Inspirational Wine Moment with Susana Colarte from Stella & Dot: Network Marketing

 I sat down with Susana Colarte, Independent Stylist with Stella & Dot over a glass of Ojala Wine Californian Cabernet Sauvignon. Pour yourself a glass of vinito and hear her inspirational approach on network marketing in this Inspirational Wine Moment video. To learn more about Ojala Wine and a list of retailers, click here


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Video Transcript 

Note: please excuse any grammatical errors. 

Nat: Hi guys, welcome to this inspirational wine moment. Today, I am speaking with Susana Colarte. She is an independent stylist for Stella & Dot. We are unwinding with a Californian Cabernet, Ojala Wine. You can actually get more information on Ojala Wine at You can purchase the wines on their website. You can find the list of retailers there. Cheers!

Thank you Susana so much for being here today and speaking with me. I met Susana at one of my signature events Women Who Wine. I have been really inspired by her ever since. With so many women these days following the network marketing path for business, she has a real inspirational approach to network marketing and I invited her here today to share that with either women that are in network marketing or women that are thinking of network marketing.

Tell me why you did this and why Stella & Dot?

Susana: Sure, well my name is Susana Colarte for those who don’t know me. I’m an independent stylist for Stella & Dot. Stella & Dot is a vintage inspired jewelry and accessories line sold exclusively through independent stylist like myself through in home trunk shows or online. The reason why I joined Stella & Dot is that I lost my job. I lost my jobs a couple of times. 

Nat: All of us women have gone through that.

Susana: Yes, I’ve been part of the corporate world for a very, very long time. I’ve done all the right things: go to school, get your bachelor’s degree, MBA, do all the things that your parents tell you to do. And then I was laid off again for the third time and then I decided I want to do something different. I want to make a difference and I was on the phone with my mom, I saw this Steve Harvey show and Jessica Herrin who is the CEO of the company. She was on his show with a beautiful display of jewelry and accessories, talking about this flexible business opportunity for either stay home moms or hardworking moms or for anyone for that matter and it’s like a business in a box.

I heard this opportunity, Googled the company. I researched a little about who Stella & Dot. I was fascinated by the jewelry and accessories. I decided, “You know this sounds like a really fun job.” I never had a fun job.

I’ve always been looking for a job but never a career job. I was inspired by Jessica Herrin and I started this business and mainly it was because I wanted to connect women with other women, I wanted to inspire women, I wanted to help to boost women’s confidence with wearing beautiful accessories. I really believed in the product. I love the guarantee that it offers. I love the flexibility. I love that it's a fun job.

Nat: Awesome. You know I had mentioned to Susana that I know there are great opportunities and a lot of great network marketing companies out there. I actually joined a network marketing company earlier this year.

I fell in love with their products. I fell in love with the business model. I unfortunately given Wine With Nat and the Wine With Nat vision that I had, I had to stop doing it because I just was really completely focused on my brand, but I know that a lot of women are into network marketing, its doing great for them and it’s a great platform.

I don’t know if you agree but I think that women are so good at connecting and networking. Network marketing businesses offer that platform and women are so good at it because they can connect with other women, they can support other women. They use empathy and find what the problem that other women have and help them find solutions to those problems and relate to them. I think that’s why so many women are doing so great in the network marketing business model.

What advice can you offer to women in network marketing or thinking of joining the network marketing company?

Susana: First of all, you need to believe in yourself. You need to believe in the capabilities that you have. Second, you need to believe in the product. You want to share this passion, this joy with your friends because you are using it with yourself. You’re not getting into something that you don’t believe in.

Second thing is that you need to get away that corporate mentality. If you’re in this corporate mentality and you’re used to being told what to do, then I wouldn’t suggest network marketing for you because this is your own business. This is you running out there— first of all, you have to make it your job, you need to accept that and then you need to know your why.

When I joined Stella & Dot, my why was freedom. My why is lifestyle. My why is to inspire other women. My why was I want to connect my friends with other friends. I want to connect those women that are so busy with work that has three or four children and don’t have time of me time, their friends, for themselves, I wanted to disconnect them from world and connect them with their friends and have fun and wind down and have some great wine like we’re having right now and look at beautiful jewelry accessories and why not?

Why not reward my whole existence for supporting my business. Again, I guess my main advice is you must love what you do and make it your fun job because if it’s not your fun job, then it’s just going to stress you out.

Nat: Right and then I think whether it would be network marketing or corporate America or me an entrepreneur with my own personal brand, have there been any challenges that you’ve faced? What do you see are the challenges for women in this industry of network marketing and do you want to talk a little bit about that?

Susana: Yeah, I think the main challenge for me, I’ll talk about my personal experience, was this corporate mentality. A lot of people, like I said, are used to being told to what to do.

I’m in network marketing of course, if I want to, I can recruit people. This is a business, at least Stella & Dot is in a business of giving you the flexibility, giving you the means to sell your life in your own way. That is you can recruit people, you can just sell online, you can do trunk shows, you can sell to just your friends and family, it gives you that flexibility. The fact that I don’t have any sales quota, I don’t have pressure that eases my mind a bit.

Then again, inside of me, I have this passion to become this inspirational woman and connect women with other women so if you are in that mentality, “Okay I need to be told what to do or I don’t have the tools to do this.”

Nat: Or I’m going to do this on my own.

Susana: Yeah, the challenge first you need to know what you want to do with this business, if you want it for extra money or if you want a full time that’s the first thing you need to decide.

Once you figure out why you’re doing your business then it's all challenges along the way because what are the things that you will encounter? Being rejected, people closing doors on you, people, “Oh you’re in network marketing, you’re trying to sell something to me goodbye,” click. Nobody answers phones. Those are lots of things that happen but you know what this business, helps you become stronger.

Nat: Yeah, you feel empowered. I’m sure the amount of women— let’s be honest, I think most women these days that I talk to are searching for something with purpose or they’re looking for lifestyle change. They are looking and desperate to make extra income because let’s face it, these days we can be in corporate America and we’re not really being paid on what we’re worth, very rare these days. It’s really an opportunity to what I fell in love with you and what you inspired me is not only like how fearless she is and her sass and approach to showcasing this beautiful jewelry, which I’m a fan with Stella & Dot.

Look I’m wearing one today. This statement piece is beautiful. And let me show you, she actually brought me a beautiful gift today, which was super thoughtful. I love that, look how gorgeous this necklace is.

Susana: What’s one of the one cool thing is that a lot of these pieces are exclusive. These are one of our soon to be retired pieces and she has a one of a kind.

Nat: Going back to Susana as an example, she is always at my networking event. She's always networking. She's all about empowering other women.

I love her approach with lets host a wine down at your house with your girlfriends. I really admire women that are doing they love with purpose but they’re doing it with like-minded women and it’s not about competition it’s about supporting each other, empowering each other, finding ways to help each other I mean. Like I told Susana when she contacted me to host a party, I’m like, “I’m so busy with Wine With Nat. I’m going to be traveling for work, I can't do a party right now but what else we can do together?”

Here we are today. We’re talking about doing what we love. We’re helping and inspiring and empowering other women do what they love and I think aside from network marketing that is the big message here that we need to come together and support each other and it’s not about competition it’s about being surrounded by the right women and empowering each other.

Susana: Absolutely, I’d like to add like one of my biggest reward is when I have a hostesses like you, that's like, “I’m too busy. I’m traveling. I have two kids. My house is a mess.” Whatever it is, all the objections that I get but when they actually go forward and do this party or this trunk show, I love hearing, “I haven’t seen this friend in five years. Oh my God, I don’t remember the last time I had a girl to get together,” or, “I don’t remember the last time I had a time for me.”

Nat: Right.

Susana: That is my biggest reward. This is personal and why not reward you with free jewelry.

Nat: I love it. She’s doing what she loves. I’m a big believer in a lot of these network marketing companies but again like Susana said: you have to find the right one for you, you have to do it with passion, you have to love what you do, and you just need to surround yourself with those like-minded women who are going to support that journey. Because as with any business even though the good thing about network marketing is there’s a lot less risk than starting your own business from scratch. This platform has already been built to succeed. They’re doing well.

Susana: They have everything available for you

Nat: Right, which is a great opportunity for women that want lifestyle, want more flexibility, want to be an entrepreneur, there’s a lot less risk with networking marketing.

Susana: You don’t need to reinvent the wheel everything is created for you. The company does their your own marketing and you just copy paste words to say. The product is shipped to your customer directly. You have the access to everything.

Nat: The lifestyle. I mean, for me Wine With Nat and the vision that I have in the future. There comes a point in your life where working is not just to get a paycheck. It’s really to clock out and enjoy life.

Chase your dreams whether it be traveling, spending more time with your family, spending more time with your husband, so this is definitely a great opportunity for that. I hope you enjoyed this inspirational wine moment video. Susana thank you so much for speaking with me and Ojala you guys enjoy our video together. Cheers!


How To Make Peace With Your Past

We can never forget the painful memories from our past, but we can make peace with them. In my last post, How To Deal With Difficult Times, I talked about a series of events that transported me back to some of the most painful times from my past. In an effort to co-heal with (you) others, I offered some coping tools still helping me today.

Recently, I had a peaceful reunion with estranged family that had caused me pain in the past. While I can never forget those painful memories, with time (and writing) for healing, I was able to view that time in my life more clearly and from a less emotional viewpoint. It was during this family meeting that I realized my past had been blocking me from happiness.

The truth is, my family had moved on with their lives. They too had been through a lot as a result of my father’s actions (learn more here), and were dealing with their own battles. But every time I was reminded of my past or family, I relived those dark moments. Why? Because we choose to live in our past since it’s familiar. Think about this for a second. When the past was good, do you live there because it makes you happy and feel safe? The same goes for painful memories. We live there because it’s what we know, so feeling pain becomes habit. Good or bad, living in the past blocks us from feeling happiness and satisfaction in the present. Break the pattern guys!

I’m grateful for what the past has taught me. I’m peacefully letting go and embracing the present, while sharing some wisdom with you on how to make peace with your past. Please keep in mind that my advice is based on personal experience and in no way professional advice. I always recommend professional advice when dealing with tough issues. I go to therapy once a week and recommend it to everyone.

So let’s co-heal together. And instead of living in the past, let’s learn from it.

1.     Ask yourself these questions.

Can I change the past? No. Is the past stopping me from living fully in the present? Probably yes. Could I have done something different? Truthfully, it doesn’t matter now, so why live there.

2.     Stop rehashing.

It’s easy to want to rehash the past. We do this sometimes in the hopes of gaining a new understanding or hearing what we want to hear. Better yet, hoping for a different ending. Unfortunately, rehashing the past doesn’t change things, but instead, it only blocks us from moving forward.

3.     Write for healing.

I can’t stress enough how writing helps you heal. I used this space to heal, because I wanted to co-heal with (you) others, but you can write and keep your thoughts private by using a journal or diary, for example. Writing allows you to confront your feelings, which lets you look at things clearly and more objectively. It was through my writing that I reached this milestone.

4.     Put memories away.

Do you ever catch yourself reading old letters, looking at old pictures, surfing through social media, and reliving painful memories? I can relate. It’s like we love to torture ourselves. My advice is to block all of this out until you are ready to make peace with your past. It is in that moment that an old picture won’t make you upset.

5.     Count your blessings.

We have so much to be thankful for, but sometimes, we are so caught up in the past that we forget to be grateful for the blessings that surround us in the present. I now wake up every morning and thank God for my blessings, while saying my affirmations. Focusing on our blessings doesn’t give us time to give attention to the negative.

6.     Focus on important relationships.

When you are upset or going through a tough time, do you ever find yourself neglecting good relationships? I did. Instead of neglecting important relationships, work on making them stronger.  

7.     Keep your mind occupied.

This is still my biggest challenge. It’s easy to allow our minds to wander to the past. When this happens, we allow negative thoughts in. I can’t tell you how to keep your mind occupied, because everyone is different. I’m trying to practice daily meditation and improve my exercise routine. Find something that works for you and stick to it.

8.     Chase your dreams.

We all have dreams. And whatever your dreams are, chase them. When you are focused 150% on your dreams, there is very little time for anything other than reaching your goals. Come up with a plan and make it happen! 

9.     Make new memories.

Instead of spending so much energy recycling old memories, focus on making new ones. It’s never too late to make new and happy memories.

If you are struggling with letting go of the past, I hope these tips help you. If you have tips on making peace with your past, please comment below as we are co-healing together and inspiring each other to become the strongest version of ourselves.

xoxo, Nat

How To Deal With Difficult Times

"Our job is not to deny the story, but to defy the ending—to rise strong, recognize our story, and rumble with the truth until we get to a place where we think, Yes. This is what happened. This is my truth. And I will choose how this story ends.” ― Brené Brown. 

Last year, I made the courageous decision to share my story. While my story has been closely related to family, I know (you) others can relate to adversity. Writing (sometimes videos) has been my way of dealing with difficult times and healing, while empowering others to co-heal with me. At times, I’ve been criticized for sharing my story and flashbacks, but that will not stop me from writing. I aim to inspire others to own their story and heal from tough times. I believe this is what it takes to transition and write our story’s ending.

Last week, a series of family events hit me like a whirlwind. From family gossip, to being used as an emotional punching bag, and being contacted by estranged family members, I was transported back to some of the most painful moments of my life. There were days of chaos and feeling immense regret and hurt. Truthfully, I wanted to pack my bags and run away from it all, but as the past has taught me, ignoring our feelings is not the answer. We have to confront our emotions head on if we want the reward of healing.

In my last post about healing, I mentioned that time does not heal wounds, but timing does. The truth is that there is pain in life. After a hard time, you might feel saddened, angry, alone, or confused. But with the proper coping tools, you can set yourself free from the hurtful past and write your story’s ending. Here are some tools still helping me today.

1. Give yourself space:

Give yourself the space to heal. And by space I mean, don’t obsess over situations you cannot control. From experience, this can make things worse and cause more stress and anxiety for you. Sometimes you need to withdraw from a situation emotionally in order to view it more objectively. It is in this space that we become aware of our feelings and make room for our perception.

2. Write about it:

Don’t keep things bottled up! Writing about tough times and your feelings can actually make you feel better. This is because writing organizes your thoughts, which makes events feel less chaotic. Instead of drowning yourself in self-pity and blaming others, write about it. Writing is a great way to release your emotions. At first, confronting your feelings may be painful, but with time, it will help you feel better.

3. Change your way of thinking:

Tough situations can bring you down and flood your head with negative thoughts and worry. Sometimes it just takes a shift in the way you think to turn negative feelings into positive ones. Write down your worries and then ask yourself how realistic they are. Instead of worrying about situations you cannot control, focus on the positives in your life.

4. Love yourself:

You are enough, you are special, and you are worthy of love. Tough times have a way of kicking us down. It’s important to talk to yourself the same way you would talk to a loved one. Yes, some days will be tougher than others, but find ways to purify your negative thoughts. Much like exercise and meditation, which I’m currently working on, positive affirmations have a way of uplifting our spirits. Here’s an article on positive affirmations from The Huffington Post.

5. Seek support:

Get support from family and friends, or professional help. Know that it’s okay to ask for help when you are dealing with a difficult time. Instead of going at it alone or having fear of judgment, ask for advice and get emotional support. I have a good support system. From my husband, to family, friends, and my therapist, you may just be surprised how many people care for your wellbeing.

Lastly, have faith that tough times will pass. And trust the journey. It took me several posts of owning my story and working through my feelings to write this post for you. I feel such a sense of accomplishment and hope you will too. No one said the journey of life would be easy, but it will be worth it. And if (I) you ever have a bad day, circle back to this post and one of my new favorite wine quotes: “Wine improves with age. We improve with wine.”

I am grateful for life’s challenges, because without them, I wouldn’t be transitioning into the person I want to become or helping others discover joy. I welcome you to share your comments and keep the dialogue open.

xoxo, Nat





Time does NOT heal all wounds, but timing does.

Whoever told you that time heals all wounds was wrong. I’m here to tell you otherwise. In my last inspirational post, The Real Root of Anger, I spoke about confronting painful feelings to make positive ones. It isn’t until we get in touch with our feelings and deal with the source of our pain that we heal, let go, and grow.

I used to think that time would make the pain, guilt, anger, and fear go away, but it didn’t. Instead of confronting my feelings, I ran away from them by keeping myself really busy. I still do sometimes. I’m infamous for consuming myself with work or binge cleaning. I often catch myself trying to finish every project on the same day or reorganizing the dishes in the dishwasher. We all deal with our feelings and anxiety differently. Some of us work, some of us clean, some of us eat, or some of us exercise. Whatever it is, we can’t avoid our feelings, because they will manifest in unexpected ways: nightmares, depression, stress, and health problems, to name a few.

Another sleepless night trapped in my mind. I’ve relapsed. I wake up tired and anxious. Why am I feeling this way again? How do I make it stop? I text my dear friend and mentor, Nikki Novo seeking clarity. As a spiritual life coach, Nikki always encourages me to confront my feelings and make sense of them (the healing process). My younger brother is dealing with some difficult personal stuff. The second I found out, I was overcome with emotions of pain and sadness. The kind of emotions that affect my motivation, self-awareness, relationships, and self-control. I took on the mom role after my mom passed. I have always been there for him, but this time, it is different. I’m allowing my brother to fight his own battle, which causes internal conflict.

Nikki tells me that I’m an addict for pain and sadness. She’s right. Pain and sadness is all I have known, so the moment something happens to my brother (or others), I automatically go back to old ways. Nikki suggests feeling joy, instead of drowning myself in pain. She recommends changing up my routine, such as watching a funny movie before going bed (great idea). 

It wasn’t until this year that I took the initiative to confront my feelings. Timing was everything. I was ready. I have an amazing supportive husband and a clear vision of my goals.  And if I want to create my own family and achieve my purpose, I had to work on me and find peace. Has confronting my feelings been easy? No. Are some days better than others? Yes. The healing journey takes work. You have to be willing to put in the effort and embrace your feelings. Some days, you’ll take two steps forward, and some days, you’ll take one step back. And that’s okay. There is no room for perfection on this journey, so you have to be kind to yourself. As long as you recognize the patterns, you’ll learn how to change them.

Nikki’s guidance made sense. I confronted my feelings, recognized my pattern, and now I have to learn to change them. I have to break these habits in order to create new and positive ones. And I can’t be hard on myself. We can’t be hard on ourselves. If we stumble, we have to bounce right back. Instead of running away from our feelings and consuming ourselves with “stuff”, we have to embrace our emotions and their teachings.

I’m grateful for Nikki’s teaching and funny wine quotes like this, “You can’t buy happiness, but you can buy wine and that’s kind of the same thing.” As always, thank you for joining me on this co-healing journey. I invite you to share your thoughts in the comment section and keep the dialogue going with me.






The Real Root Of Anger

For so many years, I silenced my inner voice and numbed the pain. Instead of acknowledging how I felt, and feeling the pain, I put a band-aid over my feelings. Can you relate? With tears in my eyes, I struggle to confront my feelings. Because making sense of my feelings means that I have to feel the pain.

From a very young age, I class clowned and ate my feelings. After my mom died, I turned to self-destructive behavior. Now in my 30’s, I internalize my feelings until they make me sick. In my last post, Letting Go of Negative Thoughts, I spoke about my gnats (unwanted thoughts) and journey to self-healing. While I hate to admit it, the journey has just begun.

I try to only use social media for work, but sometimes I get sucked in too. I’m on Facebook and a couple of wine glasses in, when I see a picture one of my family members posted. Now I’m surfing through comments from other family members. When did they all reconnect? I feel anger in my body. It’s easier to feel anger than hurt.

My aunt and I had a falling-out years ago, and when that happened, my closest family stopped talking to her too. My aunt, who was my godmother, legal guardian after my mom passed, and the woman I loved like a mother, really hurt me. Suddenly, my gnats take over and I’m reliving the past in my mind.

“Tia (aunt), I still remember the day your ex husband hit you. I tried to save you like I did for my mom so many times. You convinced me to leave my boyfriend and high school sweetheart.  You tried to have me baker acted when I hit rock bottom. You let greed get the best of you and took what belonged to my younger brother and me. I know I messed up by dating your colleague and friend, who also happened to be a married man, but you didn’t have to take his side and tag team against me, I was young and naïve. You tried to have me arrested when I fought for custody of my brother; I was just doing it out of love. You took advantage of my kindness and you played a huge role in breaking my heart.”

My hubby jumps in to stop me from spiraling out of control. I don’t want his comfort, I’m angry. I start to delete and block all of these family members from social media. As immature as it may sound, I just want to stop seeing this, because it still destroys me. Once the anger hangover is over, I identify and analyze my feelings. I want to understand my core pain, because this is the root of anger and how we work through our feelings.

  1. I feel betrayed by my aunt and now, my immediate family.
  2. I feel left out by my family.
  3. I don’t feel loved.
  4. Why did I give up so much of my life for some of my family?

Anger can be a cover up for pain, guilt and shame. We are human, and anger is a normal emotion; we all feel it. Anger is our survival mechanism. We either blow up or keep things bottled up. Can you relate? This is unhealthy anger. Healthy anger, on the other hand, gives us momentum for change. I identify my feelings of anger and start making progress.

I feel pain, guilt and shame…

  1. For telling my father that my mother was having an affair (or least that is what I thought).
  2. For forgiving my father for healing.
  3. For turning to self-destructive behavior.
  4. For unleashing my anger on the people I love the most.
  5. For disconnecting from my family.

Shame feelings are a threat to our integrity. Our feelings of shame can be humiliating, while feelings of guilt can be embarrassing. We feel anger to avoid the more painful feelings of embarrassment and humiliation. We shut down the feelings of vulnerability and helplessness, because anger is a more comfortable feeling to feel.

This is my fight, not my families. My aunt hurt me, not my family. I’m human, and it’s okay to feel feelings of anger. I don’t have to ignore my feelings or accept my family’s actions towards me (it's called boundaries). But I do have the power to change how I react to these feelings.

Thank you for joining me on this co-healing journey. What are your thoughts and suggestions? Let’s open the dialogue by sharing comments below. As one of my favorite wine quotes reads, “Wine a little…you’ll feel better.”

Special thanks to my fellow blogger, A Girl in her Thirties, my dear friend and mentor, Nikki Novo, and my husband, for their encouragement on this self-healing journey.