Alex Wehrley On Overcoming Self-Doubt And Why Women Should "Own Who They Are"
By Crystal Tate
Alex Wehrley is a TV host but she also refers to herself as an Empowerista, and has developed an entire community behind that title to encourage and empower women like herself. Recently, we chatted with Wehrley about her brand, the importance of female role models and her advice to all women on having a voice and achieving your dreams.
Through your personal brand and #Empowerista, you're all about empowering females. How did this type of work come about for you? What do you enjoy most about empowering women?
Both my mom and sister are strong business women. Thanks to them, I had confident and inspiring role models to help me navigate what it means to be a woman, and what it means to be me. I've been a part of the entertainment industry since I started modeling at nin years old. Modeling turned into dancing, singing, acting and now TV hosting, my primary profession. I like to say I'm an "outgoing introvert." I'm often shy, and like many women, had a tendency to play it safe. Performing taught me how to be bold and brave. What I love most about all these art forms is storytelling. Unfortunately so many stories in the media don't do women justice and often downright objectify them. So I wanted to create #Empowerista to tell female empowering stories, create a supportive community and celebrate women who are real and dynamic.
Equal Pay Day was April 4. How do you feel about the gender pay gap?
Frustrated! It's important to advocate for women politically. And we must also do what is within our control and not be afraid to ask for raises and the pay we deserve. There is a confidence gap between men and women because the genders are raised differently. This is why having strong female role models and mentors is all the more important.
What do you think is the single most important thing that young women should be doing to ensure they have a voice in 2017?
Never underestimate the power of your vote, dollar and opinion. Get informed and vote. Support businesses and brands that empower women, and make your opinions known on social media and in life. Our voices combined have the power to influence the powerful's choices.
What's the most valuable lesson(s) you've learned through your work that you'd want to share with every young woman in America?
When you're first starting out your career, discover what you love doing. If you're not sure, try a bunch of stuff. Then when you've discovered what you love doing, get really really good at it. Gaining experience, skills and a network is way more valuable than a title and money when you're starting out. These are the things that make you marketable as you advance. Don't be afraid to ask and go for what you want. And make friends with failure. It's inevitable and necessary if you want to make big strides.
One of #Empowerista's four cornerstones is "Own who you are." Can you further explain how exactly a young female can embrace and be her authentic self?
It really takes checking in. As a generation, we are so addicted to our phones. Don't get me wrong, social media and all technology comes with so many positives. But, you must keep it in check! Otherwise you'll find yourself never reflecting on who you are and what you want outside of the loud noises coming from society, the media and even your inner circle. Implement a self-reflection routine like meditating, yoga, journaling or praying regularly. Not everything can be Google'd!
Can you share more with the TLC audience about Empowerista, and your one-on-one mentoring sessions?
As mentioned, I'm a storyteller at heart. So you can count on many empowering stories on my website: www.empowerista.me and all of my social media. We highlight women who are powerful and purposeful. Their advice is priceless! If you live in Los Angeles, feel free to reach out about attending our networking events. I also work with millennial women one-on-one (online and in person). Simply put, I help them reach their goals. This includes coming up with a personal brand, networking plan, engaging social media community, effective marketing and a strong mindset to believe in yourself along the way.
Anything else you'd like to share with the TLC audience?
The biggest obstacle I hear young women face is self-doubt. They often think: "Who am I to accomplish this big dream?" This is a normal (but untrue) thought. The dream is ultimately about so much more than you. Once you tap into your "why" - the purpose behind your dreams - you'll find you're meant to inspire others. The world needs what you have to offer.
Crystal Tate is the editorial manager of The Life Currency, and a freelance editor, writer and stylist based in New York City. When she isn't sitting behind her laptop, she enjoys spending time with family and friends, traveling and inspiring young women to shatter glass ceilings. Follow her on Twitter at @CrystalDenise and see more of her work at Crystal-Tate.com.