TikTok star, India Sasha, knows switch things up when it comes to being a viral star. Her mantra as a disability advocate is to 'break the mould...read more..
Women We Love: India Sasha.
TikTok star, India Sasha, knows switch things up when it comes to being a viral star. Her mantra as a disability advocate is to 'break the mould through humour and representation' - something that we think fits precisely into our mantra of being completely, unapologetically yourself.
India has over 473k TikTok followers, and personally, we're obsessed with her hilarious, uplifting and informative content. We knew she'd be the perfect fit for our Women We Love interview series, which is why we were overjoyed when she agreed to chat to us! Scroll to read our interview with this lovely lady...
Hey honey! In light of International Women’s Day, we’re here to celebrate all things women. We believe that being unapologetically yourself is a fundamental part of being a woman - what parts of yourself do you LOVE?
I feel like there are two different areas of myself that I love, which work together to make me who I am as a person. Mentally, I love my resilience, my determination and my empathy. Its what has allowed me to achieve being a manager at 20, a successful business owner at 21, and now graduating from University at 22. And its also what has allowed me to love myself physically. My body, which has done so much for me, is far from any of the idealistic super-standards set for us in today’s world of ‘beauty’. However, I genuinely love all the things that make me different. My fingerless hand, my body freckles, the lines created from my excessive smiling and the scars from my adventures. It shows all the tiny details about who I am, and I love it!
Self acceptance is not always an easy thing to achieve. How do you overcome imposter syndrome when it comes to believing in yourself?
Everyday is a learning opportunity. I wasn’t born ultra-self-confident, I feel imposter syndrome all the time! But now, instead of accepting those invasive thoughts of feeling like I don’t belong, I remind myself of why I do. It isn’t easy, but it’s something we should all practise.
If you don’t mind sharing, what personal obstacle have you had to overcome along your journey of self acceptance?
A major thing that I think many people with physical differences and disabilities struggle with is posting themselves online, or have this huge fear of being seen. I struggled for years with being unable to be comfortable with it. I always identify myself as someone unable to blend in, everyone knew the girl with one hand. In school I couldn’t sneakily skip a class, because I was so indefinable. I couldn’t change that I was different, and I didn’t enjoy feeling uncomfortable with how I looked and felt about myself, so I decided I wanted to stop. The actions came first and the feelings came after. I never was ‘confident enough’ to be seen and post myself online, but being seen is what made me confident. It takes being brave, taking leaps and deciding not to spend your life being afraid in order to develop yourself as a person. The biggest challenges are what makes us grow. It wasn’t until I decided to throw out my paranoia about what I think people will see and say about me that I began to heal the years of my own criticism and fear.
Surrounding yourself with positive figures is key to believing in yourself - which incredible women inspire you everyday and why?
I know it seems so typical, but the truth is I am lucky to call my mum my role model. It goes beyond even that. My mum is my best friend. I always felt a deep sense of appreciation and respect for my mum, as she herself struggled with a serious disability after being unexpectedly diagnosed in her mid-20’s. It affected every aspect of her life, only she had 3 young daughters and a degree to finish. It was not easy, but she did not let anything hold her back. She not only finished her degree, she raised three strong women in the meantime and began to
run to empower herself and is now a recognised athlete running sub 3-hour marathons at age 43. She has been though brain surgery and back, and continues to not only move forward in life, but to go and get the best out of it. Without my mum showing me a true display of determination, I am unsure I would myself be so determined. In my household, the only thing that can hold us back is ourselves. Which sounds tough, but all the while, my mum never punished us for needing a self-care day off school or work. She has always been there to listen and to be the best-friend we need.
What is your top piece of advice for other women on how to be unapologetically themselves?
If you don’t know yourself, get to know yourself. Find out what you enjoy, what makes you happy, and also what doesn’t. Start living life by the rule of: You live once, so just live. If you only had 1 year to live, what would you do, what would you want to achieve and who would you spend it with? And then live every year just like that. In the long-run, people’s opinions don’t matter. This was a big mindset changer for me. I used to be a people pleaser, desperate to feel accepted and liked, almost to ‘make up’ for being disabled. But I realised I wasn’t living for me, I was living for them. Being open about who I am, and having a disability, has almost worked as a superpower of weeding out the people who don’t deserve to be in my life. If they judge my disability after they see it, I am so glad I didn’t hide it. People like that need time to work on themselves, and don’t need to be in your life bringing you down.
You can follow India over at @indiasasha on Instagram and TikTok 💗