You are Never too Old. Age is just a state of mind. Don’t be limited by a number. I was told by a Yoga Instructor I was too old to do a headstand so I became afraid and didn’t want to try although I always wanted to do one. With the help of several friends I not only do headstands but do headstand crunches every day.
As a part of my series about the women in wellness, I had the pleasure of interviewing MaryRose Reaston.
Mary Rose Reaston is an innovator, author, expert witness and is the CEO and Chief Science Officer of Emerge Diagnostics, Inc. MaryRose has a successful track record in the development, commercialization, marketing and governmental acceptance for advanced Electrodiagnostic testing. She is the Co-Inventor of EFA technology and holder of several U.S. and international patents. She has been named as an Industry Risk Innovator and Responsibility Leader.
Thank you so much for doing this with us! Our readers would love to “get to know you” better. Can you share your “backstory” with us?
My immersion into wellness began a little over two years ago. I have always been a proponent of better healthcare, but I had never been a very active person. My downtime was enjoying a good book or movie with family. Then just before Christmas I decided I wanted to get more centered and balanced, so I decided to give yoga a try. My first attempt was in a studio and while it was enjoyable it was confusing I didn’t understand the poses or instructions but what I did learn from that very first experience was to breathe and stay present in the movement. I am the CEO of Emerge Diagnostics Inc, a global medical service company so an hour of being present in the movement was a wonderful experience. This experience taught me that no matter how much you enjoyed your job, taking time to recent and balance would enable me to become a more effective leader. This was the start of my journey into wellness. I love the water; it is my place to go to recharge. I discovered Paddle board Yoga while on vacation in Hawaii with my husband. Even though my first time on a paddle board the board shook so much I did not know how I even managed to stay on, I continued and became a certified SUP Yoga instruction and then received my 200 and 500 hour teacher certification. I incorporate Yoga everyday even if it is only a few minutes to stay balanced.
Can you share the most interesting story that happened to you since you started your career? What were the main lessons or takeaways from that story?
As the CEO of Emerge Diagnostics, we provide global medical services to assist in the diagnosis and treatment of soft tissue injuries. We have developed a more objective telemedicine platform especially designed to help people with back, neck and shoulder issues. We have also designed telehealth to assist people through the COVID pandemic. One of the major industries we work with at Emerge Diagnostics is transportation. Truck drivers are one of the bedrocks of our society during normal times but there are indispensable with the pandemic. Without the hard work of these dedicated people our economy would suffer greatly. We wanted to do something to give back and keep people healthy, especially in the transportation business, so Emerge Diagnostics partnered with DoctorNow and Yoga Your Way to form a virtual joint venture: Here 4 Your Heath. The name says it all. We wanted to be here to keep people well and healthy. Everyone should have access to this unique telehealth and wellness opportunity. For less than the cost of a fast food lunch, a person can have unlimited access to video telemedicine visits and equally important, unlimited access to customized yoga videos and virtual yoga classes with virtual enhancements. My entire career has been focused on better care anywhere. I was saddened to see the loss of jobs and with that healthcare benefits. I also became concerned with many individuals having to work from home with the added responsibility of childcare since schools were shutting down. A respected colleague had to stop working as her job could not accommodate working from home and her husband’s hours were cut. They lost their health insurance and were feeling overwhelmed and unwell. They searched online for telemedicine services, but a single call could be over 30 dollars, something that unless urgent was not in their budget. This presented a critical issue, we needed to solve. So, we did. We wanted to offer two components to the program: a way to get better if sick- telemedicine and something for everyone in the family to participate in to stay well- yoga.
Can you share a story about the biggest mistake you made when you were first starting? Can you tell us what lesson you learned from that?
When I first started out on the wellness journey my mistake was in believing that people would be as invested in wellness and self-care as I was.
None of us are able to achieve success without some help along the way. Is there a particular person who you are grateful towards who helped get you to where you are? Can you share a story about that?
Heather Mackay, CEO of Yoga Your Way is my role model and mentor for wellness. Heather has always encouraged me that I can do anything I set my mind to do. I had always wanted to do crow, a yoga arm balance. Heather worked patiently with me as I face planted many times until I was able to do crow on the land and out in the water on a paddle board. Heather’s centering and balance helped me to see the need to bring wellness through yoga to everyone. Her philosophy is yoga your way anywhere anytime.
Ok perfect. Now let’s jump to our main focus. When it comes to health and wellness, how is the work you are doing helping to make a bigger impact in the world?
I feel that healthcare is a major priority from prevention through treatment, never more so than now. In these unprecedented and challenging times with medical issues on the forefront, access to quality healthcare and wellness is limited by in-person visits. Physicians and patients no longer want to have to go to a health care provider if it can be avoided. Gyms or yoga studios are closing or have limited availability. Access to healthcare with loss of jobs or high deductibles is a new reality. Luxuries such as working out may not be an option for many people win today’s environment. Given all of these factors, I wanted to be able to give back and share my success so that people could stay well or get well. Emerge Diagnostics, Doctor Now and Yoga Your Way have collaborated to offer a monthly program with unlimited access to quality physicians via telemedicine. While access to healthcare is vital in these trying times, we also feel an ounce of prevention will help individuals improve their quality of life, so this partnership is also aimed at wellness. For a low monthly fee, users have unlimited access to physicians as well as customized yoga videos, yoga for specific industries, and yoga for specific conditions. We wanted to make it cost effective so everyone would have the ability to participate. This will benefit many for a long time to come, and we are thrilled to be a pioneer in the industry.
Can you share your top five “lifestyle tweaks” that you believe will help support people’s journey towards better wellbeing? Please give an example or story for each.
- Make Time in Your Day to do something for yourself. I found that taking the time in the day to make time for yourself is important. I start everyday with Yoga even if it is only for 10 minutes. Breathing centering and balance help me energize for the day and prepare me to be able to face whatever awaits with clarity.
- Believe In Yourself. If you do not believe in yourself then how can you expect anyone else to believe in, you. If you believe in yourself, you project confidence and can accomplish anything.
- Never Be Afraid to Ask for help. I found in life and especially on my journey toward wellness if you don’t’ know what to do or how to get started ask for help. People love to help it is a blessing for them to be able to assist.
- You are Never to Old. Age is a state of mind. Don’t be limited by a number. I was told by a Yoga Instructor I was too old to do a headstand so I became afraid and didn’t want to try although I always wanted to do one. With the help of several friends I not only do headstands but do headstand crunches every day.
- Life is a balance take time for family and friends.
If you could start a movement that would bring the most amount of wellness to the most amount of people, what would that be?
Here 4 Your Heath- The name says it all. This is a program designed to offer affordable healthcare and wellness anywhere anytime. It is the hope of Here 4 Your Heath to get people better if they are sick, help them stay well and healthy and live more productive and fulfilled lives.
What are your “5 Things I Wish Someone Told Me Before I Started” and why?
- You cannot make everyone happy. I learned very early on that while allowing for input from every member of the team, the ultimate responsibility for each decision rested with me. While I always listen, I can’t always take the action that people want and this causes some hurt feelings.
- You won’t have all the answers and that is ok. I thought that by being in the role of CEO that you had to be able to respond with all the answers; be all-knowing. This was especially true for me as I was not a seasoned CEO. I thought if I didn’t have all the answers then people would think I was not qualified for the job. Having a great team and becoming more centered helped me overcome this and now I say I don’t know; let’s look into this together or I know where I can go to get the best information.
- Surround yourself with the best. The better people you have working with you the better the team gets. Don’t settle for mediocrity; this affects the entire team and pulls others down.
- Encourage outside of the box thinking. Don’t be afraid to explore new ideas or new solutions to old problems. This is especially true in our new reality with COVID 19.
- Always Believe in Yourself. Have confidence in your abilities.
Sustainability, veganism, mental health and environmental changes are big topics at the moment. Which one of these causes is dearest to you, and why?
Mental health issues are important to me especially now during this new reality we live in. I understand the need for social distancing, but I fear what this is doing to us and our loved ones. I look at the elderly in Assisted Living Facilities that can no longer be surrounded by loved ones and I look at the children that no longer can enjoy all the interactions with friends through school and activities and I fear for us. I hope that staying healthy and well will help alleviate some of these serious mental health issues we are no faced with as we deal with this pandemic.
What is the best way our readers can follow you on social media?
MaryRose Reason — Linkedin
Mary Cusimano Reaston Facebook
Thank you for these fantastic insights!