Alexis Jones redefines beauty, speaks to mentoring group
To hear Alexis Jones’ list of accomplishments, one would assume that she is significantly older than her actually age. The 28-year-old Jones has lasted 33 days on “Survivor,” hosted “On the Red Carpet,” been contacted by Michelle Obama to come to the White House in October and started a national movement for female empowerment, called “I Am That Girl.”
The Mentoring Alliance organized an appearance by Jones at the Lodge on Aug. 31, where she gave a well-attended presentation, begining with a short video invoking a quote from Bethany Hamilton. Hamilton is the teenager who lost an arm to a shark while surfing, but got back in the water a short time later.
Her quote reads, “Courage, sacrifice, determination, commitment, toughness, heart, talent, guts. That’s what little girls are made of, the heck with sugar and spice.”
That accurately sums up the Jones’ message with “I Am That Girl.” The bubbly, charismatic woman continued on to tell the enthralled crowd of all ages her personal life story. Alternating between hilarious anecdotes and serious stories, she shared her experiences growing up poor in Austin, Texas, to living in Beverly Hills and chatting with celebrities, to her grueling stint on the popular reality show, “Survivor.” She revealed how unhappy she was in a supposedly glamorous life and how the Vagina Monologues was a “life-changer.”
Gazing at every woman (and the few men) in the room, Jones instructed everyone to, “Pursue what you love with every ounce of your being. What are you willing to sacrifice in order to get it? Make people see your passion, make it so that no one can ignore it!”
Jones also shared the story of how “I Am That Girl” came to be. She decided (after seeing the “Vagina Monologues”) that she wanted to make a difference in girls’ lives. She cold-called 20 female CEO’s in her area looking for advice. “I thought I’d be lucky if one or two called me back,” she admitted. All 20 of them called back, eager to give her advice and warn her of the perils of business.
Jones also spoke on being beautiful. “Our definition of beauty is so wrong and so messed up,” she exclaimed. “There is nothing more gorgeous than being passionate about what you do. Compassion is beautiful. When you do something, think ‘Am I investing in other people or in myself?’ Integrity is beautiful. Ask yourself, ‘Who will I be in this lifetime?’”
“I want to ignite a beauty movement,” she said. “I want girls to feel beautiful because of their compassion and creativity rather than their physical beauty.”
On her website, iamthatgirl.com, there is an initiative to make smart the new sexy.
Softening ever so slightly, Jones made eye contact with all the young women in the room and explained, “Even if you’ve forgotten, I know you’re precious. You are so treasured and precious and beautiful. There are things that are beautiful about you that can’t always be seen by the naked eye, but those are often the most important.”
She closed by having audience members read various dares aloud, such as “I dare you to have faith in life,” and “I dare you to powerfully create a new identity for yourself as a champion and then to inspire others to follow your brave lead.”
For more information, go to iamthatgirl.com.