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March 8 is International Women’s Day—and this year’s theme is #ChooseToChallenge. The Goldfaden MD team talked to five incredible women who are navigating life’s challenges: juggling building businesses and finding time to take care of themselves.  We asked them about their own personal challenges and how they find balance, inspiration, and most of all, support (with a little skincare sprinkled in).

ALICIA EASTER:

This year’s theme for IWD is #ChooseToChallenge. What does that mean to you? 

Allowance. We always have the right to change our mind, grow, set boundaries which allow us to be our full, loving, and honest selves. Too often as women we play small in order to be understood while neglecting the very important component of innerstanding ourselves, first. As long as we know our core intention and is not causing harm to ourselves or the collective, then do you! I like to say, “Stay Brave in Your Pursuit of Joy!” 

Who/What/Where do you look for inspiration and support? 

First and foremost I look to God, my mother, and teachings of Yoga. I am inspired by humans who choose everyday to put one foot in front of the other and not give up. I am inspired by my own journey as an entrepreneur, teacher, daughter, sister, friend and who I yet to become. I could have made the decision to quit on life a long time ago, but I didn’t, and for that I will always keep God first and believe in myself to follow the path He laid out for me. I am constantly inspired by all the elements: earth, sky, fire, air, and water. I might sound a little woo, but I no longer require much to fill my cup and to be inspired. If I get to wake up to a new new day, look at God, what a beautiful gift!  Anything after that, dear friends, are all excellent bonuses…my work, family, friends, students, clients and my beloved teachers. 

What is your hero Goldfaden MD product?

I mean, do I have to only pick one?! Well, I love Bright Eyes, FLEURESSENCE, and the Doctors Scrub but GFMD really does make magic in their products. Do y’all use Baby Unicorn Tears of Overflow, or something?! LOL!

AMBI SITHAM: 

This year’s theme for IWD is #ChooseToChallenge. What does that mean to you?

Honing in on the causes closest to my heart and supporting these through donations, raising awareness, and fighting the good fight. There are many causes that I support, but one that I feel deeply  connected to is that of maternal mortality. The data exposes the racial and economic disparities that mean so many women unnecessarily die during pregnancy or childbirth, or suffer tremendously in the post-partum period. As a new Mom, I feel passionately about this and support a variety of organizations whose mission is to make pregnancy and giving birth an equitable process and making post-partum care accessible for all women, both across the world and here in the USA.

I am also choosing to challenge myself to become more financially literate. Although I am well educated in many ways, I feel I missed out on this vital component that would have better equipped me to deal with some of life’s challenges. I feel that all women can be empowered by having true financial literacy and this is fundamental to achieving equality. While I am engaging in this process myself, I am also supporting organizations that help women all over the world to do the same.

Who/What/Where do you look for inspiration and support?

My Mom and my sister in law are pretty amazing strong women who inspire me with their feats and my  Mother in law is one of the most compassionate people I have ever met. I feel lucky to be able to look to my family for both inspiration and support. Also, my close girlfriends. From my childhood friends of 30 plus years to strong friendships I have formed since moving to LA., I am grateful to be both inspired and supported by my tribe in our collective mission to do good and bring justice and equality to our world in our own unique ways.

What is your hero Goldfaden MD product?

Ah, it’s hard to name just one but I cannot live without the Facial Detox mask. It is a must in both my skin and self-care regime!

Mariah K. LYONS:

This year’s theme for IWD is #ChooseToChallenge. What does that mean to you?

#ChooseToChallenge to me means having the courage to think, act and create differently than in the past or what you might have been taught. It is challenging the status quo and choosing to create your own path and life. It might always be easy, but it’s always worth it. 

Who/What/Where do you look for inspiration and support?

Nature is my constant inspiration and support. 

What is your hero Goldfaden MD product?

Plant Profusion Night Creme (my absolute favorite creme I’ve ever tried!)

SHANNON SOLLER:

#ChoosetoChallenge- What does that mean to you?

For me, #Choosetochallenge is the continual reminder as a female founder, wife, mother, daughter that as women we must never stop pushing boundaries,  calling out inequities when we see them, thriving to continue to educate ourselves and empower our children to become informed about making a positive change in our world. I’m personally involved with advocating for Dyslexia and Literacy being a basic civil right for all. 1 and 5 people are dyslexic and yet children are not being taught to read in schools. It is my mission to raise awareness, and advocate for those without a voice. 

Who/What/Where do you look for inspiration and support?

This past year has challenged us all in more ways that any thought possible. I am so grateful for the neighborhood I live in and the diverse group of women who have become my closest friends. Aside from being able to literally borrow an egg from my neighbors, these women have become my rocks and support system as we aim to raise mindful children, navigate marriage, keep our mental health in check and provide each other the overall fuel to get these trying times.

 What is your hero Goldfaden MD product?

I am a huge fan of so many Goldfaden products but my personal hero product is the Fresh-A-Peel Mask. The Lactic acid and fruit enzymes work in 2 minutes flat. My skin feels smoother, brighter and my pores clearer. I wish I had more time to mask and pamper myself and this product gives me that perfect glow every time!

WHITNEY TINGLE:

This year’s theme for IWD is #ChooseToChallenge. What does that mean to you?

It’s both important and powerful to challenge the views of others — and of ourselves. During this time of reflection, we are both looking at ourselves, the beliefs we carry out into the world, as well as the beliefs we are holding about ourselves.  At Sakara, we believe in challenging these limiting beliefs on a daily basis. The mind is a funny thing, often telling us we’re not good enough (not smart enough, pretty enough, thin enough, rich enough, whatever enough). But when we are able to move past these fears and insecurities, and embrace ourselves, there we are able to uncover our true power. Though it can be difficult, we each have the ability to choose the thoughts we think. And to challenge any thoughts that aren’t serving us. Believing in ourselves is the first step for each of us to start shining our lights a little brighter. And when we’re all shining our brightest lights, we light up the world for others. So, in this year’s theme, we are choosing to challenge our own thoughts and beliefs, and hope others join us in doing so as well. We each hold the power to transform, to make an impact, and create change–  it all starts within. 

Who/What/Where do you look for inspiration and support?

Finding support is crucial — especially as a new mama. I feel blessed to have an incredible group of women around me – both personally and professionally– who I look to for inspiration and support on a daily basis. Professionally, Sakara’s Leadership Team is composed of 9 women, all who are mothers as well. I was actually the last in the group to become a mother (just gave birth last fall), so I look to them for inspiration and advice on how to hold both roles of Mom and businesswoman.  This group has shown me how we can rework the “typical” culture for working mothers by showing empathy and compassion for each other as we all balance family life and work. And show each other that it is absolutely possible to be both hardworking and nurturing. They truly are an amazing group of individuals, who inspire me every day to be a better mother and entrepreneur!

What is your hero Goldfaden MD product?

My favorite Goldfaden MD products are the Doctor’s Scrub and Firm Believer – I’m obsessed! I’m a new mama and am busier than ever, so as of late, my ideal form of self care is taking 10 minutes at the end of the day to wind down and do a full skincare and body care routine. Both products leave my skin feeling so nourished and hydrated and it’s such a nice way to wind down at the end of the day.

International Women’s Day is celebrated in many countries around the world. It is a day when women are recognized for their achievements without regard to divisions, whether national, ethnic, linguistic, cultural, age, economic or political. It’s a celebration where we unite as a global community to celebrate women, their endless drive, passion, impact and tireless effort in making a difference.

In recognition of International Women’s Day, we’re celebrating our accomplishments as women, and the progress we make each day towards an equal future by bringing together three inspiring duo founders making an impact in their field and communities. Dive in deeper and follow along with us this month as we showcase a handful of incredibly notable and talented women because as women we are stronger together.

Meet Jill Donenfeld and Tiana Tenet, the Co-founders of The Culinistas, an in-home personal chef services that include menu planning & shopping, cooking & clean up.

How did the two of you meet?

TT: Jill was running a boutique company that provided in home chef services.
JD: When I met Tiana, she saw how to leverage those services into a scalable business and we partnered almost immediately.

TT: We met through a friend of mine who was about to hire one of the chefs with whom Jill worked.

What is The Culinistas and what is your mission?
The Culinistas is an in home chef services platform with a mission to bring mealtime back to the table.
What is one standout quality you each see in each other?
JD: Tiana is laser-focused on progress and does not get caught up on perfection.
TT: Jill is a community builder. She rallies the team.
What are the best decisions that you have made in your careers thus far?
JD: Partnering with Tiana, hands down. Not only do we have the ability to grow this company together, but the partnership is also an opportunity to grow a very special, unique relationship.
TT: Partnering with Jill, hands up!
What are the worst?
JD: Anytime I’ve operated from a place of fear, the effects have a long tail that is hard to shake.
TT: Anytime I ignore my gut, same thing.
In what areas do you want to see women progress in 2020?
TT: I’d like to see women putting their money where their mouth is. We need more female investors & there is power in the purse.
JD: This goes for everyone: I would like everyone to harness the capacity of the human brain more. Our brains have the ability to teach ourselves how to do things, to figure things out. We aren’t robots. It takes discipline and confidence to employ your brain, and everyone should do it more.
What’s your advice to women trying to make an impact in their career?
TT: Take risks.
JD: Discipline yourself to learn more and learn deeper. It will help define what you want. And then you will figure out how to get it.
What will be the biggest challenge for the generation of women behind you?
JD: To stay focused on learning rather than mimicking.
TT: Staying present. In a world of so much distraction, we all need to get focused.
Which women inspire you the most and why?
JD: Eileen Fisher — she is a trailblazer in sustainability.
TT: Serena — she never settles. Everything is excellent.
What is your self-care routine?
TT: Wake up, work out, bath, smoothie.
JD: Body oil, fresh air, jazz on Monday nights

“There are so many benefits to working in a close family business, chief among them being trust and agility. Having control of the business and easy access to one another allows for fast critical decision making with an implicit shared mission that has the best interest of the business at heart.” Lisa Goldfaden

Learn more about the two women driving the success of Goldfaden MD

What is one standout quality you each see in each other? 

LW: I hit the jackpot, literally. One of the best things about having the right partner is your ability to divide and conquer, to understand each other’s limits and support one another’s strengths and weaknesses and that is just the base of Lisa. I don’t think i can land on just one thing that stands out to me from her because i know that i (and our brand) would not be here today if it weren’t for her passion, dedication, inspiration and drive. 

LG: Besides being my sister-in law, business partner and best friend, her work ethic never ceases to inspire me.  She is a positive and strategic problem solver as well as creative minded. We wouldn’t be where we are today without her vision and she inspires me to be better at my job. 

What are the best decisions that you have made in your careers thus far? 

LW: I would have to say that this answer is two-fold: 1. Moving out to Los Angeles as it has opened up the ability to grow and connect in ways that were not possible while trying to run our business out of Miami and 2. Never accepting NO. I always pocket a “no” with “not now” and it has always proved us right – either in the form of a work relationship, partnership or collaboration. Sometimes, it’s all about the right timing.  

LG: Leaving my prior career in education to help start and grow our brand. I also know we choose the exact right time to launch as there were no other brands like us. This was risky in the sense that we couldn’t be certain the market was ready for our brand and DNA. We wanted to and have bridged the gap between high performance and natural plant based products. 

What are the worst? 

LW: Disclosing a launch plan to a retailer prior to it actually happening and it ruined a potential partnership with them at that time; i’ll always remember that as a lesson to be careful with your words and pivot to adjust to the audience that you’re speaking with! 

LG: I don’t “do regret”  in life because every bad decision is a learning experience. I’ve learned to value my own opinion and decision making skills. 

In what areas do you want to see women progress in 2020?

LW: More women in C-suite positions! 

LG: Government and the continuation in media/social images and messaging.

What’s your advice to women trying to make an impact in their career? 

LW: Find something you have a passion for, as that is the key to ultimate personal and professional success as it is what truly shines through in every aspect of your work, relationships and beyond. Be willing to try things you secretly think you may not be able to do; it’s about making mistakes along the way and learning from them. For me, making mistakes is the only way to truly learn what you are able to accomplish, adapt and grow through them.

LG: Be true to yourself and don’t change to try and fit a stereotype or specific roll.I also think finding a mentor or surrounding yourself with other women who you look up to can be very beneficial. 

What will be the biggest challenge for the generation of women behind you? 

LW: I think the greatest challenge for women in the generation behind me will be achieving work life balance; it’s always a struggle – no matter if you have children and a family or not. Leadership does require some sacrifice – mostly in the personal life standpoint –  and I hope that the women behind me will be able capitalize on the work that has been accomplished by previous generations of women without sacrificing so much of their personal lives. 

LG: I think the women in the generation behind me will still be challenged by a  lower pay rate than male counterparts. They will have to continue to push for equality. I also agree that the work life balance will continue to get more challenging for this generation of women. 

Which women inspire you the most and why?

LW:  I can truly and honestly say that I am most inspired by the women that surround my life – from both a personal and professional standpoint. Every single woman in my life is juggling so many things, are all multi-taskers and do it all with such grace. These are the women that inspire me beyond what I could never have imagined on a daily basis; It’s the people that touch you and surround you that can often inspire you the most. 

LG: Of course I am inspired by women making important changes in our world, but I am most inspired by kindness, patience and hard work-which is found in women all around us.

What is your self-care routine?

LW: I try to maintain a well-rounded wellness routine that consists of regular exercise, sleep (8 hours a night), a balanced diet, treatments when i need them (i.e. acupuncture, massage), and meditation. I don’t always get it packed into one day or even a week, but I do my best to find the balance and fit it into my overall lifestyle. I also push myself to always see the bright side of things as there is nothing worse than negativity! 

LG: I exercise daily, eat a clean keto based diet, practice intermittent fasting and take a lot of supplements. I try to get as much sleep as I can. My skincare regimen is pretty simple, I wash with our Pure Start cleanser and Doctor’s Scrub followed by our Brightening Elixir Serum and then a face oil (either our Fleuresence oil or Cecilia Wong’s Strengthening Serum). I always moisturize my entire body the minute I get out of the shower with a special bespoke Body Oil created by Cecilia Wong. I try to practice patience and kindness with myself as well as everyone around me.  Life goes by very fast and I want to be the best version of myself.