Welcome back to a new season of “The Patients Speak,” where we’re committed to listening to patients’ stories and journeys, beyond just the medical aspect.
In this episode, we’re joined by Jeanne-Mari Retief, CEO of Figgi Beauty and Healthcare, to discuss her experiences with panic disorders and anxiety, and how these challenges have intersected with her business journey.
When Jeanne turned 35, she experienced great change, contemplation, confusion, frustration, and joy. She invested so much of her energy in becoming an expert in her field, but realized that the career she had built with a single-minded focus no longer fulfilled or inspired her. It was a confusing and frightening realization. Facing a health and soul crisis she decided to make a big change. She integrated her human rights background into FIGGI which allowed her to seek serenity and still experience the adrenaline rush of creating something new. This is what FIGGI is to her! It is her Best Life – It is her FIGGI Life.
Jeanne shares how she was diagnosed with panic disorder after a frightening episode while traveling. She emphasizes the difficulty of conveying the complex nature of panic disorder to others, as it goes beyond mere stress or anxiety and impacts various aspects of daily life. She recalls a doctor’s insensitive response that greatly affected her and highlights the need for medical professionals to approach patients with compassion and understanding, especially during vulnerable moments.
Discussing her pivot to create Figgi Beauty, Jeanne explains how her personal struggles with skin sensitivity due to anxiety-related symptoms led her to develop a skincare line. The brand represents self-acceptance and offers a holistic approach to self-care for individuals in high-stress professions.
Throughout the conversation, Jeanne emphasizes the importance of acknowledging the holistic nature of mental health issues. She encourages healthcare providers to approach patients with compassion, help them understand their condition, and explore treatment options with fewer side effects. She also touches on the idea of self-actualization by referring to her customers as “goddesses,” aiming to inspire self-celebration and self-awareness.
The episode ends with a reminder that patients are not defined solely by their medical conditions; they are individuals with dreams, aspirations, and lives beyond their illnesses. Stay tuned for more engaging conversations on “The Patients Speak.”
Hosted by Mark Stinson, produced by BSB Media