The end of April is officially “nitty gritty time” for many pageant contestants.
It’s where the rubber meets the road – it’s where you’ve either got your crap together or you don’t – it’s where all of the hard work and preparation you’ve put in for the past 6-8-10 months is about to get recognized (or exposed!)…
That’s because, unless you live in Maine or New Hampshire (and your state pageant takes place in April) – YOUR STATE PAGEANT WILL BE HERE BEFORE YOU KNOW IT!!!
That’s why we decided to focus this week’s blog on the wisdom of previous state titleholders! We’ve selected 3 ladies who offered some great advice during their time on the Pageant Junkies Podcast – and “summarized” their tips in writing below. 🙂
OH – If you’re fairly new here and you’ve never heard of the Pageant Junkies Podcast, we’ve got 125 podcasts from awesome people within the Miss America program at this link, or you can also go to iTunes and search Pageant Junkies Podcast to find the same list. 🙂
And now – in completely random order – Here’s three of our favorite tips, offered by state winners, as heard on the Pageant Junkies Podcast!
Tip #1: GET TO KNOW YOUR JUDGES
As Miss Tennessee 2014, Hayley Lewis admitted she was “a little star struck” at the fact that when she walked in the door, several celebrities were going to be sitting in front of her! 🙂 And let’s face it – We all know how super-easy it is to be thinking something in your head (“OH MY GOSH! That’s Shawn Johnson! She’s RIGHT THERE!) – even though you’re supposed to be paying attention to the question being asked (or the answer you’re giving!).
Therefore, in order to make sure she didn’t lose her concentration during her interview, Hayley said she cut out pictures of each of the judges and taped them to her bathroom mirror. That way, she could look at them over and over, say good morning, ask them about their day, and generally feel comfortable around people she considered to be celebrities.
Even if your state judges aren’t necessarily considered, “celebrities” – it’s good to make sure you feel comfortable around them! Now, cutting out some floating heads and taping those pics to your bathroom mirror might not be your strategy – But you DO need to find a way to help you relax before walking into your interview. The more comfortable you are, the more relaxed you will feel, and the better your interview will likely be.
To hear Hayley’s entire podcast, just click here…
Tip #2: GET YOURSELF A STAGE
Yes, it’s wonderful to practice walking in your swimsuit across the hardwood floor in your parent’s great room. And there’s no problem walking in your evening gown with your 5 inch heels until you know you’re “gliding” like Miss Congeniality says you should (lol!). But do you know what’s even better? Doing it all – ON A REAL STAGE!
Miss Kentucky 2012, Jessica Casebolt said during her podcast, that practicing her competition elements on a stage, made a HUGE difference for her! And it’s not that hard! She and her family found a local auditorium and practiced as if it were the Miss Kentucky stage. 🙂 She took several trips across the stage in her gown, her swimsuit, practiced her on-stage question, and even performed her talent.
Taking the time to perform all of her competition elements on an actual stage, made a big difference. It allowed others to help her to recognize her best poses, it helped her walk at the correct pace in each phase of competition, and Jessica says it made her super confident when she walked on the Miss Kentucky stage a few weeks later. 🙂
That simple practice worked out pretty darn well for her – Jessica went from finishing in the Top 10 her first year, to winning it all her second year!
You can catch Jessica’s entire podcast right here…
Tip #3: GET WITH A FRIEND AND ACT LIKE A 3 YEAR OLD
Ashton Yarbrough, Miss Arkansas Outstanding Teen 2014, offered this simple, yet extremely effective tip during her podcast last year. Ashton said prior to winning the Miss AR OT title, the majority of her interview prep time was spent with her mom, in the car, listening to current events and answering questions. Her mom would ask what she thought of a news story they just heard, Ashton would give an answer, and her mom would ask, “Why?”
The whole process would repeat itself over and over with Ashton answering, and her mom saying “Why?” until Ashton figured out where her opinions were truly coming from. That process pushed Ashton to learn more about herself and whether or not she was repeating something she’d heard someone else say, or if she really and truly believed the things that came out of her mouth. 🙂
This kind of prep is AMAZING for young women in pageantry – Because unfortunately, it’s really not enough just to “state your opinion…” You also need to know why you believe it!
Why??? (HaHa – Sorry – Couldn’t help it!) … Because that’s how you demonstrate that you are a smart, well-education, well-read pageant contestant, who can think for herself – as opposed to one who just spits out talking points for an interview.
Trust me – when someone asks you “why” over and over again, they may begin to irritate you like a 3 year old, but they’re giving you the best pageant prep you could possibly gain. You’ll become more articulate and more thoughtful with your answers – which is exactly what scores big in most interview circles.
You can catch Ashton’s full podcast here…
And there you have it! Our Top Pageant Tips from the Pageant Junkies Podcast – just in time for the month of May to begin! For all of you who are about to walk into your state pageant, sometimes it’s the “little extras” that make a big difference when your pageant week arrives! Find out what those “nitty gritty” details are – and make the most of you time between now and your big event 🙂
If you’d like to see more #ThursdayBlogDay posts like this one, just click here…
Carrie Lakey is kind of obsessed with Miss America…
So are 15,000 of her closest friends.
As an avid fan of the Miss America Organization, Carrie began
publicly predicting pageant winners over 10 years ago.
Now, she’s galvanizing an online movement of fans
known as “Pageant Junkies”.
Learn more about the Junkie Nation
by clicking here.