Sunday, Apr 14th

Discovering Your Second Act

ZibbyZibby OwensHow do we reinvent ourselves when it’s time to pivot? Are there ways to repurpose what we know and use seemingly-unrelated experiences as the basis for our next gig? That was the subject of a panel discussion featuring three authors and moderated by Scarsdale “mompreneur” Pamela Pekerman held at the Scarsdale Library last Thursday night, March 14th.

Zibby Owens, a mother of four, hosts the podcast, Moms Don’t Have Time to Read Books, runs her own publishing house Zibby Books, owns a bookstore in Santa Monica and recently wrote her own novel, Blank.

Joanne Lipman, a journalist who was the editor in chief at USA Today, founding editor of Condé Nast Portfolio and started the Wall Street Journal’s weekend edition, shared her findings from the research she did for her most recent book, Next! The Power of Reinvention in Life and Work.

Amy Shoenthal, a branding and marketing expert, discussed her book, The Setback Cycle: How Defining Moments Can Move Us Forward. She is a contributor to ForbesWomen and the Harvard Business Review and will give her first TEDx talk this spring.

Lipman explained the genesis of her book, which she worked on during COVID, “I wanted to look at this idea when we were reprioritizing our lives and the relationship of work to our lives,” she said. “I interviewed people who went through transformations. Women are masters of reinvention, often by necessity. We hit the glass ceiling and don’t have the same opportunities.” In fact, one of Next’s subjects is former Scarsdale Mayor Jane Veron, who left a corporate position to raise her three daughters, but went on to create The Acceleration Project, an organization that uses experienced volunteers to advise local entrepreneurs.stagePanelists on stage

All three women talked about staying in the fray, and figuring out how to silence your inner critics.
Asked how she combats negative self-talk when something goes wrong, Amy Shoenthal said, “Your inner critic can get loud when you have a setback, but you need to fight the self-doubt by conjuring up an “inner hype” voice or relying on an imaginary cheerleader.

Zibby Owens spoke about the value of trips and falls saying, “Most of the time you get over the setback and end up in a better place than you were before.”Elyse JoanneJoanne Lipman and Elyse Klayman

Lipman defined what she calls the four S’s of reinvention, gleaned from those she interviewed for her book: Search. Struggle. Stop. Solution. These words, she said, can be used as a roadmap when looking for a new direction.

During the process, Lipman recommended calling on an expert companion or person who knows you well and can reflect your strengths and talents back to you. This companion can be a friend, a personal coach, or a psychologist. She said, “It’s good to have one, and to be one to someone else.”

Asked how to give yourself space to explore, Shoenthal said, “Don’t freeze. Don’t get in a spiral of resentment, blame and shame. Thaw yourself out. Explore your curiosity–play a team sport or volunteer.”

Owens advised, “Just keep doing what you’re interested in. It will pay off in the end. Persistence is what makes anything a success. Don’t stop trying. Nothing you go through is wasted. Even if it does not work out.”

The three, along with moderator Pamela Pekerman offered positive messages and energy to those who were hoping to find new careers or life paths. Following the talk, the panelists answered questions and signed books sold by Bronx River Books.

flowersPanelists with Stacey Mayer and Nancy Kaplan


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