By Dr. Sujit Sharma
Beauty from the inside out....
Imagine you are a successful makeup artist, helping celebrities look perfect for the camera. You are sought after and doing well for yourself. Then one day you realize that purely working on beauty from the outside isn't enough, for yourself and others. This is the story of Tierra Burrell, founder of Tierra Goes Green.
Transformation, Stardust and Tierra Goes Green
The best way to describe Tierra Burrell is that she is more mystical creature than homo sapien; something of a modern day Unicorn, perhaps. In more human terms, Tierra is an amalgamation of some other notable beings: Neil Degrass Tyson, Einstein, Depak Chopra, Rich Roll, Toni Morrison, and the list goes on. Tierra is the epitome of self-empowered authentic inspiration, and the founder of Tierra Goes Green, a platform she created to help others discover the power within themselves to find happiness through a healthier lifestyle focusing on mind, body and spirit. And a lot of plants.
Competition, Nerdiness and Quantum Physics
Growing up, Tierra was one of those rare kids who was just plain gifted, both as student and athlete. She began competing as a cheerleader at age 6, eventually crossing over into soccer, track, basketball and double Dutch, anything involving competition. At the same time, she was reading 4-5 books per week; magic and science were the usual topics, eventually leading her to ultimate ‘nerdhood’, as a self-proclaimed fan of quantum physics. Why not?
Tierra always had an inner artist, in addition to a natural entrepreneurial mindset. She finished college in just 3 years, with a degree in anthropology. Her creative spirit led her to a career as a makeup artist, eventually creating her own line of cosmetics.
WTF is Success?
Soon, Tierra found herself to be a sought after professional, with a growing roster of celebrity clients — like someone named Beyoncé...etc.
At age 25, despite what most would consider ‘material success’, Tierra realized something was missing. By adopting a lifestyle that was socially acceptable - working hard to make more money and eating food the way everyone else was - Tierra had an epiphany: She was no longer the author of her own story and destiny.
Looking around one day, Tierra realized that she, her family and community, young and old, were trapped in a cycle that led to chronic illness. At that point, she decided to make a change. If she was going to truly help people look beautiful on the outside, she had to understand how to do it internally. She started with herself, a woman destined to unleash her inner unicorn.
And Now, the Transformation Part
Tierra’s intense focus became hacking health, starting with food. Next up was the psychology of lifestyle, as it exists in our modern ‘age of information’. After several years of intense studying and reflection, Tierra (the unicorn) had mapped out her own theories, connecting all aspects of our food culture to overall physical and emotional well-being.
During that time, Tierra transformed herself, by channeling her intellect and passion; her lifestyle became about mindfulness, plant-based eating, and eventually serving others, through her knowledge and inspired genius (real genius, which, let’s admit it, is often a little bit unstable, by definition).
Tierra is the real deal. When you visit her website and look at the program Tierra has created to help others, she makes it quite clear that she offers no quick fixes or traditional diet; "Tierra Goes Green", as she proclaims, "is a lifestyle". Years ago, seeing the potential for Instagram to be an incredible communication vehicle, her account and influence grew fast.
Tierra and I don’t agree on everything, but that’s OK.
I come from the world of traditional healthcare/medicine. I treat kids in the ER, when they’re sick or injured. Our healthcare system is actually pretty good at treating injury/illness. While my industry of medicine, today, basically sucks at preventing disease, I’d say our one shining achievement has been vaccinations. And this is perhaps where Tierra and I differ in opinion. But I love her just the same, because she’s doing something modern primary care struggles to do: She is using passion, intellect — and social media — to help people improve their lives day-to-day and live longer by empowering them to make better daily decisions. Over the years, many of her followers who've also gained authorship of their own destiny have gone on to become beacons of inspiration for others. As a doctor, I'm blown away by this capacity to promote disease prevention.
If this isn’t a model for how primary care can improve in the future, I don’t know what the hell is.
Sujit Sharma M.D.
CEO at Chuice
Pediatric ER Physician, Children's Healthcare of Atlanta
Board of Directors, Georgia Organics