motivational

All posts tagged motivational

Best Speaker Award Toastmasters

Published January 11, 2019 by Maryanne

dscf3291

Best Speaker Award for “David Bowie Tribute”

I was ecstatic, last night to get the “Best Speaker” Award for my “David Bowie Tribute.”

It was the third anniversary of his death, so I figured what better way than to honor him with a special tribute.

My assignment was to give a 5-7 minute speech on any topic. I went the extra mile and learned a bit of mime to start it off. I spoke passionately about the highlights of David Bowie’s career, and then shared an intimate story about my friendship with Cyrinda Foxe, who was the model in David Bowie’s “Jean Genie” video.

I knew my speech was well-received, but I didn’t expect to win “Best Speaker.” I was a deer in headlights when my name was announced. I actually said, “Really?”

I’ve only been a member of Toastmasters since October, inspired by Lewis Howes when I saw him speak at Summit of Greatness. I’ve been a public speaker in libraries since 2014, but I decided to up my game and try to get into schools, corporations, and even stages. Why not think big for 2019?!

DSCF3288.JPGShowing my “Best Speaker” medal

Maryanne Christiano-Mistretta is an international author and speaker. She is available for events. For availability and pricing, contact: maryannechristiano@gmail.com 

She is also a professional blogger, book editor and ghost writer. Contact today for rates: maryannechristiano@gmail.com 

Be (Extra)Ordinary: Ten Ways to Become Your Own Hero

Published January 9, 2019 by Maryanne

kicam cover

I am ecstatic to reveal the cover, and the landing page of my upcoming book Be (Extra)Ordinary: Ten Ways To Become Your Own Hero, published by KiCam!

Release date is October 2019, and you can order yours today here: https://kicamprojects.com/shop/be-extraordinary/

Maryanne Christiano-Mistretta is an international author and speaker. She is available for events. For availability and pricing, contact: maryannechristiano@gmail.com 

She is also a professional blogger, book editor and ghost writer. Contact today for rates: maryannechristiano@gmail.com 

Best of 2018!

Published December 29, 2018 by Maryanne

DSCF29105-4-3-2-1 HAPPY NEW YEAR! 

Looking back a year ago, I was sad to see 2017 go, because it was a great one, mainly because no one close to me passed. However, 2018 was a year of visiting loved ones in the hospital; therefore not the best. But me being the eternal optimist, I’ve once again compiled a “Best Of” because so many super cool things happened. Mainly with my husband, Dennis, as we’re always seeking out music of old and new; great friends; and always something cool is going on in my career. Let’s take a peek back at the highlights, shall we?

January 2018

My popular library program, The Learn & Listen series, kicked off the year right as I had the opportunity to work with Charlie Fusari. We gave the presentation, “The Life and Music of Michael Jackson” at the Elmwood Park Library, Elmwood Park, NJ. I spoke about the career of Michael Jackson, followed by a stellar performance from Charlie, which even included moon walking!

February 2018

The Learn & Listen series continued on it’s full force when I gave the presentation, “The Life and Music of Freddie Mercury” featuring Rob Fusari at Kinnelon Public Library, Kinnelon, New Jersey. This was a dream come true, to not only share my feelings about my favorite band’s front person Freddie Mercury, but to work with three-time Grammy Award winning producer, Rob Fusari. A great time was had by all!

June 2018

June was unbelievable! I was thrilled to be a guest on the Health & Wellness Show! You can view the show here on You Tube: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VS3w8p-4nIk&feature=youtu.be

And Sunday, June 9, 2018, I was incredibly honored to speak on anti-bullying at Montville High School, Montville, New Jersey. I was invited by teacher Anthony Sia who started the Coalition for the Human Condition (https://www.facebook.com/Coalition-For-The-Human-Condition-209170233169424/) with Alus (https://www.alusofficial.com/).

I was up first, then followed by a powerful performance from Alus, and later, the incredible Montville School of Rock (https://www.facebook.com/msorrocks/).

Supported by my husband Dennis and some friends, I was happy to speak for the first time in front of a high school. Prior to that engagement, I’ve done mostly libraries and senior citizen groups. I didn’t have much time to get into how I was bullied as a child and teen (though I am writing a book about it!) but I did get to speak about teen spirit. And that the one most important thing we need in this world today is love.

August 2018

My birthday month! Yes, birthday MONTH! Celebrations for my 55th happened all month long, being spoiled by good friends, family, and my amazing husband!

September 2018

September I was ecstatic that my fourth book was published by Higher Ground! It’s also available on Amazon and is climbing the charts! My book “I Don’t Want to Be Like You” is my memoir about being bullied as a child. You can get it here, from Higher Ground: https://highergroundbooksandmedia.com/product/i-dont-want-to-be-like-you

And, once again, I was invited to read my poetry at the West End Arts Festival, in Long Branch, New Jersey.

September was also the month, that my husband and I took in another cat. A beautiful feral we named Bennie. He’s just the sweetest thing! He loves, loves, loves to cuddle! The vet told us he has feline auto-immune disorder, but we promise to give him the greatest life for as long as he lives!

BennieBennie

October 2018

There was so much movement in October! It all began with a road trip to Columbus, Ohio, with my friend Jayne for “Summit of Greatness.” Exploring the town, and spending full days being inspired by great motivational speakers was a life-changing experience. In fact, I ended up joining Toastmasters as soon as I got back home, so I could also hone in on my speaking skills and become greatness myself!

I also launched my anti-bullying channel Be YOUnique on You Tube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCLq6J9MSvcjd-haQ30ycLWA?view_as=subscriber

December 2018

The year ended in a bang, career-wise, as I got invited as a guest, once again, to the Health & Wellness Show. Here’s another great time: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-U3OIu7as40

And in addition to all of this, so many beautiful times spent alone with each other and with our great friends. These things, my husband and I choose to keep private.

ALSO, a major book publishing company gave me an advance to write my fifth book! It will be published early 2019–STAY TUNED! AND, I continue to help people edit their books, blogs, and websites; as well as ghost writing, memoir writing, and book editing. Clients include: Brute Force!

AND WISHING EVERYONE A VERY HAPPY 2019! 

The Best Acts We Saw in 2018 

In no particular order: Jackknife Stillettos; Tommy James; Sheila E.; No Future; “Ladies of The 1980s” with Rob Fusari, and Taylor Dayne; and Cher in Oxen Hill, Maryland. (As of writing this we also have tickets for Felix Cavaliere and Gene Cornish’s Rascals, with Carmine Appice on drums!)

Also, John Cusack  Live -“Q&A: Say Anything” was amazing!

Ric Ocasek, in person at his art show, Short Hills Mall, New Jersey.

Favorite Movies of 2018

“Bohemian Rhapsody” and “Mr. Rogers: Won’t You Be My Neighbor”

Rest in Peace

In 2018 we’ve lost so many in the media, but the one that most hit home was author and spiritual guru, Shatki Gawain. The date of her death was November 11, 2018 –11/11/11 (2+0+1+8=11).  Eleven is the most intuitive of all numbers, a master number associated with faith and psychics. I always kept her books at my bedside, my favorite of all “Creative Visualization” which I first read in the 1980s. I had the book so many times, and gave away so many copies. Yet another copy always finds its way back to me. 

Maryanne Christiano-Mistretta is an international author and speaker. She is available for events. For availability and pricing, contact: maryannechristiano@gmail.com 

She is also a professional blogger, book editor and ghost writer. Contact today for rates: maryannechristiano@gmail.com 

Older Women Look Younger Nowadays

Published December 2, 2018 by Maryanne

55 - 2

55 and proud of it! 

As a journalist, a few years I interviewed a grandmother who authored a book. She said she wrote the book because she was tired of grandmothers being portrayed as women with gray hair tied back in a bun. Those days are long gone, she believed. Her picture of a grandmother was modernized to represent her as a grandmother. This grandmother was a lady who was in shape, wore stylish clothes, and had long flowing dark hair.

Modern middle-aged women definitely have it going on. More so than generations before us. I can’t quite pinpoint why, but can only guess. Our stress factors are lower because we know how to take care of ourselves. We work hard, but we know when to take a “time out.” We treat ourselves by going to the spa, by taking time to relax and do creative things, and of course, retail therapy. We do it all, but we don’t forget to make ourselves a number one priority, therefore having the stamina to be able to give more of ourselves to others.

Even though I dye my hair, I can assure you that I have minimal grays. It’s not hereditary. My grandmother was gray young, and so was my mother.

The thing is, there is less tension in my life, as well as the lives of my peers. Because my generation has been independent — making our own money and marrying later in life — we end up with men because we truly love them, not because we need them. I’m proud to be a part of an age group that began the trend of marrying someone you could call your very best friend.

I’d also like to add, that by the time you are in your 40s and 50s, you know what looks good on you. You have the confidence you lacked in your 20s and 30s. You’ve experienced with different looks, changed your closet as your body changed, and now have a killer wardrobe, as well as great shoes. Maybe you now have a gut, but that doesn’t take away from the fact that you still have toned, rockin’ legs.

By doing more of what we want, dressing how we want, wearing our hair how we want,  by being with who we want to be with, and by surrounding ourselves with like-minded women with youthful spirit, the result is — YES, WE DO LOOK MUCH YOUNGER THAN WE ARE! And there should be nothing wrong with that.

However, lately I’ve been coming across some negative comments on articles about older women. Women of a certain age do not like that the models used in the articles are so “young looking.” They don’t feel these women represent their age bracket. But they DO!

Those who look their age or older are definitely in the minority. They can easily look younger with a good make-over, a little less stress in their lives, and giving themselves a little tender loving care.

If I’m making it sound “easy” well it’s not. I grew up during the 1980s and that meant that 25 was old. From that point, I took care of myself with the little info I had back then. I was into yoga from a young age. I stopped eating conventional meats. I avoided preservatives and additives 80 percent of the time (and still do, with cheats). And I realized from the time I started working that I’d always support myself and only marry if I was truly in love. But the biggest thing that makes me look younger, I think, is I do not smoke. Others are also giving up this stinky habit. And I’m a happy, non-gossipy person. Now people are finally realizing how ugly and stressful bad-mouthing can be. Smart women don’t do that; it’s actually frowned upon. It’s great because when we get together, we talk more about ideas and fun stuff in life. We aren’t bitter because we’re honestly in a happy place.

I’m sure other foxes over 40 and 50 will agree with most of what I am saying. Long gone are the Edith Bunker hairstyles for women our age. Long gone are the days of sneaking cigarettes when our husbands aren’t around because we don’t lie to our spouses, they accept us as we are. Long gone are the days of busting our asses cleaning the house. We either hire cleaning help or don’t mind a little mess. And long gone are the days of talking trash about other women — we are here to support each other!

So, next time you are reading an article about older women, and you think the model doesn’t look her age, think again. Most of us don’t! After all, pretty is as pretty does, and most of us are pretty darn awesome!

Maryanne Christiano Mistretta has authored four books and is working on her fifth. If you enjoyed this blog, you may love her fiction book “Love Cats” about love in the 1980s. It’s available on Amazon in Kindle and paperback: https://www.amazon.com/Love-Cats-Maryanne-Christiano-Mistretta-ebook/dp/B00YBGVJQS

She’s also a motivational speaker available for talks at schools, JCC’s, women’s clubs, rotary clubs, and corporations. Email her for pricing and availability 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