Guy Peters of MOP STARS: Second Chapters; How I Reinvented Myself In The Second Chapter Of My Life

Many successful people reinvented themselves in a later period in their life. Jeff Bezos worked in Wall Street before he reinvented himself and started Amazon. Sara Blakely sold office supplies before she started Spanx. Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson was a WWE wrestler before he became a successful actor and filmmaker. Arnold Schwarzenegger went from a bodybuilder, to an actor to a Governor. McDonald’s founder Ray Croc was a milkshake-device salesman before starting the McDonalds franchise in his 50’s.

How does one reinvent themselves? What hurdles have to be overcome to take life in a new direction? How do you overcome those challenges? How do you ignore the naysayers? How do you push through the paralyzing fear?

In this series called “Second Chapters; How I Reinvented Myself In The Second Chapter Of My Life “ we are interviewing successful people who reinvented themselves in a second chapter in life, to share their story and help empower others.

As a part of this interview series, I had the pleasure of interviewing Guy Peters.

After a decades long career working with household names like A&W, Canada Dry and TaylorMade, Guy Peters started MOP STARS Cleaning Service. A complete 180 from the corporate world, MOP STARS provides residential and commercial cleaning services across the United States. When he’s not running the day-to-day operations of MOP STARS, Guy can be found out on the golf course or inside binging the latest Netflix documentary.

Thank you so much for doing this with us! Before we start, our readers would love to “get to know you” a bit better. Can you tell us a bit about your childhood backstory?

was born in Tripoli, Libya, where my father was Controller for an oil company doing a pipeline deal with the Libyans. When I was 2 years old our family moved back to Ohio, evacuated by the US Army at the start of the Six-Day War, in 1967. At Ten years old I moved to Sacramento, California where I lived until moving to New York for graduate school. I generally consider myself to be from Northern California.

Can you please give us your favorite “Life Lesson Quote”? Can you share how that was relevant to you in your life?

“Those who do only what is asked of them are slaves, those who do more are free.” It’s an anonymous quote but one that struck me when I heard it more than 25 years ago. I believe trying different ideas, getting creative and resourceful, taking risks, and thinking like a leader gives us that freedom.

You have been blessed with much success. In your opinion, what are the top three qualities that you possess that have helped you accomplish so much? If you can, please share a story or example for each.

Integrity — In business, especially when in business for yourself, you must decide where you land on the morality continuum. For some people it is natural, one way or the other, and for others it is an internal struggle. I have no choice but to be honest, otherwise I could not sleep.

As much as people say they want to hear the truth, it can also get you in trouble. We provide a service, and while opportunities to massage the truth are always there, it’s not something I’ve ever been good at.

I think honesty has allowed me to attract the right people to my business, and my personal life.

Respect — Respect for everyone with whom you interact is critical in developing trust and long-term relationships. One time I disrespected a vendor by telling him his product was no good. I was being honest, but my delivery lacked respect in a way that 23 years later it still bothers me.

In some ways, I feel like I’m making up for that slight so many years later. But regardless of the motivation, I think continued respect for everyone helps me find the best people to work with, whether it be employees, vendors, or clients.

Humor — Humor has been a way to successfully diffuse uncomfortable conversations and situations. Using humor to help guide meetings and keep people at ease has always been an asset.

Let’s now shift to the main part of our discussion about ‘Second Chapters’. Can you tell our readers about your career experience before your Second Chapter?

Armed with a finance undergraduate degree I went to work for Ford Motor Credit Company, Ford’s lending organization. “Before you can loan it, you have to collect it,” I was told.

So, I spent three years in collections, talking to customers who were behind on their car payments. After one year on the phone, I wanted to talk to people in person, so I was repo-man for two years in the field. More of an investigator than anything since people get creative in how they hide a car they know is on the verge of repossession, although I repossessed more than 300 cars in those two years. I learned a lot about people and empathy.

After getting my MBA degree, I embarked on a brand marketing career which included food (Nabisco), carbonated soft drinks (Cadbury Beverages) and golf (Dunlop/Maxfli Sports Corp. and Taylormade-adidas Golf). I was fortunate enough to work on mature brands and create new brands; and worked with many great people along the way. I liked the idea that in these brand-driven organizations, marketing worked with all functional areas.

And how did you “reinvent yourself” in your Second Chapter?

I had a taste of entrepreneurship when I was hired by a private equity group to create a new marketing and distribution plan for a popular yet tired brand they were buying.

Then, I moved to San Francisco to join a startup, and I liked the free-wheeling, high pressure environment of working with a few people to bring a unique product to market.

It was more of an evolution than a reinvention. At times I struggled in corporate America because when someone asked me what I thought, I told them. That didn’t always work well for me. I liked the entrepreneurial struggle, where it was do or die, and there was less politics with more focus on doing what was necessary to succeed.

Can you tell us about the specific trigger that made you decide that you were going to “take the plunge” and make your huge transition?

I was working for a company that, admittedly, was not a good fit for me, which I mentioned to the CEO during my interview, but he disagreed. It was a small yet public company, after my time in the entrepreneurial settings, while I was trying to determine what next.

One day it dawned on me. I realized that if I work in an environment that did not excite me, I will not thrive or be happy. I wanted to start my own company, create my own brand, and I had to completely step away to start the process.

While it may have made sense to leverage my experience in product branding I went a completely different direction and created a service business — cleaning. Whatever company I started, I knew the bottom line was customer satisfaction.

I liked the fact that the cleaning industry is fragmented and lacking many of the corporate best practices that had been my day-to-day for so many years.

Most of my friends and family thought I was completely crazy…to say the least! But with three locations in Colorado and three more planned in Texas, I like our direction.

What did you do to discover that you had a new skillset inside of you that you haven’t been maximizing? How did you find that and how did you ultimately overcome the barriers to help manifest those powers?

For me it was not a new skill set, it was just believing that I had the skills, which really is half the battle.

Once I believed I had the skills to start my own business, it gave me confidence. My experience in marketing, and working with sales, finance, operations, HR, etc., gave me the confidence I needed to launch my brand.

How are things going with this new initiative? We would love to hear some specific examples or stories.

There have been many ups and downs, as one would expect with a new business, and I still feel like I learn something every day.

Constantly striving to create value through the best possible client experience keeps me focused. I am always available to any client who wants to discuss our service and provide feedback. In addition, continually looking for employees who share my vision of providing a consistent, quality service is critical.

Accelerating growth this year is a key initiative as we move into new markets. Investing in controlled growth is a good use of capital for us.

Is there a particular person who you are grateful towards who helped get you to where you are? Can you share a story about that?

My mother comes to mind first, without a doubt, always a big supporter.

A previous boss, Edward, has been a mentor ever since we worked together. He is a very sharp guy, and a great guy. Interestingly, because he is so smart, and British, sometimes people didn’t know how to react to him. Our sales team didn’t get to spend as much time with him as I did in headquarters, so some of them were unsure about him. I often emceed our national and global sales meetings, and Edward and I had an unwritten rule — he did not censor my comments on stage, and I made fun of him in front of the sales team. I believe our sales group must have thought, “If he lets Guy say those things about him, he must be a good guy!”

Can you share the most interesting story that happened to you since you started in this new direction?

Operating a service business, in which we go into people’s homes, in a global pandemic has certainly been challenging. But, unfortunately the most interesting event was when I discovered a manager was siphoning cash and clients from the business.

White collar crime is probably much more common than we hear about. I trusted someone and did not have the proper controls in place. One of the many learning experiences along the way, and the most painful. It was a gut punch, but it crystalized my focus on growing my business by providing a consistent, quality service to our clients.

Did you ever struggle with believing in yourself? If so, how did you overcome that limiting belief about yourself? Can you share a story or example?

I never struggled with believing in myself, but never thought about it one way or another. The first time I thought about self-belief was when Cornell University offered me admission to their MBA program.

I was a B+ student through undergrad, but never worked hard and never really challenged myself. I think some friends thought it was a stretch when I applied to Cornell, but why not? I worked hard to get in. I went to two MBA forums and talked to their admissions people at both, visited the school and talked to the same admissions people, and called many alumni to get their thoughts and make sure they knew what I wanted. Persistence helps when you want something.

In my own work I usually encourage my clients to ask for support before they embark on something new. How did you create your support system before you moved to your new chapter?

I made many good friends and business contacts in my first chapter, corporate career, and some of them were helpful. I leaned on them when making key decisions about my future and whether to start a business. It was natural — they were interested in my next chapter, and I wanted their opinions.

Starting a new chapter usually means getting out of your comfort zone, how did you do that? Can you share a story or example of that?

Getting out of my comfort zone was helped, in part, by the fact that my comfort zone itself started becoming uncomfortable. I felt I needed to make a big change. It was still uncomfortable making the change, with the inherent risk of a change that big.

What helped me was going all in. There was nothing hesitant about it when I finally decided I was going to do it. If you are not 110% in, you need to reconsider your probability of success.

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Category: Articles

Thrive Global – How To Heal From Autoimmune Diseases Without Meds!

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Learn alternative methods from experts and start believing your body can heal itself

Do you ask yourself daily, “What’s wrong with me? Why don’t I feel well? Why am I tired, in pain, overweight, and unable to escape brain fog? Is this my new normal?

Join my summit series for 21-days of how to take control of your own health including healing from autoimmune diseases without meds. Learn techniques and tools to create more wellness in your mind, body, and spirit while nourishing and supporting your transformation to better health and more happiness. You can stop autoimmune damage that keeps you sick before it develops into an autoimmune disease!

Six months ago I was diagnosed with the Epstein-Barr virus. After spending a week in the hospital enduring many tests, I was told I had EBV and that there was no remedy, no drug, and nothing doctors could provide other than the suggestion to go home to bed for six months to a year. Bewildered, I left the hospital with conventional drugs that provided a Band-Aid to my newly diagnosed autoimmune disease. There was no talk of alternative therapies or approaches to relieve the constant pain and fatigue.

However because of close friends and family, and an alternative/functional medical doctor who literally took me under his wing, I was graced with learning alternative therapies from doctors, nurse practitioners, teachers, and other patients, and began my protocol and started to feel better. I met and spoke with patients who were previously overwhelmed by their diseases and now managed their lupus, fibromyalgia, Hashimoto’s, Graves’, and rheumatoid arthritis with success. Did you know over 100 million Americans have some version of an autoimmune disease?

Because I’ve been a patient, my heart is full of compassion for those who suffer from the disorienting malaise and the unknowing of what’s to come each day, “Will I be tired, in pain, stressed, and how long is this going to last? Am I crazy to feel like I’m losing myself?” These lonely and dizzying questions and flu-like symptoms combine to make us all feel as though there is no hope. But, there is!

My singular mission is for you to feel better! I have experts who are committed to helping you throughout my 21-day summit and they will share specific modalities that work. My only request is that you are open to new possibilities and opportunities for your healing. Are you with me?

Do you know?

  • Keeping your heart happy reduces depression and pain
  • Ozone and neural therapies work to heal disorders
  • There’s a connection between diet and autoimmune diseases
  • Using breathing and meditation techniques focus
  • There are supplements that heal leaky gut
  • There are specific lab tests that identify autoimmune diseases
  • Vitamin C intravenous therapy greatly improves overall health

Leave your doubts behind. It’s not “all in your head!” There’s no need to consult several specialist when our experts strive (and you’ll thrive) with our integrative approach to optimal health. Stop the cycle of conventional medicines and start believing your body has the capacity to heal on its own with alternative therapies!

Please join 21 experts and me on a health summit series, “How to Heal Autoimmune Diseases Without Using Meds!” You can register on the link below.  Feel free to forward to those that need help getting their health and lives back! https://piriejonesgrossman.com/HealingSummit/

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Category: Articles

I Survived Infertility, a Broken Marriage and a Suicide Attempt

By: Pirie Jones Grossman
Photo Credit:  Andrii Yalanskyi/Getty Images

One woman opens up about her struggle.

My story begins on a hazy, late August afternoon, when I returned home from my fertility doctor’s office in Pasadena, California after he had extracted eggs from my uterus for the seventh time within eight months. This extraction is part of the process known as in-vitro fertilization or IVF. The lab mixes my husband’s semen with my eggs to potentially create healthy embryos to be transferred to our surrogate. Blindsided by my inability to carry a pregnancy, my husband and I remained hopeful that our surrogate, a healthy 26-year-old who had previous success carrying two babies for another couple, could carry our baby. This was the second time we transferred our embryos into this surrogate. And take note, she was our second surrogate.

You see, I was 37 and my husband was 42. We had been together for four years when we decided to get married. We were in love and giddy with the thought of having a child. Steve had a fabulous daughter, and I loved them both with all my heart. They were the reason I wanted to become a mother. I witnessed the beautiful relationship between them and that inspired me to have a child. We were excited about growing our family.

So, back to when I was at the doctor’s office for my seventh extraction.

As soon as the procedure was complete, we returned home where I climbed into our bed to rest. My husband went to work and our housekeeper took care of me. My body, mind, and spirit were exhausted. I felt depleted, yet optimistic. Maybe this time our surrogate would get pregnant! I soon fell asleep, dreaming of a healthy pregnancy.

Within a few hours, I woke up with severe nausea and cramps. I felt weak and dizzy, and when I stood to walk into the bathroom, my world went dark. I’m not sure how long I lay on the floor or who even found me. All I remember is waking up in an emergency room, my body burdened by tubes and a headache so mind-numbing that it felt as though a hatchet had been left in my head. My husband was standing beside my bed, holding my hand with a look on his face that struggled to adequately describe my situation. My sister was also in the room, whispering into the phone. She and my husband were conferring as to what to do, as I was told later. I felt lifeless and all I wanted to do was sleep. The next thing I knew, I woke up in a different hospital. I had been transported across town from the Huntington in Pasadena to Cedars Sinai in Los Angeles. This time, my internist swayed over me trusting I could understand his words and the reason for my move. He proceeded to tell me I had lost a massive amount of blood and within the last 48 hours had received three blood transfusions. And, yet I continued to hemorrhage. I was now in the ICU and soon would be prepped for surgery to correct the tear in my uterine wall. I was so thoroughly exhausted at this point that I slept for another three days. When I finally woke, my weight had plummeted to 100 pounds. I saw Steve’s face leaning over me, his eyes squinting in distress. He told me that he was worried he was losing me, his wife. He wanted me to give up trying to have a baby and forego our efforts to create our child. I didn’t think I could feel worse, physically or mentally, yet my chest tightened with each of his words pushing my heart up to the back of my throat where it burned like an uncontrolled forest fire. I felt like a failure.

A mere 48 hours later, my husband brought me home. My body, achy and riddled with vast amounts of fertility drugs (in addition to sleeping, pain, and anti-anxiety medications) acted as a dull reminder of the hospitals where I had taken up residence for 12 days. The lingering depression had wrapped itself tightly around me forbidding me to react to anything other than where I might next curl up in a fetal position and drift away.

What came next, I could have not predicted. As I lay in bed, trying to heal in my own way from this short-circuited and dangerous attempt at motherhood, my husband announced that he needed a break. He and his daughter were headed to our home in Sun Valley, Idaho. He asked me if I wanted to join. It seemed like a bad joke. How could I? I could barely walk! My doctor gave me stern instructions and those included round-the-clock bed rest. Travel was absolutely out of the question.

In the brief time, he spent thinking about the events that had interrupted our IVF cycle Steve became cold and indifferent. Something had changed the man I loved; this man was a stranger to me. He reiterated that I had to stop trying to have a baby and that he and his daughter needed to be enough for me. He missed his life… our life. In a clipped tone, typically reserved for his business affairs, he stated he didn’t like who I had become. The words burrowed into my vacant body and at that point, nothing was making sense. There was a distance between us that I never encountered with him. He always took care of me. He was that husband. But this man was shut down and unsympathetic to my pain, my health, and my well-being. I didn’t feel an ounce of compassion or love from him. I remember thinking that we may not make it. Yet that seemed inconceivable to me. How could I live without him? He and his daughter were my family. And, then the real pain inside me, in my heart, became insufferable.

He turned away, walked out of our bedroom, and left. His casualness only exacerbated my confused and lonely reality. There was no one in our home to help me. Within moments of his departure and absence, I felt a noticeable shift in my state of mind. Despair had become my new partner; I knew I was in trouble.

My sister called to check on me. I told her what happened and she rushed over, furious to hear that my husband left me alone. She decided to stay with me until he returned.

Over the course of a couple of days, I learned more about my experience at Cedars-Sinai. My sister said that my doctor told her they almost lost me… twice! He confirmed, “Your sister is very strong on the inside, but her body is weak.” He also agreed it would be better to take a break from trying to have a baby.

During that Labor Day weekend, I was alone in my thoughts. Not once did my husband call or check on me and I felt the sting of his negligence from afar. He was definitely pulling away from me physically, emotionally, and mentally. With that, I detached from the rhythms of normalcy. I subconsciously staged my own disappearing act; slipped into a dark and disconnected place, away from everyone I knew and loved. All I could think about was how I was such a failure. I couldn’t create our baby. Not only could I not get pregnant, but also neither could the two surrogates we used who each tried twice. At that time, I never once considered my husband’s virility! My fertility specialist paraphrased numerous times that I was too old and so were my eggs. I was judging myself so harshly for not being able to create life and now I was the one responsible for my marriage being in shambles. My hopes and dreams vanished and were quickly replaced with helplessness and hopelessness.

Family and friends knew me as strong. I could get up time and time again through any failure. I’d try again with a big smile on my face; I was the perky girl!Nothing could keep me down. I had faith in God and believed that bad would change to good with his divine power and I preached that belief to family and friends. I always carried hope in my heart, no matter what. But, this grief was unlike anything I had experienced. I plunged into an even darker place desperately looking for the light inside of me. Where was God? I prayed and prayed and prayed, “Please take this excruciating pain away from me.”The drugs removed any sense of self. I didn’t know who I was or what I was doing anymore.

As I was spiraling emotionally at a rapid rate, my husband returned home. It was Monday night, Labor Day, September 7, 1998.

I was sleeping on our leather sofa in our media room, and with the TV on as a constant companion; I still managed to hear the back door of our garage open. As he walked in and sat down on the sofa, he asked how I was feeling. Surprisingly, I was happy to see him. Maybe he would be kinder? I could scarcely lift my head off the sofa and when I tried to reach for him to get a hug or a kiss, he backed away abruptly. We were habitually affectionate towards each other, but now those affirming touches and nods ceased to exist. In one easy move, he stood up and walked as far away from me as possible…. in the same room.

I tried to catch my breath before he began asking me if I had given some thought to what we talked about before he left—about giving up trying to have a child together. I said yes, I did. I said I would be willing to if we could consider adoption. He glared back at me with such disdain and laughed. He said he would never consider that as an option. And how could I want someone else’s child? He continued by saying while he was in Sun Valley he had time to think about what he wanted and confessed he didn’t want a child anymore. He claimed the sole reason he married me was because we were going to have a child together and he wanted to make sure the child had his name. But since that wasn’t going to happen for us, he wanted a divorce.

I felt my body tremble with the rush of adrenaline and then I didn’t hear anything else he said. All I could think was that he was throwing our marriage and me away. Nothing seemed real. My head whirled with confusion and my heart pinched with anticipation. A light-headedness nipped at my vision as the pressure of all the drugs in my body began heating up and coursing furiously in my veins. This couldn’t be happening! I can’t take any more grief and sadness. I felt as though I didn’t exist any longer and that unsteady sensation was the light leaving me.

I was standing in front of a man I didn’t know. Who was this man? Where was my husband? This man was dismissive, deliberate, and deadly—his tapestry of venomous words and actions prompted my eruption. I started telling him I didn’t want a child anymore! I only wanted him and our marriage. I’d promise to give up my dream and start being the woman he wanted again. “Please take me back,” I pleaded. He stood like a tower in front of me, his voice calculating, his body rigid continually repeating the word “no.” He had already made up his mind. He wanted a divorce and that was it. I begged him to give us another chance. How could his feelings for me vanish over two days? We shared a passionate marriage for four years. How could he discard me so quickly? I said, “Give me a chance to heal and let’s go to therapy. We could work this out!” He stood motionless; his head and neck stiff, his eyes locked on the wall behind me. I walked over to him and said, “I thought you loved me?” And then he completely crushed me when he said, “I don’t love you anymore… not this Pirie, the woman who’s sick and weak. I miss the fun, sexy woman who was full of life.” I didn’t think about it then, but I missed her too. “You should go to Houston and be with your parents. I’ll talk with my attorney tomorrow morning and start the divorce proceedings. Good night.”

Whatever was left holding me up at that moment, came crashing down. I started shaking, fell back on the sofa, and became sick. Tears were flowing down my face. Everything was just taken away from me. My life had disintegrated. I felt like garbage being tossed out of my own home. So this is what it really feels like to be nothing to someone who you thought would love you forever. I was nothing and this “nothing” was being told to leave tomorrow for her parents’ home in Texas.I could hardly walk or even stand up.

Then a thought occurred. I looked at the seven bottles of medications sitting on the table in front of me. I know… I’ll go to sleep… it will be painless. And then I won’t have to feel this agonizing pain any longer. I immediately opened all the bottles and swallowed over 250 pills… then I lay down, said a prayer to God telling him I’m coming home and closed my eyes… forever. “Now I lay me down to sleep, I pray the Lord my soul to keep, and if I die before I wake, I pray the Lord my soul to take.”

A violent bout of vomiting woke me. Somehow, I was in our bed, and my husband was holding me trying to stop the convulsions. There were people in the room yelling out to each other. I was being picked up and moved to another bed. Then it went dark.

Days later, I learned I had returned to Cedars Sinai hospital. This place became my home away from home. It was a repeat performance; my husband was standing next to my bed, staring at me with that same worry. His voice rose as he called for a nurse. He told me I was lucky to be alive. My thoughts came rushing in, why was I in the hospital again? I didn’t remember that I tried to take my life until a mental health provider arrived. She was gentle and asked many questions. Then I remembered… and shame and guilt scorched my heart and soul. Hot tears started streaming down my face and quickly turned into sobs only a wounded animal could make. The shame became unbearable. How could I have done that? My husband was right… I needed to give up my dream of being a mother! I couldn’t even take care of myself. It just wasn’t meant to be.

Steve came to the hospital every day for the first few days to see me. Relentless, he continued asking me if I was going to stop trying to have a baby. I said yes, but on the third day I brought up adoption again. He recoiled and with his eyes blazing, said, “Absolutely not!” Then the subject changed to divorce, but then he said we would talk about that later when I got better. With that, he turned around and walked out of my hospital room. He never returned to my room again.

Two days later I called my sister and she helped me check out and brought me home. When I arrived, I went back to bed and lay down. I called my parents and made arrangements to fly to Houston the next day. Steve was home but was sleeping in another bedroom.

The next morning as I was packing, Steve entered our bedroom. He said his attorney had prepared divorce papers. He hoped it wouldn’t get messy and offered up a mediator if I wanted one to assist in the negotiations. He uttered that he would be fair. Again, I was stunned by his ruthlessness.

Yet something inside of me had switched on… the light. Even through the pain, I felt peace. I survived. God was with me and had a plan and purpose for my life.

I flew to Houston the following day and stayed with my parents for two weeks. I spent time with my brother and his family and my sister. They prayed with me every day. They didn’t give up on me as my husband did and even how I did. The saddest part of all was that I gave my worthiness away to another.That was the first part of my healing—I had to find self-love. I reconnected to my faith, my spiritual side. I found great strength from God every day. I grew stronger and started to heal both physically and mentally. God spared my life and I felt an overflow of gratitude. Yes, I had been given a second chance, now I wanted to find out why. I had embarked on a new life journey.

Where would I go next?

A vision came to me. Move to Sun Valley, Idaho.

And so I did.

The energy of the mountains became my refuge. That energy reaffirmed who I was, where I had been, and who I could become. It restored my worth.

Within a year, I met a beautiful man who loved me and wanted to fulfill my dream of being a mother. We created two healthy children. My dream came true! Now, my 16-year old son and 14-year-old daughter are the heartbeats of my life. I even beat the odds by having them when I was 44 and 46 years old!

Let’s connect and conclude the story as far as my ex-husband is concerned. Steve passed away from liver cancer only nine years after we divorced. If we had had children together, I would be a widow and our children wouldn’t have a father. We made our peace and forgave one another before he passed. Our karma is done. My children met him and he was truly happy for me.

What is the moral of the story for me?

Never. Give. Up.

Not on dreams, or goals, or plans, or marriage, or happiness, or children. Trust yourself, even when it becomes challenging, complicated, and grim. And never give away your precious life! Situations change. People change. Give yourself time. Reach out for help and let others know when you are in a dark place. I didn’t. I kept the pain inside me. I was ashamed that I wasn’t strong enough. You see the light we need when we can’t find it within, is outside in our relationships… our family, our friends. Their light will turn yours back on because of the love and connection with other souls. We need each other to survive.

You are not alone. Do not hide and isolate yourself.

Trust your inner compass. It’s your soul giving you directions. That still and small voice that’s loving and compassionate is your guide. Don’t allow others to discount or negate your dreams. They may have their own, which is fine, but your dreams are yours. They deserve an opportunity, to grow, to be realized, and to be shared.

God believed in me, as I know he does you. This part of my life was the most demanding lesson thus far. I learned I could count on myself to reach a place where my gratitude for life changed my life. I was spared and I’m here to share my story with you.

Now you know the real reason I’ve been an advocate for people to not take their lives; and why I started a task force in my community to lower the high suicide rates in our state. I’m that survivor.I’m that woman who doubted her worth. I’m that woman who forgave herself and renewed her self-love.

I was keeping this part of my life a secret because I was embarrassed, but I’m not anymore! What I considered to be my weakness is actually my greatest strength. I love my life and I’m so grateful to still be here to help others. If my story resonates with you or someone you know; if my journey can give the hope and strength for even just one person to reach for the light; then I have fulfilled my ultimate mission… to save a life. God bless!

Watch my TedX talk entitled, “How A Community Is Healing From Suicide.”

 

 

Category: Articles

Keeping Secrets – FREE EBOOK!

Have you ever heard the expression, “You’re as sick as your secrets?” Isabelle Holland, an author of children’s books penned that phrase.

What is that secret in your life you don’t want other people to know? That’s actually eating you up? Holding onto a secret prevents you from living up to your fullest potential. It gets in the way of your growth and success because…

Click here for MORE! FREE E-Book on Keeping Secrets.

Category: Articles

From Breakdowns to Breakthroughs

Pirie Jones Grossman looks like she has it all together. She’s a successful personal coach and works on helping people make their lives better. Unbeknownst to many, she had to overcome a fair amount of trials and soul-searching. At 39, she couldn’t have kids, she got divorced from a well-known Hollywood director, and suffered an emotional breakdown. Being in the movie and film business, her identity revolved around projecting herself on camera and obsessing about the perfect body, the perfect face, and the perfect hair. Over the years, she put on layers of inauthenticity until she lost her identity. Pirie talks about rising from the ashes, facing her true self, taking back the throne to her life, and helping others do the same through soul-centered life coaching.

This episode, I have the good fortune of interviewing a sweet soul, Pirie Jones Grossman. Pirie is somebody who used to work as a reporter for the show E! Entertainment and also Entertainment Tonight, and she did that for over ten years. We go through a lot of her adversity. She was married to a very famous director in Hollywood and lived that Hollywood lifestyle. At the end of the day, it was not the life for her. She ultimately moved off to Sun Valley where she found herself. She’s been through a whole lot. She’s also been involved in the Special Olympics. She’s also been involved in various wellness institutes. She was a TED Talk speaker. She also puts some time with the Dalai Lama. She is now living in Sun Valley. She has been for quite some time as a personal coach. She’s working on how to better other people’s lives. Anytime anybody is doing that, that’s incredible. Please always go in to rate and review. It really helps with the visibility and really broadcasting the news out to people who need to hear these great messages from people like Pirie. If you want to hear anything from me, what’s going on, my clients, my public speaking, social media following, MarkPattisonNFL.com.

Read the rest of this article and listen to the podcast here!

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What I Did Last Summer…

‘My emotions were dull and I didn’t carry my usual joy.’

We’re deep into the fall season and I can hardly imagine my life just six months ago. As I think back to spring, I’m in absolute awe at how much healing has transpired in my life. If someone had told me I would be living the most magical life now, I wouldn’t have believed it. Do you know why?

I was STUCK!

I didn’t have much direction or even excitement of where my life was headed. I was suffering with heavy bouts of brain fog and as a result had no energy. My spirit felt weak and honestly, if truth were told, I was depressed.

Praying and meditating were my only outlets, but even those left me blue. I realized I was scarcely “showing up” in my everyday tasks. My emotions were dull and I didn’t carry my usual joy. It became apparent to those around me I wasn’t my usual self. “Why did I feel so badly?” was the question I asked myself at least 10 times a day!

I tried upping my exercise game. More running, biking and weight lifting. But those attempts didn’t move the gauge. It was obvious. My tank was empty.

And then it happened. I had conversations with family and friends that I couldn’t remember an hour later. I kept repeating stories and information to people who gently reminded me, “You already said that!” What was going on with me? I couldn’t remember things and I couldn’t think clearly. And you know what? I didn’t really care. Finding a solution was way too much trouble.

I also noticed I wasn’t sleeping well, and I was eating a lot of junk food. I knew better, and yet I couldn’t stop. “You need comfort food,” is what I told my body, as I ate another chocolate cookie or two!

When I began isolating in my bedroom, I knew my daily life had taken a turn. I could barely find the strength and energy to be present for my kids and that worried me. All night. My children were my priority, but I was at a loss when it came to explaining why I didn’t feel OK. Each day I promised myself that the next day would be better, but sadly it wasn’t. It frightened me… this new and not great version of me.

I didn’t talk to anyone about my feelings. I was too embarrassed and God forbid, you speak negativity aloud to the Universe. I felt that if I voiced my thoughts I would imprison myself even more. I was in my own personal jail! And I didn’t have a clue how to get out.

Now that’s a scary scenario when you’re a Soul Centered Life Coach with a Masters in Spiritual Psychology. In my head, a small army was speaking to me, “Get over yourself Pirie! Stop complaining. You’re financially and physically healthy. Things will sort themselves out. Start writing in your gratitude journal in large letters, BE THANKFUL.’ Somewhere along the road, I couldn’t hear what my soul was saying. At least not until later.

That April, I started hearing a still, small voice whispering inside my head… “What do YOU think that’s not working in your life Pirie? What haven’t you given over to God? What are you hanging onto so tightly? What are your secrets? And are you truly free from something that you think you can’t live without? What would that be?”

You see I was working from my emotional, spiritual and physical quadrants in my life, but it was my mental side that had been ignored. So, I started writing down everything I was fearful about in a way that’s known as Free Form Writing. It’s when you write whatever is present and allow your pen to fly. It’s a tool for releasing energy and information that may be stored in the unconscious part of our brain. It helps to assist in releasing negativity, judgments, emotions, blocks, and frees up the energy that held these in place. It’s not automatic writing, however it takes place in a stream-of-consciousness style.

Free Form Writing is done by hand, using paper and pen. You can tell when you’re finished.

This exercise helped me understand what was blocking me. I could barely talk about it to anyone, including myself. It released a lot of pain.

So now, let’s go back to my not being able to sleep. That actually started six years ago. I had recently separated from my ex-husband and two weeks later, my Dad died suddenly. I was a mess. I couldn’t sleep for days. Unable to function, I visited my doctor who prescribed the sleeping aid, Lunesta. What a miracle drug. I could reach over and take that little blue pill and fall asleep within minutes! That behavior became a habit very quickly.

Before I knew it, six year passed. Incredibly, I was still on Lunesta and unfortunately I couldn’t sleep without it. Then earlier this year, I noticed I couldn’t remember things. My short term and long term memory was questionable at best. My mind felt blurry and I experienced black outs. I couldn’t remember how I got home from a dinner party or recall a close friend’s name. It was disturbing. I also couldn’t get off the drug on my own.

I went online to research rehab centers, specifically to detox off sleeping pills. I found one in Malibu. What I loved most was that they didn’t just help you detox, but offered to teach me brain health tools to heal my brain, like looking ‘under the Band-Aid’ to find out what could be causing my sleep issues. I immediately signed up for a 30-day stay!

I was in sunny California for the month of June, where I started my healing journey under the care of expert doctors and staff. From the first day I arrived, I decided to surrender myself completely. I put away all my fears, judgments and stigmas and allowed the experts to help me. That was another daunting undertaking… learning how to ask for help! Not exactly a breezy assignment.

It took about a week for me to detox off sleeping pills. It was not a simple process believe me. My body and brain seemed to be screaming in my ear, “NOOOOOO!!!! We can’t do this!” You see, when you take sleeping pills, your brain stops producing its natural serotonin, which helps you, relax and sleep. When you stop taking the pills, it takes your brain a solid six months to start healing and producing its own serotonin again.

Here’s a study for you to read that gave me the best reason to stop.

A 20-year study by Harvard University and the University of Bordeaux in France found that benzodiazepine sleeping pills increase the risk of developing dementia in the next 15 years by a whopping 50%. And, new research published in 2014 found that if you take benzodiazepines for three months, you’re 50% more likely to be diagnosed with Alzheimer’s five years later. Of course my brain was forgetting things!

While I was staying in Malibu, my doctors were teaching me all kinds of wonderful brain health tools. They used Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (better known as EMDR), Brain Spotting*, Art Therapy, Cranial Sacral techniques, and acupuncture. All of these treatments were part of my healing and were instrumental in dealing with trauma I had experienced during crucial parts of my life.

When I returned home, I felt like a brand new person. The fog disappeared, my energy doubled, and I could sleep like a baby, without any sleeping pills! I’ll repeat. Without that little blue pill.

A big bonus was my friends and family noticing my significant improvement. I had clarity again. The truth was I had my life back. New and significant changes occurred in my life as well. I had always wanted to do a TedTalk about my work with Suicide Prevention, but I was anxious I wouldn’t be able to memorize my speech. When I came home, I submitted my Talk and was immediately selected! I successfully gave my TedTalk last month without forgetting one word. And then on a more personal note, I met an amazing man who I’m now in a committed relationship with after being single for six years. By the way, I was worried about sleeping with someone because another side effect of the pills was that I snored! Ha ha. I’ve been told I don’t snore anymore.

Reaching for my goals to have a healthy, happy life in ALL areas was not an easy course of action, but looking back, it was beyond compare one the best decisions I’ve ever made. I am always reminded we are much stronger than we give ourselves credit for. I know that having transcended this, you can too. The icing? I am a much better soul centered life coach for having had this journey.

*Brainspotting is a physiological therapy, which has profound psychological, emotional, and physical consequences.

With over 20 years in front of the camera, Pirie Grossman understands the power of storytelling. After success in commercials and acting. Pirie spent 10 years reporting for E! Entertainment Television, Entertainment Tonight, also hosted ABC’s “Every Woman”.Pirie’s work off-camera capitalizes on her strength, producing, bringing people together for unique experiences. Pirie produced a Children’s Day of Compassion during the Dalai Lama’s visit here in 2005. 10,000 children attended, sharing ideas about compassion with His Holiness.From 2006-2009, Pirie Co-chaired the Special Olympics World Winter Games, in Idaho, welcoming 3,000 athletes from over 150 countries. Pirie founded Destiny Productions to create Wellness Festivals and is an Advisory Board member of the Sun Valley Wellness Board.In February 2017, Pirie produced, “Love is Louder”, a Brain Health Summit, bringing in Kevin Hines, noted suicide survivor to Sun Valley who spoke to school kids about suicide. Sun Valley is in the top 5% highest suicide rate per capita in the Northwest, prompting a community initiative with St. Luke’s and other stake holders, to begin healing.Pirie lives in Sun Valley with her two children, serves on the Board of Community School. She has her Master’s in Spiritual Psychology from the University of Santa Monica and is a Leadership Life Coach. You can contact her at 208-720-7725 or at www.piriejonesgrossman.com.

Category: Articles