I have been thinking about role models a lot lately. A few weeks ago I was speaking with my friend Meg Rowe at a pageant about different pageant systems and how she was handling people's comments as she moved from competing in the Miss America Organization to the Miss America Collegiate system. She said she didn't understand why people cared about how the women were making a difference, what organization they were with, or what title they had, and then she said something that stood out to me in one of the best ways possible, "There can never be too many positive female role models in the community." So it got me thinking... who are my role models? What women stand out to me as representatives of what I want to stand for?
And you know what I realized? I am really lucky. I have been blessed with so many strong women in my life. I have always stated my mother as my biggest role model. She has a giving heart and she is always ready to celebrate everyone's success. She motivates people to accomplish their goals through support and love. She was my very first female role model and has taught me to look for the best in so many people. Then there are all my pageant people - the board members, my sister titleholders, and the current contestants that I work with through volunteering. They are all working to promote service and scholarship. It is an organization full of caring, dedicated, and educated women. I have never seen a group of women so rooted in service and passion for their communities. I feel so blessed to be a part of the organization and to be surrounded by those women on a daily basis. And I have been blessed with amazing friends that all bring a different quality to the table that I wish I could emulate more - a gypsy spirit, drive, being rooted in the gospel, selflessness, creativity, independence, honesty, and education.... the list goes on and on. I am blessed with so many women role models in my own circles.
And then beyond my circles there are women who make a difference and motivate me through their actions. Taylor Swift is an incredible business woman. But beyond that she is giving of her time, her talents, and her energy. She connects with everyone she can and she makes an effort to be present in more than just the media. She is constantly looking way to serve her fans too. Coco Chanel has some of the best quotes for inspiring women to be the best and most classy version of themselves. That is something that I feel is so lost today, an inspiration to be classy and timeless rather than trendy. Alison Faulkner inspires me on a daily basis through her Instagram and blog to be a free spirit. To live my life and have fun while I am doing it. Michelle Money has motivated me to put my dreams into plans and make everything I want a reality. From hairdresser, to YouTube channel, to shop owner, and now talk show host - she has done it all and she keeps reaching for her next dream. She shows love and appreciation to her fans. And she always speaks her mind.
And as I sit here thinking about the women that have inspired my life, I realize what I want my legacy to be. Because who knows, maybe someday someone will look to me as a role model. I want to show everyone that honesty is always key, and being honest with yourself is part of that. Own up to your mistakes and correct them when you can. Be present in the lives of those around you and put effort into friendships and relationships. I hope to be a role model of support and love, just like my mother, to all those around me. I want to motivate people to be there best. I want people to remember me as kind. And I want people to look up to my humor - my honest, to the point humor. I want to be a reminder and a female role model of hard work, of support, of a listener, and of good laughs. Of something, of everything! Because the world can never have enough positive female role models. How do you hope to leave a positive impact on those you meet? What do you want your legacy to be?