We interviewed Ararose model Alyssa about her thoughts on compassion, empowerment and overcoming insecurities. Read about her story and gain insight into the women behind the beautiful images you see online.
Ararose Dress Size: Medium
What is your favourite/most inspiring quote?
“I will not be another flower, picked for my beauty and left to die. I will be wild, difficult to find, and impossible to forget” – Erin Van Vuren
What does empowerment mean to you?
Empowerment means not only having the strength to love yourself and lift yourself up, but also to spread that strength in loving, encouraging, supporting and praising the people around you.
What part of your body do you love the most?
I love my eyes. I love how they can light up when I talk about something I’m passionate about or when I’m excited or when I’m speaking to the people I love. I love how they can let the people around me know if I’m happy or if something is wrong.
What is your favourite quality about your personality?
Compassion. It has always been something I felt strongly, I would always care too much. I’m always sensitive of what my actions or words might make someone feel…But this compassion has led to one of my biggest passions in life, which is being vegan. Being vegan has not only led to me to stop causing harm to innocent animals on a daily basis, but it has led me to extend my compassion in almost all aspects of my life. I’ve become more open, understanding and empathetic to causes bigger than myself.
When you were growing up, can you remember becoming aware of what you looked like? Were you influenced by anything in particular?
I think I started to become more aware of what I looked like towards the end of primary school. It was around this time that social media started popping up and boys started becoming a constant thought. It started to become so easy to compare myself to others and always be self-conscious of how I looked and what kind of impression I was leaving.
What insecurities have you overcome that were previously holding you back?
A huge insecurity I had was a bald spot I have on top of my head. When I had longer hair, I used to feel so scared that it would peek out from under my hair and I was absolutely devastated whenever someone noticed it. Since shaving my hair in January, I was obviously faced with it being exposed all the time. Not only did I already stand out with having a shaved head, but I also had this gaping scar on my head. I was forced to face my insecurities head on and in the beginning I honestly had to fake it till I made it. I had to ignore the stares I got, and had to explain what this scar on my head was. I’m proud to say that today it doesn’t bother me at all and I embrace it.
Who do you look up to and why?
I don’t necessarily have a famous celebrity or figure head that I can think of that I look up to…But thinking about this question, I think that someone I look up to is a blogger, Ally Sheehan. Simply scrolling through her blog, her light shines right through. She’s honest, kind, open hearted and isn’t afraid to share her thoughts and opinions. She’s able to admit her faults if she accidentally offends someone or says the wrong thing. She’s always the best reminder to forever be grateful for what I have and she’s often what I strive to be.
What advice would you give to your 12 year old self?
Stop worrying about what other people think or say about you. Your self worth is so much bigger than the attention you get or don’t get from people. Also, boys are not as important as you think they are.
What do you enjoy doing in your spare time?
I am the biggest fan of binge watching TV shows…It’s so sad watching a show nonstop and then realising you’ve already caught up! I also really enjoy hiking when I get the chance to, there’s nothing that comes close to the calmness I feel during a hike.
What advice would you like to share with other women?
Please, let’s stop judging each other and trying to bring each other down. We’re all we’ve got. Let’s continuously support each other and give each other the boost of confidence we so desperately need in a world where we’re more often than not seen as less than.
Find Alyssa on Instagram: @alyssasafura