There are two types of motivation: intrinsic and extrinsic.
When you decide to sign up for a pageant, you are first often motivated by an external factor, such as winning the title and crown-this is a common motivation among all contestants. Everyone wants to win, but what's your personal reason as to why? This is what would be referred to as your internal, or intrinsic motivation, and this is what will set you apart from the other contestants.
Alyea Draper America's U.S. Teen 2019. Photo: America's US Miss Instagram
What’s your reason?
What is the real reason for why you want to win this title? Maybe you feel like you need to prove something to yourself or to others, but in order to be seen as a titleholder, you must move beyond simply wanting to win the crown in order to prove something. Every great titleholder knows the potential power that a crown holds and wants to use that power to make a positive difference during her reign.
Your reason is something internally that fires you up. Something you are passionate about. It usually stems from a personal experience. This turns into what some contestants create as their platform.
Stories have the power to change lives. Take some time to think about a personal story of yours that emotionally moves you. Maybe it’s a bit tough for you to talk about it right now, but through mock interviews and telling the story to your friends, coaches, and others, it will begin to empower you and you will find the strength to continue to share your story and your story can and will help others.
What’s your vision?
Now that you’ve established a strong intrinsic motivation, it’s important to create a clearly defined vision. Every great titleholder has something that the judges were able to grasp onto: vision.
If you can get a crystal clear idea of why you want to win, what you are going to do once you win, and how you are going to make that happen, you now allow the opportunity for the judges to share this same vision. If you paint the picture clear enough in every area of competition, the judges will want to turn this vision of yours into a reality and crown you as the next titleholder.
So, take some time to first establish your intrinsic motivation. Then, answer the following questions (I provided my answers as an example):
What’s your personal story that makes up your reason?
My mom had me at a very young age, which made growing up difficult for both of us. We moved around a lot and I know it hurt my mom knowing she struggled to take care of my sisters and me. I have been very blessed and was inspired by my mom and others to turn my past struggles and experiences into motivation to be successful so I wouldn’t have to endure what my mom had to and so I could take care of my family.
What are your goals to spread your message?
I want to empower as many youth as possible. I want kids to think and speak out their dreams. I want them to know that they may have no control of their current circumstances, but they cannot let it define who they are and for them to know that they are in complete control of their future.
How exactly are you going to accomplish your goals?
I will conduct Dream Board workshops, distribute the workbook I created, and share my personal story with youth organizations like the Boys & Girls Clubs, schools, and churches.