Inspiring Lives Magazine Spring 2017: Issue 4 - Page 51

Dresses Theodora James by Portia Brady, Jewerly by Sandie Grindel, Tux by Eva Dixon, and Makeup by Kourtney Leech How did she get those great people skills? Branas credits growing up both Catholic and Jewish. “How I was raised taught me about people,” she said with a smile. “It allowed me to associate, gay or straight, whatever their race. I paid attention to women, and I have a greater appreciation of what women want.” Branas considers herself “fun, optimistic, charismat- ic” and “loyal to my friends and family.” She said she doesn’t even tell herself “no.” Being able to describe who she is at her core is part of what she said helped her become the person she is today. So, what advice would Branas give someone starting a journey of change? 1. Take time to meditate. Use positive thinking ex- ercises. Avoid words about how you look, and instead, think about strengths, abilities, and skills. Do it daily so it becomes a habit. 2. Cut out toxic people. Do not give them free space in your brain. Push them aside because they are only hurting you. 3. Take action for the life you want. Don’t let fear hold you back, and don’t give up. “Sometimes there are 3,000 different paths to get to your goal. You may need to walk many of those paths to get where you want to be, so just take those steps,” she advises. Branas turned 40 a few months ago, and she believes this next decade will be filled with many avenues for sharing her mission. She said, “I love helping people find what they have to offer. I’m just getting started.” n Get to know Branas at Suzanne Hobbs is an international best-selling children’s author, writer, and speaker. She is also the national media spokesperson for the safe surrender of unwanted newborns through the National Safe Haven Alliance. Connect with her at SPRING 2017 INSPIRING LIVES 51