101 episodes

Erik DaRosa and Marc Fernandes, two men who are candid and vulnerable about their own mental health struggles, are upending the front-end of the mental health space. Each week, they tackle different mental health topics through honest and relatable “kitchen table” conversations with real people who are helping to shatter mental health stigmas and find their voices. We aim to normalize discussions around mental health topics and remind our audience they are not alone, there is strength in community and "it's perfectly ok to not always be ok."

From Survivor to Thriver Erik DaRosa & Marc Fernandes

    • Health & Fitness
    • 4.8 • 49 Ratings

Erik DaRosa and Marc Fernandes, two men who are candid and vulnerable about their own mental health struggles, are upending the front-end of the mental health space. Each week, they tackle different mental health topics through honest and relatable “kitchen table” conversations with real people who are helping to shatter mental health stigmas and find their voices. We aim to normalize discussions around mental health topics and remind our audience they are not alone, there is strength in community and "it's perfectly ok to not always be ok."

    Healing from Anger and Anxiety, Practicing ACT Therapy, and Being More Present with Tony Hardman

    Healing from Anger and Anxiety, Practicing ACT Therapy, and Being More Present with Tony Hardman

    Do you struggle with anxiety or anger? 


    These are important mental health issues and different forms of therapy work for different people. In this episode of From Survivor To Thriver, we sat down with Tony Hardman to talk about his journey struggling with anxiety and anger issues and how he found healing through ACT therapy and by sharing his story through his blog and podcast. 


    Tony Hardman is the founder of Not Quite Zen, a blog and podcast focused on providing mental health support from the perspective of a survivor. Tony has struggled with severe depression, anxiety, and anger since he was a child. 


    Cursed with a family history of mental health issues, and early childhood trauma, finding a path to calm was a journey 35 years in the making. While he’s still anxious and has bad days, the real truth is he’ll never be fully done growing. These days he shares his experience through Not Quite Zen in hopes that he can help others learn how to get better faster.  


    In today’s episode we cover: 


    How to conquer anxiety Working through a mental health crisisTony’s mental health journey Acceptance and commitment therapy What anger and anxiety can look like Why you sometimes need to hit rock bottom Breaking the stigma around mental health Cognitive defusion The differences between CBT and ACT therapy The Association for Contextual Behavior Science Connecting with the present momentThe small steps that make a big difference 

    We hope you enjoyed our conversation with Tony. If you want to learn more from him, make sure to visit his website and follow him on Instagram. You can also listen to his podcast here. To learn more about the Association for Contextual Behavior Science, visit their website here. 


    Thanks again for tuning in. We are so grateful to each and every one of you. Please remember to leave a rating and review of our show. It helps us grow and reach those who need it. Also, make sure to subscribe so you never miss an episode! 



    Links: 
    Check out Not Quite Zen
    Follow Tony on Instagram
    Listen to Tony’s podcast
    Learn more about ACBS
    Follow us on Facebook
    Follow us on Instagram
    Follow us on TikTok
    Get in touch: amgits.reverse@gmail.com
    “Don’t give up. Be a huge advocate for yourself. If something is not working, you’ve got to do something about it.” -Tony


    “There is really important work that happens when you’re in crisis.” -Marc 


    “Before something, like talking about mental health,  can become the norm, it's going to make a lot of people uncomfortable at first.” Erik

    • 1 hr 8 min
    Mental Health Healing, Recovering From Addiction and Finding a Purpose After Prison with Keri Blakinger

    Mental Health Healing, Recovering From Addiction and Finding a Purpose After Prison with Keri Blakinger

    In this episode of From Survivor to Thriver,  we sat down with Keri Blakinger who struggled with mental health issues, chronic suicidal ideation, and drug addiction for years before it landed her in prison for two years. 
    Keri shares her story of how she emerged from the depths of depression and addiction and found healing with journalism and community. 
    Keri Blakinger is a Texas-based journalist and the author of Corrections in Ink, a memoir which details her path from aspiring professional figure skater, to her two years spent in prison after she was arrested in 2010 during her final semester of her senior year at Cornell University with six ounces of heroin, to prison and, finally, to life as an investigative reporter covering mass incarceration. 
    Today she is a staff writer at The Marshall Project, whose work focuses on prisons and where she is the organization's first formerly incarcerated reporter. She previously covered criminal justice for the Houston Chronicle, and her work has appeared in the Washington Post Magazine, VICE, the New York Daily News, and The New York Times.  
    In today’s episode we cover: 
    Surrounding yourself with people who understand your experienceKeri’s mental health struggles and why she turned to heroinDrugs as an escape mechanism Chronic suicidal ideationWhat happened after Keri attempted to take her own lifeWhy prison isn’t a way to enforce sobriety How journalism helped Keri find a communitySelf-careWe hope you enjoyed our conversation with Keri. Make sure to visit her website and follow her on Instagram. You can check out her book, Corrections in Ink: A Memoir here. 
    Thanks again for tuning in. We are so grateful to each and every one of you. Please remember to leave a rating and review of our show. It helps us grow and reach those who need it. Also, make sure to subscribe so you never miss an episode! 
    Links: 
    Visit Keri’s website
    Get Keri’s book
    Follow her on Instagram
    Follow her on TikTok
    Learn more about The Marshall Project
    Follow us on Facebook
    Follow us on Instagram
    Follow us on TikTok
    Get in touch: amgits.reverse@gmail.com
    “There’s nothing I can say that is going to make depression easier to live through, but people do live through it.” -Keri
    “Sometimes when you’re learning something new and there’s a compound failure where you’re beating your head against the wall, that leaves a mark.” -Marc
    “Mental health issues don’t just suddenly go away.” -Erik

    • 56 min
    Bravery and Finding True Happiness After Battling Depression with Dannie De Novo

    Bravery and Finding True Happiness After Battling Depression with Dannie De Novo

    For some people that suffer from depression and anxiety, medication is not enough. Despite their best efforts to get better, it just doesn’t help. If this sounds like what you’ve experienced, you aren’t alone. 
    In this episode of From Survivor to Thriver, we sat down with Dannie De Novo to talk about her journey through severe depression and suicidal thoughts. After trying multiple medications and even electro-shock therapy, she found that her body just didn’t respond to any of them. Even her doctors were at a loss for how to help her.  
    In this episode, Dannie shares how, after becoming a mother and gaining a new perspective, she decided to be brave, take it into her own hands and find her own way back to happiness. 
    Dannie De Novo is an award-winning happiness coach, attorney, speaker, single mom, and international bestselling author. After having battled depression and anxiety for most of her early life, Dannie set out on a course to learn what true happiness was for her and for the sake of her baby girl. 
    Today, Dannie regularly appears on ABC, Fox, NBC, and CBS TV news and talk shows as an expert on creating happiness, combating loneliness and depression, managing anxiety, and being brave.  
    In today’s episode we cover: 
    Dannie’s mental health journeyThe side effects of depression medicationsDepression and anxiety among children and parentsDanni’s experience with electro-shock therapyThe issues with mental health treatmentHow motherhood changed her perspectiveHer experience studying happinessHow she became a happiness coachBeing in alignment with the things that you wantThe impact of social media on our mental health

    We hope you enjoyed our conversation with Dannie. If you want to learn more from her, make sure to visit her website and follow her on social media. 
    Thanks again for tuning in. We are so grateful to each and every one of you. Please remember to leave a rating and review of our show. It helps us grow and reach those who need it. Also, make sure to subscribe so you never miss an episode! 



    Links: 
    Check out Dannie’s website
    Check out Dannie’s books
    Connect with Dannie on LinkedIn 
    Follow her on Instagram 
    Follow her on YouTube
    Follow her on Facebook
    Follow her on TikTok
    Follow us on Facebook
    Follow us on Instagram
    Follow us on TikTok
    Get in touch: amgits.reverse@gmail.com


    Quotes: 


    “I was studying happiness for my daughter but it was rapidly changing my life.” -Dannie


    “I immersed myself into the study of happiness and writing it down and putting it into words that I could one day teach to my daughter.” -Dannie


    “We often don’t get better for ourselves. We get better for someone else.” -Marc


    “We get so comfortable being who we are and doing what we do that we fear the idea of doing something new and liking it.” -Erik

    • 1 hr 25 min
    Developing Deeper Connections And Finding Community By Understanding Yourself with Lee Hopkins

    Developing Deeper Connections And Finding Community By Understanding Yourself with Lee Hopkins

    Have you ever felt lonely and misunderstood? For many people, these feelings make it even harder to find meaningful connections and friendships. 


    In this episode of From Survivor to Thriver, we sat down with Lee Hopkins to dive into the topic of friendship and finding your tribe by searching within. After moving from state to state and struggling to find his people, Lee began therapy and realized that he had to start by taking a look at himself. After that, he found that his ability to form deeper connections and friendships grew significantly. 


    Lee Hopkins is a transgender man and coach who helps people create lasting friendships. For several years, he didn’t have supportive people who knew the real him in his life. After struggling with loneliness most of his life, he's tried various ways to resolve it without success. However, on his journey to make friends, he discovered that the more he learned about himself, the better he was able to connect with others. 


    These days, he helps others create the fulfilling friendships and relationships that they deserve and during today’s conversation will show us how this is possible for everyone.  


    In today’s episode we cover: 


    The tools now available for deeper connectionsHow Lee found his people in the LGBTQ+ communityThe truth about finding your tribe The impact therapy had on Lee’s lifeHow his gender identity impacted his ability to form relationshipsWhat happens when you hide your true self from othersWhy knowing yourself is so important when forming connectionsBeing open and vulnerable with othersThe three things you need to understand to make better connectionsWhat to do if you’re feeling lonely and misunderstood

    We hope you enjoyed our conversation with Lee. If you want to hear more from him, make sure to visit his website and follow him on social media. 


    Thanks again for tuning in. We are so grateful to each and every one of you. Please remember to leave a rating and review of our show. It helps us grow and reach those who need it. Also, make sure to subscribe so you never miss an episode! 



    Links: 
    Visit Lee’s website
    Follow Lee on Instagram
    Follow Lee on TikTok
    Check out Lee’s YouTube channel
    Follow Lee on Twitter
    Follow us on Facebook
    Follow us on Instagram
    Follow us on TikTok
    Get in touch: amgits.reverse@gmail.com


    Quotes: 


    “The idea of finding your tribe is true, but it’s not something that is outward. It’s something that you do inside and then you end up being in the right place and meeting the right people.” -Lee
    “Not only do you cause yourself harm by hiding, but you lose the opportunity to connect, help, and teach others.” -Marc
    “If we focused on the ‘why’ more then people wouldn’t focus so much on the ‘what’. It won’t matter anymore.” -Erik

    • 1 hr 9 min
    Color and Beauty for Everyone: Mental Health Among the LGBTQ+ Community with Andrew Velazquez

    Color and Beauty for Everyone: Mental Health Among the LGBTQ+ Community with Andrew Velazquez

    In this special episode of From Survivor to Thriver, we had the honor of sitting down with Andrew Velazquez to talk about his journey as a member of the LGBTQ+ community and how he uses his experience as someone who has suffered from trauma and thoughts of suicide to help others in a similar position. 
    He recently released his book, “Amore es Arte | Arte es Amore. Love is Art | Art is Love” with a goal to be a source of positivity and light to all. 
    Andrew Velazquez is a born and bred Angeleno who always knew he was meant for a life in beauty. He is the founder of Love is Art, Art is Love cosmetics and a finalist on American Beauty Star. In a star-studded career, Andrew has worked as a makeup artist with major celebrities, from Lady Gaga to RuPaul to Demi Levato, along with countless others on major film, TV and music video productions. 
    Growing up in Boyle Heights on the eastside of Los Angeles, in the closet and raised in a macho environment, he turned to his faith in God and the support of his mother, who encouraged him to attend the Los Angeles Music and Art School. 
    After earning his G.E.D., he attended LA Trade Tech at the age of 16 and graduated with a degree in Fashion Merchandising. Shortly thereafter, he attended cosmetology school at West Valley Occupational Center, graduating with honors and receiving his license. 
    While rising through the ranks of MAC and Anastasia Beverly Hills, he built a loyal following in film, TV, music and fashion before being selected for American Beauty Star and launching his own cosmetics line.  
    Andrew currently lives with his dogs and husband Johnny Debut in Orlando, Florida.  
    In today’s episode we cover: 
    How trauma transformed Andrew Taking control of your own power The impact of our wordsChoosing positivity and lightHow Andrew grounds himself when he is feeling anxietyThe healing power of animalsWhat’s happening now within the LGBTQ+ communityThe importance of vulnerability among menThe impact of music and the artsMentorship

    We hope you enjoyed our conversation with Andrew. If you want to hear more from her, make sure to follow him on Instagram and get your hands on a copy of his new book here. 
    Thanks again for tuning in. We are so grateful to each and every one of you. Please remember to leave a rating and review of our show. It helps us grow and reach those who need it. Also, make sure to subscribe so you never miss an episode! 
    Links: 
    Get Andrew’s book
    Follow Andrew on Instagram
    Check out Andrew’s website
    Follow us on Facebook
    Follow us on Instagram
    Follow us on TikTok
    Get in touch: amgits.reverse@gmail.com
    “Positivity can win. It can always be the light at the end of the dark tunnel.” -Andrew
    “Animals are really great healers.” -Erik
    “We don’t find our partners often until we are comfortable in our own skin.” -Marc

    • 1 hr 12 min
    Mindful Eating and Intermittent Fasting for Physical and Mental Healing with Fred Rutman

    Mindful Eating and Intermittent Fasting for Physical and Mental Healing with Fred Rutman

     Have you heard of intermittent fasting? 
    It’s the practice of switching between fasting and eating on a regular schedule. While most people think of it in terms of the physical effects, it can also positively impact your mental health. 
    In this episode of From Survivor to Thriver, we sat down with Fred Rutman who has died and come back to life numerous times. This brought serious physical and mental health challenges for him but he found healing through intermittent fasting. 
    Fred Rutman known as “Repeatedly Dead Fred”, has had 11 heart procedures in 11 years, been clinically dead dozens of times, suffered dozens of concussions, PTSD, Post-concussion syndrome, brain trauma, defective pacemakers, and botched surgeries. To put the icing on the cake, you can throw in multiple incidences of cognitive medical bias and misdiagnoses.  
    Through it all, his faith and belief/practice of Judaism was rocked to the core. He also discovered the most powerful prophylactic medicinal tool we have - Intermittent Fasting. If we are supposed to make lemonade out of life’s lemons, then he is making the best lemonade ever produced. 
    In today’s episode we cover: 
    Fred’s health journeyThe Lazarus EffectHow social anxiety impacted his lifeThe cost of men not speaking up about mental health issuesThe problem with our education systemsWhy learning something new helps with brain trauma The power of intermittent fastingHow it helps your body healThe importance of mindful eatingHow Fred’s mental health has improved

    We hope you enjoyed our conversation with Fred. If you want to hear more from her, make sure to follow him on Instagram and watch for the release of his new book The Summer I Died 20 Times. You can also email him at repeatedly.dead.fred@gmail.com.
    Thanks again for tuning in. We are so grateful to each and every one of you. Please remember to leave a rating and review of our show. It helps us grow and reach those who need it. Also, make sure to subscribe so you never miss an episode! 


    Links: 
    Fast. Feast. Repeat. By Gin Stephens 
    The Obesity Code by Dr. Jason Fung
    Follow Fred on Instagram
    Connect with Fred on LinkedIn
    Follow Fred on Facebook
    Follow us on Facebook
    Follow us on Instagram
    Follow us on TikTok
    Get in touch: amgits.reverse@gmail.com
    “Intermittent fasting is the most effective non-medicinal tool that most doctors have and not many of them use it.” -Fred


    “I try to be very specific about the foods that I put into my body.” -Erik


    “Theory only takes us so far. We need theory to challenge practicality, but you can’t do that without practicality.” -Marc

    • 1 hr 15 min

Customer Reviews

4.8 out of 5
49 Ratings

49 Ratings

De'Vannon ,

Excellent Tag Team!!!

Erik and Marc make an incredible team. I admire their willingness and ability to be vulnerable and transparent about their mental health struggles.

mcdigger ,

For real?

???

TheFarb1 ,

Your time to Thrive!

If you’re looking for candid, insightful, humors (at times) conversation about a topic that is often difficult to discuss, you’ve come to the right place! Eric and Marc have found the right formula to address Mental Health in a familiar and comfortable way by making themselves and their guests relatable to anyone listening. Whether you’re a regular listener or someone who uses it as a “check-in”, from Survivor to Thriver is a thoughtful and engaging approach to a topic most people dance around.

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