Mindset coach & Founder, The Rock/Star Advocate
Helping music professionals set goals, identify next steps, and create a healthier work/life balance.
Suzanne is a mindset coach and founder of The Rock/Star Advocate, helping music professionals reach their goals with custom goal-setting and time management solutions that enable them to gain clarity on their next steps while maintaining a healthy work/life balance.
She published her first book, , now in its 2019 edition, as a tool for creatives to find focus in their daily lives and her teachings can also be found on her weekly podcast – – as well as blog posts for Sonicbids, TuneCore, CD Baby, Rising Tide, and Thrive.
I want to see a world with more empathy. That’s what motivates me on a daily basis – the need to help people not only better understand each other, but also themselves. We often try our best to be kind to others but fall short when it’s time to be kind to ourselves. Born and raised in NYC it’s difficult to overcome the stigma around self-care and “me time;” everything is always about the “hustle.” It’s my mission to redefine that hustle and help people, especially musicians, experience a better work-life balance and avoid burnout.
My biggest success so far has been that I haven’t given up. I’m proud of the book I created with Alyssa Jackson, The Rock/Star Life Planner, and my podcast and annual summit of the same name, The Music-Preneur Mindset, but those successes are due to the actions of others deciding to support them. My own success comes from me getting up every day and deciding to withstand the unexpected bumps and setbacks so I can enjoy it all when things go well.
I’ve dealt with Lyme disease for the past 6 years and while I’m better at managing my symptoms, my most challenging moments are always when my body doesn’t want to keep up with my mind and my drive and I have to practice what I preach – slow down, take breaks, listen to my body, and trust that the important things will get done.
Just keep swimming. That’s on loan from Dory.
My mom and my grandma – two women who worked extremely hard, stand for what they feel is right, and make their own decisions. They’ve taught me how to trust my gut, stand my ground, and follow my instincts even when it’s not the popular viewpoint.
Make it count. Plans will change. Life will happen and things I can’t predict will inevitably mess with my ultimate plan. But, if I can go with the flow and make sure whatever I’m able to is intentional and has a purpose towards achieving my goals, then I’m making the day count as best I can, and that’s a success in my book.
Everything Is Figureoutable. Thank you, Marie Forleo. I think that at least about 20 times every day.
My main action every day is to get up and do a 10-min full-body stretch and meditation so I’m reach for any other actions on my list.
Today I spoke to a group of students at Five Towns College about self-care and how to make the most after graduation. I love spending time with students, helping them gain a new perspective on what “the real world” is like and how to better navigate it.
Slow. The. F*ck. Down.
My Pic of the Day: I love strong women and I love women who support other women. Ariel Hyatt is one of those badasses and working in this industry and meeting awesome people like Yann lunga wouldn’t be as fun without her.
A Day in My Life:
What do you love most about Your City?
I do grow a little tired of the constant noise, but I love how accessible everything is. If I want food at 1am there’s always someone who can deliver it to me, there are trains, buses and cabs I can grab right outside my apartment, and I’m surrounded by the most creative people in the world who inspire me daily.
Favorite breakfast meal and restaurant?
I love a toasted bagel and a tall hot chocolate from Starbucks to start my day.
What are you doing at…
6am: I’ve probably just headed into bed around 3 or 4 am so I’m in a deep sleep by now.
10am: I wake up around 9:30 am, do a 10 minute, full-body stretch, walk my dog, Pepper, and then by 10:30 am the latest I’m at my desk getting ready to start my work day.
12pm: At 12pm I am fully in my zone. I time block my schedule, something I train my clients in, and during the early afternoon I’m usually creating content for my brand; two days a week are dedicated to client calls during this block.
Favorite lunch spot/meal?
I LOVE work afternoons at Panera. Everything always tastes so fresh and I love that they deliver now! I can stay in my apartment and work with my favorite playlist playing or, when the weather’s nice I like to walk approximately 1 mile to the one in my neighborhood and get in a little sunshine and exercise between projects.
7pm: At this time I’m on break, enjoying time with friends at a happy hour or vegging out on my couch and catching shows I’ve missed on Hulu.
11pm: This is usually when I get my second wind and I’m back at it. I’m a total night owl and, living in an apartment building in NYC, it’s a great time to work on my podcast. Construction outside is done, neighbors’ babies are tucked in, and I’m in my creative sweet-spot until about 2 or 3 am.
What drink do you need to get through the day and at the end (and how many)?
During the cold months I need a hot chocolate from Starbucks every morning. During the warm months, water is my go-to, but I LOVE a chocolate Shake Shack shake during my mid-day break. A little secret: I’ve never had coffee.
Most used App/Favorite Instagram Account?
Most used app is IG and favorite account is probably @moderntinyliving – such cute
photos and inspiration, as I’m actually entering the tiny house movement!
What should everyone try at least once?
Traveling alone. I’ve experienced so many personal breakthroughs and realizations
while traveling on my own; it’s enabled me to find my voice and the confidence
needed to run my own business.
Where do you enjoy getting lost?
In a new album. I know it’s a singles/playlisting market, but I still love hitting play on a concept album, sitting with the liner notes, and imagining the entire process of putting the album together.
How did you get into the industry?
I majored in Music Business at Drexel University. I always wanted to be in the industry as a behind the scenes advocate for musicians, I just didn’t know what shape that would take until I finished my master’s degree in psychology from Queens College. I realized how many musicians needed someone to advocate for their self-care and self-preservation. After hiring a business coach I learned the art of working smarter and I made it my mission to un-train creatives from the “hustle” they’ve adopted at the cost of their health.
Career advice to those in your industry?
It all feels counter-intuitive to what we’ve been taught in the music industry, but slow
down and say “No” more often. Not everything is as urgent as it feels. Give yourself time to get clear on what you want and turn down anything that doesn’t serve you in gaining what you want, no matter how great the opportunity may seem. Get rid of the word “should” and be brave enough to do what feels right. If you’re wrong, dust yourself off and try again, always on your terms.
Any emerging industry trends?
I don’t know if it’s emerging, but I think the industry is finally realizing that the fans, not the corporations, are the gatekeepers. Success in this industry, even more than before, is based on relationships. Giving your fans true, authentic engagement and attention will do more for your music than chasing the attention of an A&R rep or venue promoter.
Ideal experience for a customer/client?
Music professionals come to me because they’re tired of feeling overwhelmed and burnt out. There are so many falsehoods out there about success and there are so many unrealistic expectations we set for ourselves, clients receive an active listener who can reflect what they’re feeling back to them with a myriad of solutions and tools to help them get where they want to be without the guilt, second-guessing, and strain on their personal lives.
How do you motivate others?
I help identify in others how they can motivate themselves. We are all moved by something different – some are driven by competition, some need more empathy and forgiveness so they can let go and let live, and others need to be excited by a deep passion they haven’t yet uncovered. It’s a long, winding road out there and the only way to keep climbing is to learn how to be your own motivator.
What Else To Know?
The 2019 Rock/Star Life Planner will change any creative’s life if they’re looking to build a sustainable career from their passions and it’s currently on sale here. I also offer 1:1 coaching, team mediation (counseling for teams and bands), and my new service Rock/Star Slackers™ is a weekly accountability and group coaching program is a monthly subscription service that allows music professionals to stay on course with their goals while having the support of a team of others who are in similar situations and direct access to me when they get stuck.