On this episode of the Healthy, Wealthy and Smart Podcast, I welcome Leigh Hurst on the show to discuss breast cancer awareness. Leigh Hurst is a breast cancer survivor and the founder of the Feel Your Boobies® Foundation, which she started to educate young women (under 40) by reminding them to “feel their boobies” – a call to action that can save their life. Feel Your Boobies® is one of the largest followed breast cancer awareness foundations on Facebook and has inspired women all over the world to feel for lumps starting before they are formally screened for breast cancer. And, most importantly, it has directly resulted in countless women finding lumps early and giving them a better shot at living a full, meaningful life after their diagnosis. The Feel Your Boobies® Foundation has been featured in The New York Times, New York Daily News, and other national publications. At one point, Feel Your Boobies® was the largest cause on Facebook, with more than 1 million supporters.
In this episode, we discuss:
-Leigh’s experience advocating for her own breast cancer diagnosis
-The story behind the Feel Your Boobies Foundation
-Why women need to prioritize self-care
-The voices of breast cancer survivors in the book Say Something Big
-And so much more!
For more information Leigh:
LEIGH HURST is a breast cancer survivor and the founder of the Feel Your Boobies® Foundation, which she started educate young women (under 40) by reminding them to feel their boobies – a call to action that can save their life. Feel Your Boobies® is one of the largest followed breast cancer awareness foundations on Facebook and has inspired women all over the world to feel for lumps starting before they are formally screened for breast cancer. And, most importantly, it has directly resulted in countless women finding lumps early and giving them a better shot at living a full, meaningful life after their diagnosis. The Feel Your Boobies® Foundation has been featured in The New York Times, New York Daily News, and other national publications. At one point, Feel Your Boobies® was the largest cause on Facebook, with more than 1 million supporters.
Hurst is also the author of the new book, Say Something Big: Feel Your Boobies, Find Your Voice. Stories About Little Lumps Inspiring Big Change (Oct. 2020) Beyond her work with Feel Your Boobies®, Leigh regularly speaks to audiences large and small, sharing her own personal journey and inspiring others to “Say Something Big” amidst life’s hurdles and hardships. She resides in Pennsylvania with her family. Feel Your Boobies® uses innovation around media to reach women across the world with their important message.
For more information, visit www.leighhurst.com or www.feelyourboobies.com, and connect with Leigh on Instagram, Facebook, and LinkedIn.
Read the full transcript below:
Karen Litzy (00:01):
Hi, Leigh, welcome to the podcast. I’m happy to have you on.
Leigh Hurst (00:05):
Thanks for having me, happy to be here.
Karen Litzy (00:07):
Yeah. And now we’re in the month of October. And for those of people who don’t know October is breast cancer awareness month. And in the past, I’ve had shows about breast cancer during the month of October, but this is the first time I am speaking to a breast cancer survivor. So thank you so much for coming on and sharing your story because I know it’s going to be so helpful for other women and men listening to this podcast. So before we kind of get into everything, I’m going to just throw it over to you so that you can just kind of tell your story how old you were when you were diagnosed. How did you find out? So I’ll send it over to you.
Leigh Hurst (00:51):
Okay, cool. Thank you. So I was officially diagnosed when I was 33 that I had felt the lump for some time leading up to the actual diagnosis. So I think I was probably around 30 or 31 when I started to notice the lump. And I was living in New York city at the time and I was a marathon runner. So really health conscious, certainly educated about my health felt very kind of plugged into that kind of thing. And for a little while, I didn’t really think much about it. I just thought it was, you know, something no big deal. I really small breasts. So I felt like when I’d go to the doctors, I’d let them sort of do their exam of my breasts and they would never notice it until I would point it out. So I would literally take their hand, put it on my boob and say, this kind of feels a little different to me.
Leigh Hurst (01:39):
I don’t know if you notice it or not. It’s like a ridge on the outer side of my left breast and then they would feel it and then they would say, I don’t really think that’s anything to worry about. I had no family history, so I wasn’t exceptionally worried about it. Although, as I know now, that’s not necessarily a primary risk factor. It is, but most women diagnosed don’t have a family history. So I was pacified about that for a while. You know, that kind of went on for maybe a year or two. I eventually decided to sort of simplify my life and I moved out in New York city. I was in a really kind of super corporate job, traveled a lot for my work on a weekly basis. And I was just trying to find ways to sort of step out of that.
Leigh Hurst (02:20):
And so I moved back to central PA, which is where I live now. I’m kinda got set up on a house was back near my family and it came time for my annual exam. And I went again to the doctors and again, it wasn’t noticed, but I mentioned it and it was the first time someone’s like, Oh, she probably should just get a mammogram. It can’t hurt to sort of just see if it’s something or not. So that’s how it started and ended up having the mammogram showed some areas of concern, took me right in and did an ultrasound and eventually at the biopsy a couple of weeks later and it did turn out to be cancer. So that was 2004. And you know, needless to say, I was very concerned because I knew I had had the lump for quite some time, so I wasn’t sure what to expect, but it didn’t turn out to be stage one, so early stage breast cancer.
Leigh Hurst (03:09):
And so, yeah, that’s kinda how it started with, you know, finding out that I had a lump and went through treatment. I decided to have a lumpectomy, the lump was small stage one had no lymph node involvement. So that was good. And I did do chemotherapy because I was young. So they suggested that because of being premenopausal and being so young at the time, it was some preventative. So I did chemotherapy than I did seven weeks of daily radiation treatment to the lump site. And then I took five years of a pill called Tamoxifen, which is estrogen reducing medicine at the time they were still prescribing it for five years. I believe now the regimen is 10 years. But so the actual treatment itself was about six months start to finish. And then it was the five years of the Tamoxifen following that.
Karen Litzy (03:59):
And at the age of 33, you must have been kind of shocked. Right. Cause it’s not something that we hear a lot of, you know, like even to get a mammogram, they don’t suggest getting a mammogram until you’re 40.
Leigh Hurst (04:15):
Correct. Yeah. And you know, it was, you know, looking back on it, I remember thinking, gosh, I never talked about breast cancer, never talked about it. I didn’t know anybody who had had it. I’m not even really sure. I knew anybody who’s mother that had had it. So I was really taken aback by that when I was diagnosed and I was single at the time really hadn’t thought about having a family quite yet. You know, I was living in the city, it was very common to still be kind of doing your thing. And so there are other issues that came up other than of course the life or death issue with breast cancer. There were the other possibilities of losing your fertility through chemo. Certainly that’s a possibility certain decisions that you might be faced with can also, you know, if you decide to remove any of your female organs, ovaries, whatever, to minimize your risk, of course, those are big decisions when you haven’t started a family yet.
Leigh Hurst (05:08):
And I wasn’t really sure I was going up, but I didn’t want that choice to be taken away from me. I didn’t want it to be something that I couldn’t do at a later date. So yeah, it was, it was shocking. And you know, out of that, I really started to like, think about why didn’t I talk about this? Why didn’t I think about this? And so that’s kind of how the feel your boobies idea came about is that I just made some t-shirts for friends. Cause I would joke around during my treatment, I was actually still running and I didn’t get sick. So I was really happy about that. And I just made sure that said, feel your boobies for fun. I’d always wanted to make t-shirts. I was kinda crafty kind of thing, you know, hobbies on the side.
Leigh Hurst (05:47):
And so my friend and I mocked up a tee shirt and I got a hundred made, put a website up, my background’s in technology based learning. So I was kind of techie and I’m just send it around to my friends that had lived in the cities where I had moved after grad school. And I started selling shirts to people. I didn’t know, very quickly, it just kind of went viral. I was getting checks in the mail from people. I had no idea who they were. And so, you know, that whole idea of, of using a message, like feel your boobies, which is lighthearted, but very pointed in terms of what it’s trying to get you to do. Made me think about, you know, is this really creating behavior change? Is this creating a meaningful dialogue among a population of women like me that never really talked about it before? Or if they did, it was the third serious town and it was about their mother or it was in the context of a doctor’s office. And so to that accidental t-shirt, that was just a hobby sort of evolved in time into something that took over my life quite honestly, and quickly I had to figure out what I was doing with it. So that’s how the foundation itself came to be.
Karen Litzy (06:53):
Yeah. It’s amazing. The things that happen to you that can just do a 180 and change your life. Right. So you could have had this diagnosis and then just went on and got a job and just went on your way. Right. But instead you were like, wait a second, like I’m young, I never talked about this. There’s gotta be other people out there just like me. So how can I reach them?
Leigh Hurst (07:15):
Right, right. Sort of back fitting it. Right. Because I didn’t create the tee shirt with that in mind, but I watched it happen. And that started to make sense to me with my background in behavior theory and that kind of thing. And so I kind of ran with it and, you know, we were able to support ourselves for quite some time just through t-shirt sales. So fortuitously, unlike other nonprofits that you know, have to submit for grants and you know, really the funding side of it is the tricky part. We were fortunate in those early days the t-shirt sales themselves allowed us to do a lot of creative things through social media before that was a standard way of spreading our message. And so we really tried to leverage the idea of media and the peer to peer sharing because what I saw when somebody would wear the tee shirts, like a happy hour or a cookout was I was watching like a 20 something talk to another 20 something or a guy even who might say your shirt says feel your boobies.
Leigh Hurst (08:16):
Can I feel your boobies? And then they would say, it’s not about that. It’s about breast cancer. Or you got to feel your boobs to see if you find a lump. And to me that was a productive conversation. It was somebody articulating something very simple, but in a playful and a more friendly and lighthearted way than trying to impart stats or other types of things that I think a lot of campaigns do, or certainly they have the aesthetic and the sensibility that feels like it’s for an older woman. So you may relate to it because you’re trying to just be proactive and educate yourself about health. But the messaging itself is not really created for you. It’s not created for the younger population, the style of the images, the style of the graphics, and even the use of the channel that you use to spread it.
Leigh Hurst (09:01):
Right? So a tee shirts, just one way you can not, but you can do that in many other ways. You know, we flew aerial banners up and down the Jersey shore in the summertime on all the very populated beaches. And I’m thinking of these young women that are like dragging themselves out to the beach after going out Friday night. And they see a, you know aerial banner and they say, Oh my God, that says feel your boobies. And I’m like, that’s wonderful. That’s a great way to kind of intersect with them where they are in a way that they can relate to. And, you know, it’s created testimonials from women that say, that’s why they found their lumps. So very proud of the campaign. And eventually I went on and left my corporate career and ran the foundation full time. So it really wouldn’t do that 180 for me, that you mentioned about changing your life. It was definitely that for me.
Karen Litzy (09:50):
Yeah. So we can definitely see how your life has changed after diagnosis, but what are the big lessons that you learned?
Leigh Hurst (10:00):
Well, you know, I definitely learned I’m type A, very much of an ambitious overachiever and, you know,
Karen Litzy (10:06):
Well, I mean, you were in New York city in a corporate job, we get it, that came across.
Leigh Hurst (10:12):
Right. And so you kind of like play these scripts out in your head. Like I really should slow down this. Isn’t really how I want to spend my time. I’m really too busy. I wish I could make more time for X and part of my move home quite honestly, before breast cancer was in an effort to sort of really operationalize some of that stuff to sort of extract myself out of the environment that wasn’t really fueling me anymore. It was draining me. And so, you know, earlier in my career, there’s coast to coast flights on a Monday morning to get to a meeting on time. That was exciting. And as I got older, I’m kind of like, I don’t really want to do that anymore. I don’t care how much money I make. I don’t want to be on a plane. I want to be involved in the place that I live.
Leigh Hurst (10:55):
And so my move was in part to get that going right, to really start to be outside more to, you know, I decided to go part time cause I kept my job in New York city. So I didn’t need the amount of money I was making where I lived anymore. But I didn’t truly step out like that until breast cancer came. And then I quite honestly, I got depressed at the end of my treatment, I got depressed and I took three months off work. I called it my be nice to me times. So I like got weekly massages. I went to get therapy because I felt like I needed to sort of sort through some things, you know, I felt like I should be getting back to normal, but nothing about my life felt normal. Everything had changed, you know, whether or not.
Leigh Hurst (11:39):
So I think during that time is when I started to realize what it meant to say no, that you can say no and not give a reason. And that having lots and lots of friends, which I had is great, but having a lot or having fewer really good friends became more important to me. People that I could really keep in touch with and have meaningful conversations. And my family quite honestly, too, was a big part of that. So I would say that that was the biggest thing slowing down. And I still struggle with that because that’s not my genetic makeup. My genetic makeup is to, you know, attack a problem, and make a change and go through something like breast cancer, trying to get back to normal is tricky because you really can’t change the future. You never know if it’s going to come back.
Leigh Hurst (12:26):
That’s just a fact with breast cancer. And so I think learning to live with the ambiguity of not knowing, you know, and accepting that, truly accepting that that kind of translates out into other parts of your life, where you can, if you really allow yourself to sit in that space, you can apply that to other uncomfortable things that come up, right. Things that happen with your job or relationships or other things that make you feel anxious. Like you want to make a change or you want a resolution immediately. I think I have a better sense of pause around that where I trust that in time things will sort themselves out and I will have a greater sense of peace around whatever it is. I’m stressing about things that came out of that period of time in my life. Yeah. That’s so powerful. I don’t do it well by the way, but I work at it all the time.
Karen Litzy (13:19):
Well, I mean, I think the fact that you were able to identify that as, Hey, listen, this is something that I know I need to work on. And of course we’re all a work in progress. Nothing’s perfect. But to just be able to recognize that and say, I need to make a change. Like this is too much, that’s so powerful. And then to be able to kind of leave the city, move to central PA and say, I know I’m doing this for me. And that was even before the diagnosis. So you were already, you know, heading in that direction. And I also really appreciate that. You said at the end of treatment that you were depressed, that you were unsure, you know, because I think oftentimes when people see breast cancer survivors or they hear from, or just looking at a picture, let’s say, right, it’s a person smiling or it’s I beat it, or, but you don’t really get into the background of that.
Leigh Hurst (14:22):
I talk about the mental health side all the time, because I think it is something that’s not discussed as much as it should be and not everybody gets depressed, but I do think everybody has down days. Of course, I mean, when you’re struggling with something that’s life or death and that happens at different times for different people. For me, I was fight or flight during the treatment. For me, it was like a project, right. I knew I had a plan and I had to do it. And the tricky part for me was when I entered into that gray space where I was kind of released from all of that care. And I had to make sense of my life on a day to day basis, be my own cheerleader, quiet those voices in my head that would raise all those scary thoughts and realize that this was going to be forever. You know, like you can’t let this consume you. And you know, being brave enough to say I’m depressed. I wasn’t brave enough to say that right away. You know, I went into therapy, very hesitantly feeling like, what do you have to be upset about? It was stage one, you got through it, shouldn’t you be happy with it?
Karen Litzy (15:22):
That self-defeating language, right? There’s someone worse off than you.
Leigh Hurst (15:27):
Right? So therefore you can’t feel any sort of emotion around your own words is not true and very dangerous by the way. And so, you know, I really try to bring that up when I speak to women who are going through it or who have gone through it, who I sense might be struggling with a little bit of that, because there’s so much, and it’s different for everybody. If you might be balancing kids, I wasn’t, but it might be balancing kids, little children and trying to mask what you’re going through to keep them from being afraid. And so that you’re hiding your own emotions for some period of time, or same thing goes for spouses that can have issues. So finding a place where you can be truly honest with your own feelings and dealing with that is I think really important because it delays your ability to heal. If you don’t find your way.
Karen Litzy (16:18):
You have to say to yourself, okay, this is the situation and I need to live with this. What’s the best way I can move forward. Right. We discussed that a lot with people who have like chronic pain. So the pain may never go away, but can you get to a point where you’re still doing all the things you want to do, but in order to do that, you kind of have to accept it.
Leigh Hurst (16:48):
Yeah. And the way you choose to do that, whatever steps you take to make that possible in your life. The biggest thing for me was realizing that other people don’t have to get it right. Like if I had a choice, things that make me able to have good days or days that I need to step out for a little bit, I don’t have, I shouldn’t have to worry, or I can’t worry if that makes sense to somebody else, because the only thing I can do is reconcile within myself. What makes me the best version of me, the fullest version of me, for the people that need me. And the way I choose to do that is probably not going to be the same as the way someone else chooses to do that, or should it yeah. Nor should it be. Right. So looking for affirmation about those decisions outside of yourself is a real challenge. You know, if you’re a pleaser or you’re, you know, sometimes you just gotta bone up and do what you have to do, right. You always just satisfy your needs. But the times when you have choices to flake out on plan that you just don’t feel up for, or push something that you thought you should do today to tomorrow those things are okay to do, and you don’t need someone else to tell you they’re okay.
Karen Litzy (18:01):
Right, right. It comes down to like giving yourself the permission and the grace and the ability to do what you need. Like you said, to do what you need to do in the moment at that time, that’s going to be best for you. That’s going to allow you to show up fully as the person you need to be.
Leigh Hurst (18:20):
Right. Yeah. That makes total sense. I thought it was a great way of putting it as like self care is not the same as selfish. So making those choices, you have to be, you know, polite, honest, a good person when you’re doing all of those things, but taking care of yourself, the self care part of it is not being selfish. It’s about being in touch with what makes you the good person that you are.
Karen Litzy (18:46):
Right. And I think also being able to communicate that to someone maybe it’s your partner or your spouse or your children or work, I think the way you go about communicating, that makes all the difference, right. Because there’s a difference between, listen, right now, maybe you might have felt, you know, I just need to be by myself for a couple of hours, you know, that’s what’s best for me, but if you don’t communicate that properly or if you just flake out and go stout on people like that is not that that’s how you, you create a lot of friction. Right. So what advice would you give to people if they do have to make these decisions to do what’s best for them? What’s the best kind of language? Cause I know you’re very good at communication and all that other stuff.
Leigh Hurst (19:38):
So I have two small children. I had kids after breast cancer and I’m a single mom now. And I was since they were very little good friends with their father and all of that, but still, you know, being I’m 50 now, but I was 40 and 42 when I had them. And so, you know, the loss of independence around raising two children alone when you’re used to like literally flying coast to coast, you know, rewind five years. And it was like, the world was at your feet. So I found myself becoming extremely protective of my space when they were not with me. And, you know, so I was very cautious about making plans. And I would just be honest about that if it was a weekend that I didn’t have them and somebody invited me to go away for example, Oh, we’re having a girl’s weekend.
Leigh Hurst (20:24):
We’re going to go to a winery. Do you want to come? And I would say, well, I might, I might want to come if you need a commitment though. I can’t commit because a lot of times when the kids go away, I just like to have some quiet time to myself. I don’t like to come back from a weekend and be tired. So I would, I mean, that’s just being honest, you know, some things, those are, it’s not as easy as something like that, but you know, I think with work where there’s deadlines and it’s a little trickier to push things off I’ve gotten better at prioritizing where I’ll say it has not really in it today. I know I said I would have this by two o’clock is it possible I could have it tomorrow by maybe 10. So I’m not telling them all the inner workings of what’s going on in my brain, but I’m floating the idea that I’d like to shift the priority around because I think it would work better for my mental state. You know, so those are just some ideas for how I do it.
Karen Litzy (21:20):
Yeah. That’s great. That’s great. Thanks for sharing that. And now what I’d also like to talk about is your book. So you’re about to release, well, this will be out the first weekend of October. So the book should hopefully be out by then, right? They will be. Okay. Perfect. So say something big, feel your boobies, find your voice stories about little lumps, inspiring, big change. So first of all, congratulations, because writing a book is no joke. So tell us a little bit about why you wrote the book and what’s in it.
Leigh Hurst (21:57):
So I wanted to write this book for quite some time. You know, I do a lot of speaking and people often say, Oh, your story is so inspiring about how you just created something and then you ran with it and you saved lives. And now you have this big foundation. And I do realize that that’s inspirational, but I kind of tire of my own story over time. So every time I would sit down and try to write about it, I was like, Oh my gosh. But what I found inspirational enough to get me going this time. And it was really an honor of our 15th anniversary, which was last year. I was hoping to have it done by them, but that’s the 15th anniversary of the foundation. And it was also my anniversary from breast cancer is the same as the foundations university.
Leigh Hurst (22:39):
So I started writing it back then and the way I got inspired to really get into it was as I started writing about my own story, I was things were coming to mind about these other women that I had met over time through my path, as you know, being very involved in the breast cancer community and quite honestly, their stories while different were very similar. So they were young when they were diagnosed, they found their own lump and they made some sort of change that was remarkable that they hadn’t really pivoted from one path to another and really in an effort to give back. And so, as I started seeing that sort of common thread through some other women that I respected, I thought, well, what if I wove their stories into mine? And so, you know, our stories are different. So how I felt it, this part of the journey, you know, when I found the lump, the way I found it is different than the way one of the other women found it and how I felt during chemo is a lot different than the way some other people felt during chemo.
Leigh Hurst (23:38):
So if I can weave their stories in to mine, then it will relate to so many more people because can kind of say, Oh, I really relate to Leigh. When she was deciding if she wanted to have a mastectomy or lumpectomy, but I really, really related to Holly during chemo, cause I’m really struggling with it. And she struggled with it too. And so there’s lots of tidbits of inspiration and advice that come out of all of these stories. And so after each chapter, I write a little piece that’s called big lessons from little lumps. And it’s basically trying to suss out the things that I felt were common through each of the women’s stories at each stage of the breast cancer journey. And then of course at the end, you know, they’ve all sort of found their voice. They’ve started their own nonprofits, where they started a company to create underwear, lingerie line that’s meant to make you feel sexy, even if you’ve had your breast removed.
Leigh Hurst (24:35):
And that was because that particular survivor did not feel sexy after she was diagnosed and had surgery and she was a designer. So she decided to do that. And so I just found great inspiration and listening to their stories and trying to weave them into mine. And, really at the end of the entire book, what I found were basically three ideas that I saw across all the women that I think can relate to anybody that’s going through any sort of difficult time, not just breast cancer. And one of them was that I really noticed that each woman found a frame for their situation that really focused on the idea of looking forward into the future versus looking only backwards and only wishing they could redo it differently. Right? Like being sad about what had happened. They all had those emotions, but the way they ultimately framed things was with the idea of looking forward.
Leigh Hurst (25:31):
Then each of them also talked a lot about finding a passion, something that really, you know, gave them those goosebumps or that feeling you get in your stomach when you’re doing something right. And that is what they chose to spend their time on. And they really made an effort to strip anything out of their life that got in the way of them being able to focus on that type of activity. And then the thing that we talked about earlier, but the third thing is that they all recognize that change is continuous, right? It’s not like you flip a switch and say, I’m going to make this change, or I’m going to start fuel your movies. And all of a sudden I’m happy because I started a nonprofit and it does good things. I mean, it has all the same challenges that a normal job has.
Leigh Hurst (26:11):
So change is truly this continuous thing, but because of the passion and they’re focused on the future, they were able to realize that, sure, there’s going to be some bad days throughout this process, but nothing is going to get in the way of my path to create this change towards the way I really want to live my life. And I found that so powerful when I saw that kind of trend throughout each woman. And I really think a lot of people will benefit from watching how each of them kind of, you know, injected that into their own lives.
Karen Litzy (26:44):
And isn’t it amazing how storytelling creates such great learning moments, right? I think that’s the way to do it. People they remember the stories, they think it’s digestible, they internalize it. Like you said, what someone may not relate to you, but they may relate to someone else in the book. And it’s those stories that weave through that come up with these great themes that anyone can relate to. So I just always think that I’m such a huge fan of storytelling and storytelling makes things real and relatable.
Leigh Hurst (27:16):
And I think that’s an important way. It’s one of the things we try to do with the foundation too, is when we do provide messaging or things, we try to really make it relatable. And that we’re telling a story about someone who is real, someone who was young when they were diagnosed. So when you say that looks like me, I can relate to that. I also think women who are brave enough to share their story and I, by no means think it’s wrong to not share your story. I think you’re a private person and that’s how you heal, then that’s what you should pay attention to. But for those who choose to, and they don’t always realize they’ve chosen to one of the women in the books that she never talked about it. The first time she was diagnosed, she was 26 and she was embarrassed.
Leigh Hurst (27:56):
And then she unfortunately was rediagnosed nine years later with metastatic cancer at 45, which means it’s terminal. And at that point she really became braver to start talking about it and she realized how much strength she got from sharing her story. And so I think when women put their stories out there they have no idea how many people they touch when they do it, because no one’s gonna necessarily walk up to you and say, I really respect that. You said that, or I want you to know that that really made a change in my life that day, but it does. It does. And it goes beyond what you will ever actually know.
Karen Litzy (28:32):
Absolutely. Yeah. And I love that sort of women pushing other women forward and building them up and paying it forward. It’s just such a lovely, a lovely lesson for anyone. But as we all know, you know, the power of women in groups is very powerful.
Leigh Hurst (28:52):
Karen Litzy (28:54):
Exactly. That’s better unstoppable. Yes, absolutely. And so before we kind of wrap things up, what I would love from you is what would you like the audience to sort of take away from maybe from your experience or from our talk today? Cause I know that you do and you also, I also want to point out that you also talked to a lot of young people, college students, things like that, right?
Leigh Hurst (29:18):
Yeah, I do. I do. Yeah. So one of the aspects of our campaign in the past has been what we call our college outreach program, which we provided free materials to college health centers nationally through sororities and women’s centers and so forth. And that was in an effort to get our message out to the college campuses. And we’ve also started running a media campaign which we did last year called are you doing it was a minority outreach campaign focused on young African American women in low income areas. African American women have a higher, are diagnosed at an earlier age than white women. And once they’re diagnosed, they have a higher mortality rate as well. And so it’s a very important audience to target. And so we funded a campaign that leveraged billboards, bus shelters, bus wraps, as well as targeted digital outreach to that demographic of women specifically to spread the message and that incorporated five local survivors, real survivors who were diagnosed at a young age, we did a photo shoot, shot a video with them.
Leigh Hurst (30:22):
And we shared that through all the channels that I mentioned, but we got over 6.2 million impressions with that campaign. Amazing. Very amazing. So, yeah. So we reach out to that younger population, like you mentioned in a lot of different ways, but I mean, I think if you asked me what the one thing is, I want someone to take away is that, you know, it sounds cliche, but I really do believe that one voice matters. I feel like the ripple effect from one person’s passion and when one person’s devotion to an idea can really make a difference and they don’t have to be big actions. The things that you choose to do, don’t have to necessarily change the world, but you can start small. And the actions that you choose, the words that you choose and how you choose to navigate your life, I think affects other people. And this book really showed me that in the smallest of ways, people can have the biggest impact in their communities and in other people’s lives. And that’s, I think that’s a really great lesson for anybody to take away.
Karen Litzy (31:24):
Absolutely. And now if people want to get in touch with you, where can they find you? Where can they find the book?
Leigh Hurst (31:31):
So the book will be available on Amazon. Starting October 1st, I believe. You can read more about the book leighhurst.com. You can follow the book on Facebook, which is, say something big as well and Instagram to say something big. So those are all the channels. And then of course, if you’re interested in feel your boobies and the work that we do, the Facebook pages you know, at feelyourboobies on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter, and our website is feelyourboobies.com.
Karen Litzy (32:08):
Awesome. And we’ll get all of those links. So for everyone, if you don’t have something to take it down, or you’re not right in front of the computer, we’ll have all of the links. You can go to podcast.healthywealthysmart.com. And we’ll have a quick link to everything that Leigh mentioned today throughout the podcast. So not to worry, everything will be right there. So Leigh, thank you so much for sharing your story. I just know, like you said, even if one person hears this and they say, Oh, well maybe I will feel my boobies, mission accomplished. Well, thank you so much for sharing your story and coming on the podcast. I appreciate it. And everyone out there listening. Thank you so much. Have a great couple of days and stay healthy, wealthy and smart.
Thanks for listening and subscribing to the podcast! Make sure to connect with me on twitter, instagram and facebook to stay updated on all of the latest! Show your support for the show by leaving a rating and review on Apple Podcasts