We all know that the best moms out there have capes hiding under their regular clothes. They are gifted with the ability to do it all, while still making sure their cherished children are smiling. Molly Sims’ world revolves around her three kids, yet she manages to thrive in various careers simultaneously, from modeling and acting to starting her own jewelry line and getting involved in philanthropy. We asked her to give us the rundown on her professional and personal life, and how they seem to coexist so seamlessly.
1. Can you tell us a bit about your personal background? Where did you grow up and what was your childhood like?
Family is the most important thing to me. I grew up in Kentucky with my mom, dad, and brother in a very close-knit family. My brother and I love to get our families together with our parents. We do this frequently because our time with each other is very precious. Everything my parents taught me, I instill in my own children. My mom taught me to love unconditionally, and my dad taught me to never give up.
2. When did you enter the modeling world? How were you discovered and what were your first impressions of the industry?
At the end of my sophomore year in college, a girlfriend who had experience in modeling suggested I take some photos with a fashion photographer she'd worked with in Memphis. So I drove myself down to Memphis, took my first ever modeling pictures, and sent them off to the New York agencies. When a few agreed to meet me, I flew out with my mom and I was signed with Next Model Management.
3. Can you share any anecdotes for what it was like being a model and whether or not you felt supported by the industry or industry mentors or not? Were there any specific challenges you had to overcome/lessons you learned?
The number one thing you have to accept in the modeling industry is hearing the word “no." You're never going to be the tallest or most beautiful girl in the room, but you can be the most determined. I had to learn to accept this and never give up my determination to succeed.
"My brother and I love to get our families together with our parents. We do this frequently because our time with each other is very precious. Everything my parents taught me, I instill in my own children. My mom taught me to love unconditionally, and my dad taught me to never give up." Photo courtesy of mollysims.com
4. Please share a bit about what life was like for you as you as an actor. What were some of the highlights/challenges?
Acting for me was a dream come true. I feel so lucky to have had my experience on the show Las Vegas. It ran for five years (which was practically unheard of) and that cast became my second family.
"My son has always been affected by eczema, not crazy bad, but it flares up where we need hydrocortisone. I found [ProCure] and it uses coconut oil and is very emollient. It doesn't sting or burn, and it makes his eczema feel so much better"
5. Do you have any advice for balancing motherhood and marriage? Do you have any go-to philosophies or life mottos?
You have to take each day at a time. Being a mom is my greatest joy. My family, or my "tribe of five" as I like to call us, is my entire life.
6. What advice do you give for women who have a really bad day/month/etc? What has helped you dust yourself off and put yourself out there after a set back?
Never let a bad day get you down. This industry is tough and it will knock you down, but if you want to succeed, you can never stop working. It's easy to look in the mirror and critique yourself, but you have to remember you are beautiful and strong, and that if you believe in yourself, you will accomplish your goals.
7. Can you speak about your experience in business and entrepreneurship, including launching your own jewelry line? What was that like? Can you share the challenges/high points?
I launched my signature jewelry line called Grayce with HSN in 2010. It was a great experience learning how to put myself out there creatively in ways other than modeling and acting. I have my own sense of style, so I wasn't sure if people would appreciate what I found stylish. It truly was a great experience that kickstarted everything else I've done.8. How did you get involved with ProCure? Do you use it personally? Can you share what it does for you? How do you work with the brand?
Being a mom of three you have to be organized at all times. It started when I created travel kits and first-aid kids for each of my kids. My son has always been affected by eczema, not crazy bad, but it flares up where we need hydrocortisone. I found [ProCure] and it uses coconut oil and is very emollient. It doesn't sting or burn, and it makes his eczema feel so much better. So that's ultimately how I got involved. I try to use things that are paraben-free and as organic as possible. It really takes any itch, burn, or pain away.
9. Can you talk briefly about the philanthropic causes that you champion? Please share why these are your passion projects?
Giving back is so important to me and it's something my entire family cares about. I'm passionate about Baby2Baby and everything they do for low-income children. At my son Brooks' sixth birthday party we just did a backpack drive for Baby2Baby. Instead of bringing gifts, guests brought backpacks to donate.
10. Any fun summer plans? Can you share any tips for navigating family vacations while still looking cool, calm and under control?
We always spend summer in the Hamptons. It's such a great getaway from LA and gives us a chance to slow down and be together. While traveling with my babies can be tough, I always keep my big bag of tricks with me. We've got snacks on hand, legos, bottles...anything you could need!
11. Who would you want to play you in a movie about your life?
Definitely Sarah Jessica Parker. She'd add a little glam, a little humor, and a lot of style.
12. What is the first thing you do in the morning?
The first thing I do in the morning is get myself and my children dressed and ready for the day. Although getting kids up and dressed can be the most challenging part of the morning, I make it a priority to prepare ahead of time and pick out all of our outfits the night before. This is the best way to get the morning started on the right foot.
13. What is your biggest beauty secret?
My biggest beauty secret is skincare. When your skin is fresh and flawless you can tackle anything. I love serums, moisturizers, face masks, eye patches...you name it. I'm currently loving the Summer Fridays Jet Lag Mask created by Marianna Hewitt and Lauren Gores Ireland. It's the best for travel, and as a busy mom I'm always on the go.
14. Please name something that is always in your purse.
In my bag I always have Wet Ones (I'm a mom, so that's an obvious one), some type of moisturizer, a pair of sunglasses, and snacks.
15. What is your go-to karaoke song?
If you know me, you know I'm a huge karaoke fanatic. Give me a mic and I will sing my heart out. I love a good, upbeat song.
For decades, women have been unknowingly suffering from PSD and intergenerational trauma, but now Dr. Valerie Rein wants women to reclaim their power through mind, body and healing tools.
As women, no matter how many accomplishments we have or how successful we look on the outside, we all occasionally hear that nagging internal voice telling us to do more. We criticize ourselves more than anyone else and then throw ourselves into the never-ending cycle of self-care, all in effort to save ourselves from crashing into this invisible internal wall. According to psychologist, entrepreneur and author, Dr. Valerie Rein, these feelings are not your fault and there is nothing wrong with you— but chances are you definitely suffering from Patriarchy Stress Disorder.
Patriarchy Stress Disorder (PSD) is defined as the collective inherited trauma of oppression that forms an invisible inner barrier to women's happiness and fulfillment. The term was coined by Rein who discovered a missing link between trauma and the effects that patriarchal power structures have had on certain groups of people all throughout history up until the present day. Her life experience, in addition to research, have led Rein to develop a deeper understanding of the ways in which men and women are experiencing symptoms of trauma and stress that have been genetically passed down from previously oppressed generations.
What makes the discovery of this disorder significant is that it provides women with an answer to the stresses and trauma we feel but cannot explain or overcome. After being admitted to the ER with stroke-like symptoms one afternoon, when Rein noticed the left side of her body and face going numb, she was baffled to learn from her doctors that the results of her tests revealed that her stroke-like symptoms were caused by stress. Rein was then left to figure out what exactly she did for her clients in order for them to be able to step into the fullness of themselves that she was unable to do for herself. "What started seeping through the tears was the realization that I checked all the boxes that society told me I needed to feel happy and fulfilled, but I didn't feel happy or fulfilled and I didn't feel unhappy either. I didn't feel much of anything at all, not even stress," she stated.
Photo Courtesy of Dr. Valerie Rein
This raised the question for Rein as to what sort of hidden traumas women are suppressing without having any awareness of its presence. In her evaluation of her healing methodology, Rein realized that she was using mind, body and trauma healing tools with her clients because, while they had never experienced a traumatic event, they were showing the tell-tale symptoms of trauma which are described as a disconnect from parts of ourselves, body and emotions. In addition to her personal evaluation, research at the time had revealed that traumatic experiences are, in fact, passed down genetically throughout generations. This was Rein's lightbulb moment. The answer to a very real problem that she, and all women, have been experiencing is intergenerational trauma as a result of oppression formed under the patriarchy.
Although Rein's discovery would undoubtably change the way women experience and understand stress, it was crucial that she first broaden the definition of trauma not with the intention of catering to PSD, but to better identify the ways in which trauma presents itself in the current generation. When studying psychology from the books and diagnostic manuals written exclusively by white men, trauma was narrowly defined as a life-threatening experience. By that definition, not many people fit the bill despite showing trauma-like symptoms such as disconnections from parts of their body, emotions and self-expression. However, as the field of psychology has expanded, more voices have been joining the conversations and expanding the definition of trauma based on their lived experience. "I have broadened the definition to say that any experience that makes us feel unsafe psychically or emotionally can be traumatic," stated Rein. By redefining trauma, people across the gender spectrum are able to find validation in their experiences and begin their journey to healing these traumas not just for ourselves, but for future generations.
While PSD is not experienced by one particular gender, as women who have been one of the most historically disadvantaged and oppressed groups, we have inherited survival instructions that express themselves differently for different women. For some women, this means their nervous systems freeze when faced with something that has been historically dangerous for women such as stepping into their power, speaking out, being visible or making a lot of money. Then there are women who go into fight or flight mode. Although they are able to stand in the spotlight, they pay a high price for it when their nervous system begins to work in a constant state of hyper vigilance in order to keep them safe. These women often find themselves having trouble with anxiety, intimacy, sleeping or relaxing without a glass of wine or a pill. Because of this, adrenaline fatigue has become an epidemic among high achieving women that is resulting in heightened levels of stress and anxiety.
"For the first time, it makes sense that we are not broken or making this up, and we have gained this understanding by looking through the lens of a shared trauma. All of these things have been either forbidden or impossible for women. A woman's power has always been a punishable offense throughout history," stated Rein.
Although the idea of having a disorder may be scary to some and even potentially contribute to a victim mentality, Rein wants people to be empowered by PSD and to see it as a diagnosis meant to validate your experience by giving it a name, making it real and giving you a means to heal yourself. "There are still experiences in our lives that are triggering PSD and the more layers we heal, the more power we claim, the more resilience we have and more ability we have in staying plugged into our power and happiness. These triggers affect us less and less the more we heal," emphasized Rein. While the task of breaking intergenerational transmission of trauma seems intimidating, the author has flipped the negative approach to the healing journey from a game of survival to the game of how good can it get.
In her new book, Patriarchy Stress Disorder: The Invisible Barrier to Women's Happiness and Fulfillment, Rein details an easy system for healing that includes the necessary tools she has sourced over 20 years on her healing exploration with the pioneers of mind, body and trauma resolution. Her 5-step system serves to help "Jailbreakers" escape the inner prison of PSD and other hidden trauma through the process of Waking Up in Prison, Meeting the Prison Guards, Turning the Prison Guards into Body Guards, Digging the Tunnel to Freedom and Savoring Freedom. Readers can also find free tools on Rein's website to help aid in their healing journey and exploration.
"I think of the book coming out as the birth of a movement. Healing is not women against men– it's women, men and people across the gender spectrum, coming together in a shared understanding that we all have trauma and we can all heal."