27 Sep NOISEMAKER: Stacy Nadeau
In 2005, Dove rebelled against society's perception of female beauty with their Campaign for Real Beauty. They highlighted the beauty in the world around us using REAL women -- and subsequently confronted the body image conversation head on, changing the lives of millions of women around the world. Stacy Nadeau was one of the original models from the campaign and has made it her mission to shift the perception of perfection in women's minds around the world -- and with an innate rebellious attitude, she's tackled and overcome plenty of bumps in the road. We're proud to introduce NOISEMAKER Stacy Nadeau! We asked her to share some of her best tips with our #fitnessrebel community, and here they are:
To us, being a rebel means following your gut & your heart, even if its the path of MOST resistance. How did your inner rebel help you in the beginning, during and right after the landmark Dove shoot? And how has your inner rebel guided the decisions you’ve made growing your brand?
I love this definition of inner rebel! My inner rebel served me strongly during my experience with the Dove campaign. My rebel knew that this campaign was going to help a lot of women. I knew this was going to be a campaign that gave women permission to define what healthy looked and felt like for their own body and I wanted to be a part of that.
My inner rebel got strong in middle school, when I used to spend days crying about my “fat thighs” or “frizzy hair”. My mom would talk me down and help me work through it. She would allow me to have 3-5 minutes to feel bad for myself, ask me what was on my schedule at school that day (shift my attention), and send me to school. I realize now she was teaching me the “squash it” method. I still use this today! I still have my moments or days where I’m not feeling my most confident. When I’m feeling uncomfortable about my body, I let myself have the 3 minutes to acknowledge those feelings, I take a deep breath, and then say to myself: “I have more important things to do today than beat up my body.”
At the end of the day, I want to wake up and make myself proud. If I’m proud of the things I’m doing, I’m in a good place. My inner rebel knows what’s best for me – so I listen to her. She is the one in control. If I’m trying to make a decision or am on the fence about something, I slow down and listen. My inner rebel always comes through to make sure I’m making the best decision for me at that time.
The Dove Campaign for Real Beauty totally broke the mold in terms of womanhood and body image. Were you ever apprehensive to participate? How did you quiet any fears you may have had in the beginning about the shoot?
I chose which emotions would shape my experience. I could have let anxiety and the worry of “what will people think?” take over. Instead, I decided to let pride lead the experience. I was (and still am) SO proud of being a part of that experience. I walked through the fear to get to the other side and am so thankful I did – we have helped so many people think differently about what health looks like for each individual body. Most importantly, I’ve helped men and women take back the control and define what healthy FEELS like for their own body. No one can mess with you when you know that about yourself!
What is one piece of advice you think that every woman should hear about self image?
It all comes from you! So often, women look for external things to make us feel better. “If I just lost that next ten pounds, THEN I would l feel confident.” Or, “If I could just meet a partner, THEN I would feel good about myself.” External things do not create your happiness or peace, YOU do. In my opinion, the goal should be finding inner content and peace. When you live from the inside out, your entire perspective shifts – life can and will be so much more enjoyable.
You’re no stranger to traveling: what advice can you give our community on being a balanced badass when you’re outside the comfort of your routine?
PLANNING! I plan out and carry my own healthy snacks so I’m never left starving in an airport with only fast food available. However, I’m the first to admit there are times I’ve been stuck with no healthy snacks and only fast food available due to my lack of planning. I do the best I can in each situation and then I DO NOT beat myself up over it. I just get back on track at the next mealtime.
I love staying active and when I’m traveling, it can be difficult to fit an hour workout in. I used to subscribe to the “all or nothing” attitude and only workout if I had the full hour to get it all in. Now, I add in activity whenever I get the chance. If I can only fit ten minutes in on certain days, I let that be enough! I’ll get back to longer workouts as soon as I can.
What do you think the first step is in attaining self-love and self-acceptance?
Being kinder to yourself. Changing the conversation that you have with yourself will be the most beneficial thing you can start doing, TODAY. I believe we can be our own worst enemies. Often times, we are the hardest on ourselves. This is the way I see it: you’re going to have an internal conversation with yourself no matter what. Why not make it a positive one? You are in complete control of how you talk to yourself and react to situations – be kind along the way! Think about how you would treat your best friend, why not treat yourself the same way?
What really makes you turn up the volume? In the car (favorite music artists), and in life 🙂
EVERYTHING! I really connect to music and have it on constantly. You can often find me working to Adele and Celine Dion (such a classic). And you’ll find me dancing in the car to anything on the top 40 that gets me moving. I’ve also been known to throw on my cowboy boots and get down with country – Eric Church is one of my favorites!
Tell us a moment in your life that you felt most like a rebel.
The launch of the Dove Campaign. I felt like a rebel because we were telling the entire world, “we love who we are, no matter what you say”. To me, that’s the ultimate rebel attitude: when you know who you are and aren’t apologetic for it – no matter what other people’s opinions are.
Who inspires you (your #noisemakers!) and who gave you your best piece of advice along the way?
I am blessed beyond belief with all of the noisemakers I have in my life. My mom was my first coach and best friend and remains one of those today – she’s the most positive and encouraging person I know! Along the way, I’ve had other amazing mentors and teachers.
The best advice I’ve ever received is “be yourself and break the rules.” To me, this means embrace fear and walk through it anyway. SO many of us walk around fearful of the unknown or trying something new. I get scared too. When I do, I welcome the fear in, thank it for showing up, and keep trying new things anyway. To me, it’s not about becoming fearless – I don’t think that’s even possible. It’s about mustering the courage to walk through the fear and get to the other side.
Your 5 min rockstar breakfast & morning mantra:
When I’m not traveling, my son and I get to eat breakfast together. It also happens to be my favorite meal of the day. We have oatmeal, hardboiled eggs, or egg whites and veggies, wheat toast, and fruit. I really load up in the morning! When I head in to my office, I put on some music that pumps me up and the mantra is always, “Let’s go kick some butt today!”
You’re leaving on an extended journey/speaking tour: 3 things you’d take & 3 things you’d leave behind:
Three things I take:
(1) My phone to stay connected and to Facetime with my husband and son.
(2) My Kindle – I love to read.
(3) Running shoes – I want to stay active on the road!
Three things I leave behind:
(1) Extra clothes & shoes – I’m a minimalist when I pack, I only take what I need and make all of my clothes work together.
(2) Stress – I watch so many people get stressed when traveling. It’s a blast. I always find the joy in it.
(3) A detailed itinerary – don’t get me wrong, I have my itinerary for my flights and rental cars but I also allow myself to roll with the punches. Flight delays, cancellations, bad weather – its all part of the experience. Staying flexible and trusting that I can handle all of the situations thrown at me has really helped me enjoy every travel experience!