‘Below Deck’ Star Captain Sandy on Her New Book and the Best Advice She Received
February 22, 2023
Captain Sandy Yawn is hoping to share the wisdom and lessons she’s picked up in her 30 years of experience out at sea.
The star of the Bravo reality series “Below Deck” recently released her first book, “Be the Calm or Be the Storm: Leadership Lessons from a Woman at the Helm.”
“I wanted to reach people’s hearts and tell them the real story of who Sandy was before she became a captain, how I became a captain, and what I do to defuse situations,” she told Jennifer Hudson on the February 22 episode of “The Jennifer Hudson Show.” “I don’t become the storm anymore. Now I’m the calm.
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“Back in the day I was a lost kid,” she told JHud. “I was on that merry-go-round of drugs and alcohol.”
She got clean, then started at the very bottom of the maritime industry scrubbing boats before eventually working her way up to captain.
“That’s why I wrote the book,” she said. “I wanted people to know — don’t give up on people if they’re suffering from addiction or mental illness. Invest in them and give them the opportunity.
“I share a lot about my personal life, and how I was a mess and how I changed,” she added. “How I learned the art of self-leadership. You can’t lead others if you can’t lead yourself.
“If you’re driving to work and you have an argument with your 16-year-old, and you had a major fight — are you gonna walk into your office with that energy?”
Captain Sandy hopes not! “I give tools on how to be the calm when you just walked through the storm.”
JHud asked the reality star for her best advice about leadership, and Captain Sandy immediately knew her answer: “Remain teachable,” she said, a lesson she picked up while watching a new deckhand confidently introduce himself to others on the ship.
“It showed me that all I had to do was walk into a room, and if I didn’t know people, I didn’t have to feel insecure or feel less than,” she said. “I could just stick my hand out and say, ‘I’m Sandy, I’m new here.’ People welcome that.”
“Words of wisdom,” added JHud.
“The Jennifer Hudson Show” airs weekdays. Here’s when to watch in your area.