Every Friday I am going to feature a woman that I adore. They exude all the qualities of an Alpha Female and I want to dig into their lives to get some nuggets of knowledge to help us all live happier, healthier lives balancing life & work.
Definition of an Alpha Female
An Alpha Female is a powerful and assertive woman. Her confidence is due to being an intelligent and intellectual problem-solver. Being an Alpha Female is a State of Mind based on choosing ambition and being proud of it. She strives for a happy and healthy work/life harmony.
Type A Alpha Females often come across as strong willed and selfish. When we stay true to our authentic selves and stay true to our mission we shine. A true Alpha Female puts the needs of herself first without sacrificing her principles or dignity. She fills up her cup or gas tank first so that she has enough energy for her friends, family, and coworkers. A true Alpha Female strives for synergy with the world around her. She wants a perfect work/life balance but knows that it requires being true to your priorities and what makes you happy. She is never complacent about striving for better and nurtures relationships with the people in her life.
Meet Danny J!
Driven, passionate, fun and full of laughter, Danny Johnson, is a high-energy speaker who can dish it to you straight, but with just enough sugar to make you want more. Danny-J, is a serial entrepreneur who has created multiple successful brands and online businesses with one underlying principle: “Make People More Awesome(r).”
She won Ali Brown’s 2012 Entrepreneur of the year award, lived through being paralyzed at age 22 and was a suicidal and pregnant teen, with quite a turn-around story. She owned a very successful personal training and online-training business, No Excuses, and has helped thousands of people lose 10-100+ lbs. She coached fitness competitors to the stage and has even graced the stage as a National Level Athlete and Fitness Magazine Cover Model herself.
She has been interviewed as a trainer and an entrepreneur on numerous podcasts and was featured on Huff Post Live. More notably, online, she co-founded, The Sweaty Betties, one of the largest online fitness communities for women, to teach the truth about nutrition and exercise. Danny is committed to helping women find their TRUE issues. She’s not afraid to talk about what others don’t want to talk about. When it comes to depression, suicidal thoughts, adrenal fatigue and abuse, she can call it out and empower those who feel like they are stuck. Her major goal in life is to allow every woman to see the power she already holds and shine a bright light on those who have a story to share.
She believes that things don’t happen to us, they happen for us, and its our responsibility to share those lessons with each other. Danny-J lives by sheer example, calling herself out on her own BS, while living a lifestyle purely created. She moved into a Motorhome and traveled the country for a year with her Big Tattooed husband and two dogs and she currently runs a small zoo in Southern Utah.
How are you an Alpha Female?
I think what I really identify with is that sometimes people think we’re selfish for putting ourselves first. You know what? I have a hard time with this, I’ve actually struggled with this, like am I selfish or am I doing the right thing. I see other women or just anyone who puts everyone else first and then they feel like they’ve been trampled all over. They feel used. They don’t feel validated and I feel like really it’s just like in the airplane when they tell you to put your own oxygen mask on first before you help anyone else. You really can’t help anyone or do the greatest good if you’re not putting yourself first and taking care of yourself first. Even if you have children and I think that that’s hard for a lot of women once they have kids, they’re like but my kids are first, my kids are first. Honestly, I just see too many people who are unhappy later as they put other people first for such a long time. For me, I think it’s very, very important that we realize it’s not selfish that you have to be all in and healthy in mind, body and spirit before you can help anyone else.
What does your work/life harmony look like?
For me, my work and my life are so intertwined. There’s not like a very strong line between work and personal life. My work is my personal life, my personal life is my work. I love what I do. I don’t have a very strong, okay, I go to work and then I shut off at night. I think that sometimes we’re looking for that, I know I used to wish I had that. Sometimes I was like, I wish I had a job where I could go and I come home and I don’t think about it. Then I did have that and I wasn’t really happy. Then I had the job where I can’t stop thinking about it and I’m stressed and it’s constantly stress. Now I have a job where I do what I love, I love what I do so there’s not a strong line between that. My day, I work from home. I spend a lot of time promoting on social media, answering emails, having meetings or interviews like this. For me it’s all together and it’s fun.
What are you most passionate about?
I started to get very passionate about talking about finances and relationships and personal identity and the spirit part of the self instead of focusing on the outside and so many times they were coming to me trying to focus on the outside when really what was going on was on the inside. It just got to the point where literally about a year and a half ago I just said I can’t do another meal plan when I know it’s not for me. They think they need that but what they really need was a good long talk with a friend or they really need to get their finances straight or they really need to be a counselor or get their hormones checked.
What are you daily health habits that keep your immune system boosted?
I think number one, so overlooked, is sleep. That was something for me that I, I used to work at a night club on the weekends, full time job on the week. Literally, two nights a week I slept for like four hours. I mean it was just, I thought I could get away with it and I could for a little while until my adrenals completely crashed and shut down. We’re always like looking for the next supplement. We’re always looking for what protein shakes to have or what things to take, but if you’re not sleeping you can take all the dang supplements you want, you’re going to really crumble your immune system if you’re not sleeping well. That’s the big one for me. Another one is just getting healthy fats. That’s another place where, you know, I grew up in the thought that fats were bad. Now we just know so much about sugars and carbohydrates and how they work in your body. I realize that the no fat did me no good. Once I really started to up my fats and it helped my brain function, outside concentration. It helped my hormones stabilize. I am really big on eating a tablespoon of coconut oil or putting some butter or oil in my coffee or just getting some extra fats everyday I think is very important.
What is your weekly fitness routine like?
The last year and a half, and here’s another mind shift and paradigm shift for me, is I was so used to the traditional go to work out at the gym, no excuses. You can make it happen, you can make time, four to five days a week. My husband and I moved into a motorhome about a year and a half ago and we were traveling around the country. We would stop places with friends, but we walked a lot. I mean we went to New York City. We walked a tonne. We went to Washington, D.C. and we walked a tonnne. We went to Toronto and we walked a tonne. That was kind of our fitness routine for a year. We found there’s like some amazing places to hike out here so we’ve been hiking. We bought bikes and we’ve been riding bikes and just doing easy kind of leisurely stuff. Then I got this body bar; I do shoulder presses and curls. Then I just do a couple squats, but I don’t have like a real set routine. I think you do need to move, but it doesn’t have to be the gym.
How do you challenge yourself fitness wise?
I’ve gotten a lot easier on myself and I maintain my weight for the last year and two years I actually lost weight by just going easy and just doing what I can and not stressing. I think before, if I didn’t work out, I would gain weight instantly. I think more of that was just the stress, thinking oh my god, I’m going to gain weight if I don’t work out, oh my god, I’m going to gain weight if I don’t work out. Now I’m just relaxed. I don’t beat myself up over it if I miss something. I do what I can and wow, look my body is just maintaining. I feel good, I look fine. I don’t look ripped like I used to, but I think that before I used to not look really healthy. I feel good.
What are your daily habits for winding down at night and reducing stress?
I kind of will do little hypnosis / meditation. I don’t really see a big difference between hypnosis and meditation except that the hypnosis is almost like meditation that talks you through it. I have a hard time meditating just without words because then my mind starts wandering and I either fall asleep or I don’t know what I was supposed to be thinking about. I like to put in some ear buds and listen to a guided meditation or a guided self hypnosis. I learned to really be able to get into a mode of breathing and relax myself very quickly. That has helped me a lot and I like to have the guidance when sometimes I go on YouTube and just type in guided meditation and just find one that sounds good for the day. Or I just go to walk. Sometimes just getting out of the house if I’ve been sitting on the computer all day and things are uploading and things are freezing and I start getting stressed and pissy and I go okay, it’s time to get out. I just go and ride a bike or go run a hike.
What are you daily/weekly nutrition habits that keep you well nourished?
We get fresh eggs every day and so I figure since they’re free and they’re fresh, I pretty much eat eggs every day. I’m surprised I haven’t got sick of them yet. I just think it’s fun that we have, I don’t know, to see where food comes from.
What are pain points of being an Alpha Female that you have to problem solve for?
I would say a lot of time I feel like it’s not always spoken but it is like this unspoken thing that I’m being selfish. Sometimes it isn’t spoken aloud but I know there’s that underlying why are you so selfish? I do feel like I have to justify that sometimes. I’m done justifying it. I think that we have our own life to live and I don’t want to live in regret. I think kind of Charlene gave me permission to not go to some things that I don’t want to go to.
What is your definition of happiness?
My definition of happiness is so tied to my definition of freedom. I remember I would sneak out of the house and I would bring my dog and I would let him off the leash and just watch him run and play and I was just like god I wish I could just be like this dog. So happy and free, just running around like a maniac off the leash and ever since then I’ve really equated happiness to freedom. For me that freedom just really means being able to do what you want when you want. Just doing what makes you feel good, not being sorry for it. I think so often we’re so wrapped up in what we should do but we’re never truly happy. I believe that when you are free to do what you want to do, and you do things out of joy because you want to, that’s try happiness. I feel like doing what you want because you want to and doing it out of pure joy is happiness.