At SLSP we believe that love is not bound by gender expression or sexual orientation. In this interview, radio personality and “Drinks with Jess” host Jess Branas joins SLSP host Tatiana Berindei to discuss what happens when we stop hiding behind a crafted sense of identity and just have the courage to be fully, unapologetically ourselves. A dating strategist and celebrated author, Jess shares with the listeners her unique and powerful perspective on what is really important when it comes to dating. Whether you are #LGBTQ identified or not, there is wisdom to gain from her insights! Tune in for this lively conversation and learn some fundamental tools for navigating the world of dating.
Hello everyone, welcome to the Sex, Love and SuperPowers podcast show. I am your host Tatiana Berindei and today I am delighted to have with me, Jess Branas. We are going to be discussing love in all forms. Before we get started let me tell you a little bit about Jess.
Jess is a dating coach, author and radio personality who focuses on LGBTQ community. As the founder and CEO of Branas Enterprises, she first gained worldwide status with the release of her first book, Seeking Her, Knowing You, in 2014. With the release of her best selling book Zero to Ninety, in 2016, she highlighted the first 90 days of dating and become an Amazon new hot release author. Previously heard as the dating expert for LesBe Real Radio Talk, Jess is also the creator and host of the blog and podcast, Drinks with Jess. She is bringing the LGBTQ community and its allies to the same table, to initiate unity while discussing positive missions that guests create and support.
In 2014, Jess was named one of the 100 empowering women in the world, featured in the international best seller trilogy, Common Threads by Dr. Shellie Hipsky. Most recently, she was fortunate to be listed as one of the 47 boldest women in the world, in Next Bold Move, by international best selling author Tarra Flores Sloan. Welcome to the show, Jess.
Thanks Tatiana, it’s great to be here.
Yeah, it’s so wonderful to have you.
It’s kind of surreal. I really enjoy being, as we discussed, on this side of the microphone rather than on the other side.
Right, yeah, you get to be in the hot seat now. I’m going to start out by asking you the question that I love to ask all of our guests, what are your superpowers?
Wow, dating, obviously. You know, I think, I would say I have two superpowers. One is being able to really see someone, whether it’s through their voice, whether it’s through their body movements. Somebody can act as the most confident person in the world, but you can see behind the scenes without even knowing them yet, which I love and I guess, just making people feel comfortable. There’s something about being easy to talk to that makes people feel safe.
Absolutely, beautiful, and so I’m sure that these are super powers that serve you really well in running a show like yours. Will you tell us a little bit about how that show came to be, what inspired it?
Well, Drinks with Jess originally was a blog that was written, I would say, in 2010. At the time I was a high school teacher and it was more sociopolitical. I tend to be very opinionated and some of my students found it and I was encouraged to shut it down, which at the time I figured, well, I’m really not going to stop being who I am, but I’ll do my best to not be as outspoken as I normally am and that just didn’t really suit me. There’s always that nagging feeling inside that you’re being caged in and I’m not that type of person.
So, a few years later after I released my first book, Seeking Her, Knowing You, I was a guest on LesBe Real Radio Talk. From there they actually asked me to come on full-time with them and then we started to do all these other segments, that were pre-recorded, when we were in our off-season. So, from there I started podcasting and Drinks with Jess came back. Initially it started as, it was supposed to be a dating podcast for the LGBT community and for some reason, you never know why it is, now I know why it is, but it just changed. It was like there was something more meaningful that could be done to pull the community together. Kind of like we have racism in the United States, within the LGBT community, there are so many people that are not necessarily included. We’re seeing more inclusion now, whether it’s bisexuals or the transgender community.
This type of show brings all of them in and also allows people to step outside their comfort zone and step outside the box and realize, hey, we have straight allies too. They’re just as important. They have some of the same feelings, some of the same strifes sometimes and so it’s been a good show running for the past four years.
What would you say is some of your biggest takeaways from doing this show?
I think I learned more about humanity. Again, you can look at somebody and not think that they have certain substance and then you realize, after talking to them, they really care about something important and it just makes you want to be on their side. It was more of a growing experience for me, I think.
Yeah, absolutely. It’s funny ’cause we do this work, we step into it, we do our coaching, we do our podcasting and I really do think, I’ve seen time and time again with myself and also with other people in my network and in my sphere, that really we’re doing this work for ourselves, it’s for our own growth. Of course, we’re doing it to serve a larger audience as well, but there’s so much of our own growth in the process.
There’s so many causes out there that I didn’t know existed. For example, I had a guest on my first season, a friend of mine, Maya Sieber and she was one of the ice road truckers from the History channel. You would never think that this woman went up to Alaska and did this, but she’s hardcore. She was supporting a mission called Breast Implant Illness Awareness and I was very surprised because it was something that didn’t even know about. I didn’t know women were getting deathly ill from some kind of physical change that they elected and so that opened my eyes.
My friend, Suzanne Hobbs has been on the show several times and she is one of the people who forges forward for the Safe Haven laws, for newborn babies. Her story’s incredible and she started as a news journalist and had to cover a news story of a baby that was found in a dumpster and that just totally got to her. In fact, her child Lily, she adopted, was actually one of the Safe Haven babies.
So, when you see someone who has been impacted by even a single event, it makes it all worthwhile.
Yeah, totally. Those stories are so powerful and so healing. All right, we have to go to a quick break, but before we do, I would really love for you to share with our listeners where they can go to find more about you, more of the show?
Oh, sure. For the show, you can find Drinks with Jess on iTunes, Mixcloud. We also put up most of our episodes on YouTube, if you’re more of a watcher. As far as information about me or my books or even to contact the show, ’cause we love to hear from our listeners, you can go to dwjphl.com.
Awesome. So, we’ve been talking with Jess Branas about love in all forms. More when we get back, stay tuned.