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SheSez with Linda Grasso
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SheSez with Linda Grasso

Author: The Golden State Company

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Journalist Linda Grasso hosts candid conversation with fascinating women about the things that matter most: happiness, health and purpose. SheSez is a master class for the modern woman.

In her signature unabashed style, the well-known TV broadcaster showcases her seasoned interviewing skills, fueled by a keen sense of what women want to know. With thoughtful cadence and saucy humor, Linda peels back the layers on each guest, giving equal time to successes and failures.

Interviewees come from many stages and walks of life, ranging from Fortune 500 executives to forward thinkers to illuminating women who just have it down. Each 30-40 minute episode offers tangible takeaways for the listener: the secrets to living as healthy as possible, getting what you want out of life and achieving success on your own terms.
105 Episodes
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Surgeon Carolyn Chang shares the story of losing her only child to cancer and the lessons she learned about our innate ability as humans to cope and survive—even in the face of  unimaginable tragedy. 
Consumed by fear of aging and not mattering anymore? Meet Wendy Euler, who is on a mission to show us that middle age—and even later— can be the prime of life. While most people shy away from change as they get older, Wendy faced it head on. In her 40s she left an unhappy marriage, married her dream man and, after tiring of life in the big city, moved with her new husband and family to Montana. Then, at 46, she had another child. And then it all really started happening. Fed up with hearing the message that it’s basically over for women after 50, the former advertising executive decided to take matters into her own hands. In 2017, Wendy (who has always been impossibly chic) launched the fashion blog, Goodbye Crop Top, which quickly became a smash hit and has created numerous opportunities for the 51-year-old—from swimsuit modeling to writing a book.
Sarah Lee and Christine Chang, the founders of Glow Recipe Skincare, school us on the red hot Korean a.k.a. K-Beauty industry—explaining everything from its reliance on unusual and pure ingredients (snail secretions, anyone?) to its playful packaging. They also share how they came up with the cult-favorite, Watermelon Sleeping Mask which has sold out over 7 times at Sephora with an 8,000 person waitlist. Plus, how the women decided to get off the fast track as VP’s at Loreal and in 2017 launch the fruit-inspired Glow Recipe line, which is cruelty-free and made without parabens, sulfates and phthalates. Sarah and Christine's newest K-Beauty-inspired line, Sweet Chef, is available  at Target. 
Pivoting from full-time motherhood to employment can be daunting In this episode Kelley Biskupiak & Susan Rietano Davey, co-founders of the on-line professional coaching platform, Prepare to Launch U, share with Linda tips & strategies for moms interested in returning to the work force. Topics touched on: how to reclaim your professional confidence; how to shift from focusing entirely on the family to yourself; the importance of getting ahead of the curve, i.e. taking small but critical steps to plan for your future before the kids are actually out of the house. Also, how to spin your time at home into something prospective employers will view as an asset.  Prepare to Launch U provides instruction, inspiration and community to women navigating work-life transitions along the continuum of life. Its signature online career re-entry course has students in 26 states. It also offers a course to help women plan and execute a maternity leave. Like Linda, both Kelley and Susan have first-hand experiences with the challenges of pivoting from full-time motherhood to the working world. Both women opted out to take career breaks, opted back in as working moms, and made mid-career pivots to start their own business. 
Stage 4 Triple-Negative Breast Cancer survivor Jenn Greenhut had just had her yearly mammogram when she discovered the lump under her arm. In this episode, Jenn speaks out about the importance of ultrasounds—particularly for women with dense breasts—and she shares the story of how doing essentially a 360-degree change in mindset got her through the grim diagnosis. During her treatment for one of the most aggressive forms of the disease, she learned to embrace (instead of dread) chemo and to see and be grateful for all the positives that have resulted from her situation. She credits that attitude reboot with helping her go from little hope to cancer-free in four months. Plus, how Jenn is giving back by raising money for cancer research with her new line of bags, Zero Negative. The line includes reversible bags that go from cross body to fanny packs designed for women going through treatment.
For SheSez’s 100th episode, the tables turn as host Linda Grasso gets interviewed by Emmy Award winning TV broadcaster Diane Dwyer about what she has learned from some of the most accomplished women in the world about finding happiness, fulfillment and purpose. Linda also shares some of the surprises she’s experienced over the past two years i.e. most popular and favorite episodes; some of the mistakes she’s made and what she looks for in a SheSez guest. Plus, some advice for anyone thinking of kicking off their own podcast.
 A yearly mammogram and monthly self-examinations aren’t enough anymore when it comes to preventing breast cancer. According to surgeon Kristi Funk (who treated Angelina Jolie and Sheryl Crowe) there is a lot more we women can and should do—including getting ultrasounds. To commemorate Breast Cancer Awareness Month, we’re re-broadcasting Linda’s interview with Kristi, who after years of research, has written Breasts: An Owner’s Manual, which flies in the face of convention when it comes to prevention. The surgeon says her findings indicate that by merely subscribing to a healthy lifestyle (i.e. vegan and no alcohol) women can lower their risk by 80-percent. Kristi also provides an analysis on the variety of treatment options and she has some words of caution for women who are lackadaisical about getting yearly mammograms and ultrasounds, feeling complacent because breast cancer does not run in their family. 
When TV contributor/host Kym Douglas got diagnosed with Stage 3 breast cancer, her management team in Los Angeles advised her to get a good wig and keep it quiet. They felt it didn’t “fit her brand” which was doing fun, comedic beauty segments on The Ellen DeGeneres Show and on the Hallmark Channel’s Home & Family show. In this episode, Kym shares with Linda why she ignored their advice and instead went full throttle on social media. In painstaking detail, Kym shared with her fans and followers the most intimate, painful moments of her aggressive treatment, which included mastectomy, chemotherapy and radiation. The beauty expert also discusses with Linda her decision to do an elective mastectomy on one breast, a move that ultimately saved her life.
Connecting with a loved one with Alzheimer's Disease, as well as other dementias, can be a challenge—and a heartbreak. In this episode, comedian and author Dani Klein Modisett shares the story of how she  learned to reach her mother while visiting her at an assisted living facility. After a spell of silent, sad visits, Dani stumbled across an idea, eventually founding Laughter On Call, which provides training workshops and an on-line curriculum for caregivers of Alzheimer's and dementia patients. Dani also shares tips and strategies for moving a loved one into assisted living, navigating the finances and levels of care, warding off isolation, and the challenges encountered when family members have differing opinions about what should be done.  
Protecting our girls from self-deflating social and mainstream media messages is a challenge—and one that Michelle Cove is facing head- on. She is the founder and executive director of MEDIAGIRLS—a nonprofit organization aimed at teaching middle-school girls to take a critical look at the images they’re being barraged with and how to self-protect. Michelle, also an award-winning filmmaker, author and journalist, shares with Linda how MEDIAGIRLS is going about empowering girls—showing them that they don’t have to accept the negative messages—which often make them feel bad – whether it be about their body, the way they look or their social status. Instead, through its workshops, the non-profit shows girls that they can and should challenge those messages, and in some cases get mad about them. Plus, teaching your child the importance of creating responsible  media messages (particularly the popular girls)—teaching them to be part of the solution, instead of the problem.
 Ellen K's story is one of patience, perseverance and pay off, set amidst the male host-dominated radio industry. After being a sidekick for 24 years on two popular radio shows —the first with Rick Dees and the second with Ryan Seacrest — Ellen K finally got her due. In 2015 she became host of her own gig: the Ellen K Morning Show on KOST 103.5. It airs weekdays and is I Heart Radio’s number one show in Los Angeles. A syndicated version airs nationwide on weekends. Ellen shares why she stayed as a sidekick for nearly a quarter a century (not even raising her hand at hosting opportunities) and how she finally got the guts to fight for and win her own show. Ellen takes us inside the boardroom with all the decision makers, and shares her rather unique strategy for arguing her case.
Functional medicine is providing relief for some people with chronic illnesses. With this alternative approach, physicians look at the patient as a whole, taking in factors like diet and stress, in an attempt to find the root causes of disease. In this episode, Linda talks with Dr. Karima Hirani who switched from practicing conventional to functional medicine 20 years ago due to frustration about not being able to provide patients with enough answers and solutions. Dr. Hirani shares how she treats patients suffering from several on-going illnesses, including depression, anxiety, chronic fatigue and a host of digestive ailments as well as the strides functional medicine is making with autistic children. We also hear from a woman who says functional medicine changed her life. Maryam Henein says it helped her to finally heal after a life threatening accident, ultimately inspiring her to found her alternative medicine/health & wellness website Honey Colony.  
Looking at Kanchan Koya today cooking on her blog Spice Spice Baby, it is hard to imagine her as a Harvard Medical School-educated molecular biologist. But indeed 7 years ago she was working in the bio-tech industry. Increasingly dissatisfied with each passing year, she finally made a hard right turn—focusing on her love of Indian food and spices and her belief in their health benefits, ultimately kicking off the blog Spice Spice Baby.  In this show, the mom of two shares how she got the guts to make such a bold career switch; how she became the 1st self-published author to get her cookbook Spice Spice Baby: 100 Recipes with Healing Spices for your Family Table on The Today Show; and how being a regularly featured chef on Buzzfeed’s wildly popular Tasty network has elevated her brand to a new level. Plus, how to integrate Indian spices into your diet for health & wellness benefits—ranging from alleviating indigestion to reducing inflammation.
Sex in a long-term relationship can be a challenge. Even if you truly adore your partner, how do you keep it alive and healthy after that initial spark fades? Why is sex so important? What do you do when your partner starts initiating sex by taking a Viagra (and forgets that you, too, are part of the equation)?  In this show, Linda asks those questions and more to Dr. Shannon Chavez, a Licensed Clinical Psychologist and ASECT Certified Sex Therapist. She is the Clinical Director of the SHAPE Center (Sexual Health and Pleasure Enhancement) in Beverly Hills, where she provides therapy and coaching, and community outreach on sexual health and wellness. Dr. Chavez also covers how to handle the Viagra-popping partner, the pleasures of porn made specifically for females by females, and she explains her philosophy on opening up a long-term relationship to other partners. (She does not automatically nix this idea!) Plus, Dr. Chavez answers some questions from SheSez listeners…and they’re pretty juicy.      
Menstruation is a shameful experience for girls in many parts of the world. When Oakwood School high school English teacher Melissa Berton and her students discovered (through a program called Girls Learn International) that girls in some villages in India have to miss school when they have their periods, they set out to do something about it. They raised money to buy a sanitary pad-making machine for one village and then traveled there to teach the locals how to use it—all of which they documented in the short film, Period. End of Sentence. In January 2019, much to their surprise, that 26-minute endeavor won the Oscar for Best Documentary Short Subject and Melissa, her students, and director, 25-year-old Rayka Zehtabchi, took to the stage to accept the award. In this show, Melissa recounts with Linda that life-changing experience and how the effort to help other girls—as well as end the taboo surrounding menstruation—continue with the non-profit The Pad Project.   
Marketing/branding executive Katie Klencheski shares with Linda how she re-focused her company, the Brooklyn-based Smakk Studios, to concentrate on clients with brands that aligned with her core values of helping people and the planet. The impetus was an upsetting meeting during which a potential client was disrespectful to his employees during which Katie walked out. For her, it was the straw that broke the camel's back. The 37-year-old turned on a dime, redirecting Smakk's mission, even though it initially meant losing money. She also shares about some of the more progressive brands on her client roster—specifically those aimed at women. They include CBD oil for menstrual cramps, a non-toxic bra (Vibrant Body) and an herbal feminine hygiene care line (Honey Pot).
A deep dive into the topic of failure—the shameful way it makes us feel and how it (or fear of it) can present a roadblock to achieving and living full, satisfying lives. Our guests are Melissa Brohner Schneider and Sara Singer Schiff, hosts of the podcast The Other F Word. The two share what they've learned from interviewing guests like Sharon Stone and Elizabeth Craft (Happier with Gretchen Rubin podcast) and some innovative mindsets aimed at not letting failure define you. Plus, Melissa, a licensed therapist, offers her take on why it is critical to share our failures with our kids.
With the release of the Elton John musical Rocketman, we hear from Anett Murray, wife of Elton John bass player Dee Murray. Dee played with the band during the most prolific period of Elton’s career—the 1970s—during which there were 15 Top-10 hits and 6 number one records. Anett shares what it was like in the early days as the only woman traveling with the band. And we talk about what it was like having a front row seat to Elton’s meteoric rise —and well as his fall due to drugs. To keep herself busy while on the road, Anett started sewing. At first, she was doing simple repairs for the band but as Elton’s on-stage outfits became bolder, she started sewing stuff for him. In fact, the denim jacket covered with patches that was prominently featured in Rocketman was actually her work. So, was Anett was the inspiration for the lyrics in the hit song Tiny Dancer (Blue jean baby, LA lady, seamstress for the band…)? We suss that out, too! To see more pictures of Anett, Dee and the EJ band, check out SheSez Instagram at she_sez https://www.instagram.com/she_sez/?hl=en and SheSez Facebook https://www.facebook.com/SheSez/.
Leah Yari and Mary Lennon share the story of how Mary's frustration at not being able to have her daughter's birthday party at a nail salon (that seemed healthy enough to host a bunch of kids) morphed into—not just an uber healthy salon—but an entire line of nail polish that is formaldehyde, toxin and gluten-free and vegan. The duo's company Côte now has 2 environmentally safe salons in Brentwood, CA and NYC and a line of toxin-free polish with 125 different shades. Here they chat with Linda about their journey in quitting their jobs and launching a company (Leah was an interior designer; Mary was a school admissions director) and their ultimate goal: to transform the manicure experience for women—and their daughters.
With her company Barney Butter, Dawn Kelley has developed a unique way of making almond butter that avoids bitterness and that nasty, pasty texture so many products on the market have. Barney Butter also offers a no added salt or sugar version, making it one of the healthiest almond butters on the market. On the show Linda and Dawn discuss the health benefits of almond butter—ranging from better sleep to stronger bones—and tasty ways of integrating it into your diet.  They also discuss the year Dawn’s life turned upside down (for the better)—a year in which she quit one job, started another, moved from Southern California to Maine and married a man with three kids. By the way it was also the year, she turned forty. 
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