In this series I highlight someone in the Upper Valley who falls under the title of "Wellness Professional" - trainers, nutritionists, therapists of all kinds (physical, psychological, massage), and creators of healthy products, to name just a few. I give them a list of 20 questions and they choose to answer them however they'd like.
This week I'd like to introduce you to Brandi Burnett, Skin Care Specialist at the River Valley Club Spa
I am a skin care specialist with a Cosmetology license in Vermont and New Hampshire. My certifications allow me to provide many beauty services including facials, hair and scalp treatments, manicures and pedicures, body waxing, eyelash and eyebrow tinting, and body scrubs. My favorite treatments are facials, either for relaxation or as a focused treatment for skin concerns such as acne, aging, sensitivity, hyperpigmentation, oiliness, and dryness. I try to make my facials a whole mind and body experience. Not only do I work on the face, but depending on the time duration of the treatment, I like to give hand, arm, shoulder, neck and scalp massages. Occasionally I will have the opportunity to go further in offering some back massage as well as the legs and feet. The longer the appointment, the better opportunity for relaxation. With any service, from nails to waxing or facials, I strive to make everyone feel comfortable, relaxed and cared about. I love all people and making others happy and relaxed.
What is your fitness/wellness philosophy?
Each and every person should work hard and fight for what makes them feel good inside and out, and not worry that they are focusing on themselves too much.
How did you get to where you are now?
My journey has been led by listening to my heart. I fought against the odds and others' input trying to steer me away from what I wanted to do with my life. I have always wanted to help and heal others in any way I can, and with my line of work I can do that and still feel very happy to wake up and go to work every day!
Did you ever have any setbacks and how did you get past them?
I think that everyone faces setbacks from time to time and we should try to find the strength within us to reevaluate, make solid action plans, and bust our butts to get where we want to go! We all know life can be hard, but we should be enjoying the times that aren't so hard, as well as loving ourselves for making it through the hard times!
What makes you unique in your field?
I strongly believe that in my field of work each therapist and service provider must find what their strengths and weaknesses are. When you find the things that you are good at, you have to own them and allow yourself to thrive! With anything that we feel weak about, we should throw ourselves into it until that too becomes a strength. Personally, I thrive on making all of my services a whole mind and body experience for every client. I always try to go out of my way to make every person comfortable, happy, and relaxed! If one person can leave feeling any amount happier with life or themselves because of me, then I am fulfilling my goals.
What's your guilty pleasure (food or otherwise)?
My guilty pleasure is without a doubt chocolate. A simple chocolate bar, or anything with chocolate in the ingredient list! I do try to refrain from treating myself too often, as they say, "absence makes the heart grow fonder," or in this case, absence makes my cravings go wild!
What's something health and wellness related that you wish you'd known years ago?
As humans, we truly must be happy with who we are before we can even begin to work on specific health concerns or our fitness condition. We could diet and exercise likes it's our job, but if we don't love ourselves, things like anxiety, depression and stress will hold us back from any goals we set.
What's the best health/fitness/wellness advice you ever received?
There are endless ways to grow and feel better. I used to think that I just had to eat healthy and exercise regularly and I would feel much better. Now I know that for me, I need to incorporate other things like meditation, yoga, stretching, sitting in silence alone once in a while, as well as being open to new people and ideas that can potentially bring any other methods to my table!
Who or what gives you inspiration?
As cheesy as it may sound, my inspiration comes from my clients. Nothing encourages me to get out of bed each day more than seeing people happy to be coming to see me or happy when they leave. Every time someone comes in feeling stressed, angry or just having a bad day and I am able to take some of that away it feeds my heart and soul driving me more. I am just as grateful to be serving those clients as they are to me serving them.
What's something you wish your clients/class participants knew? Or did? Or didn't do?
Something I wish that every client knew is how valuable they are. Each and every one of us deserves to be happy, fulfilled, proud, beautiful inside and out, and appreciated. I have never appreciated the human body more than I do now. There are no two bodies the same, and yet every single one is so beautiful. We all make mistakes in life and have regrets, but that does not change our worth!
What are your passions outside of your field?
My passions outside of my work are art, being outdoors (when it is not cold), and being around other people that love life! As far as my art goes, my favorite is working on a pottery wheel! It brings me so much serenity and peace to feel something being created in my very own hands! Yes, I am a born and raised New Englander, but I do not enjoy the winter months! I do try to engage myself in as many outdoor activities while its cold to stay sane, but once my toes go numb I'm ready to go back indoors! As for the warmer months, I love hiking, being by the water, kayaking, and simply being in nature while taking in its beauty. When it comes to being around other people, I enjoy every type of personality for the most part! I do need my alone time on occasion, but I feel a sense of powering up when being around other people talking about anything and everything. I am an extrovert, anyone that knows me will tell you that!
What are one or two tips you can give to help people be successful in their wellness journey?
- Find a good meal plan, as well as an exercise plan, that is customized to your needs and goals, but doesn't take away from enjoying the process. You should still be eating foods that taste good and make you feel good when you are eating them. The same is true when working out. We should feel just as excited to eat and workout as we are about meeting our goals and seeing the progress in ourselves!
- Find a good balance of activities that will fit into your schedule and help you enjoy life and yourself more. Some things that fall into this category may be the preparation of your meals, yoga, hiking, reading, drawing, writing, laying in a hot tub, getting a massage, and spending time around others who build you up and support you! All together these things should make it a breeze to want to continue to move toward each and every goal you have set. Not to say that we all don't have days that we will struggle or feel beat down, but incorporating things we love should counteract and drive you on!
- My Last Interview - Kelli DiFazio, Board Certified Integrative Nutrition & Holistic Health Coach
- My Next Interview - TBD
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- More about the author, Amy Fortier: A short interview