside of myself to choose me.

I choose to live my dream now.

Take one small intentional step today

The author, Wallace Wattles, writes about this in his book, “How to Get What You Want.”

He tells the story of a man who wants to own a department store, but right now all he has is a newsstand.

Wallace says, “Do not get the idea that there is some magical method by which you can successfully operate a department store on a newsstand capital.”

This isn’t about thinking that if we want something badly enough, it will come to us.

But the point is, if you are dreaming about a department store and you have a newsstand right now, you can choose to show up completely and wholeheartedly to your newsstand every day. You choose to do everything you can to make this newsstand as successful as possible. If you don’t hang your head low and think, “all I have is a newsstand,” if you go to work whistling, serving everyone with a big smile and great service, chances are your newsstand will grow bigger. And more successful.

Chances are the way you tend to that newsstand (like the lettuce pods!) will yield the growth you desire. Wallace says, “make every act and thought constructive.” He believes that if we stay positive in our acts and thoughts, if we always speak from the place of our dreams and visions, people will be drawn to us. He calls this a “place of increase.”

“Consider that your newsstand is one department of the store you are going to have; fix your mind on the department store, and begin to assimilate the rest of it. You will get it if you make every act and thought constructive.”

One day, it will be a department store.

Or not.

What if it doesn’t grow and thrive the way you had imagined?

Think about it. You are still living in the seed of your dream. You still have a beautiful newsstand that attracts customers because you show up every day with a smile and kind word. You still have the essence of your dream — which is having work that enables you to serve people and impact their lives on a daily basis. You are happy. You love your days.

Whether your newsstand grows into a department store or not, or whether it takes twenty years longer than you had imagined is not the point.

The point is: can you love the process of showing up each day to tend to the dream of who you are and the life you want to live — no matter what?

Can you train yourself to scan for what is, instead of what is missing?

Wish for what you have

My son taught me one of the most beautiful lessons about all of this.

When he was three years old, it was his birthday and we had a chocolate cake for him. I lit the candles and whispered to my son to make a wish before he blew them out.

I watched him close his eyes, and blow out the candles.

His dad and I clapped and then I leaned in and whispered, “What did you wish for?”

My son whispered back: “a birthday cake.”

Talk about instantly stepping into a place of having what we want. We need to see that it is right here, in front of us.

When we are livin’ the dream, we learn to focus on what is on the plate in front of us. We see it, taste it, appreciate it.

Customized tribute books

One small step

Today, can you practice with this? Can you wish for something you already have and watch how good it feels to “get” it?

Can you take one small action step that is in service of a bigger dream and feel in your bones that this small step is a part of the dream? You are not outside of it.

You are livin’ the dream. You’re in it. It’s already yours.

In the midst of everyday life, it is easy to forget how extraordinary — and fleeting— our lives are. Thus, Sherry believes in a simple philosophy: make moments into gifts. She helps people appreciate who they are and the people they love through customized tribute books and other one-of-a-kind gifts that inspire us to celebrate, share, and build beautiful relationships. Don’t wait; say it now. Find Sherry here.

5 Make-up Tips to Make You More Trustworthy

I found out something surprising that you know….and don’t know.

You’ve heard the well-known expression – first impressions count.

On TV, speaking, doing a book signing, attending a networking event or meeting — you may be turning people off without even knowing it!

Here’s the shocker: I just discovered that it doesn’t take 3 seconds for us to decide whether we trust you or not.

A new study says that it takes just 1/10 of a second.



While make-up isn’t a cure-all, surprisingly, it can help in that crucial nano-second.

In this quick video I show you how to be more trustworthy with these 5 simple make-up tips.

Use these make-up tips to appear more trustworthy for TV appearances, media appearances, job interviews, meetings, and networking events, too.

Gearing up for the publicity spotlight for the new year?

Go here, here  and here for the dos and don’ts.

Want a kooky way to improve your sound bites? Watch my new fav show Longmire. The characters are a study in the succinct. I’m enthralled with Wyoming and have a fantasy of learning how to lasso a calf while atop a steed.

Looking for more publicity training videos (And some surprising tips about your tone)? Head on over here.

How to Be Authentic in a World Full of Fakes

My dear friend Reverend Maggie Oman Shannon and I talked about ways to be authentic in times when truthiness rules over truth. There’s a lot of fake authenticity going around. True authenticity in a daily practice in both thought and deed. We discuss the many different types of tribes there are in the world and the true meaning of intimacy and friendship.



hand on tree

Find your true tribe. Be authentic to yourself first.

Hear more of Maggie’s thoughtful interviews.

The life-Changing Magic of Speaking Up. (This is my story. What’s yours?)

As a high school student in Palo Alto, California, I was irrepressibly curious and constantly looking for strange and exciting new experiences to try out. And if those “strange and exciting” adventures meant that I could make a little extra money on the side? Even better!

That’s how I wound up sitting in a laboratory with a guy in a white lab coat who explained that he was conducting an important scientific experiment. I was going to be compensated for my time and, so it seemed, helping to further a scientific discovery. This was great!

“There’s a man sitting in another room, on the other side of this wall,” Mr. White Coat explained to me. “This man is taking a test and if he answers a question incorrectly, you must give him an electric shock.”

Mr. White Coat shocks me the 15 volts to show me how it feels. Ow! I jerk in my seat. Tolerable, but definitely painful.

“Remember,” Mr. White Coat reminds me. “If the test subject gets the wrong answer, you shock him.”

The test begins. The man taking the test gets a string of wrong answers. I shock him. Wrong answer. I shock him again.

With each progressive shock, the man on the other side of the wall — the man I am shocking — begins to yelp, then cry out, then scream. It sounds like the pain is becoming unbearable. I glance up at Mr. White Coat and he urges me to keep going. After the third shock, the man on the other side of the wall SCREAMS out, “Stop! Please! STOP! Let me out!” and starts pounding frantically on the wall. I yank back my hands and stand up.

“This experiment is over. I won’t shock him any more. He’s screaming. It obviously hurts.”

Sternly, he urges me to sit down and continue. “You agreed to this experiment so you have to finish it.”

“No, forget it, I won’t do it,” I tell him. I gather my things and prepare to leave. Mr. White Coat puts his hand on my shoulder to stop me and says,


Photo Credit: Death to stock photo Experimenter The Movie

Photo Credit: Death to stock photo Experimenter The Movie

“The man on the other side of the wall is also participating in the experiment. He wasn’t really being shocked. You weren’t hurting him. He was just pretending. He wasn’t the test subject. YOU are.”

You can imagine, my teenage jaw fell right down to the floor. I was stunned and also relieved.

He went on to explain that he and his colleagues were conducting an experiment to see how people obey orders and respond to “authority figures.”

The results were pretty troubling.

Many of the people controlling the “shock” button kept shocking, and shocking, and shocking, and shocking…up to 450 volts (“Danger: severe shock”) despite horrible screams and pleas coming from beyond the wall.

According to The Atlantic Magazine, in one variation of the experiment, 65% of the people shocked the other person to “death.” (Not really, of course, because the actor was just pretending. But they didn’t know that.)

When asked, “Why did you do that? Why did you keep administering the shock?” most people would respond with some variation of, “The guy in the white coat told me to do it!”

Pretty staggering, right? As this experiment, first conducted by Stanley Milgram — which went on to become a famous, historic experiment, and is now a Hollywood movie called Experimenter — demonstrates, most people do not question authority. If someone who appears to wearing some kind of “uniform” doles out an instruction, most people simply obey.

I was one of the few people who wouldn’t obey. Why? Because I won’t be bullied into hurting somebody, even if I’m told that I “must.” (“Must” is not a word that I like and I do not like being told what to do.) But I do know that it comes from my family, who has always taught me to stand up for what I believe no matter what. And to be kind and to help others who are in distress.

So this non-conformist attitude came from the example of my upbringing. As far as I can remember, I’ve always been wired that way — and it definitely carries through to my work today.

Photo Credit: Death to Stock Photo Be kind whenever possible. It is always possible. ~ The Dalai Lama

Photo Credit: Death to Stock Photo Be kind whenever possible. It is always possible. ~ The Dalai Lama

When a client said to me, “My publisher wants to put out a press release that doesn’t accurately represent my work and the content of my book and I don’t feel right about it, but don’t feel like I can say anything. After all, they know best.” I told my client, “Don’t go against your own moral compass. Let’s come up with a new strategy and present it to them.” That’s what we did and it was readily accepted.

Or when another client said to me, “A sales expert told me I had to use his coaching model to get clients, but those aren’t the people I really want to work with,” I told my client, “Then stop that. We can find another way that reaches the people you resonate with.” I helped her get her first $10,000 client for a new program we devised. She was elated and said, “You turned my world upside down. What you have really opened my eyes to is another level of living. One to which I have aspired, but my only model was ‘become a guru.’  (shudder) Not only are you helping me, you are modeling a way of thinking that uplifts my spirit.”

When I see someone doing something that’s painful, unethical, ineffective, or that just “doesn’t feel right” for whatever reason, I urge them to speak up. I urge them to stop. I urge them to trust their instincts, rather than blindly trusting “The Man in the White Coat.”

Your “speaking up” story can be anything you want. Stopping a person from beating their dog. Telling a teacher that you DO in fact have singing skills. A time when you spoke up in a meeting and suggested something totally opposite to the common group think.

Speak up for what is right

Speak up for what is right

By speaking up and choosing to behave differently than your peers, you could transform your industry, change your customer’s lives, or (who knows?) even save someone’s life.

When you feel the urge to speak up or defy the “orders” you’ve been given, do it.

With very, very few exceptions, you will not regret it.

Can you think of a time when you spoke up and it changed your life or someone else’s life? I want to hear your story.

Here’s how to share:

  • Head over to Instagram (download the app here to sign up if you don’t already have an account).

  • Once you’re logged into Instagram, follow me and then post a photo plus some text. For the text, briefly tell a story about a time in your life when you chose to speak up—where you were, what you said, and what happened next.

  • Include this hashtag somewhere in your text: #TheMagicOfSpeakingUp and tag me @susanharrow

  • Guidelines: please keep your story brief. 250 words or less. Think: “sound bite sized.” Also, please keep your story G-rated and appropriate for kids and teens to read. Extra credit for concise stories!

  • Please do your Instagram post by November 24 and encourage friends to participate, too!

  • Not on Instagram? No problem. Do the same thing on Facebook. Please “like” my page and remember to use the hashtag #TheMagicOfSpeakingUp and to tag me @susanharrow.


Prizes for everyone

Every single person who shares a story on Instagram or Facebook receives my E-book Girl On Fire—which shows you how to speak up in 10 of life’s trickiest scenarios—just for participating!

Here’s how to get that prize (and be entered in the contest for the grand prize):

Go to Instagram or Facebook.

  1. On Instagram follow me and then tag EITHER the photo OR the text using @susanharrow.
  2. Post your story and image. NOTE: Make sure that you own the rights to the image or have creative commons commercial use rights. All submissions must have an image as well as text. Need some photo inspiration? Go here.
  3. Use the hashtag #TheMagicOfSpeakingUp.
  4. Tag me: @susanharrow.
  5. Go here to download your prize!
  6. I’ll announce the grand prize winner on December 9! (I hope it’s you!)

(Note: this is purely an “honor system” situation. No big hoops to jump through. If you posted a story, then go ahead and get your prize! It’s yours for the taking. Enjoy.)

Grand prize for one person 

I will also select one story—the one that I feel is the most poignant or had the most impact—and that storyteller will receive the grand prize: My 6 month mentorship program to get prepared for publicity for or to launch your publicity program (Worth $11,500). I’ll announce the grand prize winner on my Instagram account and my Facebook Page on December 9. (Follow me on Instagram at @susanharrow and on Facebook to stay in the loop!)

This will be so fun and inspiring!

Whether you have a story about a huge, life-altering moment—or a small, quiet, everyday act of bravery—I want to see how you decided to speak up.


Small print: 

In submitting a photo and story (The Work) you give memy publisher, and its licensees and assigns permission to use any and/or all of the material from your post including the photo in all editions and derivations of The Work throughout the World, in all languages and all media, whether now known or hereinafter devised, and in the advertising, publicity, and promotion thereof. Proper credit will be attributed to you in The Work.


In submitting a story with an image/photograph you grant the permission requested above and warrant that the material indicated below does not infringe upon the copyright or other rights of anyone. If you do not control the rights requested by this post in their entirety, please provide me with the name and address of any other party from whom permission is required.


I cannot wait to see your story. Whether it’s a story about a gigantic act of courage — or a small, everyday act of bravery — it all counts and it’s all amazing.

This blog post was inspired by a lovely & very popular book called The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up by Marie Kondo. It’s delightful. You should read it. 

Speak your mind. Stand your ground. Sing your song™.

The Life Changing Magic of Speaking Up – A Story Contest

Share your story & get a prize! For…

The Life Changing Magic of Speaking Up™

Can you think of a time when you spoke up and it changed your life — or someone else’s life — for the better?

Maybe you saw a classmate bullying someone on the schoolyard and you spoke up and said, “Back off!”

Maybe you witnessed harm being done to a child or animal and intervened.

Maybe a colleague made a bigoted or sexist comment and you objected or said, “You need to apologize. That’s not OK.”

Maybe you had a “funny gut feeling” to call, visit or email a friend, parent, sibling, or client at a particular moment and your message changed the course of their day — or life.

Maybe you asked for a pay raise, a promotion, a new project, or an opportunity that you wanted—and you got it.

Maybe you bravely got onstage—or published a blog post—to share a true story from your own life and it led to a beautiful opportunity, inspired your audience to take action, or shifted your whole year in an unexpected way.

When you speak up—honestly, courageously, straight from the heart—your words can unlock incredible opportunities, open people’s eyes, help to correct wrongdoings, biases, and misconceptions, and make the world a better place.

The life-changing magic of speaking up contest

The life-changing magic of speaking up contest

Speaking up is magical.

I love hearing stories about people who have chosen to speak up—what they did, what they said, and what happened next—and I want to hear your story. 

To reward you for sharing your story, I’m turning this into a CONTEST with a delicious prize for EVERYONE who participates! (Hooray!)

Here’s how it works:

  • Head over to Instagram (download the app here to sign up if you don’t already have an account).
  • Once you’re logged into Instagram, follow me and then post a photo plus some text on your feed. For the text, briefly tell a story about a time in your life when you chose to speak up—where you were, what you said, and what happened next.
  • Include this hashtag somewhere in your text: #TheMagicOfSpeakingUp and tag me @susanharrow
  • Guidelines: please keep your story brief. 250 words or less. Think: “sound bite sized.” Also, please keep your story G-rated and appropriate for kids and teens to read. Extra credit for concise stories!
  • Please do your Instagram post by November 24 and encourage friends to participate, too!
  • Not on Instagram? No problem. Do the same thing on Facebook. Please “like” my page and remember to use the hashtag #TheMagicOfSpeakingUp and to tag me @susanharrow.


Prizes for everyone

Every single person who shares a story on Instagram or Facebook receives my E-book Girl On Fire—which shows you how to speak up in 10 of life’s trickiest scenarios—just for participating!

Here’s how to get that prize (and be entered in the contest for the grand prize):

Go to Instagram or Facebook.

  1. On Instagram follow me and tag EITHER the photo OR the text using @susanharrow.
  2. Post your story and image. NOTE: Make sure that you own the rights to the image or have creative commons commercial use rights. All submissions must have an image as well as text. Need some photo inspiration? Go here.
  3. Use the hashtag #TheMagicOfSpeakingUp.
  4. Tag me: @susanharrow.
  5. Go here to download your prize!
  6. I’ll announce the grand prize winner on December 9! (I hope it’s you!)

(Note: this is purely an “honor system” situation. No big hoops to jump through. If you posted a story, then go ahead and get your prize! It’s yours for the taking. Enjoy.)


Grand prize for one person 

I will also select one story—the one that I feel is the most poignant or had the most impact—and that storyteller will receive the grand prize: My 6 month mentorship program to get prepared for publicity for or to launch your publicity program (Worth $11,500). I’ll announce the grand prize winner on my Instagram account and my Facebook Page on December 9. (Follow me on Instagram at @susanharrow and on Facebook to stay in the loop!)

This will be so fun and inspiring!

Whether you have a story about a huge, life-altering moment—or a small, quiet, everyday act of bravery—I want to see how you decided to speak up.

I can’t wait to see your story!

This contest was inspired by a lovely and very popular book called The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up by Marie Kondo. You can buy the book here. 

Small print: 

In submitting a photo and story (The Work) you give me, my publisher, and its licensees and assigns permission to use any and/or all of the material from your post including the photo in all editions and derivations of The Work throughout the World, in all languages and all media, whether now known or hereinafter devised, and in the advertising, publicity, and promotion thereof. Proper credit will be attributed to you in The Work.


In submitting a story with an image/photograph you grant the permission requested above and warrant that the material indicated below does not infringe upon the copyright or other rights of anyone. If you do not control the rights requested by this post in their entirety, please provide me with the name and address of any other party from whom permission is required.

7 Harmful Attitudes That Are Blocking You From Getting Featured in the Media

Not getting featured in the media?

Feeling tons of “resistance” whenever you sit down to work on your press kit, pitch or press release?

Can’t seem to “crack the code” on how to get top bloggers, journalists, editors and producers to pay attention to your work?

Frustrated that your replies to HARO, PRLeads and other PR services and don’t get any response?

Feel like, deep down, you “know” what you ought to be doing to take your visibility to the next level… except for some reason, you’re not doing it?

Over the past 25 years of my career, I’ve spent over 130,000 hours (that’s a very conservative estimate) training authors, speakers, coaches, consultants and entrepreneurs to help them get booked in the media and then use that exposure to double or triple their income.

Initially, when I ask, “Why are you having trouble getting press for your business?” One client said she had done literally hundreds of radio shows with little result, but had no idea what she was doing wrong. Many other clients have similar stories. Those are the ones that say that, “publicity doesn’t work.”

Just as typically my clients tend to point towards something “external” (like: “My press release really represent what we do” or: “My website looks dated.”)

Fair enough. I agree: having all of your materials looking sharp is very important. Your presence and what you say when you’re in the spotlight is too.

Presence is equally important as your message Photo Credit: Tim Caynes

Presence is equally important as your message Photo Credit: Tim Caynes

But in my experience? If you’re consistently struggling to get your business, book, product, service, cause or mission in the media, or your appearances just don’t have much of an effect, the source of your “blockage” usually boils down to one thing:

Your attitude.

In other words: What you BELIEVE about yourself and your ability to serve.

This may sound harsh, but it’s actually a very empowering thing to realize. Because once you’ve identified the harmful attitude that is holding you back, you can take steps to resolve it. Hopefully: once and for all.

Think your attitude is just fine, thank you very much? That may be true.

But it never hurts to do a little self-exploration.

Read on and see if any of the following 7 attitudes sound a bit like… you.

Harmful attitude #1:

Im too fat to be on TV. Maybe if I lose 20 pounds first…”

Why you need to change your tude:

It’s been reported that 97% of women have at least one I hate my body moment, per day.

Imagine if every woman who thought to herself, Ugh, I dont like how I look allowed those thoughts to STOP her from seeking media opportunities. We would literally have almost ZERO women appearing in the media. What a dismal world that would be!

Harmful weight-related attitudes aren’t just for women, of course. Men can — and do — think these kinds of thoughts, too, but generally, they don’t let that hold them back.

If you feel that you need to drop some weight, for your overall health, go for it. But in the meantime, don’t let “size shame” halt your progress. Not everyone who appears in the media needs to be a rail-thin supermodel. There’s room for all kinds of ideas, personalities and sizes.

Your media role model:

Oprah, of course.

She has publicly battled with her weight for decades. Even at her absolute lowest weight, she wore a size 10! Yet she’s perfectly comfortable talking about health, happiness, wellbeing, and “living your best life” — in front of international audiences. People respect her opinions, completely. If she can do it, why not you?

Harmful attitude #2:

“I’m so boring! My life has been relatively comfortable and easy. I havent overcome an extreme adversity, dont have a rags to riches story, or anything gritty to share.”

Why you need to change your tude:

Not everything in the media needs to be “gritty,” “caustic,” “violent” or “dramatic.” And we’ve certainly had our fill of rags to riches stories, haven’t we? You don’t need to have become homeless and lived under a bridge, eaten from garbage cans or swindled out of a fortune by your business partner to get media coverage.

In fact, I would argue that today’s audiences are so bombarded with “drama” that they are delighted for an escape from the madness. (There’s a reason why websites like are so popular.)

You don’t need to be rude, crude or rough around the edges in order to get booked in the media. You just need to be yourself.

If the “real you” is a positive person who was blessed with wonderful parents and a joyful childhood, so be it. You still have ideas, tips, strategies and stories to share. You can still be entertaining. You can still be insightful. You can still help people to lead better lives. Suffering is not a pre-requisite for service.

As my friend Alex puts it, you don’t necessarily have to “overcome adversity in order to know stuff.”

Your media role model:

Ellen DeGeneres.

Ellen has built a huge media platform anchored on “traditional values” like kindness and compassion. She consciously steers away from gritty or violent topics.

She’s known for delivering audiences a daily dose of positivity — complete with goofy dancing. That’s who she is and what she does best.

If you are the “Ellen” of your industry, embrace it! Don’t try to change yourself for the spotlight. You will feel awkward, uncomfortable, and struggle to successfully make the “point” that you’re there to make — and audiences will be feeling uncomfortable, right along with you.

Just be you. “You” is what works.

Harmful attitude #3:

“All of this media preparation stuff like setting up my website is too hard! I’m terrible with technology.”

Why you need to change your tude:

To quote the folks at this design firm: If Google cant find it, it doesnt exist.

That’s the reality of our world today.

If you are unwilling to set up a website, participate in social media, and create materials that are quickly searchable (and findable) online — like a backlog of recent press releases stored on your site — you are going to have a tough time getting the kind of media coverage you want.

Your media role model:

Betty White.

At age 93, this actress, activist and product spokeswoman has a vibrant Twitter presence and shows no signs of slowing down with her career, despite her age.

Her manager jokes, “Betty and I have an understanding. I have told her that I have already booked her when she turns 100 and there is no out clause. Betty never backs out of a date.”

Another role model for you:

Theresa Reed.

As a professional Tarot card reader who has been reading cards — full time — for over 25 years, Theresa has a steady stream of “regulars” and could certainly opt to “rest on her laurels.” But that’s not her style.

She is constantly learning new tools, upgrading her website, and experimenting with new ways to connect with audiences around the world (including starting her own podcast). She firmly believes that all business owners need to be tech-savvy, and she even mentors “tech-phobic” entrepreneurs to help them grasp the basics.

Theresa is regularly a go-to expert on Tarot, astrology and spirituality blogs, podcasts and magazines. The secret to her success? Well, as she put it — while talking to a friend of mine — “I ain’t no stale hippie.”

Harmful attitude #4:

Im not the worlds most credible expert on this topic. Other people are much more experienced and authoritative than me.

Why you need to change your tude:

There will always be people who are more highly credentialed than you are. That’s a fact.

“Comparing and despairing” when you size yourself up to your competitors is very counter-productive.

Yes, of course, there are people who might have more degrees, certifications or years of experience than you. But that doesn’t detract from your ability to serve your audience in your way, right now.

The real question is this: Do you have something to share right now, today that could help a fellow human solve a problem, get inspired, or lead a better life?

If so, then you’ve got the most important “credential” of all: something of VALUE to share.

Your media role model:

Gabby Bernstein.

Gabby is one of the world’s most sought-after media commentators in the realm of personal growth and spirituality.

Does she have a PhD in psychology? Nope. (She actually studied “theater” at college). Is she a Nobel Peace Prize winner like The Dalai Lama? Nope. Has she published formal, academic research papers? Nope. Has any of that ever stopped her from pursuing opportunities to write, appear, and get interviewed in the media? NOPE.

She has personal stories to share and insights that she knows will help people.

And share she does. With videos, audios, Ted talks, lectures, meditations, courses, books, products, a spirit junkie app, and stuff she loves. And if that’s not enough you can enroll in the “Get More Gabby” subscription service. Phew!

Harmful attitude #5:

I just dont have time for all this stuff! Between running my business, taking care of my clients, and dealing with my family I dont have a minute to write press releases, build relationships with journalists, maintain my website, and ugh!

Why you need to change your tude:

Life is unquestionably busy. As a business owner, there will always be “something” pulling at your attention.

But if you want to grow to the next level, serve wider audiences, and sell more of your books, products, courses and services (without spending money on advertising), then getting featured in the media needs to be part of your plan.

As Stephen R. Covey, author of the bestselling book The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People said, “The key is not to prioritize what’s on your schedule, but to schedule your priorities.”

If getting media coverage is a priority for you (and it should be!) then it must be treated as just that: a priority.

This may mean shutting down lower-priority projects for the time being or learning how to delegate more effectively. (If you’re struggling to stay focused on the action steps that really count, this training program can help you stay on track.)

Your media role model:

President Obama.

He is arguably THE busiest man on planet earth — with an unthinkable level of stress resting upon his shoulders.

Yet he still creates the time to write guest articles for The Huffington Post, contribute exclusive interviews to People magazine, occasionally, even tweet personal notes to his followers, and appear on TV talk shows to discuss his latest thoughts on basketball or a new bill in Congress.

Does he have a team supporting him? Of course. The point, here, is that Obama recognizes the importance of making media coverage a top priority. It’s not something to ignore or neglect. It’s vital to his success as a thought leader.

Harmful attitude #6:

Ive never been good at public speaking. Its just not my thing. Im going to freeze, blush, giggle, burp, sweat, snort, forget my lines and mess this up somehow. I just know it.

Why you need to change your tude:

No one wants to watch a “perfect robot” on the air or listen to a “slick and polished” presentation. If you go “off script” during a media appearance, it can often work in your favor. Little flubs can be endearing and humanizing.

This is something I talk about a lot in one of my media training programs, Your Signature Sound Bites. If you’ve got your sound bites down pat — meaning: you’ve chosen a couple of key messages that you really, really want your media audience to remember and “take home” — then it’s pretty tough to mess anything up. Just stick to your sound bites and allow yourself to relax. If you’re too slick? We want to topple you off that perfect pedestal. Be yourself. Quirks, nerves, sweats, burbs and all.

Your media role model:

Anne Hathaway.

While appearing on The Daily Show with Jon Stewart to promote her latest film — which she produced and starred in — Anne lost her composure and began laughing hysterically. Why? Because the plot of the movie (which deals with a coma victim) is so dreadfully, horrendously sad, it was actually… kind of funny.

Rather than sitting back in horror, fans LOVED it. Multiple media platforms (Vanity Fair, E! Online, US Magazine) shared the now-legendary giggle-clip, using words like “charming” and “adorable” and “utterly endearing” to describe it!

As one journalist put it: “This feels real candid. I don’t know if Anne Hathaway has ever been so likable. This is how you sell a movie, even when it’s a coma movie.”

Harmful attitude #7:

I dont deserve to be featured in the media. Im ordinary. Im not special.

Why you need to change your tude:

Let me ask you this:

Has an “ordinary” person ever given you a piece of advice that made your entire week better?

Has an “ordinary” person ever shared a resource with you that saved you tons of time or brought you hours of delight?

Has an “ordinary” friend, colleague or family member ever said something that motivated you to change an unhealthy habit and improve your life?

“Ordinary” people have the power to serve, educate, inform and inspire, just as much as rich, famous “celebrities” or “authorities” do.

If you have something of value to share — whether it’s a product, service, book, mission, cause, or day-changing tip, tool or idea — then you deserve to be in the media.

The brilliant Marianne Williamson had it right when said, We ask ourselves, Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, and fabulous? Actually, who are you not to be? You are a child of God. Your playing small does not serve the world.

Your media role model:

This “ordinary” mom from Sumter, South Carolina.

She recorded a video of herself singing her baby to sleep and spontaneously posted it online. When she woke up the next morning, her video had gone viral. After a radio station shared it on Facebook, it got 4 million views. TV stations started calling. She was featured on Good Morning America and the host said that this could be the big break she’s been waiting for to become a singer. This mom became — literally! — an overnight sensation.

Her voice is very pretty, yes, but the real reason that her video touched the hearts of millions of people is that… she is ordinary and heartfelt. There was no artifice in her singing. Just a mom, home, in a dimly lit room, rocking her baby to sleep, singing as if no one was watching.

Moral of the story?

Your “ordinary-ness” can be THE quality that makes you appealing to the media and to audiences, worldwide.

“Ordinary” is not the same as “boring.” You can be totally un-flashy and still wow audiences with your ideas, stories and talents.

Musician Sam Smith who won four Grammy awards last night, said, “I just want to say that before I made this record I was doing everything to try to get my music heard. I tried to lose weight and I was making awful music. It was only until I started to be myself that the music started to flow and the people started to listen.”

Allow yourself to be exactly who you are. We want to see your blemished self. Not a prettified version of someone you think you should be.

How do I get on TV Photo Credit: goMainstream

How do I get on TV Photo Credit: goMainstream

That’s the approach that will resonate most strongly with audiences — and get the media calling you back.

Final words:

Getting booked in the media is one thing.

Translating media attention into sales is another.

Simply getting “interviewed,” “featured,” “quoted” or “mentioned” in the media does NOT guarantee that people are going to actually buy your program, products and services or hire you for speeches or consulting.

To accomplish that, you’ve got to have specific systems and processes in place that turn curious callers or new website visitors into paying customers.

Those systems and processes are exactly what I teach inside my $25 / month training program: The Sell Yourself Without Selling Your Soul Membership Club.

If you want to learn how to get booked in the media and use publicity to double or triple your income ― while keeping your integrity intact ― this monthly membership club was created for you.

The program is ongoing and you can begin your training any month, any time, and get access to all the goodies immediately. Join us here.

3 Gifts Hidden Inside Every Pang of Jealousy

Sunita (name changed) walked into the dojo, confident, regal and self-possessed to begin practicing Aikido.

For some people — including me — studying Aikido (The Japanese Martial Art, called The Way of Harmony that works as a way to polish the spirit, to turn lead into gold) is a slow, awkward, and arduous process. It can take years — decades, even — to master the intricate movements and achieve a level of skill and grace that would be considered “masterful.”

I’ve been practicing this martial art for almost six years. Even though I’ll be taking my black belt test in a few weeks, much of the time I still feel like a hulking Clydesdale, tromping around inelegantly.

Which is why I couldn’t help but feel a twinge of jealousy (OK, more than just a “twinge”) watching Sunita, the “new girl” at the dojo, pick up all of the basic moves so quickly — and effortlessly.

As a former gymnast, Sunita already has a great deal of physical intelligence, balance, coordination, and the ability to memorize patterns and dance-like movements quickly. Oh, and did I mention that she’s also drop-dead gorgeous and mesmerizing to watch?


It was hard not to feel jealous.

Girl dancing dark autumn_Lies Thru a Lens

Self-Esteem for women Photo Credit: Lies Thru a Lens

Jealousy is a funny emotion. I’ve found that — no matter how “evolved” you think you are, and no matter how fiercely you try to deny that it’s happening (“Nope! I’m not jealous, no, not at all…”) it has a way of creeping back into your body and taking over — if you allow it.

I see this happen with my clients all the time, and unfortunately, it can be detrimental to their success.

Just a few weeks back, a woman in my monthly training program confessed that she’s been hesitating on moving forward with a crucial piece of her publicity plan because she feels like one of her “business heroes” is “so much better” than her, so much “farther along” with her business, with a more attractive website and legions of online fans, and polished programs — so what’s the point of even trying? She feels like, “Why even bother? I ought to just give up now, because I’ll never be able to measure up!”

I probably don’t have to spell out why that kind of thinking is so harmful.

Imagine if J.K. Rowling had said to herself, “Oh, plenty of other people have written stories about wizards. J.R.R. Tolkien already wrote a whole bunch of wizard-y books, years ago, and he’s a much better writer than me. He already has tons of adoring fans. I have none. Plus, 12 publishers have rejected my manuscript for Harry Potter. I’ll just quit now.”

When jealousy turns into creative-paralysis — freezing you in place, holding you back from doing the work you feel called to do — nobody benefits. The world is left bereft, with a “gap” where your finest contribution ought to go.

On some level, I’m guessing you already know this. You get that jealousy can be a harmful emotion if it’s left untamed and undirected. The question on your mind might be, “So, if I’m feeling jealous of someone — say, a business competitor, peer, athlete, or even a good friend — what can I do about that?”

Here are three acts of “emotional alchemy” (that is, transforming one emotional state into another) that I recommend trying. Or, to word it differently, three “gifts” or “opportunities” that are hidden inside of every twinge of jealousy…

1. Turn jealousy into an opportunity to “steal the technique.”

Watching Sunita’s graceful movements, I found myself thinking, “I want my body to move like that. I want my mind to be more still.”

When there’s something I want, I’ve trained myself to shift out of “jealous lurker mode” and into “student mode.” I began to study her more closely, picking up cues, copying her subtle movements, learning through imitation, asking that I can absorb her qualities and make them mine.

Aikido braid B&W_Øystein Alsaker

Aikido Martial Arts Training Photo Credit: Øystein Alsaker

Later, even though I was advising her, since I’m her “sempei” or senior (though based on years and experience that doesn’t necessarily mean superior in skill), I could feel her technique and that, in itself taught me. I noticed myself improving. Just by being near her I felt myself becoming more calm.

In Aikido we call this “stealing the technique.” Actually, I’m not just jealous of Sunita. I’m jealous of everyone in the dojo. Every single person who trains at Bay Marin Aikido has a quality or movement I envy.

In fact, I’ve written down those qualities and techniques and consciously practice them on the mat. I have a list that I review before going to training and take one per night to focus on. This is a variation on what Saito Sensei, who trained directly with O’Sensei advised.

My sensei (teacher) Hans Goto Sensei explained it this way: “Work on one thing and then you’ll get it. That’s yours. And then you can work on another one thing. That’s what Saito Sensei said. He said, ‘You can try and work on too many things each class you’ll get zero. 30 days of zero still equal zero. But if you only try to get one thing out of each class after 30 days you have 30 things.’ This is huge.”

Jealousy doesn’t have to “freeze” you. It can be turned into motivational fuel, inspiring you to study and train more precisely, more intensely. Or perhaps, simply try something new to achieve the result that you want. It can be an opportunity to “steal the technique” and learn from the best.

2. Turn jealousy into an opportunity to return to the present and rejoice in the success of others.

When I feel my mind spinning into intense jealousy, it’s usually a signal that I have “left” the present moment. Instead of focusing on the Aikido technique that I’m trying to master, or the blog post I’m trying to write, or the webinar that I’m trying to deliver, or the client I am trying to coach, my mind has gone somewhere else.

My mind is caught up in what other people are doing and how they are doing it better. That kind of mental departure leads to distracted, fragmented work. It’s hard to do your best work when you’re not fully engaged in the present moment and it just doesn’t feel good either.

When I sense that happening, I take a few deep breaths to center myself back in my body, back in the present moment. Sometimes I say silently, “OK, I’m back here now.” Everything feels better once I’m “back,” and in that more centered place, I let go of the envious feelings and focus on what I’m working on in the moment.

Ginny Breeland Sensei says, “The Breath provides a bridge to subtle energies that can nourish. It is the connection for the Mind to the Body and the Here to the Now. On the mat it allows us to go from tension to relaxation, from confusion to a clarity, from irregular motion to coordinated ease.

In life it can quell a sense of separation and allow us to find that comforting sense of interconnection. It can take us beyond ourselves.

Let attention allow us see ourselves with a new reverence.

Study the Breath. The most profound things lie close at hand.”

So the breath can connect us to the very person we envy thus dissolving the separation between us. It brings us closer to what we want and who we want to be and gives us the chance to “see ourselves with new reverence.”

Aikido B&W girl throw_Øystein Alsaker

How to turn jealousy into an asset Photo Credit: Øystein Alsaker

Another way to look at this is that whenever jealous feelings arise for me I’m being pulled off center. One of the key principles of Aikido is to keep your center and take your attacker’s center, to get them off balance so they are light and easy to throw. It’s often said that someone asked O’Sensei, the founder of Aikido, “How is it you never get pulled off center?” And he replied that, just like everyone else, he does get pulled off center but he has trained himself to get back to center so quickly you can’t see it. So the more you practice pulling yourself back to center the faster you’ll be able to do it. And soon, like O’Sensei, your process will be “invisible” and incorporated into how you handle jealousy, and ultimately, self-acceptance.

3. Turn jealousy into an opportunity to reflect on your own strengths, skills, desirable assets, and “swallow the world in one gulp.”

Curly haired women long for smooth locks. Straight-haired women spend hours trying to add curls and waves.

Skinny women yearn for Marilyn Monroe-esque curves. Curvy girls wish they could slim down and look like a runway model.

A struggling yoga studio owner might long for more money, more influence, or a big team to manage. A successful CEO might wistfully yearn for quiet days filled with minimal responsibilities, no meetings, and plenty of time to practice yoga.

So many of us crave the opposite of what we have! It’s almost comedic.

I admire Sunita’s instant, effortless grace on the Aikido mat. One day, in the dressing room, she mentioned that she found me a patient teacher who didn’t condescend. Who knew? Another woman in the dojo startled me by saying she was studying my conversational skills. I know I’m much more fluent verbally than physically, but had no idea that someone would study what comes naturally to me.

We all have skills and strengths that other people find enviable. Sometimes, though, caught up in a whirlwind of jealousy, we can’t see our own gloriousness.

Samurai Sword_Alex Masters

The Neuroscience of happiness Photo Credit: Alex Masters

Not surprisingly, self-acceptance is a key happiness factor.

Christopher Bergland, a world-class endurance athlete, coach, author, and political activist noted, “A 2014 survey by psychologists who study happiness identified ‘ten keys to happier living’ including daily habits that make people genuinely happy. In an unexpected finding, the psychologists at the University of Hertfordshire who performed the survey found that the habit which corresponded most closely with being happy — and satisfied with overall life — is self-acceptance.”

Unfortunately, self-acceptance was also the “happiness habit” that participants in the survey practiced the least. The new study is titled “Self-Acceptance Could Be the Key to a Happier Life, Yet It’s the Happy Habit Many People Practice the Least.””

Dr. Mark Williamson, Director of Action for Happiness, said: “Our society puts huge pressure on us to be successful and to constantly compare ourselves with others. This causes a great deal of unhappiness and anxiety.”

An antidote to comparing ourselves to others is a Buddhist practice that asks, “Can you be happy for their (the person you are jealous of) success?” You notice your jealous feelings. Stop. Take a breath and simply ask this question. You can do this anywhere, anytime. Can you be happy for this person’s success? Even rejoice in it? At the heart of this practice is the realization that it’s actually changing you. It’s not just for Karma points. You are getting something from engaging in the very act of transforming your feelings from envy into good will toward another person.

Reverse the negative thought by giving a blessing

Reverse the negative thought by giving a blessing

We may even be able to extend this same practice to ourselves in a direct way by doing what Dr. Mark Williamson recommends, “Ask a trusted friend or colleague to tell you what your strengths are or what they value about you.”

But don’t stop there, because as psychologist Rick Hanson, author of the best-selling Buddha’s Brain says, “The mind is like Velcro for negative experiences, and Teflon for positive ones.”

He references John Gottman’s study that found in important relationships “a negative interaction in an important relationship is five times more powerful than a positive interaction.”

To counteract this “negativity bias” effect, Hanson recommends that we really savor a person’s positive words. “The way to remember something is to make it intense, felt in the body, and lasting. That’s how we give those neurons lots and lots of time to fire together so they start wiring together. So rather than noticing it and feeling good for a couple of seconds, stay with it. Relish it, enjoy it, for 10, 20, or 30 seconds, so it really starts developing neural structure.”

And lastly, “Sense and intend that this positive experience is sinking into you and becoming a part of you. In other words, it’s becoming woven into the fabric of your brain and yourself.”

When our body and mind are so full of our own happiness it leaves less room for jealousy and makes it easier to be happier for others.

Another way to counteract jealousy is to consider that that moment of “outward longing” might be your cue to pause and turn your gaze inward. Ask yourself, “What are some of the qualities that I possess that others might find desirable, enviable, or beautiful?”

Maybe you have tremendous poise, perseverance, a sense of balance, a wry sense of humor, mental grit, physical endurance, playfulness, seriousness, graciousness, an uncanny ability to say just the right thing at just the right time, or the ability to know when to listen and say nothing at all.

Return to the qualities that make you… you. Make a mental list or write them down.

Refer back to your list when feelings of jealousy are starting to feel overwhelming.

Remember who you are, beneath the noise. Remember what you add to the world.

Aikdo Sword Kyoto_Alex Masters

Neuroscience how to train your brain Photo Credit: Alex Masters

The stark reality is that there will always be people who are more seasoned, more experienced, and more popular than you. 

You might feel like you will “never catch up” with them, and you are quite right.

You will never “catch up” with people that you admire deeply, because you are not them. You are you.

You have your own stories to tell, books to write, products to launch, projects to bring forth into the world. In the end, who knows? You might become bewilderingly successful — in the conventional, making-millions-of-dollars sense of the term — beyond your wildest dreams, surpassing all of your personal heroes as you skyrocket ever-upwards.

Or, instead of making millions you might move millions with your words, your deeds, your presence.

Or you might achieve success on a far humbler, though no less meaningful, scale. Who knows?

One thing is certain:

True success is not about being “as good” or “better” than somebody else.

It’s about using all that you have been given to the fullest and maxing out your potential. 

That’s the person that your clients, your customers, your fellow martial arts students, and media audiences all want to meet.

As O’Sensei says, “Never become stagnant. Train your body, forge your spirit, and swallow the world in one gulp! Stand boldly, with confidence, wherever you find yourself. Make use of all your innate power and you can accomplish anything.”

On that note, it’s time for me to finish this up, head to the dojo and swallow the world in one gulp.

Dear Jealousy:

Domo arigato gozaimashita.

(Thank you very much for what you have taught me.)