We had the good fortune of connecting with Cheryl Burnside, PT and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Cheryl, we’d love to hear more about how you thought about starting your own business?
After 20 years of practicing as a physical therapist, I got burned out, treating injuries and symptoms that I could prevent. So instead of becoming a complainer, I wanted to be part of the solution. In 2006, I decided to have a Tea Party that promotes physical, emotional, and spiritual support to 30 women. That year at the ladies’ request, we had another Tea for Health. It became a yearly event that leads to Phenomenal Women’s Health, Inc, a 501(C)(3) in 2007.
Alright, so for those in our community who might not be familiar with your business, can you tell us more?
I’ve been an entrepreneur for over 30 years and a physical therapist for 41 years. I ran a consulting and PRN company, a PT private practice, and now a nonprofit. I don’t know how I ran a nonprofit while running businesses all these years. In March of 2020, as the result of COVID-19 I became semi-retired temporarily, I am now doing Phenomenal Women’s Health, Inc(PWH) full time. I still practice Physical Therapy once a week so I won’t lose my skill sets. Incorporated in 2007, PWH is a 501(c)(3). It didn’t start out to be a nonprofit but a social gathering to teach women about their health. Yearly, we would have Teas for Health at various hotels like the Intercontinental and the Hyatt. We wanted to create an atmosphere and experience for the ladies attending. As Maya Angelo stated “people will forget what you said, but people will never forget how you made them feel.”. It you are feeling relaxed you are more likely to absorb the health information given. While working in women’s shelters, we found a lot of unresolved issues in childhood taken into adulthood. In 2010 we expanded our reach to girls 11-15 years of age to address these issues. We established Loving Me Phenomenally with Endless Possibilities. PWH wanted young girls to have self-love and to see women in various occupations excel in their careers. So regardless of their current situations at home they have endless possibilities in life. Many times I wanted to walk away but found out quitting wasn’t an option. Have you seen the picture with the man digging for gold and stopped one foot before reaching it. I remind myself of what my father would say, that whatever is worth having doesn’t come easy. “Just think if God is blessing you with something and you gave it back.”(quote by my husband) Is that gratitude? You have to be grateful daily especially of the small accomplishments. My goal is to continue growing PWH so my grandchildren can see the legacy that I left for them.
Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
I love history and music. What intrigued me were songs about Georgia. A Raining Night in Georgia by Brooke Benton and Gladys Knight, Georgia on my Mind by Ray Charles, and Midnight train to Georgia. What else can I say! I love the small nightclubs where you can go and hear live jazz pre COVID like Sweet Georgia’s Juke Joint or Blind Willie’s. Before going to hear the music, we would eat at Bistro Niko in Buckhead. Of course, Atlanta is full of history that I lived! First stop the Martin Luther King Center, HBCU’s like the Atlanta University Center, Aquarium, CNN, and Coca-Cola Center to start. What would top this off would to sit down and have a chat with President Carter and Andrew Young.
The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
For the past 41 years, my husband Michael has been my support, mentor, motivator, and friend. Sometimes I didn’t like what he told me, but in actuality, it was what I needed to hear. When things didn’t go my way because of various situations or people, he would tell me it’s not my season, and although delayed, it not denial. Oh, was he right! There were times when I went down various paths, and it didn’t work out. He taught me not to look at it as a failure but as a learning experience. Last but certainly not least, thank you to all of the past and present volunteers at Phenomenal Women’s Health who have helped our vision come to fruition.
Instagram: PWH iamphenomenal2018
Linkedin: Cheryl Burnside
Facebook: PWH Loving Me and Phenomenal Women’s Health
State of Hope – Georgia