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Real Talk: How To Stand Up For What You Believe In

GOAL DIGGER

188-Blog Real Talk: How To Stand Up For What You Believe In

Goal Diggers, I want to talk about it. The messy stuff, the embarrassing, the humiliating, the shameful… I want to talk about it. But it’s not always easy. You see, there are some BIG topics out there: body shaming, discrimination, inequality, war, oppression, shame, guilt…. But they aren’t always easy to address.

Insert today’s guest. Alex Larosa is a plus-size model, blogger, and self-love advocate based in Los Angeles… This Cali native is ready to share her message of self-acceptance and personal growth. She has two major goals: to help other women become the most powerful version of themselves and to see these women represented in fashion. The launch of Visibly Plus Size is a result of Alex’s unwavering belief that all different types of women (no matter their size, age, or the color of their skin) benefit from seeing images that represent them in the media.

Aside from her brilliant business and insane modeling skills, what also captured my eye is the way that Alex speaks about topics that matter. She recently caught my eye in an Instagram comment section where there was a heated debate, and her responses were first and foremost respectful, but also informative and persuasive. I was so captivated by how this woman spoke up for what she believed that I knew I had to have her on the show. Goal Diggers, without any further adieu, welcome Alex Larosa!

WHICH CAMP ARE YOU IN?

We discussed that people on social media generally fall into one of two camps: either timid and afraid to share their truth OR the people that put it all out there and freely share their thoughts. Which do you fall in? Personally, I said that for the longest time I was more timid because I was worried about repelling followers, but I am actively trying to stand more boldly in my truth. Which is exactly why I wanted to talk to Alex- the way she speaks openly about “hard” topics is so inspiring to me.

I asked her if she has always been so eloquent sharing her opinions, and she said NO. I was so surprised because I assumed it was innate, but she said she had to learn it. As a plus-size model, she would worry that brands would think “this girl is too political or has too strong opinions” and so… she was quiet. But later on, she found herself asking “why am I not seeing myself represented?” and then it hit her: she had to speak up in order to create change.

FINDING HER VOICE

So, you’re inspired to share your voice… but HOW do you do it? I asked about this, and Alex said it was a journey of speaking up where she saw voids in media, cultivating hard conversations, and pushing back when she felt it was warranted. The best part? Now, brands hire her to ask her how to be more inclusive, more diverse, more all-encompassing. That’s right– the thing she was scared to do, she is now being hired for. It turns out”brands do want to hear those things… but for so long, I was scared”

When I was asking her about what my “place” is in cultivating difficult conversations as a privileged white woman, she simply responded with this “A lot of people get an audience, and then play it safe… and what a waste. There are so many conversations and progress that people are missing out.”  WHOA. Yes.

BEFORE SPEAKING UP ON A TOPIC:

However, sometimes you need tangible tips on this (I sure did!). When I asked Alex why it is so hard to discuss certain things, I loved how she pointed this out “We were never trained to have hard conversations… as humans, we are generally trained to stay as comfortable as possible. Now, we are adults and  don’t know how to have hard conversations.”

Here are the basic steps you must take before taking a firm stance:
-Educate yourself
-Consider the dilemma from another’s point of view
-Think of ALL people- not just you
-If you are doubting speaking up, ask yourself WHY
-Speak up anyway (for all the people that aren’t able to)
-And, ALWAYS, always, always treat the person you are talking to as a person.

This woman– boundary breaking and unifying, she truly creates such a welcoming space to come as you are. The reason she has touched so many people is due to WHO she is and how she views the world. I have never met someone who is so eloquent, open, and ready to move the whole forward. Because, Goal Diggers, we are better, TOGETHER.

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PHOTO: NICOLE LEBRIS

by Jenna Kutcher 

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