Overcoming Adversity and Regaining Control


Without feeling powerless, life-coach, self-help author and consumer advocate, Vivian Orgel, overcomes a catastrophic apartment fire and investment fraud.

She can help you overcome just about anything
quickly and painlessly.

I found out about the fire as I was boarding my plane to New York City. The kitchen closet AC unit had burst into flames, flooding my apartment with smoke and destroying my kitchen. It melted the window shades and left smoke damage in my apartment and the two floors above me.  I knew I would be tied up for days with State Farm, but I stayed on the plane. It was the best thing I could have done for myself. I didn’t know how bad it was until my friend went into the building with the firemen. She filmed the extent of it and sent it to me. I started crying immediately. It was shocking. I had no idea how bad it was.

It was really hard, but I was able to overcome the intense paperwork from the insurance company and handle my emotions. And now I’m taking back my life.

You can view the video and several photos of my apartment during the renovations below.



My apartment


My kitchen


An original Barbara Streisand casting photograph-the fireman put it in another roomClick here to see the salvaged photo


Lost possessions

I opened up the drawer and found brand new pots and pans

fire 0

My fridge


Somehow pictures of my dad and his two-seater airplanes from 1938 survived


How could the fire have spared my life’s work, my credentials, my computers, flash drives and my books? Miraculously, the fire did not affect anything precious in my office except the picture frames. My professional accolades, a New York Times interview, GQ, were completely spared.


These are the walls when the picture frames were removed


Removed all the carpet


Gutting my apartment


My apartment after it was gutted


The staircase also had to be gutted


The work begins


Putting life back together after the fire