Are You Making a Difference Today?

Published September 14, 2018 by Maryanne

Victoria Woodhull

For the few who know how to read …
Is everyone following their dreams today? I am.
Is everyone working towards making the world a better place?
I am.
The biggest dream I have for 2019 is to get into the schools and speak on anti-bullying. I don’t say this verbally because you mention “bully” and people like to bring up how our president is the biggest bully. While I agree, I must also add that I feel neither party is 100 percent correct. Being an extremist and not finding flaw with your own party, going by a protocol is wrong.
You have to take your own steps to make the world a better place even if it means getting angry because that’s when you make a difference. Even if people laugh at you, STILL have your say! Laugh back at them because your views are just as important as everyone else. Especially if you are a woman, it’s your right.
Sharing hateful posts on Facebook that YOU DIDN’T WRITE isn’t going to do anything to change our country. Being right isn’t going to do anything to change our country. Calling someone a bully isn’t going to do anything to change our country. If you strongly believe in something, take a giant step towards doing it. You WILL be heard.
My two biggest inspirations are Rosa Parks and Victoria Woodhull. One changed the world, the other sure did try!
If you don’t know who they are, educate yourself about them. Be inspired and do your part. Especially if you are a woman! Being silent is not a good thing. If you’re shy and quiet, work towards having a bigger mouth, you CAN make a difference.

Maryanne Christiano-Mistretta is the author of the memoir “I Don’t Want to Be Like You” which is about her experiences growing up being bullied. She now is putting adult bullies in their places! Links to the book are here: 

HGBM Store:  https://highergroundbooksandmedia.com/product/i-dont-want-to-be-like-you

Amazon:  https://www.amazon.com/Dont-Want-Be-Like-You/dp/1726273261/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&qid=1536446696&sr=8-2&keywords=maryanne+christiano+mistretta

Kindle:  https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07H6H4CY1/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1536446756&sr=8-1&keywords=maryanne+christiano+mistretta+kindle 

I Don’t Want to Be Like You

Published September 10, 2018 by Maryanne

BookCoverPreview Mistretta

“I Don’t Want to Be Like You” 

I’m ecstatic to say my fourth book is now available! (See links below, and it will soon be in Barnes & Noble stores). “I Don’t Want to Be Like You” is my memoir about growing up, dealing with bullying in the 1970s.

And with this, I want to add some wise words from my sister, who is a mom:

“Congratulations on the book. I, myself also experienced bullying. Unfortunately, today parents still turn a blind eye. So let me send out compliments to St. Anne and Fair Lawn high school (New Jersey schools). Both excellent in having a no tolerance motto for bullies. I raised my son to have compassion to ALL people. He would never hurt or bully anyone! As a parent, please remember those red flags. Believe me, you will notice if you pay attention. Burning children, shooting drugs, and fire crackers into an innocent pet, does not just happen overnight. I’m begging parent to wake up. Protect your children while you can they will only get worse. No tolerance for bullying! You must know your kids.” — Kim Cagiao

HGBM Store:  https://highergroundbooksandmedia.com/product/i-dont-want-to-be-like-you

Amazon:  https://www.amazon.com/Dont-Want-Be-Like-You/dp/1726273261/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&qid=1536446696&sr=8-2&keywords=maryanne+christiano+mistretta

Kindle:  https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07H6H4CY1/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1536446756&sr=8-1&keywords=maryanne+christiano+mistretta+kindle

Maryanne Christiano-Mistretta is an anti-bullying motivational speaker. Contact her at: maryannechristiano@gmail.com 

 

Thou Shalt Not Commit Adulthood

Published September 2, 2018 by Maryanne

DSCF2687.JPGSo this is 55?! (Photo taken on my 55th birthday) 

Maryanne Christiano-Mistretta is an author and a motivational speaker. Contact her at: maryannechristiano@gmail.com

Thou Shalt Not Commit Adulthood

I grew up in a time where being “old” began as young as 22. In the 1980s when most of us started working, we were out of the house! No question about it. And if you weren’t married or engaged by 25 you were considered an old maid.

But now things have changed. People are living at home well into their 30s. Marrying later and having children even later. Or having children, then marrying. Even more inspiring are the women in their 70s, 80s, and 90s who are still modeling, dancing, and doing yoga! Don’t believe me? You’ll find them all on You Tube!

Therefore what was once considered “old” has changed.

I like to believe it was my generation that started the change. Everyone was getting married in their 20s, but I decided to wait. Nowadays women in their 50s and 60s who waited have the best relationships with their husbands or long term partners, saying things like, “I married my best friend” or “I met my soul mate.” Parties we throw are integrated with men and women mixing all over the house! But I’m sure we can remember our parents’ parties, segregated with men in the living room and women in the kitchen. Bah to that!

Even those of us who don’t get Botox (I don’t!) look younger than they are thanks to cool clothes and flattering hairstyles. Generation gaps are less “gappy” because we can be friends with women of all ages. I have female friends in their 20s, 30s, and 40s (all younger) as well as older women in their 60s and 70s!

We’re also more in tune with health and spirituality than previous generations, which also helps us to age better. Being in your 50s is a great time to be alive; I LOVE it!

Much younger people have told me I’m “stylish” and  I have “young energy.” I thought long and hard, why that is. Once I figured it out, I decided to make a list of Top Five Things Women Over 50 Should (or Shouldn’t) Do to Seem Younger.

Here’s what I came up with …

  1. Don’t Obsess Over Your Hair. I’ve noticed that the women in my own age bracket who look youngest don’t always have perfect hair. They don’t have hair that is all one color. They are more free-spirited with highlights, even with some gray peering through. They also tie their hair up in a bun, wear hats, ponytails, or braids. And they never use hairspray. I go by this too and I think this is just half the battle of having young energy.
  2. Don’t Obsess Over Your Weight. Over the past decade or so I’ve noticed a very sweet trend among younger women. They love each other just as they are! They tell each how beautiful they are and are oblivious to weight gain. Older women can learn a thing or two from these youngsters! I’m not saying run out and eat White Castles every day. What I am saying is don’t worry about your gut, your boobs, or your thighs. Once you reach 50, there’s no doubt that it is harder to stay at your perfect weight. So why not just embrace your weight gain? Most guys love those extra pounds anyway. Nothing says “What an old stick in the mud!” more than a woman who constantly bitches about her weight and fat-shames other women. Young women have evolved. They don’t shame each other or gossip about each other. Let’s evolve too and be friends; not beat each other up by being catty.
  3. Do Seek Out New Music. When people say there’s no good music around nowadays, I have to laugh. There’s a whole big wide world full of music and if you can’t find something good, maybe you just don’t like music! Instead of scrolling past things on your iPhone, why not stop at something your friend recommends? Sometimes I’ll post new music on Facebook and only one person actually listens to it. This is why you THINK there’s no good music, because you’re too damn lazy to seek it out! I’d challenge anyone on this, but haters can be so stubborn they will find something wrong with something new without giving it a chance. But trust me, if you liked Queen or The New York Dolls back in 1974, there are more than one indie band that sounds just like them. Young people groove on the retro and emulate the ground we grew up on. Don’t discount their ability to deliver!
  4. Do Give Compliments to Other Women. Back in the 1980s when I first started out in the workforce unfortunately people were still homophobic. I’ll never forget being nice and telling another girl her new hairstyle looked “cute.” Then she got all bent out of shape falsely assuming I was hitting on her. (Wow, how self-absorbed was that?!) Thank GODDESS times have changed! Young women of today are extremely supportive of each other and that is acceptable. They are generous with hugs and even hand-holding. Inspired by young women, I do all this with my middle-aged female friends. Why? It’s sweet, it’s fun, and it means we are warm people. We tell each other how beautiful we are and we say “I love you” to each other. Gone are the days, at least in my world, where women are at each other’s throats and giving each other the jealous green-eye. Young girls are kind and sweet. If you smile at a young girl, you’re much more likely to get a smile back than if you smile at a middle-aged woman. Ladies in my age bracket (and a little younger and a little older — you know who you are!) let’s change all that! If there’s one thing the younger generation can teach us is how to be more loving towards each other. Love, love, LOVE!
  5. Thou Shalt Not Commit Adulthood. Since I first became really old, at the age of 30, my motto was “Thou Shalt Not Commit Adulthood.” I continued to challenge myself, talk to younger people, do fun things, not worry what others thought about me, dress the way I liked, speak my mind, and so on.  I sing. I act silly. I pose for photographs with toys and on children’s rides at amusement parks. My goal for each day is to do something fun that I could tell my grandchildren (if I had any!) This is the biggest rule of all when you want to stay young at heart!

Ageism, it’s REAL!

Published August 23, 2018 by Maryanne

Ageism

I’ve tried to say this on Facebook and received zero support and response. So I figured, perhaps if Madonna said it, people will listen.

Earlier today I read a disturbing comment that all old people are racists and homophobic (and should die!) As someone who will be entering my senior years in less than a decade, I find these sort of comments extremely disturbing. And of course untrue.

For decades the beauty end of ageism was shoved down a person’s throat. Botox, fillers, staying under a certain weight, do this, do that to stay young.

But now, we have to also worry about people falsely assuming we are racist and homophobic just because we’re of a certain age?! And even worse, that we should die?!

Well, let me tell you something … some of the oldest people I know are the LEAST racist and homophobic. A perfect example is when I worked at a newspaper and helped an elderly entertainment editor with her section each week. She embraced all types of people no matter what their color or sexual preference.

And this is not the exception. It’s the rule.

Old people are extremely accepting, kind, and loving. If someone is old and an asshole, that’s all it is — an old person who is an asshole. That same old asshole was most likely a young asshole at one point in his/her life.

It’s ignorant to lump all people into categories.  As I blogged last week, it’s never ever black and white. It’s always gray.

And I wish, with all my heart, that some people who are limited in their thinking will meet that one inspirational person who shows them differently. Because if you hang out with that one person, more and more will arrive in your life like magic.

Be blessed.
Be happy.

Maryanne Christiano-Mistretta is the author of three books. Her fourth book “I Don’t Want to Be Like You” will be traditionally published later this year by Higher Ground. She is available for ghost writing, book editing, and motivational speaking. Contact her directly at: maryannechristiano@gmail.com 

 

Kill the Hate

Published August 13, 2018 by Maryanne

Kill the Hate

I’m currently editing a book written by a black man growing up in the 1950s and 1960s. He spoke about transferring from an all black high school to a school that was 90 percent Caucasian. He was shocked by how much prejudice there was from white people against other white people.

I have experienced this growing up in the 1960s and 1970s being called a “wop” and “guinea” by white children of other nationalities and will be addressing this in my upcoming book, “I Don’t Want to Be Like You.”

There’s so much hatred in this world, especially among children, which they learn from their parents. And then they grow up, but don’t really grow up because they use every excuse possible to spew hate.

No one is exempt from hate, whether it’s race, religion (it never ceases to amaze me how all forms of spirituality are okay, but God forbid you say “God”) age-ism, class shaming, fat AND thin shaming, jealousy, homophobia, tattoo haters, political beliefs, shaming the childless, even how people eat with vegans against meat eaters, people hating each other only because of what they “HEARD” and so on and so on and so on, people have to fight — and by fight I mean relentlessly harass — with anyone who is not like they are! And it SUCKS, I have been on the receiving end myself over and over again. And talking to all types of people, most people have experienced EXTREME hatred and hurt to some degree — more than once too. For one person to tell another person, “You don’t know how it is” is so wrong.

I don’t know where I’m going with this, I’m just so fucking drained of people hating on each other. We all have more in common than not in common. Doesn’t EVERYONE want prosperity, a great career, recognition for a job well done, love, sex, good health and wonderful friends?

You don’t have to love everyone, but by turning to the gray area of at least liking or respecting, the world would be a better place to live, I truly believe that.
PEACE, OUT.

My Guest Slot on “Health & Wellness”

Published June 26, 2018 by Maryanne

DSCF2377

Above, left to right, Dennis Lords, Ryche Chlanda, Maryanne Christiano-Mistretta and Maryann Castello.

Last week I was honored to be a guest on Maryann Castello’s “Health & Wellness” show. Maryann was an awesome host. We spoke about my career, my three books (and upcoming book), music, health, and so much more! You might even hear your name mentioned!

The show was 1.5 hours long, but it went fast. Enjoy the You Tube video here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VS3w8p-4nIk&feature=youtu.be

Maryanne Christiano-Mistretta is an award-winning journalist, author, and public speaker. Contact her at: maryannechristiano@gmail.com 

The Four Types of Clients

Published June 22, 2018 by Maryanne
The Four Types of Clients You'll Encounter

By Maryanne Christiano-Mistretta

This article originally appeared in the Verona Patch online on March 20, 2013. 

Bending over backward to keep each and every client is the biggest mistake small business owners make.

When you run your own business, having more clients doesn’t always mean more profit. In fact, some clients can be so detrimental to your business having them onboard can make you lose business.

The key to running a successful home based business is identifying which clients to keep and which to pass on. There is nothing wrong with having a “pecking order” when running your own business, putting the more desirable clients at the top.

  1. High Profit/Low Maintenance. These are obviously the clients you want to keep because they pay well and are easy to work with. In other words, a small business owner’s dream! They are organized. They are easy to communicate with. They pay on time. They utilize your talents to the best ability. There is a mutual trust and respect. They may even give you a Christmas present or bonus! If you can develop a great relationship with these clients and keep them, you are so ahead of the game as you’ll be making money almost effortlessly.
  2. High Profit/High Maintenance. Whether you choose to keep these clients or not is up to you. The high profit/high maintenance client may drive you up a wall. There may be drama, unexpected phone calls when you’re on the beach vacationing, a ton of stress, disorganization and so forth. But the pay will be well worth it. To me, high maintenance can be amusing if you keep your sense of humor. Unless high maintenance goes too far by crossing the line of respect, eating up all your spare time, making you cry or reach for a glass of vodka after working with such clients, I say “go for it.” After all, sometimes big money comes with a small price.
  3. Low Profit/Low Maintenance. Sometimes a client may come along who doesn’t have a large budget or is asking for a task that doesn’t require too much skill or effort so the pay is lower than usual. But I say to keep these clients on board because it’s easy income. And you never know when you’re going to hit a slow period. Also note that sometimes a low profit/low maintenance client can eventually become a high profit/low maintenance client. That happened to me a few times. I did such a great job at a low profit level, a client willingly increased my rate!
  4. Low Profit/High Maintenance. I’m not afraid to say these clients are the worst and should definitely not to be kept. They will expect you to jump through hoops while paying you peanuts. There will always be stress, tension, misunderstandings, frustration and possibly tears. The hours will add up and you’ll have nothing to show for it but aggravation. You may find yourself passing up work from other clients because you are so wrapped up in this nightmare of a project, which isn’t fair to you, your other clients or your business. Just say “no” and move on.

By immediately recognizing a low profit/high maintenance client you can let him or her down easily by saying that you are currently over-booked and can’t take on a new client at this time.

Or just be honest and tell them their rate is too low. But try to keep the working relationship positive, as you never know what can change in the future.

Maryanne Christiano-Mistretta is the proprietor of Pear Tree Enterprises (https://peartreeenterprises.wordpress.com/). She’s an award-winning journalist, book editor, ghost writer, blogger and more. She can be reached at: maryannechristiano@gmail.com or call 908-276-1514.