In her new book, IT’S IN THE BAG, Gayle Martz describes her mother as a “woman of action,” and readers quickly learn that the apple didn’t fall far from the tree. Martz is, herself, a woman of action, and she teaches readers how to be the same: see a challenge, make a decision, and act. Whether it’s a passion project, filling a need with volunteering, or overcoming personal, financial, or professional adversity, a woman of action doesn’t cower in the face of challenge, rather she sees opportunity. Here’s some advice from the quintessential woman of action, who turned adversity in her own life into a million-dollar company, SHERPA Pet Trading Company, and a life full of passion.

When Life Falls Apart, Look for an Opportunity

When life gets hard, take positive action. It’s so easy to sit around and feel sorry for ourselves when things don’t go as planned. We’ve all done it! But, every difficult moment presents an opportunity if you’re willing to look. Martz suffered numerous setbacks in her life, from the death of her fiancé to job losses and professional setbacks and betrayals. But, one thing she never did was give up. Martz persevered when life got challenging and always looked for the opportunity for growth. She found new ways to pursue her passions and worked hard to bring them to fruition. When things seem like they are crashing down all around you, look for the lesson, the opportunity to grow, or even a window of opportunity.

Purpose and Passion

Take action to do what you love. Even if your career hasn’t been full of passion, you can always fill your time outside of work with projects and activities that you are passionate about. Martz worked as a flight attendant while working diligently on her dream to create a comfortable and stylish pet travel tote, The SHERPA Bag®. Martz loved her dog, fashion, photography, and traveling. She combined her work and her passions into a business that blossomed into a million-dollar company. You, too may have the perfect combination of passion and interest to become an entrepreneur yourself! Or, at the very least, you can fill your life with something you are passionate about, bringing more joy and a sense of purpose to your days. There’s always a way to pursue your passion, even as a hobby.


Take action on behalf of others. You’ll be making the world a better place while reaping the benefits of giving back. Volunteering to help others less fortunate will always leave you feeling better. Martz writes that whenever she felt down, she went to the Humane Society to volunteer with animals. According to an article by Mayo Clinic, volunteering has major benefits for the volunteer—it decreases risk of depression, provides a sense of purpose, increases physical and mental activity, reduces stress levels, increases longevity, and provides a sense of belonging through relationship building.

Martz writes that when life presents challenges, “one must take positive action.” When bad things happen we always have a choice. We can wallow or we can rise. With her story of perseverance, passion, and positivity, Martz inspires us to take action and RISE. Martz’s book, IT’S IN THE BAG, is a story of resilience, endless optimism, and triumph. If you’re looking for some positive inspiration, grab a copy of IT’S IN THE BAG today!