Renee Linnell is the author of The Burn Zone: A Memoir (She Writes Press; October 2018). She is a serial entrepreneur who has founded and cofounded five companies and has an Executive Masters in Business Administration from New York University. Currently she is working on starting a publishing company to give people from diverse walks of life an opportunity to tell their stories. She divides her time between Colorado and Southern California. Please visit and follow Renee on , and .
What do I do best?
I’m a very good dancer; it is the gift I was given and love to give back to the world, basically any time fun music is playing regardless of if it’s truly appropriate for me to start dancing. I am also exceptionally good at forgiving, and at turning every situation back to love.
What makes me the best version of myself?
Trusting in my own Inner Guidance, knowing I have what it takes to get something done, and always believing in a Divine Plan and that the unseen hands of the Universe are always there to assist me. As Paulo Coelho says in his beautiful book The Alchemist, “. . . when you want something, all the universe conspires in helping you to achieve it.”
What are my aspirations?
I aspire to be a New York Times best-selling author because, why not? That would be SO fun! I also aspire to have a movie made from my book. Again, how fun would that be? I aspire to open my heart fully to allow in love and partnership. But, most importantly, I aspire to be the best version of myself every day; the kindest, most compassionate, most loving person I can be.
My Biggest Success?
My biggest success is healing from a ton of abuse and brainwashing, forgiving those that “hurt” me, and loving myself enough to keep going and to create a new life in which no one ever gets to treat me badly again.
My Most Challenging Moment?
Lately, as in the last ten days, it was to say “no” to appearing live on the TODAY show, every new author’s dream. They wanted me to reveal the names and identities I so carefully disguised in my memoir; I refused. My story is a story of becoming whole, a story of forgiveness and healing; it is not a story of revenge. I turned down the opportunity of a lifetime and chose peace instead. I chose love. I chose having my own back. I chose integrity.
When I was broken it was: “This will turn out better than I can imagine. I don’t know how, but I know it will.” Now it is: “You are beautiful and perfect just the way you are.” I have to tell this to myself every time I look in the mirror. As women we are so bombarded by messaging that tells us we are not okay the way we are, that we are not beautiful the way we are, that we have to look like 18-year-old models to be beautiful (and even then, the 18-year-old models criticize themselves). I find it takes great strength of mind and constant vigilance to not fall into the trap of criticizing myself in some way when I look in the mirror, so I counter it with that mantra. I say it out loud in the mirror, “Honey, you are so beautiful.” I feel the little girl inside of me smile each time I say this.
My Favorite People/Role Models?
Definitely Nelson Mandela and Oprah Winfrey. Dr. Maya Angelou, as well. And, basically anyone that stands up for what s/he believes in, brings more love and light into this world, and/or uses a position of power to take care of those that have none.
My Favorite Places/Destinations?
Anywhere in nature. But, if I have to pick: I love the ski mountain, river, and the woods in Snowmass/Aspen. I love the beaches on the North Shore of Oahu. And I love the chaos, wine, music, language, architecture, and tango in Buenos Aires.
My Favorite Products/Objects?
This is a fun question. I love my surfboards, my tango shoes, my snowboards, and my mountain and road bikes. When I had to evacuate from Cardiff by the Sea, CA (because of fires) I took my photo albums, computer, tango shoes, and surfboards. That’s when I discovered which objects were most important to me.
My Current Passions?
My biggest passion right now is promoting my memoir “The Burn Zone” and spreading the message that our difference IS our destiny and it is time to stop trying to blend in; it is time to stand out, stand proudly . . . owning our stories, celebrating them, no longer apologizing for them or thinking something went wrong along the way. My other passions are surfing, snowboarding, hiking, biking, yoga, tango, and meditating.