Dr. Marry and Me,  Personal Writing

7-card stud, Texas hold ’em, 5-card draw…

In keeping with my last post/commitment to growing my network, I want to share this not-so-small victory.

I was scrolling through LinkedIn earlier this week and came across a picture of an AA chip.

sidenote: Isn’t it funny what matters to you after something happens in your life that you would never have paid any attention to before? I wouldn’t have even recognized an AA chip four years ago, and now I stop to read the accompanying success post of every single one I see.

I didn’t know the man who posted it, but I saw that we had four tenuous connections. I sent him a message to see if he would be a guest on Daily Dose. Here’s our exchange:

Hello ________,

I see that we have a few fabulous people in common. I wanted to first congratulate you on your 33-year sobriety chip. My husband will get his 4-year chip on Feb 1, and I know how meaningful and hard-earned those chips are, so well done!

I wanted to reach out with an invitation as well. My husband and I have a livestream called Daily Dose of Dr Marry & DD that we do every weekday around addiction, recovery and finding joy in our lives. Our mission is to share our experiences with addition so that others feel less alone. We have guests on with us on Thursdays, and those episodes are among our and our audiences’ favorite days. I’m wondering if you would ever join us for a live, informal conversation around your addiction and sobriety journey?

I hope you are well and staying safe during this crazy time. Thanks for sharing your chip post–I know that you are making a difference in someone’s or many people’s lives.



He wrote back very quickly:

Hi Dayna, Sounds good – only know I rarely have spoken about my sobriety in public over all these years. More of Who I am than what I do sort of thing. Happy to share on your show, yet know I am not an AA bible thumping guy in the least. More straight forward, no bullshit approach.

I responded:

Thanks for your speedy reply! We don’t have an agenda and don’t care about a specific treatment plan, or indeed one at all. Everybody’s path is different and that’s what makes these conversations so interesting. So looking forward to meeting you and learning about you!

And then he connected me to his assistant. And I knew we were in trouble.

You see, the purpose of an assistant is to be a gatekeeper, which I totally get. My staff play that role for me from time to time, much to my great relief. But I knew he was going to ask what our audience numbers are. And as soon as he found those out, we were not going to be talking to this man on our show in March.

The assistant and I communicated, and it went exactly like I predicted it would.


Hmmmmmmm. What to do?

The way I saw it, I had two options:

  1. Let it go. After all, this man has standards and we hadn’t met them. I’m seeing more and more of that happen as I reach out. People like the idea of my personal and our joint content, but as soon as they realize that we have few followers and small viewership, they aren’t interested in us.
  2. Throw caution to the wind and say, “What the hell do I have to lose by getting a bit more persistent?”

I went with option 2:

Hi ____________________,

I wrote to [your assistant] and am sure that our audience is too small for you to consider joining. I’m just writing directly to you to see if you would be willing to forgo that and help us grow a bit? We are in that hard place of needing influencers to pay attention to us to build an audience and not having the audience in place that matters to influencers. Just checking because I know the answer if I don’t ask.

Thanks and be well,


Literally, six minutes later, I got this message:

I like you. Yes. What date time are you requesting for 30 min spot?

I stared at it for a second, ran into the kitchen to read it to Dr Marry and started writing:


I just did a very happy dance in our kitchen. 😃 You have confirmed for me the power of being a bit tenacious, so thanks so much for that!

I can’t thank you enough for saying yes. We won’t forget this, and as we grow (which we will!), we’ll pay your kindness forward to someone(s) else!

Dayna Del Val and Mazz Marry

Thirty-one minutes later:

Check email 👍

The moral of the story? You won’t win every single hand at the Poker table, but you’re guaranteed to lose if you never even pick up the cards.

Pick up the cards.

Dayna Del Val is on a mission to help others (re)discover the spark they were born with through her blog and newsletter, her professional talks and the (re)Discover Your Spark retreats she leads. Dayna works with people to help them not just identify and articulate their dreams but to develop a framework to get going on the pursuit of those dreams—today, in the next few months and for the years ahead. She's at the intersection of remarkable and so, so ordinary, but she knows that pretty much everyone else is, too. She's excited to be sharing this extraordinary journey with you.

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