Do you feel like there are so many obstacles to losing weight that it seems like you will never get there? 

Maybe exercise is an issue.

Or meal planning? 

Maybe you struggle with alcohol.

Well take a breath and stay tuned!

Today I am going to talk with Mickey Marraffino who used her Inner Coach to overcome many of these obstacles and has released nearly 50 pounds. 

This interview is inspiring because Mickey broke through a lot of her struggle points and turned them into solution points instead.

In This Episode, You'll Learn:

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Transcription

Rita Black: Do you feel like there are so many obstacles to losing weight that it seems like you will never get there? Maybe exercise is an issue, or meal planning or alcohol. Well, take a breath and stay tuned today. I'm going to talk with Mickey Marraffino who used her inner coach to overcome many of these obstacles and has released nearly 50 pounds. This interview is inspiring because Mickey broke through a lot of her struggle points and made them into solution points instead. So stay tuned.

Rita Black: Did you know that our struggle with weight doesn't start with the food on your plate or get fixed in the gym? 80% of our weight struggle is mental. That's right, the key to unlocking long-term weight release and management begins in your mind. Hi there, I'm Rita Black. I'm a clinical hypnotherapist, weight loss expert, best-selling author, and the creator of the Shift Weight Mastery Process. And not only have I helped thousands of people over the past 20 years achieve long-term weight mastery, I am also a former weight struggler, carb addict, and binge eater. And after two decades of failed diets and fad weight loss programs, I lost 40 pounds with the help of hypnosis. Not only did I release all that weight, I have kept it off for 25 years. Enter the Thin Thinking Podcast where you too will learn how to remove the mental roadblocks that keep you struggling. I'll give you the thin thinking tools, skills, and insights to help you develop the mindset you need. Not only to achieve your ideal weight, but to stay there long-term and live your best life.

: Hello everyone. You know, one thing I've learned from years of working with people with weight management is everybody is looking forward to the summer because we all perceive the summer is this time where it's going to be easier to release weight. That we have the more daylight. So it's more hours to exercise or be outside. There's more fruits and vegetables that make eating lighter and in many ways that's true. But what happens usually around this time in the summer, is that people start to struggle because the summer is a lot less structured than the rest of the year. We have holidays. We have all of these vacation weekends, we go away for a few days, get off track. The kids need us to go somewhere, go to Disneyland, we get off track.

Rita Black: There's a lot more opportunities to get off track and get unfocused. At least in tthe rest of the year, there seems to be more of a structure and repetition going on. But the summer, it seems to have a lot of disruptions. So I hear everybody by the middle of the summer is like, I can't wait to get back to September and get back to focus on living well. I want to introduce you to Mickey Marraffino, who is somebody who is incredibly close to my heart because I met Mickey in 2006 and I helped her stop smoking. This was our first introduction. You know, I help people stop smoking in one session. So you know, Mickey came in and we met, we really enjoyed each other and she left as a non-smoker and has been a non-smoker ever since.

Rita Black: And she'll talk about that a little bit in our interview. But also, Mickey has struggled with her weight off and on. And Mickey really in this last year has broke through some major challenges and things that she was up against for a long time, and it really took her sitting down and kind of making these things important to her. What I call, we all have these struggle points that seem to be the thing that gets in our way again and again and again. And she really kind of worked through her struggle points and she adds some really great ways that she did that, that you might really enjoy for yourself because she talks about alcohol. She talks about exercise. She talks about a lot of different things and the ways that she sat down with her inner coach and broke through these things that were always haunting her. And she put them in her past. So I love Mickey and I think you'll love her too. She's so vivacious. What a great spirit. So let's get onto my interview with Mickey now.

Rita Black: Hello everybody. I am sitting here with the amazing Mickey Marraffino. Mickey just so you know, I've already given you an amazing intro. We are here to hear about your journey that you've been through in the last couple of years. I know you've said COVID kind of tripped some things for you as far as getting healthy, but I wanted to say we have a long history Mickey, where did we meet in 2006.

Mickey Marraffino: So we met when I found your little rack card in a coffee shop and it said something about like quit smoking today. And so I grabbed the card and I held onto it for awhile. I'm not even sure how long I had it. I was getting ready to run at my very first half marathon. And I thought it would make sense to quit smoking before I started doing that. And so I, you know, finally I was getting ready to start training and I finally picked up the phone and I called you. And I remember vividly you had an appointment available on a Friday. And I was like, does that mean I'm going to stop smoking on Friday? Because I was thinking I would stop smoking on Monday, not Friday, because the weekend is the best time to smoke. And you said, well, yeah, that's pretty much how it works.

Mickey Marraffino: So I said, oh, okay, I'll do that. And I never looked back and I quit smoking right off the bat. I had tried so many times and I just, you know, my mind was made up. And then between that and your hypnosis, I quit smoking. And then I learned about your weight loss program. And I said, well, gosh, if I could quit smoking, maybe I could finally learn to control my weight too. And so thus the journey began, and I think I was one of your very, very first shift classes. It was a two day class. And, I want to say it was like downtown LA.

Rita Black: Yeah. It was on the LA Athletic club. My husband was a member at the time because he got to play squash there. And I, I remember you're sitting in the audience Mickey because you were you're right. It was the very first shift. I just, for the audience to understand, like the Shift Weight Mastery Process, I had been a hypnotherapist and working with people with weight management for awhile, but I hadn't put in all the tools together and sort of like a formal program in, and I decided to do it live. It was a live seminar. And I remember it because my son was a year old and my daughter was four. And I remember, cause I brought all the equipment. Cause I even brought the metabolism machine, down to the LA athletic club and I was measuring people's metabolisms. And it was one of those things. Cause it was like all over the place. Like I had all the books and everything, but I was like, Oh my goodness.

Rita Black: And my husband calling me and saying both the kids were throwing up, you know, like in the beginning of like starting. And it was just like, oh, of course they were. I was like, sorry, honey, I can't come home. You're going to have to deal. And that was how the shift began, but I remember your being there and your shiny face and you were so enthusiastic and it was, it was a great experience. So thank you for being there.

Mickey Marraffino: And I was on board with it and I think, there were two things that I was recognizing when we were talking about it. Two things that always really tripped me up. Number one, keeping track of my food and writing it down. I had never done that before. And you know, we just took all the barriers away and I said, okay, I'm going to write down my food. I'm going to track my food. And the other thing that I had a problem with with self-sabotage, so I would lose a few pounds and then I would have a big party and gain it back. And so I never really lost me. So at least I recognize that so that I wouldn't do that as I began my shift. So, yeah. So that's how the journey began.

Rita Black: Like, that is crazy. And I know for you, you, you, you have stayed a non-smoker all these years and you've had your weight journey. As many people have, I know you've released suede and then you went through some times where you were struggling a little more, but it seems like I, you know, there's something about weight management and weight mastery, you know, helping so many people over the years and, and getting to know people because like, I feel like you're a true friend and we've known each other for a long time now. And I think that you've always, it's kind of like at the end of the wizard of Oz, like you've always had the, with the Ruby slippers. It's like, you clicked them together, but it was like, you always had the power to go home. And, um, and I feel, and there's something else in the world of teaching and maybe, you know this, because I know you're sort of an educator in your own way, Mickey and you work with kids and everything.

Speaker 4: And we, I want to hear what you're up to in your life because it's, I want our listeners to hear, because I think it's really exciting. But with kids and with learning, you know, everybody, you have these kids that might seem like struggle learners. And then all of a sudden, the teachers say like, there's this, it happened in first grade. It could happen in fifth grade. It could happen in 12th grade. It might not even happen until college. That happened to a very dear friend's daughter. Like she always struggled with school. And then she got to her freshman year in college and it just all came together. And you know, she's always been bright. She's always been amazing. But I think we, we all in our journey of life, if we struggle with our weight, get to this point where we, we start to own our journey and, and really, and it clicks like it, like, it all clicks in. And I feel like for you this last year has been, you've always had the tools. You've always like, like you said, you are a, it's crazy that when you came to see me for smoking cessation, that was your first half marathon because I, how many half marathons have you run now in your life?

Mickey Marraffino: I'm only had three.

Rita Black: Why? Why do I like, you're always like doing the Turkey Trot and the Lobster. Yeah. Yeah.

Mickey Marraffino: That's not a half marathon. That's like three miles.

Rita Black: Okay. Okay. So you run, you do these things, but you've only done it three times. Oh, okay. Got it. Got it. Got it. Okay.

Mickey Marraffino: I'm more of a 5k girl.

Rita Black: All right. Why do I see, see, I'm not a runner. So to me, a 5k is kind of like a half marathon, you know, so it's not, um, it's all kind of grouped together in that that's a long way to, so, but, um, yeah, you run a lot of five Ks. How many, five Ks have you run?

Mickey Marraffino: I dunno, a lot. I like five Ks, five Ks are enough just to, to actually make me run. But it's not, it's not so much that I have to spend my entire life training for it and it doesn't kill my body like a half marathon does. Five K's are nice. And as a matter of fact, we did a five K as a shift fundraiser. That's right. I still have my shift kids t-shirt.

Rita Black: Oh, me too. I know that was such a fun event. And that, yeah, that was, that was super terrific. Um, now this year, so Mickey tall and you've been through a journey of releasing 50 pounds. Right. Am I correct in that assumption?

Mickey Marraffino: Right.

Rita Black: So tell us a little bit about that journey. Cause there, there, there are some certain things I want to talk to you about in your journey, but like how did that get started for you? Like what was your turning point in the journey?

Mickey Marraffino: I couldn't, I don't think I can tell you the actual moment. As you know, I've always been kind of a slow and steady weight loss person. I started working with a program that was a meal replacement program and it had a healthy lean and green component. So I, you know, I'm kind of always on the run. So having, you know, meal replacements that I could eat really quickly was a real benefit. And then being able to eat out, like if I'm out socializing or whatever, and now just focus on lean and green, that was super helpful and easy for me. So I could just, you know, that really worked well for me. But I have to say, you know, when the pandemic started in March of 2020, and I think it's totally because of my shift background.

Mickey Marraffino: I just recognized that there were a couple of things that were gonna be a problem for me if I was just going to have to be basically homebound. One was I have friends that I exercise with and that's how I exercise, you know, we go walking together or running together. And you know, if I can't see anybody, how is that going to work? And the other one is alcohol consumption. I mean, if I'm going to be home all the time, I was worried that I was just going to be drinking a bottle of wine at least.

Rita Black: As the wine industry went into it's highest sales ever last year, you know? I work with people in the wine industry and they're like, oh yeah, that was a good year. The year of COVID.

Mickey Marraffino: So yeah, I was surprised that we never saw empty wine shelves like we saw the empty toilet paper shelves.

Rita Black: I actually go into a couple of stores and see those empty wine shelves. But, probably they're just better stocked down in the as south bay area where you are, because that's probably a pretty big item, hot item. I want to say something about meal replacement to our listeners because, you might be thinking, you know, we, we all have our methods to our madness and you know, for me in the Shift Weight Mastery Process, I don't give people diets where it's all about, like you create your own journey with, uh, within your body's energy needs for weight release. And that's where tracking comes in. And I can do a whole other episode on tracking because it helps our brains stay cognitively correct. And I will do an episode on that. So more to come, but there have been studies that show that for a lot of people, meal replacement can be a valuable weight release tool that, you know, I think some people think of when they think of that they think of Jenny Craig or they think of Medifast or Optifast, which, you know, for some people like Mickey is saying, you are a busy person, you don't have a big family to take care of. And so making meals and all of that, sometimes just doesn't make sense for you. And like you said, you're kind of like, oh, well let me just grab and go. So for some people, the research has shown that meal replacement can be very helpful, especially for those people who don't like to cook, who maybe don't have to care for other people in and feed them. And especially if you find a meal replacement plan where you like the food and it seems like you probably did.

Mickey Marraffino: Yeah. And I have to say that, you know, I, I'm not like an all or nothing person really. So it was meal replacement. And like I said, the lean and green because I eat out a lot. And so for me, it was just very easy to choose, you know, a lean protein and green to eat out. I could do that pretty easily, but I still tracked my food. I mean, I still was writing down, you know, this is how many calories the meal replacement is. This is how many calories my lean and green is. So I still tracked my calories and listened to hypnosis. I mean, I feel like, you know, for me, like you said, everybody finds their own thing that works. And for me, that was the perfect combination.

Rita Black: Something you did too, that you're talking about is that you, you kind of even had a mantra like lean and green. And because I think what you created in your mind and, you know, because this is called the thin thinking podcast, I just want to point out like where you used your mind in a powerful way, is that when you went into a restaurant, it was like anything other than lean and green kind of wasn't an option, you know? And, and, and you found within things that you really enjoyed eating. So it wasn't like you were feeling deprived. It just was like, that's who I am. I'm a lean and green lady, you know, like, that's, it's kind of, you created your own identity, you know, like that's, that's who I am now when I walk into a restaurant or in a social situation. And I agree with you that, that just, it's kinda like with smokers when you become a non-smoker, it's just like, it's not an option when things become not an option, not because you're depriving yourself because that's kind of who you are. I'm a lean and green person, it becomes a lot easier to stay on track or, you know, live into that identity, I should say, adapt to that identity.

Mickey Marraffino: Yeah, exactly.

Rita Black: And I love that term lean and green it's it's a great term.

Mickey Marraffino: Yeah. It's pretty easy to follow. Yeah.

Rita Black: Cool. So I'm sorry. So keep going now.

Mickey Marraffino: Yeah. So as, as we, you know, entered COVID and I realized I was going to have these two issues, I came up with a couple of solutions. The first was the alcohol situation. Um, you know, I just knew that wine was going to be a problem because of all the sugar and it just, you know, doesn't make me feel good and it's super expensive and all of that. So I decided that I would have to have a vodka drink. So I started there and then I further thought about it and I discovered, I like Moscow mules, but I discovered diet ginger beer. So I started having diet Moscow mules, and I have a copper cup, and I put a lot of lemon in it and some soda water and the diet ginger beer and some vodka. And then eventually, I realized, I didn't even really need the vodka because if I put all of that in a copper cup, I just feel like I'm having a cocktail. And, and it was perfect because it was almost practically zero calories with no vodka. So, that is what I call my COVID cocktail. And now to this day, I love my diet ginger beer and lime and soda, water in a copper cup. It's just perfect.

Rita Black: Can I tell you, that's so great. And, you know, I know for my husband and I, we, um, you know, if we're out socially, we might have gin and tonics, that's kind of our drink. We've always had it. Like when we lived in England, we drank gin and tonics, but we used diet tonic and, yeah, in the evening, if we want to have a cocktail, we do a diet tonic without the gin. And it's it's, I think you hit the nail on the head. It's like, oh, it's this idea of something. And I think our brain just likes that treat and that idea of reward, but it like the alcohol itself, like you said, like when you take that sip of the diet, your Moscow mule, the Virgin on you still get that relief, the inner, like, ah, yes, it's the end of the day, you know?

Mickey Marraffino: Right. It's still that kind of that shift breath, right. When you're getting ready to have your, your cocktail or, you know, that first sip of wine or whatever, you know, where you're like, ahhhh.

Rita Black: It's the brain, the dopamine center in the brain is agitating you. Cause it wants that thing. I want that reward. I want that reward. I want that reward. And I've noticed like with alcohol, you know, alcohol does change your brain chemistry, but what happens when you take that Virgin drink is you're relieving the agitation. So it does give you a release, but it's just not altering your brain, which then leads to more eating and all that other stuff too. So that is a great solution.

Mickey Marraffino: And if you remember, at the beginning of all of this, there were a lot of, zoom happy hours, I would get on my zoom happy hour with my copper cup and nobody would know the difference.

Rita Black: How clever. Yeah. Well, and tell me, um, are tell the listeners, cause you told me this, that you would take ginger beer, like your diet ginger beer in your trunk. And so like if you went to a social event or if you went to even like out to a bar or something, you had your diet ginger beer, cause like a lot of places and a lot of people aren't going to have it.

Mickey Marraffino: Right. And it's actually kind of even hard to find it in the store sometimes. I have it right now. I have a six pack of diet ginger beer and my trunk because yeah, if I go someplace, I can just bring a bottle in with me and I can, you know, have a drink and yeah. It's not a problem at all. I mean, everybody has diet Coke, but not too many people have diet ginger beer.

Rita Black: Do you have a brand that you liked the most?

Mickey Marraffino: No, it's hard to find. So honestly it's any, anything I can find is good.

Rita Black: Oh, okay. Smart and Final. I must say, cause I like Smart and Final and this is Southern California and people I'm sorry that, but um, they do have Brandenburg diet ginger beer, which I'm sure you've had that before in the brown universe, but they also have this new one. I forget the name of it, but I'll, I'll put it in the show notes. It's um, it's really light and crisp and um, it's, it's real. Ginger is like, it's supposed to be like real. It's not fake at all. So I don't know. But anyway, I digress. Okay. Mickey. So, you conquered that alcohol thing for COVID. That's great. Now you go ahead.

Mickey Marraffino: The other thing I was worried about, was exercise and so I invented something that I call walk and talk and, you know, got my friends on board with it. And I, we would both get on our phones in our own neighborhoods and put our little headset on and talk to each other on the phone for an hour while we walked around our own neighborhoods. And it was great because it got me out walking. I stayed in touch with people almost even better than I would have previously because I was able to walk and talk with friends who lived pretty far away because, you know, we would never be able to get together and go for a walk. So, you know, friends who lived, you know, like an hour away, I could get on the phone and they could still walk in their neighborhood and I'd walk in my neighborhood and we'd catch up for an hour. So I had walk and talk partners. I like to walk early in the morning. So that, that really was the only challenge was finding somebody who was on the same schedule that I was on. But, you know, and I've continued that to this day as well.

Rita Black: You were saying to me, you know, when we were kind of having our chat before this, that what was great about that. And I think some of us recognize that during COVID getting in a car and driving to somebody to go on a walk with them took too much. Like now you're saving the time because you're just getting on the phone with them while you're walking. Instead of, I mean, you know, it's nice to be with somebody, of course, but I could totally see how that if that was, if you didn't have people around you and say, well, nobody in my neighborhood or nobody in my area that doesn't become an excuse anymore, does it?

Mickey Marraffino: No. And I have to say, I have become very protective of my time now. You know, even, even though we can get together now, sometimes I'm like, well, that's like a whole half hour, or I'm going to lose in the morning. Can we just walk and talk in our neighborhoods? But I live in Redondo beach and I don't live right next to the ocean. So sometimes, you know, it's worth it for me in the morning to get up and drive to the ocean and meet somebody to go for a walk just so I can get my ocean fix.

Rita Black: I know. It's so beautiful down where you live. It makes, it probably makes it worth it. Absolutely. I know I'm the same about, um, getting in the car and driving up to the mountain to hike in the morning in Griffith park. So, so hopefully, but, but I love this idea of walk and talk because there are so many people that you don't get to stay in contact with, or that it, it becomes that, oh, goody, I get to talk to so-and-so today while I'm walking. What about, something that you've done over and over, how long have you and Siobhan and Valerie been texting each other on Fridays?

Mickey Marraffino: Um, probably, oh, gosh, probably. I don't know, maybe six months or more.

Rita Black: Okay. Yeah. It must have been more because I think when Chevonne started doing the shift, um, last April, were you guys doing it? Had you started doing it at that point or were you already doing it?

Mickey Marraffino: No, actually Siobhan and I were doing it by ourselves. And then I think Valerie joined us. Yeah. Yeah. Yeah. Because I was definitely, um, part of Siobhan's journey in the very beginning.

Rita Black: Some of you may have heard Siobhan talking, as I interviewed her a little while ago and Siobhan is actually a coach right now during the shift process that we're currently doing. Like when I'm talking to Mickey, it will be, the shift process will be over, I'm recording this a little earlier, but, Siobhan and Mickey are sisters, Siobhan lives in Vermont, Mickey lives in Southern California and Valerie. So, but they still stay connected and they are a support system for each other. Mickey, will you tell us how you guys support each other? Cause I think it's really unique and cool.

Mickey Marraffino: Well, it's, I'm going to start with the very beginning of the story, the shift's story for Siobhan, which was a long, long time ago. And I really feel honored to have worked with Rita on a lot of her different programs. And one of them was the shift in the box and that was designed as a shift party where you would go into people's homes and have a shift party and get all your friends onboard with shift and you would all shift together. So I took the box to Vermont and introduced my sisters and my sister Valerie to shift. And we had a shift party, a shift in the box party, and we all, yeah. So we started that when was that, that was a long time ago. 10 or 11. It was a while ago. Yeah. So that was when Siobhan had her first taste of shift, and I think everyone really, you know, I always say about shift once you learn, you know, the shift concept, it doesn't go away. You can say you're not shifting, but your head is always, you're always there. So what was the, what was the question before I started talking about all that?

Rita Black: How do you guys support each other now? Cause I know, yeah, Siobhan I know really grasped program, but she was like really busy with little kids in school and all of that stuff. And I think it, during last April, it was just the time again, it was just like she was ready and you know, she's released 40 pounds and has kept it off now for a while. And Valerie released weight now too. And, but you guys really supported each other.

Mickey Marraffino: So every Friday we text each other first thing in the morning and we weigh in together and we all support each other. And there's no judgment, you know, I mean, we actually write, we actually text our actual weight. We don't say, oh, I lost a pound or anything. We actually put our actual weight. And, you know, I mean, it's been so motivating because I've been, you know, I've lost weight, but like I said, I'm kind of a slow, you know, kind of slow and steady, but I can easily like, actually right now it's April of 2021, or May, and, you know, things are opening up from COVID and I'm starting to struggle a little bit because the restaurants are open. People are getting together, you know, I'm a celebration eater. And so I'm really struggling. And so it's great to be able to check in with them every Friday and say, okay, you know, how are we doing? And, you know, once I go up a pound, then I know like, okay, I gotta really watch what I'm doing. And, you know, no more of the silly celebration stuff, you know, you can be smart and celebrate at the same time. So they have been so helpful for me. And I think we're all, you know, really helpful for each other.

Rita Black: That's great. Well, and I think that they, you know, research has shown that when you release weight with a group of people, the chances of long-term success go up over 50%. And I think it's great that you have, you've really established something with them. And I know, I think a lot of people are in your boat making. I think you know, now that everything's opening up, surely COVID was a challenge for a lot of people, but now we're all out. And I think it's the roaring twenties. Again, we are all in this celebration head. If you're listening to this interview, you can go back in the episodes because I have done two different episodes, one on restaurant eating post COVID and there was one on three-day weekends, but it was really about celebrations and just, letting loose and how to prepare your mind for those things.

Rita Black: So the good news is that you, I think Mickey, you have all the tools. It's really great. I think it is like, I think there's going to be an initial, everybody goes out and celebrates and then goes, oh, wait, we got to come back to the real world now and figure out a way of managing our social life and managing our weight at the same time. And you will figure it out because, oh, I want to tell them because weight management, long-term weight management is about it. Isn't about being perfect as Mickey, you know this, but it's about recognizing struggle points and finding solutions for them. And one thing that you worked out, I think you were very clever was cooking salmon because like a lot of people think about cooking fish and stuff like that or meat even. And they're like, oh, that's too much bother. That takes too much time, you know? And then we go for the fast food or whatever, like I'm not gonna do that, so you kind of like worked through this, like this was kind of something that was a struggle for you, and then you kind of figured out a solution. So tell us how that happened.

Mickey Marraffino: Yeah. I love salmon and it's kind of my go-to healthy meal like that I can make really, really fast. And I learned, I learned that poaching salmon really takes like five minutes to cook. It doesn't stink up the kitchen and the only dishes that frying pan. So I get one of those big plastic crates of mixed salad. And I just throw that in a big ball. I put a little slab of salmon on there. I put some seasoning on there and some lemon and maybe a little bit of oil and, I chop it all up and that is one of my favorite meals of all times. And it's super, super fast and healthy and filling and yummy. And lean and green.

Rita Black: So I think a lot of us, if we stop and look at like, well, what's really holding me back. It's a belief like that. Your belief was maybe, you know, salmon stinks up the kitchen. It's too hard to cook. I know a lot of people who are like, they hold themselves back from actually cooking something at home because it's just like, oh, it was too much of a bother, but really at the, by the time you go through a drive-through and spend that time and drive through and, and you know, all the other bothered us involved with that, finding these fast, easy. And it just, that was just one little shifts that you made that made a huge difference to your consistency because you were able to be consistent. Um, is there anything else, like in your journey that you've been through this year, that you think, you know, like what would you say as you head out into your summer? I know there's been a little blip with the social eating, but what are you looking forward to? What are you going to, you know, looking forward to doing more of as you know for your own self-care and then, and then I want you to tell us about the projects you're up to.

Mickey Marraffino: Yeah. Yeah. I mean, I feel like, you know, one of the things that is great about what you do is building community and, I have so many friends like Evelyn and Jan, you know, I think they were in your second shift and I was a coach at that point. And I have just so enjoyed, you know, Tony is super cool. I know he's a coach now. You know, you just have such, you have built such a great community of caring people who, you know, really all want to help each other. And it's so it's so great. And honestly right now, my small community of texters, you know, Siobhan and Valerie are very, very helpful for me. I just, the community part of it is really fabulous. And I'm also having a lot of fun, you know, we haven't really done too much shopping or really had any need for fashions in the past year. So it's been really interesting to me going back into my closet and looking at, you know, all my work clothes and everything that I haven't put on in a year to see that some of them are too big, which that's amazing. I've never experienced that in my entire life. So that's pretty exciting actually.

Rita Black: Yeah. How are you going to have them taken in? Cause I know you have a lot of nice work clothes, Mickey.

Mickey Marraffino: Yeah. I think I, I'm going to have a little date with an alteration person. Yeah, yeah.

Rita Black: I'm all for that. I know like Evelyn and Jan, who Mickey was mentioning have both released like Evelyn's released like 50 something pounds and Jan released 30, but they've kept that off for, you know, since the, you know, 2007 or whatever, which has been amazing. We do have this motto called, you know, alone. We diet together, we shift and it is, I do believe community creates change and in every aspect of life. So Mickey, why don't you tell us a little more about what you're up to with community experience? Tell me the three things again, that you're kind of diving into cause Mickey is a marketing master, so she's, this is what you spend most of your career being, right?

Mickey Marraffino: Yeah. So I have a marketing consulting company called Mickey M Marketing. And my focus from a marketing standpoint is on community, customer experience and social equity. And I believe that that really is the foundation to, you know, any kind of great marketing. And it's, it's really interesting now with the pandemic and those community and experience and, you know, inclusion and diversity, and those are all the buzz words now. And I have to say that I have always been such a promoter of community and customer experience, especially, and, and certainly social equity. So, I have through the whole pandemic, I've started practicing with videos, different videos. And I have an Instagram live show called small biz live that I do for the north Redondo beach business association, which I started in April of 2020 to help the small businesses out that were struggling during the pandemic.

Rita Black: That's amazing.

Mickey Marraffino: And I started a show to give the artists some more exposure in Redondo beach. And then, and most recently building joyful communities, which is a making a marketing show I'm on Instagram live and it is focusing on entrepreneurs and businesses who have an emphasis on community customer experience and or social equity. So, and I'm looking forward to interviewing Rita and talking about community because you know, I think that is really, you know, if I had to say like one thing that really makes shift super special and different, it's the people that are in your community they are really very, very authentic.

Rita Black: Shifters are amazing people that we have shifters from all walks of life, from all over the world, but there is just something special about people who are willing, you know, cause by the time people come to shift, they've been through every diet in the book and they come with this mindset, like I'm really ready for deeper change. And so when somebody is in that place, I think that makes them super special. I agree with you. Thank you, Mickey. For everybody, our listeners, I will post Mickey's link to her interview show the what are you calling it?

Mickey Marraffino: Joyful communities. So my, um, my YouTube is Mickey M Marketing. My Instagram is making a marketing Facebook, making a marketing, LinkedIn Mickey M Marketing.

Rita Black: You make it all pretty easy. Awesome. Yeah. If you want to check out what Mickey's up to with her show, that would be super great. And if you want to reach out to her and ask her any questions about her way released journey or what her meal replacement plan is, all of that stuff. Um, you can reach her and we'll have the contact in the show notes. Thank you so much for joining us Mickey. It's so great to I'm looking at Mickey, even though I know that we're just doing audio, but Nikki is also a member. Tell us all just, you know, in closing about your being a lobster, cause she's got this wonderful sweater on with big red lobsters on it and every year there's a lobster festival. And tell them about the lobster festival.

Mickey Marraffino: Yes. So I actually put on a lobster costume and I have some friends and we call ourselves the lobster ladies and, Redondo beach has a lobster annual lobster festival. And you know, I, I kind of look at it. You know, my tagline for Mickey M Marketing is building joyful communities. And I have to tell you there's nothing more joyful than when we put our lobster costumes on and everybody wants to take their picture with the lobster ladies. The kids want to hug the lobster ladies. I mean, it is, it is so fun and it really creates a memorable experience for the people who are at the lobster festival. And it's just super, super fun.

Rita Black: That is so great. And you might need to get that lobster costume taken in as well.

Mickey Marraffino: Yeah, the lobster shell is, um, is, you know, it's got a lot of room in it and you know, we don't, nobody wants a skinny lobster.

Rita Black: Well, thanks again for being here today and sharing a lot of your really great powerful tactics. So just to go over what Mickey said, shifting that cocktail from an alcohol cocktail to a Virgin cocktail and using, you know, using your taste palate to really guide you with what you like to taste, walking and talking, having you know, calling your friend and getting them just to talk with you while you're walking, which I think is fantastic. You're lean and green mantra that keeps like the ideas of eating that other stuff out of your side of vision, because that's who you are as lean and green. And really getting touching base with her powerful you're her power squad for support squad for a weighing in on a weekly basis and supporting each other. So thank you for sharing all of those really great, tactics with us and, uh, good luck with all that you're up to with the you're building powerful communities. That's great. Thank you Mickey for being here.

Mickey Marraffino: Thanks Rita!

Rita Black: Thank you so much for all of your amazing insights Mickey and thank you listeners, please. If there's anything that you would like me to cover on the thin thinking podcast, please let me know, go into the show notes and find the link or the email at rita@shiftweightmastery.com. Have an amazing week. And remember that the key and probably the only key to unlocking the door of the weight struggle is inside you. So keep listening and find it.

Rita Black: Do you want to dive deeper into the mindset of long-term weight release? Head on over to www.shiftweightmastery.com where you'll find numerous tools and resources to help you unlock your mind for permanent weight release, tips, strategies, and more, and be sure to check the show notes to learn more about my book From Fat to Thin Thinking: Unlock Your Mind For Permanent Weight Loss.