Hi, I’m Mary! I give science a soul & make courage contagious

I use biology, psychology, and communication studies to transform the way you see, hear, and interact with everyday fear. Using unique immersive experiences, live talks, workshops, print, and digital learning spaces I make navigating change as engaging and memorable as possible.

I was working in a job I hated because
I was afraid to take a leap

As the youngest of 5 children and the only one in my family to go to college, I was taught to be happy with having a full time job, any full time job. Although my family was loving, many of our core values were rooted in fear.

Then one night over a brew house dinner, I was offered the biggest opportunity of my life to teach exactly one class at San Jose State University, because I dared to ask. I dared to share my unhappiness and my desire for more with the right people. But of course, no invitation to adventure is an easy yes. At the time, I was helping to support my elderly mom and had to take into account the huge pay cut that came along with saying yes to this new life, this new opportunity.

But I knew something had to change if I was ever going to have the life I wanted: to die with good stories. So, I took the biggest leap of my life and quit my cozy full time corporate job to embark on this new venture. Since teaching a single class wasn’t going to pay all our bills, I got a job waiting tables at night to make up the difference and prayed at the start of each shift I wouldn’t have a student from my class come into the restaurant (awkward!) and began my journey of learning, researching, and exploring the human relationship with fear, creativity & innovation.

Change the conversation around fear

My workshops are for leaders that need to produce creative solutions and quick strategic decisions. My talks are for that future leader in the audience who is afraid to take that next big step. My teachings are for the student that needs just a few simple tools to get through their imposter syndrome or anxiety.

Most of us are never taught how to thrive with our very natural, very human emotions, especially those difficult ones like dread, terror, or insecurity. My job is to change that. To change the collective conversation we have about non-clinical fear and give science based strategies to those looking for a little more courage, a bit more creativity and even maybe a ton more confidence.

I have devoted myself to the study and application of the fear strategies I teach today by truly living the material. My research has never made me fearless, I still feel fear everyday – but my strategies helped make me brave.

I’ve shared my knowledge with millions of people across the world through courses, videos, live talks, podcasts, and writings. But that’s not why this work is important to me. It’s special because of the look on someone’s face when they say my talk gave them the courage to quit a job they hated and start their own business. It’s life-changing (for me) when a young man emails to say he thought of ending it all, and when talking didn’t help, my tools did. It’s beautiful when a senior executive tells me that my strategies changed the way he now relates to his team and his family. My tools made them feel powerful enough to reshape their relationship with fear and I can’t wait to share them with you.