By: Alexis Jones
When I stepped down as active President of I AM THAT GIRL, it was so that I could dance once again in the world of media. Having hosted a TV show on the red carpet for three years, transitioning into sports and working at Fox Sports and ESPN, then baring all in a bikini while starving on a deserted island on my Survivor stint, I certainly knew the power of media. Combining my passion for empowering girls and having a stage with a relatively loud microphone, I knew that we could change the world. What I didn't know was running a non-profit day to day required a lot more of me than focusing solely on pursuing my passion for story telling and media.
So (insert deep breath here), I took a leap of faith and left the keys to the kingdom with my (more than capable) bestie and co-founder to let her guard the lovely and beautiful I AM THAT GIRL castle. Was I terrified to step aside, to have faith in my personal reinvention, hell yes! I'm still scared. But suddenly a world of possibility opened and I began a new journey. I've spent the last year of my life writing the foundational book for our organization, also called I AM THAT GIRL. I moved to Europe, I fell in love, I changed my hair style, and started drinking morning lattes. But more than all of that, I had the courage to ask people for help.
In the past I confused bravery with pride. I thought that if I didn't ask anyone for help, then they would assume I was strong, capable, and smart. What I realized was that it took me seven times longer to do anything because I had to make avoidable rookie mistakes. When I decided to have the guts to say, "I'm going out on my own to build a new company called Alexis Jones Inc (eek!) I'm going to focus on my speaking, on writing, on telling important stories that need to be heard, and I'm going to do my best to teach people and inspire people along the way," I sparkled differently.
It's one thing to have a magnificent idea fluttering around your brain and never let that butterfly free because it's safe in there. The scary thing is to let that idea lose, to let it fly and see where it goes. Dreaming is not for the faint of heart, it's for the resilient, the hungry, those with an unwavering work ethic, the crazy people who are audacious enough to convince others to believe in their magic and that's woven into my DNA. It's people willing to be in the trenches, who love and hate the grind but do it anyway and somehow always find a way to motivate themselves to get out of bed and do it all over again.
The excuses and justifications you tell yourself to avoid stepping outside your comfort zone will siphon off the fuel tank of your dream-mobile. So acknowledge them and ask for help. I've never been particularly comfortable talking about money. I didn't have a lot growing up and I adopted a paradigm of scarcity and fear in the dinero department, but i can't allow that to prevent me from building my dream company. So I've reached out to the smartest, most savvy money people to teach me a course on, "Raising Money 101." Don't be afraid to show the chinks in your armor and share your insecurities with your friends, mentors, and cheerleaders.
It's in my best interests that you rock what you got, that you create awesome mayhem, reach for those sparkly stars and manifest your wildest dreams. I just want to remind you that it's brave to be vulnerable, and you'll be shocked at how quickly people come to fill your tank up and get you back on the road. In case you forgot, it's my job to remind you that you're awesome. Sometimes we forget it, sometimes we ignore it but the fact remains. Now get out there and make some magic!!
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