One on one with Miss Universe Canada 2016; the bad ass babe shutting down the body shamers

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Hello Sierra, and we warmly welcome you to our first one on one here at The Honest Fit Girl!

I’m just wanted to thank you again for taking the time to speak with us. It’s a huge honor for me personally. You are such a wonderful role model to young girls and I know I certainly look up to all of the amazing things you’ve achieved in your short life time.

You not only inspire just me, but many other women in today’s day and age – In saying this, lets get the ball rolling!

What first brought you into the competitive world that is Miss Universe?
My family and I lost our home to a house fire in 2009 and I wanted to find a way to give back to the Red Cross on a greater scale. I competed for the title of Miss Teen Saskatchewan just weeks after the fire and won. I went on to win Miss Teen Canada-World and was 2nd Runner-Up at Miss Teen World. I had the opportunity to travel to Kenya, Africa to build a school for Free The Children and speak to 16,000 youth at the We Day celebrations. I wanted to use “pageants” as a platform to create change in my community, national and globally.

What are some of the major issues that you face regarding the current day body image shaming?
We live in a critical world that profits off of our insecurities. People are not afraid to voice their opinions online and on my social media. While opinions are fine, bringing women down is not acceptable. We need to work together to redefine the global vision of beauty. We need to uplift the women in our lives and celebrate diversity. Your involvement with the community is outstanding. Are there any exciting new additions for you in the New Year in regard to body image issues for young women? I will continue to advocate body diversity and beauty beyond size. Because this message is so important to promote, I will continue to do so in any way that I can. I will be travelling back to Manila, Philippines at the end of February to hopefully spread more of this message among other exciting opportunities.

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“It takes discipline to have the body of a Miss Universe. It also takes discipline to be accepted into Law School. It takes discipline to run a marathon. It takes discipline to be true to ourselves in a world that is constantly trying to shape us into something we are not. People have asked me if I changed my body to prove a point. No. Our lives are fluid, dynamic and ever-changing. So are our bodies. To be truthful, I restricted my food intake intensely at previous pageants and was miserable, self-conscious and I never felt good enough. No matter how little I ate and how much weight I lost, I constantly compared myself to others and felt like I could still lose more. My mental perception did not match the physical body I saw in the mirror. There were days I would eat a protein bar, workout for hours and struggle to fall asleep because I was so hungry. My body is not naturally lean and that’s okay. I am healthy. I am fit. I am confident. I am me. This is who I am right now and I’m okay with it, so you should be too. My fellow ladies, remember that true beauty, and validation start from within. 💛 ” – Siera Bearchell (via instagram)

You are also a student. What are some of the challenges you face with leading such a busy lifestyle?
I was fortunate to take a year of absence from my studies to focus on the Miss Universe competition. We all lead busy lifestyles and it is important to try and still find time for ourselves. It is important to take time to go for a quick run or yoga class to clear our minds and find calm in the chaos. It is important to sit down for a nutritious and healthy meal that we have prepared ourselves. It is important to take care of ourselves in such a busy and fast paced life.

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What has been your favourite moment so far in your beauty pageant career?
My favourite moment in my “pageant career” is receiving messages from women around the world who have told me that I have helped them love themselves and find peace within their mind of accepting who they are and finding self-worth. For me, that is what these competitions are all about- celebrating women and celebrating diversity. Of course I was also incredibly proud to represent Moose Jaw, Saskatchewan, Canada and the women of the world on the Miss Universe stage. I was overwhelmed with pride and shed many tears of happiness.

You have recently been spotlighted in articles by “People,” “Huffington Post,” “CNN,” and even “Cosmopolitan,” how does it feel to be making big headlines about body image and calling body shamers out?
I am so proud and honoured to be an advocate for women. It is a shame that I this role to fulfill because we should be celebrating ALL women around the world rather than bringing women down. It is sad that I have so much to stand up for because we live in such a critical world.

Check out these articles here:

http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/2017/01/24/miss-universe-canada-body-shamers_n_14363058.html?ncid=fcbklnkcahpmg00000001

http://people.com/bodies/miss-universe-contestant-body-shaming/

http://www.cosmopolitan.com/lifestyle/a8637018/miss-universe-contestant-canada-siera-bearchell-body-shaming/

http://www.cnn.com/2017/01/27/health/miss-universe-canada-comment-trnd/index.html

 

What are some of your goals you would like to reach in the next few years? How do you stay motivated to reach those goals?
I want to continue to be a voice for those who may not have one. I want to be a role model to young women who have struggled to find someone to look up to. I want to help to redefine the global vision of beauty. I will do so by continuing to use my voice on social media, in interviews and in public speaking engagements. I will also finish my law degree within the next couple of years. I stay motivated because I am passionate about what I do. When we have passion and excitement for something, it is easier to find success and fulfilment because there is more energy, drive and dedication behind what we do!

What is your go to “junk food”?
Nachos, popcorn and icecream!!

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I cannot imagine how nervous some might be walking out on stage during a pageant. What goes through your mind when you first hit the stage?
I LOVE being on stage. I enjoy every second and am honestly not that nervous because I have such a passion for it. However, I find calmness knowing that I can only do the best I can and enjoy every second. Rather than trying to perform, I enjoy my time on the stage. I also tell myself things like “I am your Miss Universe,” right before I step onstage so that I emulate that confidence that I already have inside.

Do you have any advice for the young women out there in regard to dealing with body shaming and today’s unrealistic expectations of having the “perfect body”?
Love yourself for you are. Focus on what you love about yourself rather than what you wish you could change. No one is perfect and we all have things we don’t like or we wish we could change. However, we are all unique and that is our power. We live in a world that profits off of our securities and we stand out when we go against what society wants us to be.

Thank you once again Siera,

you are an incredibly intelligent and bright woman. We wish you all the best in your future endeavours and want to congratulate you on all your amazing accomplishments and successes that have come from the Miss Universe 2017 competition. You have done incredible things for today’s women, and I’m sure will continue to make a footprint in the issues surrounding body shaming and self love.

Follow Miss Universe Canada here:
Facebook
Instagram
Twitter

Check out her awesome clothing brad here:
Watered Down Apparel

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xo
Karly

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