The consistent theme with every role I have had is this: “How can we better communicate whatever we are trying to say?” As a perception analyst and messaging strategist, I’ve been hired as an advisor to public & private company executives, as well as advertising, marketing and public relations departments via my companies Dian Griesel International dba DGIcomm, Silver Disobedience® Inc and now Creative Content Loft. I’m recognized as an intuitive thinker with deep expertise in FDA, FTC, SEC and DoD compliant messaging. I write a personal development, personal growth, feel good and always inspirational daily blog as @SilverDisobedience which is read millions of times each month and I’ve been featured as an influential leader of the age 50 and older population by a variety of international publications during the past 18 months. Because of my deep understanding of this demographic, which has grown exponentially from answering over 500,000 comments in response to my Blog, I can bring insight to management, product & marketing teams seeking to create messages that better resonate with older audiences. You might have also seen me in commercial advertisements and in magazine editorial pages as a model as I am honored to be represented by Wilhelmina New York and Aperture Talent. That’s full disclosure upfront just in case you see me on television, a billboard or some other form of advertisement…and start to wonder!
A certified clinical hypnotherapist (Union 472), a member of the American Counseling Association and a lifetime member of the International Association of Counselors and Therapists, I have developed a keen intuition and understanding of how written, verbal, visual and body language communication trigger opinions, actions and response. I am known for my thoughtful insights; ability to listen closely and impart candid, spot-on advice; as well as my willingness to create connections to my broad, well-established network of friends & business relationships.
As a blogger known as @SilverDisobedience on Instagram, Facebook, Pinterest and on my website, my daily posts are read by hundreds of thousands of followers and reach millions of people monthly. I am a best-selling author in motivational self help, health and business books; a regular broadcast personality and contributing columnist for a variety of publications. My books include: The Silver Disobedience Playbook: 365 Inspirations for Living and Loving Agelessly; ENGAGE: Smart Ideas to Get More Media Coverage, Build Your Influence and Grow Your Business; IPPY award-winning FUNDaMentals: The Corporate Guide to Cultivating Mindshare; Uncapped: A Critically Important Workbook for Officers of Public Companies; the TurboCharged® Peak Performance health book series of books, which I originally co-wrote with my brother, Tom, and have since updated adding more supporting research — and even wrote the communication chapter for a book called Biotechnology: From Idea to Market, which is used as the foundational course guide at Harvard University’s Entrepreneurial Program for Medical Graduate students.
Lastly, but not least, I donate my time as an advisor for a few not-for-profits. My life is multi-faceted!
Here’s a bit of color as to how my work life developed…
I grew up on Long Island in a family of 7 and went to public school. I started babysitting at age 10, and by 12 it was a full-time after-school and weekend job. My mother and/or I sewed most my clothes or I bought them myself, largely second-hand. By 16, I purchased my first cars from the junkyard while paying for my own insurance. (It was years before I realized VW Bugs are supposed to have running boards!) I started managing a front desk at a health club on weekends and within six months was the manager. By 18, I was running the club’s membership sales, when I also enrolled in a commuter community college as a business major. I failed accounting and dropped out at the end of my first semester. I began writing and selling a health newsletter. I sold advertisements to the health club members who had businesses and distributed the newsletter for free in club lobbies. This was my first foray into publishing.
At 20 years old, my life took an interesting twist: I crashed out of the sky in a small two-seater Cessna airplane. The remarkable pilot (who I had met only hours before) and I were uninjured. But — we did both get a loud message from the Universe: Life has an expiration date and it comes without prior notification.
Now you might think this would be a wake up call to assure a life 100% on track. But such was not to be. I was making money and had a bit of growing up (read that “maturing”) to do. Apparently some of us need to get smacked in the head a few times in order to see the BIG PICTURE! My head got pounded and my life got rocked not from one plane crash but three in a 7-year period! There were a variety of other hard-knock lessons as well.
With the ultimate realization finally sinking in that I’d never know which day marked the start of the second half of life— I decided it was high-time to take some “control” (ha!) over my destiny.
I committed to self-education with the single-minded goal: To always be lucratively self-employed, doing whatever I found compelling and rewarding, so I could really enjoy my time on Earth.
And you know what? It has worked out perfectly.
I made my first million dollars in my twenties by leveraging a real estate sale and savings from a tiny clothing company and an entertainment corporate sponsorship company…Important note here: I promptly blew every penny and more. Lesson: Education is expensive and a really good education is VERY expensive! 😉 Thanks to perseverance, luck, connections and friendships, I managed to recoup my losses and more. I’ve done it “My Way” following my rules. I’d like to note, this choice has not always been easy; it is not for the inflexible; and I don’t recommend it for those who don’t appreciate rollercoaster rides–because that is the best analogy for the life of an entrepreneur: I’ve had both up and seriously down years. Nonetheless, my path has been the right one for me.
I have starred in Korean films; owned a t-shirt company; co-owned a corporate sponsorship company where I marketed Jay Leno, Jerry Seinfeld, Jamie Foxx, Adam Sandler and many other talents; built finance and after-sale businesses for car dealerships; in my mid 30s, wrote a thesis, defended it and earned a Ph.D. in nutrition and hygienic living thanks to the flexibility of experiential and distance learning (note: the university is out of business–but I still have the diploma!); hold advanced certifications in neuro-linguistic programming and hypnotherapy; was hired to open a chain of weight loss centers by a well-known billionaire investor–who I still count as a good friend today; earned Series 7 & 63 financial licenses; founded and sold a corporate communications firm after 18 years of success … all while writing and publishing several books*, including a health book that became an Amazon best-seller, a business book that is an IPPY winner and compiled a rock & roll quote book that was purchased by Putnam, although never published. (*FUNDaMentals; ENGAGE; Capitalization Success; 101+ Rules of Platinum Success; HealthPower; Image Enhancement Weight Control & Hypnosis; TurboCharged; TurboCharged Mind; TurboCharged Recipes…) I wrote The Silver Disobedience Playbook: 365 Inspirations for Living and Loving Agelessly. This was the result from requests from readers of my daily blog. Not too long ago, while in my mid-50s, I became a Direct Model with Wilhelmina Models New York, one of the top agencies in the world and have been cast as an actor, with Aperture Talent. (Another lesson: Dreams do come true!)
I’ve been married for over twenty years and we are raising our two fascinating children. I have truly special friends, and I gather new ones daily. I surround myself with the most creative, thoughtful, talented people I can find and try to support their individual journeys. I’m also very fortunate as they support me as well.
Considering all this bio-disclosure…can you understand why I’ve always been challenged when having to answer the question: What do you do?
What we “DO” is an amalgamation of our thoughts and actions: how we think and consider all sides and possibilities before acting; how we challenge ourselves; what we do (or not) for (and to) others; how we take care of ourselves; how we deal with adversity in life; our interactions in the relationships we maintain, along with how we care for our overall health; and then, ultimately, what people are willing to pay us for our experience and knowledge. All of this collectively tells the story of “what we do.” It is this amalgamation that shouts to the world “who” we are without words. I am fortunate in that I’m highly attuned to the lessons I have learned from my experiences and interactions throughout life, along with the fact that I’ve honed my intuition into a priceless asset. All my “doing” has resulted in quite a “living.”
Everyone is born unique. Daily we are faced with opportunities to become even more remarkable beings due to the accumulation of experiences (pleasant or not) and our responses to them.
I believe that very day is an essential “class” that offers education and insight into who we are — as well as whom we can be if we’re lucky enough to wake up.