My Secret Sauce: Amanda Fakhreddine
My authenticity is my secret sauce - and it’s yours, too.
Let me back it all the way up, here.
We are all totally different. We come from different backgrounds, we have different reactions to the same situations, and we all have different path ahead of us. Yet, somehow we have been taught that we should all look the same, think the same, and that we are in direct competition with each other to achieve the same goals.
Authenticity is a buzzword in marketing right now, because people like to feel connected to other people. Authentic truths can be manipulated to be basically whatever we need them to be, so that we can show businesses that we worth it. I fell into that trap, and while my social media and blog view were steadily climbing, something felt off.
Until I posted this photo.
This is when “authenticity” went from a buzzword, to real hard truth.
This was taken on my honeymoon, on one of the BEST days that me and my husband have spent together. I was jumping off of a freaking boat into the Caribbean for goodness sake. Yet, when I first saw this photo, I remember getting so angry. I was angry at my husband for taking what I thought was a terrible photo. I was angry at myself for looking how I look.
And then, I got angry with the fact that I let the happy memory be replaced by a simple photo.
I guess you can say this photo gave me my 15 minutes of fame - my butt was featured on a bunch of sites and accounts (basically making me a Kardashian, right?).
I got messages from THOUSANDS of people saying that they were going to stop deleting photos that reminded them of amazing times even though they didn’t like how they looked. I got messages from people saying that it had been 15 years since they felt comfortable in a bathing suit, but they were going to go swimming with their grandchildren this year.
That’s when it hit me - that my secret sauce was me.
My ups. My downs. People relate to other people, so why would I hide myself in order to connect with others?!
When the hype around my viral behind shot died down, I told myself that I would never silence my true self. That I wouldn’t just do something for the likes.I would be honest with myself, and therefore honest with my followers.
I haven’t looked back since.
We all have different journeys and different experiences, why would our secret sauce, our approach to fitness, or our end goals, ever be the same?
So, in going forward, I’ve promised myself to keep three things in mind to harness my authentic self:
Post photos that make me happy, without obsessing about the flaws. Chances are, I’m the only one that’s going to be focused on them.
Be honest. This means partnering with brands and causes that I truly love, not just partnering with anyone who wants to work with me. Learning the power of “no” has allowed me to be so much more honest with myself and my followers - regardless of who I end up working with.
Say something every day - I’m a creature of habit, and I embrace it. So, I make sure I post something every single day. My posts are real and raw, and what I’m feeling at the moment. In Madeline Albright’s words, “It’s took me quite a long time to develop a voice, and now that I have it, I’m not going to be silent”. So whether it’s a photo, a quote, or a question, I make sure to use my voice on social every single day, and if I can make a difference in someone’s day, then it’s all worth it.