Rosanna Berardi is the Managing Partner of Berardi Immigration Law and the CEO of High WireWoman, where she helps working women create a blueprint to living their lives in a simpler way and take back their most precious commodity: their time.
After saying goodbye to a lucrative corporate gig—and a promising career as an immigration lawyer for the U.S. government—she built a successful, multi-million dollar corporate immigration law firm on her own terms while helping transform people’s lives as they pursue their version of the American Dream.
In this episode, she shares that while these are difficult times and we can’t quit our jobs, we can create simple life hacks that make our lives feel so much better. We can tap into the world of convenience and start outsourcing our “motherly, wifey, worker bee” job to free up space for time, pleasure, and ourselves.
What’s in the episode:
- How women can make their lives easier
- Why it’s not selfish to pay for convenience
- Stop the martyrdom of “do everything yourself”
- How she outsources 90% of her life
- Embrace and lean into modern-day working and mothering.
“I outsource 90% of the things in my life, so I have time to enjoy the things I love.” Rosanna Berardi
If you enjoy this episode and it inspired you in some way, I’d love to hear about it and know your biggest takeaway. Take a screenshot of you listening on your device, post it to your Instagram Stories and tag me, @kimstrobeljoy.
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About Rosanna Berardi
Rosanna Berardi is the Managing Partner of
Berardi Immigration Law and the CEO of High Wire Woman, where she helps working women create a blueprint to live their lives in a simpler way and take back their most precious commodity: their time.
Berardi Immigration Law helps companies navigate the employment-based immigration system and foreign professionals achieve the American dream.
Rosanna is also the host and executive producer of High Wire Woman, a podcast where she interviews other high achieving women, and together, shares with her listeners the skills and fortitude they need to create the happy, prosperous, and balanced life they so richly deserve.
Kim Strobel is Chief Happiness Officer at Kim Strobel Live Events and Retreats. She is a teacher, consultant, motivational speaker, happiness coach, and mission-minded person whose passion is helping others overcome their fears and discover their joy!
Kim Strobel 00:08
Hi everyone. I am really excited to be on this episode with someone named Rosanna Berardi and Rosanna is the managing partner of berarti immigration law. And she is the CEO of high wire woman, where she helps working women create a blueprint to live their lives in a simpler way, and take back their most precious commodity. Their time, I cannot wait for you to meet Rosanna, she is going to share some life hacks with us on how to create a life that feels really good to us in all areas. Welcome to the show.
Rosanna Berardi 00:54
Thank you so much, Kim. So happy to be here. I'm a big fan of your work. And I'm just honored to talk to your audience today.
Kim Strobel 01:01
Yeah, well, I loved when you reached out to me and you're an attorney, I'm actually in a female kind of mastermind, with a lot of women and about four of them are female attorneys who are kind of unleashing their role as an attorney and as a mother and as a woman. And they're doing it very differently. And they have their own business just like you do. And I just feel really fired up when I hear of a woman who is like kind of taking control of her own career on her terms. So tell us a little bit more about your backstory and what led you to be able to do this as an attorney. And you know, I know you're a mother of a 15 year old and you've got a lot of this business. That's 20 employees. I think you told me so I want to hear more about what you do. And how you got there.
Rosanna Berardi 01:53
Yeah, it's certainly been a wild ride. And I, you know, I'm kind of the minority. I was at a really large law firm here in Buffalo, you know, the biggest, the best law firm, and was brainwashed for a few years like this is the only place to be. But I hated it. It was terrible. It's awful. And I didn't like the people. I didn't like the culture. This was a place where they had a separate holiday party for the paralegals and the attorneys.
Like they couldn't be together in the same room. And I was like, why are we running terrible? Yeah, no, they're just the attorney party and we hired a paralegal and I wanted to take her out to lunch on her first day. And they're like, Oh, we don't do that here. I'm like, don't do what? So I was there for six years. I didn't love it. It was just okay. I learned a lot. I learned a lot of things stuff substantively. So that was good. But I'm a first generation Italian American immigrant. My dad immigrated from Italy in 1954. He was 14, he was an orphan. no parents, no language, no job. came to Canada, then came to the US married my mom and and proof hearing him. But he was self employed his entire life. He was a hairdresser and started his own business. And you know, immigrants have a different hunger because immigrants see the possibility, right? You know, without getting political or anything when you're born in the United States, things for most people are pretty easy. And that hunger, that drive of the immigrant isn't always palpable. So my dad was self employed. My brother's a dentist, he was self employed. So I met this law firm. And I'm like, this sucks. I mean, I hated it. I was contemplating going back to school. My undergraduate degrees in English. I'm like, what can you do with an English degree? I really didn't want to be a teacher. I thought it was going to be a librarian. Like, I don't know, I just don't want to be here. And my dad was like, just go on your own. Like what? Who goes on their own, I leave. I work in the biggest law firm. And he was like, so what, like I came from another country, didn't speak the language have no formal education. And I did find, you know, you're born here, with a silver spoon in your mouth. You can do this. And so I did. I left. I quit and was told you'll never work in this town again. You know, it was very sour grapes. No one leaves there and is successful. And I was like, You know what? I'm like, Look, I have a law degree. I can do a million things. And if it doesn't work out on my own, I'll just do something else. And that's why I wanted to get a law degree because I love that it had this inherent flexibility.
Kim Strobel 04:50
So you're just a minute because I think one of the things that you said that really resonates is I do feel like so many women in particular feel very unhappy in their jobs, but they're really scared to take the leap. Because I don't think that we always understand how very capable we are. And I think your dad's story, like I do think that immigrants, it's almost as if they didn't have any choice, but to like, pull themselves up by their bootstraps, and totally try to do it themselves. And so I find that there are so many immigrants who did go into the entrepreneurial world, because what did they have to lose? They already didn't have anything. And so understanding that, like you said, many of us are actually born with this foundation that we don't realize that we are, most of us are going to be okay, we will land on our feet. So I thought that was really interesting. So take me now, then to how that led you to make this that you've laughed, and then what happened next?
Rosanna Berardi 05:56
So yeah, so I left. I was newly married. We were married in April, I left the firm in June. And my husband was very supportive from day one. He's like, whatever makes you happy. But mind you, I walked away from Pretty good deal stability benefits. Good paycheck stay. Like, okay, all right. So so I did. And, yeah, lo and behold, we got pregnant right away. We built a house in like a six month period, married business pregnant, I built a house had my son, Salvador the next year. I'm not sure I'd recommend that trajectory to people. It's a lot to do all those life events in a short time, but they were all things I had wanted. And were blessed with. So those first couple years were tough, very tough. And, you know, my firm was me, me working from home. And I had this lofty idea that I was going to have this baby that I would just put next to me and I would just continue to work. You know, I other kid that was colicky, didn't sleep and had eczema, and was a disaster for like the first year of his life. Poor honey wasn't his fault. But yeah, those first couple years who I did the best I could, but I was still able, you know, I had like one client that followed me from the old firm. So I started at least with one for one client, and just kept building it really slowly. But very
authentically, I did things very different. I was at a firm that the only thing that mattered was quantifying your time and sending out your invoices. I mean, they could care less about the client. And you know, seeing my dad is an entrepreneur, he was a hairdresser. My mom was a housekeeper in a nursing home, they were very, very engaging with the people around them. And that's how I started my practice with Jenny Levin that becoming super close to all my clients. I mean, I have clients now from 20 years ago that I still keep in contact with, I mean, because you have built a relationship with them, it was about the relationship more than the invoice. It's all about the relationship, all about the relationship. And so as my son started to sleep better, and you know, got a little bit older, like my hours or his hours, you know, I used to just work like nine to one or nine to two, and then he went to school. And, you know, now I work a little bit longer. But I've always had the flexibility to be able to pop out for his events, and I love to pick him up from school. He's 15 he's going to be driving himself very soon. And I love our car time. Because it's really the only time I get him unencumbered these days. I know. Yeah. You know that freedom. You can't put a price tag on that freedom. I agree. It's been hard. But I've learned that my passion is truly being an entrepreneur. I mean, I love the business of the law firm. I love the clients. I love the work. I'm not really, I'm not creating documents and drafts and writing legal arguments anymore. I've been doing this for almost 25 years. I love the business side and the business piece. And I work with women that want to do the same thing. And they're like, how the heck do you do this? And yes, you know, I, I break it. I've broken it down. And it's it's a lot of fun.
Kim Strobel 09:25
You have a blueprint for it. I love that word. So I know that you one of the things that you teach, because you're kind of like me, it's like we have this corporate side to us. But then we also have this side that's like I really want to serve women. And you have ways of making life simpler. And I think we're all trying to find how can I simplify my life? So can you give us a few of your life hacks for how to do that?
Rosanna Berardi 09:55
Sure. So during the pandemic, I started my little side hustle called high wire Woman, I have a podcast a website, I don't really have services to sell. I love providing content to women who want to make their lives easier. And part of that is life hacks. Hack your life away people we live in a world of convenience bleen in, you do not have to do everything from scratch. Please don't do everything yourself. Please outsource your life away as best as you can. And maybe you don't have a huge budget to do that. But there are some really simple things. So one of my favorite and it's super basic, but I spend a lot of time talking to women about using Instacart, which is grocery delivery. So I'm on the East Coast, I'm sure you have something similar in your area may be called something different.
Kim Strobel 10:45
Yeah. We have WalMart where you can pick up groceries. Yes, go online. And yeah,
Rosanna Berardi 10:51
whatever you have for groceries, please use do not go to the grocery store. Two hours every weekend. Your tomatoes, your produce. not that important. People will argue with me all the time about, but I like to pick my own cantaloupe. So I can't get my groceries ordered. And I'm like, who cares? Who cares? Do you
want to trade an hour or two every week of your life to pick your cantaloupe? Does it really matter to you that much? Like, oh, it's expensive. Okay, it's like five bucks more a week. What's your time worth? Right?
Kim Strobel 11:30
Yes, yes. And I know like I was just reading the other day in this Facebook group. It was these high achieving women who were like just stro struggling with cooking and providing for their family. And like one lady commented, because I always felt tremendous stress around that too, because cooking doesn't come naturally to me. And she's like, I literally like we're over complicating it. She goes, I get bags of brown rice, bags of broccoli, and I get some fish and some chicken. And that's what we eat for the week. I'm like, Oh my gosh, I'm doing like I was doing these recipes like Monday. Here's the recipe for this and Tuesday. Here's the recipe for this. And I'm like, what a genius idea. Like even simplifying the menu and reusing it for you know, we can eat a meal more than one time in a row. It's not going to kill. I love that. I love that. You're saying like, it's time to move to this. Give it a try?
Rosanna Berardi 12:22
Yeah, I don't use any recipes. I'm very simple rotisserie chicken a bag of salad. Done. Right. Like that's a five minute meal.
Kim Strobel 12:30
Oh, I have to tell you something about the rotisserie chicken. Get this. I had no idea. Like we grocery shop at Walmart. I wish I had Whole Foods and all that crazy stuff, but I don't. And so the rotisserie chicken in the Walmart did you know that they actually shred that and put it in containers? And so like when I did go to make us Yeah, they shred it. It's like if you're going to have fajitas or anything chicken based or like I was making a soup, so I went and just bought containers of it shredded. I'm not going to shred that dang chicken. Oh, god. No. Yeah. And I was like, this is genius. Like it tastes amazing. It's not the canned chicken.
Rosanna Berardi 13:05
Right, right. And I was like I just discovered they have that. That's amazing. You could throw that on a salad, you could throw it on rice, you could throw it on vegetables, right? Super easy, really healthy. Quick, quick, you got to lead into all this stuff. Now, the Instacart service that we have in New York State, not only will just deliver groceries, but they'll deliver gifts, they'll deliver cosmetics. And even if you don't have that Uber, Uber is not just about transporting people. Uber has Uber Eats will transport food. They have Uber, shipping or delivery packages. Oh, gosh, I love my friend was just in the hospital. I bought him a gift. I didn't have time to drop it off. Click on Uber. They delivered it. Simple, easy. $10. Right.
Kim Strobel 13:57
And you know, that's so funny, because the other day I was shopping, I had these little Christmas. And they needed a little on one of those little electric light cords. And so I googled it. And of course I was like, Oh good. I can get these on Amazon. And then I saw where they popped up on Walmart. And I'm like, Oh, I
guess I could drive the 10 minutes to Walmart. I'm probably gonna pay more if I order this for Amazon. And I'm like, Oh my gosh, no way I could be done with this task in three seconds. I don't care if it's an extra five bucks. Like I'm doing and I'm not trying to sound privileged or anything. I'm understanding that for me. I you know, I can do that. But like sometimes we have to have those conversations because like my mom, she'll still drive 20 minutes away to save $10 on the gallon to sorry, 10 cents on the gallon for gas.
Rosanna Berardi 14:43
Yeah, and again, I'm sensitive to all of the reasons why somebody would do that. But if you don't have to, then don't or cut somewhere else, right? Being cut back as many. Think about all the things you do in one day and see how you can outsource those things. I mean, it's there are so many services. Now our phones just have apps and options. To me post nasal drip in November, sorry.
Kim Strobel 15:12
Yeah, that's okay. You drink your water. Yeah, I agree. And it's like being able to do it. And this is what I say, like, did I feel guilty for a second, because I was like, Oh my gosh, I'm being frivolous with my money, because I'm probably paying $5 More for these electrical things through Amazon. And then I was like, okay, so feel the guilt and do it anyway, because I live in a modern world. And this is how we function. And I don't have to have those old scripts of guilt playing in my background all of the time.
Rosanna Berardi 15:43
And I feel the same about cleaning your own house, clean your house these days is a lot of work. I mean, people are working 40 plus hours, trying to get a meal on the table. Then on the weekends, you really want to be cleaning your bathrooms. And I understand cleaning house can be pricey. But I have friends. And I recommend this method. They'll have somebody come in every other week, or we'll have someone come in once a week and just clean their downstairs one week, and they're upstairs the other week. Break it up. Even if it's once a month to do a deep, deep clean, then at least you're just doing surface stuff. But to try and do a whole house is so much time and effort. And I think is the reason that so many women are so unhappy because there's all these, the laundry list of stuff is just crazy. And laundry. Don't even get me started on laundry. If you live in a town that has a service that will pick up and drop off your laundry. Please go without your Starbucks coffee every day. Go without getting your nails done. Have somebody fold your underwear. It's life changing.
Kim Strobel 16:50
Yes. Yes. I know. For me, like I have a housecleaner that comes every week. And but like she does a full cleaning on one week. And then on the off week, I just tell her, I'm gonna pay you for two hours, do my floors and countertops, you know. And then I was thinking the other day, I was like, you know, I just I know that. It's silly. And I don't go through a ton of laundry. But I'm like, I just really get this like nasty feelings in my mind when I have to like get my laundry done. And I hate folding it and I hate putting it away. And I'm saying this to you right now. I'm thinking some people are thinking Oh, Kim real well, that's nice that you you know, it. I don't feel like I'm being spoiled. I don't want to do those things. I have other things here in my office that I'm trying to get done and accomplish in the world. So I was thinking, I'm going to ask my
house cleaner, like literally will you start folding, I'll show you how I like my underwear folded because I do like them folded a certain way. And I'll show you where they go and everything else. And I'd like you to start taking that over. And also want you to watch my bedsheets once a week because I'm done with that.
Rosanna Berardi 17:53
We must be related because I asked the same exact thing this year of my cleaning person. And it has been life changing. Like I'm happy. I've had my law firm for 16 years. I told her the other day on Thanksgiving, I'm thankful for you. Because this is the first time where I walk into my home. And I'm relaxed. I'm not angry. Oh, I love that. There's not laundry baskets everywhere. I'm not miserable. Like I look forward to going home. We're in the past. It'd be like, Oh my God, it's Friday. There's like 10 loads of laundry to do. The house is a disaster. The countertops need to be wiped down? Yes, it's okay to pay people to do this, if you can. And I realize that not everybody's in that predicament. But I'm also going to ask you to stretch yourself a little bit. Because you sometimes and I had to do this last year with COVID.
Kim Strobel 18:46
You know, like, I went from being on 100 Plus stages to being on four. So I had to decide how to go through my list and say, Okay, what needs to go away? Because it's it's not affordable right now. Right? But then, but then what is still affordable? What isn't? What is the priority that I'm not willing to give up? And so like, okay, would I rather have my house clean, then my Starbucks every day, then maybe you choose that? Maybe you want your Starbucks and your messy house. That's okay, too. Right? What I'm saying is there are more ways to do this. And if it's the guilt that's hanging you up, sometimes I tell people that they'll tell me it's the money. And then the more deeper we get. It's the damn guilt. It's that they tell themselves, Oh, I don't want to waste 80 bucks on this when I could go do this with my family. We could go to the movies, we could go out to dinner. That's a decision that you have to make. But I'm also saying like, if guilt is the reason you're not doing it, because you're telling yourself you need to take all that on. I'm going to ask you to fight back on that belief.
Rosanna Berardi 19:42
And so many women have this martyr sim syndrome of I have to do everything myself. It must be done myself. Maybe 50 years ago, but not today. There's not so many ways that you could shortcut your life. And people say to me all the time, how do you do that? How do you? How do you get all this stuff done?
How do you have these parties? How do you do this trip, and like, I outsource 90% of the things in my life that I don't want to do, so that I have time to do things I enjoy. And at a certain point of a career, you can, the money I would spend on cleaning my house, I can make that back very quickly if I worked another one or two hours, right. So and it's okay to lean into that. There's no shame. I mean, you know, I remember like five years ago, he'll be like, Oh, I have a cleaning lady. Like it was just like the secret no one wanted to be like, guess what, I don't clean my bathroom anymore. Now everyone's like, Do you have a cleaning lady? Because my cleaning lady quit. I needed cleaning lady. Which one clean? Like, yes. Rejoice. Right? No worries. Lean in.
Kim Strobel 20:51
Yeah. And it's a way of loving yourself and women's struggle to love themselves. And it is a way of loving ourselves. Because I think that self love is the root of so many of our problems. We are afraid to love
ourselves. And I think like, look at your what you do what what you do in a day's time? Why can you not love the person who does the most for you in a day's time, which is you and you're allowed to celebrate that person and to give gifts to that person? Now, I want to know, because you had said something before we started this interview about travel hacks, and I just cannot leave this interview without knowing what a trap. So I love to travel.
Rosanna Berardi 21:30
And there's so many ways of making travel more pleasant than it can sometimes be. So one of my favorite travel hacks. Did you know if you're in an airport, and let's say you miss your connection, you have a long layover, you know, four hours or something. There are lounges in the airports that are generally reserved for people that belong to like American Express or the United Airlines club. There's a website called lounge buddy. Lounge buddy allows you to put the airport you're stuck in like I'm in the Orlando airport, they'll tell you there are five lounges in your Atlanta airport, you can buy a pass for one day, for $50 or whatever the price is. It varies depending on where you are in the US. You go into that lounge. Like you're a member free food, free drinks. Some places have showers, nappies and areas. You know, charging stations is so much better than sitting outside of the gate at the airport.
Kim Strobel 22:33
Oh my gosh, I travel a lot. So this is really helpful. Lounge buddy will change your life. Okay. Okay. All right. So that's one is there. Another one?
Rosanna Berardi 22:44
Yes. Another one that I just started using, which I really like is called log less le g l e s s log list allows you to ship your bags ahead of time to your destination for the same price or cheaper than baggage fees. Oh my gosh, I'm going to drop all of this in the show notes of notes for you guys. And I have no affiliate relationship. I have no stake in the game of any of these companies. Log lists if you're worried about losing your luggage, the airlines losing your luggage when you're traveling, you can ship your stuff ahead. loveless makes it really, really simple and really easy to do that.
Kim Strobel 23:24
Now I need to figure out how to have someone at the hotel, go ahead and unpack all my stuff and put it in the drawers and waiting for me.
Rosanna Berardi 23:32
There's a business there. Yeah, and you know, figure that one out that way? Yeah, well, I
Kim Strobel 23:38
love that. And I have a school teacher Tiffany, she teaches math right now but she's actually launched her own travel business. And what she does is help people find travel hacks as far as destinations that they
can go to that are affordable and I think it's adventurous travel by Tiffany is the name of it but these with her because she may not know about these two little so I'm gonna share that when we get off this this episode.
Rosanna Berardi 24:02
That's fantastic. I have one more before you let me go that I absolutely love. So if you're going you go around and you speak and you're doing the high pressure talks and stuff. There's a company called PRISM PR IV. You want to get your hair and your makeup done in your hotel room priv will come to you. They'll do your nails, they'll do a massage, they'll do your hair, you don't have to appear in Philadelphia, you don't have to try and find you know, a place to get your hair done or your nails done. They will come to you.
Kim Strobel 24:32
Okay, so I'm always doing this when I'm on the road. I am like, Oh, I've got downtime. Where can I find a massage? Where can I get my toenails done? Or like if I'm going to have videoing going on I need my hair and makeup done. So you're speaking my oh my gosh, this is great. I'm like gonna, I feel so much better about upcoming travel.
Rosanna Berardi 24:52
I'm telling you, it's these little things because traveling is stressful, right? And especially if you're traveling for business, and you've got to go on stage and speak like that. That's complicated. If you can just knock some of these things out. You have prev ready to go. I mean, before COVID I had I got an award I had to make a speech. I was in Philadelphia. I had a girl knock on my door she came in. She did my hair and makeup felt like a celebrity and its market price. I mean, you're gonna pay what you're gonna pay it any salon. Yeah. So easy. I didn't have to go anywhere. Oh, my gosh, I did. She came at like 7am was great. Oh, yeah, it was.
Kim Strobel 25:33
Oh my gosh, this is awesome. Okay, so before we leave, I want you to tell people where they can connect with you. So I know you have a podcast. It's called.
Rosanna Berardi 25:43
Rhigh wire woman.
Kim Strobel 25:44
Now that middle word is hard to spell that out for them. high wire.
Rosanna Berardi 25:49
Why dare you I are walking on the wire the high wire of life. Oh, nice, high wired. Okay. Why are women.com I have a website. Again, I don't have a lot to sell. I love sharing life hacks with women. My podcast, I usually interview women like you that can solve problems for women. My episodes are short and sweet. 15 To 20 minutes, the time it takes you to put your makeup on and do your hair. Yeah, you'll learn something fun and walk away with a few tips that will allow you to move quicker and stay on the high wire of life.
Kim Strobel 26:22
Love it will drop her podcast in the show notes as well. Thank you so much for being with us today. I love anything that can make our life simpler. But I also love that you're not afraid to take care of yourself. Like I think that might be my favorite thing about you is that you're not afraid to do things differently than generations of women before us. And I think you even told me before we came on, that you you know that your mother who passed away is who had to, like you said make her own mashed potatoes and just like instead of she's not shaming you, she's celebrating, absolutely have the opportunity to do that you're not forced to do these things anymore. So we need to embrace some of that.
Rosanna Berardi 27:07
Yeah, for sure. It's really important to live by your own script and embrace the technology and the modern conveniences we have we they are created for a reason. Use them. You might not have a huge budget to use them. But life is a lot about choices and make sure you choose some time for you. I'm going to be 50 next month and I had just started getting comfortable in the last year or two of celebrating taking care of me.
Kim Strobel 27:31
Absolutely no go live. Live your own script that live your own script guts the title of your book if you decide to write a book right there. There you go. Got it you so much. My pleasure. Can you take care now?