On September 13th I attended one of the Savoir Collab event series held by Savoir Agency to see a panel of empowering women speak. The topic was Beauty Beneath, which a simple, but important topic that resonates to a far reach of women. On the panel was Allie Pohl, artist and creator of Ideal Woman, Jodi Guber Brufsky, founder of Beyond Yoga, Sophie Jaffe, founder of Philosphie, and Rachel McCord, founder of the The McCord list and author of Slay the Fame Game. Listening to the women speak was ultimately inspiring and I was left with information and tips to, indeed, embrace my beauty beneath.
I felt very connected to many of the things Rachel had brought up and admired her enthusiasm. She had a very girly personality that I normally shy away from, but her words overshadowed my innate judgement. She was real and honest in her experiences and her mission. From looking at her, it was hard to understand how she could ever have an insecurity, yet after she unpacked her past struggles aloud, I was able to relate to the model-like beauty.
Recently we had the pleasure to follow up and find out a little more about Rachel, her new book and how she stays sane in the spotlight.
Where are you from?
I grew up in a small town in Georgia.
What was it like growing up there?
VERY different than LA! I'm proud of my small town roots. I love the south, and I love how kind everyone is to one another!
When did you move to LA?
What brought you to LA?
I moved out here to support my sister, as her career was taking off. I worked with and supported her, and now I get to do it with other people in entertainment. It's a blessing! I love helping others. :)
What was the most daunting part about it when you arrived?
I felt incredibly insecure. There are so many talented and beautiful people in LA, it has a way of making you feel small, [especially] if you haven't learned how to love yourself. Which I hadn't...oops!
What was your first moment in the spotlight like?
It was overwhelming. I remember seeing hundreds of photographers, and just thinking, "Umm, who let me in??" The next week, I was at the grocery store, and saw a picture of my sister and I on the cover of Enquirer Magazine. I had NO idea what I was getting myself into.
Did that have a positive or negative effect on you?
That season of my life had its ups and downs. But, as with most things in life, it was an experience that prepared me to write Slay the Fame Game, and for the speaking engagements I do for girls.
What does fame feel like over time? (both in the public eye and on instagram)
Fame creates a lot of opportunity as well as pressure. The best way to handle it, is to understand that it's as much of a job as any other. Don't go to parties for the free alcohol, don't walk red carpets for validation, and don't post on social media to brag. Network, promote your work, and create content that impacts people's lives in a positive way.
How do you think Instagram, and social media as a whole, has effected how you view yourself?
It has revealed my flaws, but that has given me the opportunity to embrace and make fun of them. As with anything, there are pros and cons, but I am grateful for the opportunities and access my social media gives me. It is definitely a lot of work, but I love using it to encourage and uplift people who are struggling. For example, after tragic events like the Texas and Vegas shootings, I search the hashtags and comment to people sharing their sadness on social. Social media can be anything you it to be. You can use it as a way to feel insecure and jealous, or you can use it as a tool to love and encourage at scale. I prefer the latter.
How do you avoid the personal downfall of Social Media?
I never use it as an excuse to compare myself to others, I laugh at my imperfections and call them out. I use it to advance my passion to heal, encourage and inspire.
What inspired you to write Slay the Fame Game?
It actually began as a vent session. I was feeling annoyed for all the crap you have to do to stay relevant and succeed in this industry. I started making fun of it, and then telling my friends about it. It turned out, they had most of the same feelings! Six weeks later, half the book was written, and I had a book agent.
In one word, describe your book?
What kind of experiences do you share in the book?
Oh my gosh!!!! Soooo many that I should never admit to!!! From lazy girl glam, Botox, awkward Hollywood moments, to collaboration with fellow talent. It's definitely sassy!
What do you hope people learn from your experiences?
I hope everyone, whether they are a small business owner trying to harness the power of social media for marketing, or a girl in her 20's trying to figure out what she's doing in life and on social media, is inspired! I hope this helps them discover their life's purpose, avoid costly mistakes, learn networking tips and find ways to deal with haters, so they can start turning those insecurities into hair flips and "stiletto queen moments!"
Please share any personal thoughts on our mission: To normalize previously silenced topics and obstacles we face as women.
You've got to use your talent, passion and resources to be YOU! I see so many women, in entertainment, tearing others down from jealous and hate. It's very sad to me. I believe those who judge the most, struggle the most. Those who are afraid to "do" end up judging everyone else who isn't. It's an on-going cycle because the more they judge, the most terrified they are of everyone else judging.
When we stop hating and start living the lives we dream of, we create so much joy in our own lives, we wouldn't want anything to interrupt that...especially not a judgement conversation about anyone else. As Abraham Maslow so eloquently says, "A painter must paint ... if he [or she] is to be at peace with himself."
Just do YOU and start encouraging other Queens to do the same!! You are FAB and were born to SLAY!