For the last 3 years I have been involved in an event called Fashion for a Cure. This is a fashion show that is sponsored by a local photographer, Samuel Marvin Photography, and raises funds for a charitable cause. The organization that we partnered with this year was the Epilepsy Foundation of Idaho.
My role every year is to meet with the models (high school seniors) in groups to go over walking the runway. First, I introduce myself to them, talk about the Miss Idaho Organization, talk about my platform, and then we get to the real reason why we are there: walking gracefully on the runway.
As a contestant for the Miss Idaho competition on June 17 and 18, I have learned a thing or two about walking (and falling, unfortunately). It would be easy to say “walking is something you learn when you are two and that’s the end of it” and, I mean, yes- the mechanics of walking are learned young, but polishing those skills can have unexpected results.
I was talking to a group of girls for the show this year about techniques to stay balanced in high heels, how to add your personality to your strut, and what kind of moves translate well on stage… at least that is how it started. I continued to talk about how, as bizarre as it sounds, this skill set does not just benefit you when you are in a fashion show or on a pageant stage- but instead everyday of your life.
Now stay with me, because I know that probably sounds like a stretch…but it is true and I will tell you why. The stress of high pressure situations like that job interview, or networking and social events, for me- approaching people for interviews, cannot easily be replicated. This is especially true when first impressions are on the line and in an instant you need to be able to convey your genuine self. When a person is able to walk into a room, command respect and be approachable, just off of their body language, I don’t think that anyone would argue saying that person isn’t a leader.
The Miss Idaho competition is what I believe to be a fairly accurate representation of these skills. In interview, obviously you are able to use multiple levels of human interaction to get across who you are, but the on stage portions of competition like “life style and fitness in swimwear” and “evening gown” are unique in that all you have is your nonverbal communication.
I have seen this necessary skill set developed over the time that I have competed in the Miss Idaho Organization. The phrase “fake it until you make it” actually comes to mind. When I am in those high pressure situations and am letting my own self-doubt take ahold of me, my best self becomes my habit. When I am nervous, when I am tired, when I am scared, I can still show confidence and accuracy because that is my default.
The time I have spent competing within the Miss Idaho Organization has taught me to be clear and concise through my words, but I can say just as much without saying anything at all.
Brittany Lock - Miss Boise 2016