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Walk A Mile in Her Shoes: Ani Phyo

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Staying healthy is a very important part of being an entrepreneur.  Our guest today is doing just that and helping other people get and stay healthy.  Ani Phyo is a best selling raw food author, nutritionist, TV host, business consultant and entrepreneur. I had the pleasure of meeting Ani when she presented her new product Super Happy Juice at an event we produced for a client of ours.

SG:   How did you get started with your business?  


Ani: I’ve been working in the Raw Food category now for over 17 years. Started with catering, then prepared packaged foods, then launched the first line of organic fruit and nut bars called SmartMonkey Foods. It was the functional nutrition aspect that got me hooked.  I felt more mental clarity, focus, energy, and better overall performance physically and mentally.


SG:   Can you tell us how you started Super Happy Juice?


AP:  I was developing a Women’s Health Optimization Program, and had traveled to the Bay Area to meet with several venture and angel investors. One of the angels got most excited about the idea of me opening up juice bars. I woke up 4 days later and realized I have the perfect executive team whom I then assembled upon my return to LA. One of my partners is Chris Ochs, we’ve been friends for years from the Superfood World, and he brings sales, strategy, and an MBA from UCLA Anderson School. Plus, it just makes total sense with my existing health and wellness platform, audience, and reach. And, I love juice! Also, my newest book is “Ani’s Raw Food Detox”, and juice cleanses are detoxes that have been super popular!


SG:   What was your biggest failure and how did you overcome it?


AP:  I like to see failures as an opportunity for growth. With SmartMonkey Foods, if I had known more about venture capital back then, I would have pitched it to the funds I know now, rather than having brought in the partner I did.


SG:   What are three things that every entrepreneur should know?


AP:  You have to believe in your vision, even when no one else does.

Have boundless passion and energy for what you’re creating.

Launch with enough in the bank to carry you at least 2 years, since it sometimes takes that long to become profitable.


 SG:   What inspires you?


AP:  Architecture, street art, street fashion, healthy food, electronic music, nature, culture, and interesting people.


SG:   What kind of shoe are you and why?


AP:  Stella McCartney, because they are luxury vegan and eco.


To learn more about Ani, please visit the link below:

HOMEPAGE – Ani Phyo: Health, Wellness, Raw Food & Detox Expert

Ani Phyo – YouTube



Walk A Mile in Her Shoes: Sarah DeAnna

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Today, we are walking a mile in the shoes of a very lovely and talented young lady, Sarah DeAnna. She has made it her life mission to empower women and young girls through beauty,  health and wellness.  She is the author of Supermodel You and a high fashion super model who has graced the pages of many top fashion magazines around the world.
Stiletto Gal:   How did you get into modeling?

SD:  I was discovered at a Starbuck’s in Hollywood by a photographer. He loved my look and just wanted to shoot me. He paid for the entire shoot and then tricked me by taking me to a modeling agency that signed me that day. After that, my 1st official photo shoot for the agency became the cover of a magazine.
SG:  What made you want to write a book and why this subject?

SD:  I’ve always been passionate about health and fitness but didn’t always know the right things to do. When I first started modeling, I weighed about 20 pounds more than I do now and I hated my body and I was barely eating and over exercising. Eventually I figured out how to get the body of my dreams and was very soon modeling on the runways in NY, Milan, and Paris. I quickly realized that no one including the agencies and models really knew the right things to do to in order to be healthy and thin. I became the go to girl for models struggling with the pressure to be thin, but still wanting to be healthy. I loved it!   But outside of my industry, I realized that so many more women and girls needed to know that they could have the body of their dreams and still be healthy. I didn’t like that so many people were misled to believing that all models have eating disorders or other unhealthy behaviors. I felt a strong desire to empower women and girls to achieving their supermodel body for themselves. That’s what Supermodel You is all about. It’s about coming into alignment with the supermodel inside of you.
SG:   What would you say is your biggest accomplishment in life and business?

SD:  It’s kinda funny, but graduating from high school was a really big deal to me. I was the first and only kid in my family to graduate from high school and I did it with honors. I went on to graduate from college with honors too, but it was high school that meant so much to me. While I’ve been on many magazine covers and have had a lot of modeling success, but having my book, Supermodel You, published and a bestseller, ranks pretty high on the list of my accomplishments.
SG:   Can you give some tips to some women from your book?

SD:  There are really only 5 keys that affect your body and your health. These are the 5 keys to Supermodel You. Balancing the 5 keys is the best way to having your dream body and being healthy and happy. When it comes to body, everyone focuses on eating and exercise which comprise 2 of the keys, but the other 3 keys are far more important than what you eat and how much you exercise. Exercise is actually the least important determinant of body and health. Getting your “Beauty Sleep” as we call it in the book is huge and affects your health, looks, and body more than people realize. Stress, is also the leading cause of weight gain, unhappiness, wrinkles, and disease. And, Self-Awareness, the premier key in Supermodel You is what governs all the keys. Having self-awareness about your body, your health, your stress levels, the food you’re eating and in all aspects of your life is the best way to empower yourself and take control of your body and your life. I live by the 5 keys.
SG:   What kind of shoe are you and why?

SD:  Shoes… oh, la, la! I love stiletto pumps! I especially love YSL stiletto pumps, but I only wear heels on dates, at events, and of course at work. In the Spring and Summer you’re more likely to see me in a cute pair of wedge sneakers like the one’s Giuseppe Zanotti makes and in the winter, I always wear boots! I love over-the-knee boots. I’m all about comfort, but you will never see me in flip flops! I am not a fan of flip flops even if I live part time at the beach. I’m also a gym rat, so I live in my Nike’s. :)
I have to agree with Sarah, you will rarely ever see me in flip flops!
To learn more about this amazing young women and buy her book, visit the below link.

Walk A Mile in Her Shoes: Kelli Ellis

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Calling all budding interior designers!  Kelli Ellis is the go to maven for anything interior design and how to build your empire.  I had a chance to sit down with her to hear more about her amazing journey.


StilettoGal:   How did you start your company?


Kelli Ellis:  As soon as my daughters started kindergarten, I jumped straight into starting my business on a shoestring. I hung my sign, placed little ads in the local paper, and I was off and running. I had been designing homes throughout college and decided to make it official at the Interior Design Institute. While my girls were in preschool, I studied to earn my certificate. As soon as I had a half day to meet clients, I began building my clientele.


SG:   What has been your biggest failure thus far and how did you overcome it?


KE:  I have never looked at past lesson as failures. Not even the breakup of my first marriage! In business, it was designing with out a contract! Early on (even though I went to Law School!) I got caught with goods my client didn’t want after ordering …my family ended up with a lot of expensive furniture!


SG:  What is your proudest moment in business?


KE:  The success of Design Camp has been very exciting and a bright light in my path. My TV career has been instrumental in propelling my career off TV, and of course my new book, “Do I look skinny in this house?” is my latest gem.


SG:   Stiletto Gals are all about giving back, what kinds of things do you do to give back to women?


KE:  I volunteer on a weekly basis at local soup kitchen, and encourage my clients to give their retired furnishings to women’s shelters and Habitat for Humanity. and my all female stock car racing team donates a percentage of our proceeds to the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society.


SG:  What are three tips that every entrepreneur should know?




1. No one will care as much about your business as much as you


2. Remember you have been hired for your expertise; do not cave.


3. You are only limited by your creativity and willingness to work hard.


SG:   What kind of shoe are you and why?


KE:  I am a metal-clad black leather heel, with peep toes. Sassy, sexy and serious at the same time.


To learn more about Kelli, visit her website below and don’t forget to pick up her new book “Do I Look Skinny In This House?”







Financially Wise Women

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Hi Stiletto Gals!

We are always here to help out a fellow entrepreneur. As many of you know, it can be difficult to run your business and take care of your finances at the same time.    I don’t know about you, but money seems to be that subject I wish I learned more of growing up.  I mean, how come no one ever taught me how to budget and how to save for retirement?

Questions like, how can I budget more effectively, how much should I be saving toward my financial goals, how do I pay off my debts and what’s the difference between a 401k, IRA and Roth IRA have all crossed my mind in the past and I know I am not the only one who has found personal finance and money management overwhelming.


But, since money is something that is around for our lifetime, I know how important it is to find a way to learn money management skills to serve me and my financial future.  However, every time I get ready to start learning about financial strategies, I am left feeling overwhelmed, misunderstood and quite frankly bored by the financial industry!


That’s where Brittney Castro, Certified Financial Planner comes in.  Brittney is a friend of mine and has over 7 years of helping people move past the roadblocks in their financial life and has this uncanny ability to talk about money in such a fun and easy way.  Every time we discuss the subject of money and finance, I leave feeling empowered and excited for my financial future.


Brittney just launched her new online 6-week Money Class and I am so excited about it that I had to share it with you!


What is the Money Class?

This online 6-week course will help teach you the basics of money management and personal finance in a fun and easy way.  You can think of it as the personal finance education you never received growing up.


You will learn things like, how much to save every month toward your financial goals, ways to improve your credit score and pay off your debts faster, how to set up your bank accounts, the difference between retirement accounts, the different types of investments you can have, which insurance types you need, and much, much more.  Along with the 6 finance modules, you’ll also have access to cool bonuses such as video interviews with other thought leaders and game changers and be able to join the private Money Class Facebook group to connect with other like-minded individuals who are also committed to their financial journeys and growth.


So my suggestion is if you want to stop living in fear with your money hoping one day it will get better, and actually start living a life full of money love and empowerment, let Brittney’s Money Class guide the way.


Ready to get started?  Click on the link below to get all the details and enroll in her course today.  I promise, it will change your life and the way you think about you finances.



Let’s take charge of our financial future together!



Walk A Mile in Her Shoes: Alycia Darby

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Stiletto Gals, it is such a treat to have this next Walk A Mile in Her Shoes gal, Alycia Darby.  Not only is she an amazing business woman, she just won Miss California International!  We sat down with her to talk about her business and how she gives back to her community.
SG: How did you start your company?
Alycia:  I’ve always had a passion for fitness and my educational background is in education and counseling, so my natural characteristics and professional interests intersect at the place of fitness and education. I love training people to understand the ‘why’ of their actions and the value of them as a unique individual. When I started FLEX Your Life, it was designed to train people to sculpt a life and business that truly fits their unique qualities and then coach them to keep it healthy and strong.
SG:  What has been your biggest failure thus far and how did you overcome it?
AD:   When I first started my business, I was all over the place. I wanted to be all things to all people and, cognitively, I knew that was impossible, but I just had so many skills that I wanted to use them all at once. I worked closely with several coaches and mentors that helped me to see how I can use all my skills toward the same effort to feel satisfied emotionally and successful financially. It was a total paradigm shift, but has made a huge difference in how I approach my life’s work.
SG:   What is your proudest moment in business?
AD:  About a year ago, I was introduced to a potential client who I felt was WAY out of my league. During my research of the company, I discovered the owner was a true power-house and her idea was brilliant! I put a ton of effort into learning about her, her company, and a process that I felt could help launch her business to the next level. After months of discussion, I finally closed the deal and it had a huge pay-off, personally and professionally. When I closed the deal over the phone, I was in my living room. As soon as I hung up, I screamed with joy and did a little party dance! Haha! It was a great feeling to know that I had the skills and was organized enough to be prepared to help a client at this level.
SG:  Stiletto Gals are all about giving back, what kinds of things do you do to give back to women?
AD:  I’ve always been a huge supporter of the American Heart Association, financially and as a volunteer. For the last 10 years, I’ve partnered with AHA chapters around the nation to raise funds and educate women about heart disease and how to lower your risks. Daily fitness is the most recommended way to lower your risk of many things including heart diseases, cancer, and stroke (the top 3 causes of health-related deaths). Online, I offer a free workout series for women who prefer to workout at home in short 20-minute increments. Really, anyone can do it from anywhere. If you’re interested, you can join us at www.GetABetterBody.info
SG:   What are three tips that every entrepreneur should know?
1. Expect Acceptance. When entrepreneurs are just starting off, we think that we have to over-sell people, defend the idea, or convince someone that we’re ‘real.’ This is really not a confident way to express your business. Instead, everywhere you go, expect that you’ll be accepted. Networking events, public speaking events, negotiation meetings….if you expect that people will accept your idea, business, personality, pitch, etc, then you will show up with the confidence you need to be sure they do.
2. Do you! Inside of you is where a very unique set of experiences, qualities, characteristics, and opportunities are found. You are the only place where these things intersect, so it is in your best interest to be the full expression of this uniqueness: you. If you do what the YOU of you would do (Dr. Seuss anyone?), you can never go wrong. “To thine own self be true.”
3. You are the boss of you. When I was a senior in high school, I participated in a talent show at a local college. They didn’t know my last night so they only printed my first name in the program pamphlet. I was embarrassed that they didn’t care enough to print my last name, but my mom said, “Wow! You’ve arrived! Madonna, Brittany, Pink, Alycia!” It made me feel like a celebrity! And that night, my talent show dance ROCKED because I acted as though I’d already arrived. In business, I allow myself to control how I react to situations based on how I want them to go. I’m the only boss of me, so I have to always be responsible for my actions and not place blame on other people, circumstances, or environments. 
SG:   What kind of shoe are you and why?
AD: I’m a sneaker – I have thick skin, a solid ‘soul’, supportive interior, and always ready to bust into a workout!
To learn more about this fabulous lady, visit her links below.
Business website: www.FLEXYourLife.com
Personal/Biz website: www.AlyciaDarby.com
Stay healthy Stiletto Gals!
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