December 1, 2015
Soundtrack: Justin Bieber- Purpose (The whole damn album is lit)
Location: New York City
November 15th 2015. It was a grey Sunday in the Bronx, one of those days where you wish you could stay laid with your main but have an inkling that if you do you would be missing out on something very special. I was right. The Capricorn in me wouldn’t let the Tenderoni in me go out like that.
Stefanie and I planned a meeting at the CrossBronx Diner after I slid through her DMs. *cue YoGotti* Like attracts like, and the content she was putting out through her BetterLifeChoicesofNewYork (BLCNY) Instagram was speaking to me. I had no idea who was behind the page but I gave the due props and we hit it off from there. What ensued was one of the illest and meant to be encounters of my life. The clickage was real. We laughed, hugged, got teary-eyed, “yes girl”-ed, you know typical real one shit.
My goal with these interviews is to shine an indigo spotlight on those doing” it”. Using their authentic gifts to heal and uplift the vibration of the world. She, her, this beautiful soul is doing just that. Stefanie Fuentes-Kumnipa is putting her insecurities aside and giving the world life!!!
I feel honored to have been in the presence of such a goddess. Below is a transcription of the interview and more about her organization. This is just the tip of the iceberg for this fly honey. Do yourself a favor, research her movement and spread her mission.
Better Life Choices of New YorkMission Statement
Better Life Choices of New York is a mentoring, empowerment and life skills organization, created as a guide in personal development through inspiration, motivation, support, and coaching for girls and women of all ages and beginning as young as age 5. BLCNY aims to aid girls and women of all races, backgrounds, sexual identification and preference in becoming well-rounded individuals and effective leaders that learn to grow and live beyond limitations and impact communities beyond their reach. BLCNY believes learning has no boundaries or age limit.
Message from Better Life Choices of New York's Founder
"I wanted to create a space where there were fewer routines, and raw, real, conversations, that turn into even more action. A place where women pass down their wisdom and young women toss up their knowledge. A place where girls and women don't feel they need permission to be great. Where being assertive, knowing what you want and aspiring to be more than the assistant, someone's domestic partner or caregiver isn’t looked at as a bad thing. I was so lost, waiting for happiness and growth to magically appear. I was often told to 'Be happy', Love yourself ', 'Figure it out', 'Do better', but no one ever told me how to achieve these things. After 10 years in Case Management, assisting girls and women, I decided to pursue Life Coaching. Now, as a Certified Professional Life Coach, I Envision BLCNY being that "how to" blueprint place for girls and women."
Refer your daughters, nieces, neighbors, sisters, best friends, students, mothers, etc. to Better Life Choices of New York. -Like I even had to tell you, after reading.-
Before we began Stefanie had to send her husband a reassuring text, informing him that she wasn’t kidnapped. Shouts to all the mans lookin’ out for your ladies!
- From where do you gather inspiration?
- Everywhere. This sugar packet. It reminds me of how soft a woman can be. Everything really inspires me and that’s of recent. In the last three years I have become present, now I am giving my full self. I wasn’t giving that to anyone before, including myself.
- What is your living message to the world?
- The choice is yours. My company is called Better Life Choices. I would always say ‘I need to make better life choices.’ I was waiting for someone to tell me what to do instead of making the decision myself.
- What part of you makes you the most insecure?
- Internally, my overthinking. It’s dangerous and it doesn’t allow you to feel. Externally- My stomach, typical woman stuff.
- What part of you makes you most confident?
- Internally, my connection to people. It feels really good for people to know you. Externally, I feel secure about my presence. I know what portion of the room I fill up (with my energy) and I’m OK with that.
This question led to a story about being on a crowded elevator with a woman who was sobbing uncontrollably. One morning while everyone else in the elevator was quiet and seemingly ignoring the woman. Stefanie looked at the stranger and, in her head (yes on that telepathic tip), asked “Do you need a hug?” The woman looked up at her and nodded yes. They embraced and Stefanie held the woman while she wept about her sister’s death. They rode up and down until all of her tears and makeup had run off the woman’s face onto Stefanie’s blouse. – When was the last time you did something for someone who could do nothing for you?
- What snacks are in your dream pantry?
- I’m obsessed with Tomato Basil Wheat Thins. White Chocolate Truffles, Twix, Butterfingers, and Cooler Ranch Doritos (Big ups to the 90s!), those are my top 5.
- When/where are you the youest you?
- Anytime I open my eyes and have the breath of life I am my youest. I don’t have to be at a specific place to by my youest and that took me a long time. I feel like in the shower I am brilliant. The motion of the water allows for the excess to be cleared and what is left are the truest ideas and my realest self.
- How old do you feel?
- Today I feel 29, 6 years younger than I am. It varies from day to day, task to task.
- What are you a secret expert in?
- Flirting! I am a flirt and I’m OK with that. Surprisingly, my husband is too.
- What is the one thing you need at the end of a long day?
- To take off my bra!
#INSPY is honored that Stefanie took the time out to sit down with Lauren and be so candid. If you would like to contact Stefanie about speaking to your group or joining any of her upcoming events email her: firstname.lastname@example.org – Remember who put you on.