Listen to Your Body Podcast 335- Breaking the Body Stereotype w_ Amanda LaCount

Breaking the Body Stereotype w/ Amanda LaCount

Ever since a dance studio director told Amanda LaCount that she could not participate due to her body size, she has been on a mission to break the stereotype and promote body positivity and the belief that any body can be a dancer’s body. So if you are feeling like you are ready to get back out there and start moving your body but are nervous about what other people might think, this is the episode for you.

Listen to Your Body Podcast 335- Breaking the Body Stereotype w_ Amanda LaCount

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Key Takeaways

If You Want To Break The Stereotype You Should:

  1. Start moving your body in a way that feels good to you
  2. Stop listening to the haters and find a way to push through the negative comments
  3. Remember that everyone is focusing on themselves, and you have nothing to be self-conscious about
  4. Work to lift up marginalized voices in the entertainment you consume

Doing What You Love with Amanda LaCount

Rihanna follows her on Instagram; she has danced with Lady Gaga in her Stupid Love music video and danced with Lizzo at Coachella. She has also danced with Meghan Trainor and Katy Perry, was the first plus-sized Disney mermaid, and has partnered with international brands to bring body inclusivity to the forefront. Amanda LaCount is making huge waves in the world of entertainment and is working day by day to #breakthestereotype.

Don’t Let The ‘Haters’ Get You Down

Amanda has been dancing since she was 2 years old, but it hasn’t come without her fair share of setbacks. ‘Haters’ have often made Amanda feel like she didn’t belong in a world where your appearance means way more than it should. But Amanda never let that stop her and has developed her own way to move past the mean comments and embrace what she truly loves to do.

Amanda believes that your body should not play a role in what job you get or how qualified people assume you are, and she wants to inspire people to do what they love regardless of any stereotypes you may or may not fit into.

#breakthestereotype

The hashtag #breakthestereotype is Amanda’s way to make change actionable. What started as something just for her has turned into a global movement on social media. Amanda wants other people to know that you don’t have to be perfect, skinny, or tall to ‘make it’ in your chosen field. All it takes is hard work, dedication, and the right attitude.

Working to promote inclusivity and body positivity in the dance world and entertainment space, Amanda, and her famous friends, are working to break the stereotype piece by piece.

Are you ready to #breakthestereotype and get out there and start moving your body in a way that is fun and enjoyable for you? Share what you loved most about Amanda’s story with me in the comments below.

In This Episode

  • How to get over the haters and push through negative comments (9:12)
  • Gain a peek inside the dance world and the expectations to conform to a certain body type (13:45)
  • Why the #breakthestereotype hashtag was created (18:10)
  • The importance of representation in the dance world and entertainment industry (23:57)
  • Some of Amanda’s proudest moments and coolest experiences (29:29)
  • Advice for those who want to get started moving their body through dance (33:15)

Quotes

“There is no point in feeling bad for yourself, that’s only going to hurt you at the end of the day.” (11:26)

“I just don’t want my body to be part of the discussion, I want my dancing to speak for itself.” (15:19)

“I came up with ‘breaking the stereotype’ because that’s what I do, and that’s what I am doing still.” (19:44)

“What I want to see is more fat people, or fat films, or fat movies, that are positive and show the beautiful parts of being a plus-size person and show how strong we are and how beautiful we are.” (26:12)

“Stop caring so much about what other people think or have to say. At the end of the day, if it makes you happy, that’s all that matters.” (34:12)

Featured on the Show

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Amanda LaCount Website

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Check out the full show notes here!

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Related Episodes

LTYB 311: Reclaiming Your Spark By Honoring Your Swagger with Anniedi Essien

LTYB 313: How To Stop a Bad Body Image Day In Its Tracks with Brianna Campos

 

Breaking the Body Stereotype w/ Amanda LaCount FULL TRANSCRIPT

Steph Gaudreau
On today’s episode of the Listen To Your Body podcast, my special guest Amanda LaCount is sharing with us all about her breaking the stereotype movement. Amanda is all about dance, but her goal is to inspire others to follow their dreams. And her breaking the stereotype movement is all about promoting body positivity, and the belief that any body can be a dancer. Amanda is incredible. And I know you’re going to love this show. So let’s dive in. The next evolution of Harder To Kill radio is here. Welcome to the Listen To Your Body podcast. on this show, we’ll explore the intersection of body, mind, and soul health, and help you reclaim your abilities to eat and move more intuitively, hear your body’s signals, and trust yourself more deeply. I’m Steph Gaudreau, certified intuitive eating counselor, nutritional therapy practitioner, and strength coach. On this podcast, you can expect to hear expert guest interviews and solo chats that will help you deepen your trust with the food movement and your body. Remember to hit the subscribe button and share this podcast with your friends and loved ones. Now, on to the show.

Steph Gaudreau
Hello, my friend. Welcome to the podcast this week. If you’re a new listener, hello and welcome and you picked a really great episode, to begin with. If you’re a returning listener, your continued listenership means so much. We’re almost at the six-year mark of this podcast. Six years, which is mind-blowing. And I’ve just looked back with so many fond memories of all the incredible people I’ve talked to. But not only that, all of the messages I’ve received from you about episodes that rang true or episodes that made you realize something that you hadn’t thought of before, or episodes that you’ve shared with your friends or family or gym mates or whoever it might be. It really makes me pretty nostalgic. And it also makes me incredibly grateful so thank you very much for continuing to listen to this show.

Steph Gaudreau
Alright, today’s guest is Amanda LaCount. If you’ve never heard of her, go follow her on Instagram right now because you need to see what she does. And her art form and her choreography and her dance and how she brings it to life to really understand the force of nature. That is Amanda LaCount. But beyond that, she’s an incredible human with a heart of gold. And she’s really on a mission to help others see that dance can be for any body. And not only that, in this episode, she’s talking about her personal story. She’s sharing with us some of her most frustrating moments, and also the things that have really propelled her to start breaking the stereotype hashtag. And she’s talking about the importance of representation and inclusivity in dance. So this fits so well with our message here. And I’m just so grateful to Amanda for sharing her time with us. You’re going to love this episode. I know it. So let’s go ahead and dive in.

Steph Gaudreau
Amanda, thank you so much for being on this show today and for being my guest. I’ve already fangirl to you off the air but I’m going to fangirl again because you’ve been somebody I’ve been following for a couple of years now on Instagram. And my goodness, I just love everything you do. So I’m beyond honored that you’re here on the show today. And we’re going to talk about all things like movement and dance and your mission in the world and why you’re so passionate about it. So thank you very, very much for being here with us.

Amanda LaCount
Yeah, of course. Thank you for having me. I’m very excited to talk with you. And yeah, I’m excited.

Steph Gaudreau
Yeah. So whenever I see your videos on the gram, I guess this is what the young folks are calling it these days, whenever I see your stuff on the gram, it is just like, I just want to get up and move. Now to anybody who has seen my old Throwback Thursday pictures, I definitely had some experience in dance. I was not very good at it. But whenever I see your videos on Instagram, your choreography or dancing, when you do partner dances, like whatever you’re doing, it makes me want to get up and move. And it’s so joyful. Are you really like… you’re like, always smiling and so happy. Are you just like loving life and so happy all the time? Is that part of your personality?

Amanda LaCount
Um, I mean, I definitely think whenever I dance that just comes naturally. And it just comes because I genuinely love what I do. And it just makes me so happy. So whenever I dance, I’m not like trying to force anything. It’s just that’s how I feel. So it just naturally comes out. I don’t know what my face is doing. I’m just focused on dancing. And then when I watch this video, I’m like, Oh, yeah, I was smiling a lot. Um, so that just kind of naturally happened with dance and outside of dance in my daily life. I do try to be very, like bright and happy and smiling. And just try to be like a light in the world. I guess I could say very, like, cheesy, but I’m definitely not happy all the time. I think anyone that says they’re happy all the time is lying. So definitely not all the time. But I do try to look on the brighter side of things and stuff like that.

Steph Gaudreau
Well, you definitely have that energy that comes out of you when you’re dancing. I mean, like, sometimes you have this super intensity like I’m gonna fuck shit up right now. Like, like, this is just like intense, like, the energy is moving. But it comes across so much that you love this art form. You love this expression, the self-expression. So tell me when you know, tell me about your history with movement and dance and like, Why? Why is this something you got into? And did you ever see yourself here right now doing what you’re doing?

Amanda LaCount
Yeah, um, okay, that’s a big question. Let’s see. So I started dance when I was two. And I come from a family of seven. And I’m the youngest. And I had two older sisters who were in dance when I was growing up. And my mom was a single parent at the time. And she was very stressed out. And you know, we couldn’t afford like a nanny for me to stay at home. So I go to the studio a lot. And she would see that I was always jumping up and down or staring through the window while my sisters were dancing. And she just had that motherly instinct that, oh, maybe I should put her in some dance classes and see if she likes it, you know, and I tried it. And my sisters don’t dance anymore. I’m the only one that does it now. But I’m really lucky that I had a parent who was watching and picked up on that. Because I’m really lucky. She put me in so early. And I got to find my passion. So early because she was what’s the word? She was I can’t think of the word but she like watched what I was doing. And she paid attention. And I started doing it at 2 am. And I never stopped. And if I ever thought I would be here, yes, but no, it’s hard. Because, you know, growing up, a lot of people say this, but I just like had this feeling that I was like, I think I’m gonna like be something one day like, I just feel it. Like, I feel like I’m gonna be able to help a lot of people. And I feel like people are gonna know my name. And it’s hard to explain without sounding cocky in a way. But I just felt like, I got to feel like this was gonna happen, or that I was going to be successful, no matter how many people I wasn’t, I knew that I had it in me if I just kept going. But then at the same time, there were, of course, moments or times in my life or periods where I thought, Oh, god, I’m never gonna get there. Or I’m never, you know, going to achieve those goals. Just because obviously, you’re like, self-sabotage, but also other people around me constantly telling me, you know, you don’t have the right this, you don’t look good enough. You’re not tall enough, you’re not thin enough, you’re, you’re not good enough, whatever. So there were constantly people telling me that it wasn’t going to happen. And when people are constantly telling you something, you’re going to start to believe that. And so there were definitely times where I was like, am I wasting my time? Or should I try something else? Is this ever gonna work out? But deep down, I think I knew that I was going to be pretty successful.

Steph Gaudreau
I love that. Are there ever times you know, you’re saying how there’s always been, you know, naysayers along the way. And you sort of like had this idea that, like, you’re going to be really a force of nature, like a force for good in the world and doing something big. But were there ever times where those naysayers really got you down?

Amanda LaCount
Um, I think I would say yes, I mean, even now, if I get a really big comment, it affects me. Of course, I think anyone that says that hate doesn’t ever get to them again, is lying. Because it’s natural for us to react to it. Do you know what I mean? It’s natural to feel something when someone says something bad about you. So I think I definitely still react to it. I think I’ve just gotten better at getting over it and kind of, you know, what’s the word like acknowledging it and then just putting it behind me and being like, okay, that’s one person, they don’t know what they’re talking about, you know, is your life you’re doing what you love, and you know that you’re good at it, like, I just gotten better at kind of going in here going well in one year and then leaving the other, I have just gotten better at that because sadly, I’m used to it. But it definitely does still get to me sometimes. I mean, I tell this story every single time I talked to anybody, but it’s a good story. And if I’m going to try to keep it quick for this time telling it but there’s a studio director when I was growing up, who kicked me out of a studio because my body type didn’t fit his vision for his team. And I was no longer allowed in the studio. And that definitely really, really affected me. That’s probably still the experience that has affected me the most as far as like body shaming, or my dance career and my journey with dance. And after that it definitely really impacted me and I was really discouraged and down.

Amanda LaCount
But luckily, I had a mom who was super supportive and very encouraging. And you know, didn’t let me stop in a way because I definitely thought about stopping, or I definitely thought about not dancing anymore. But she gave me kind of the tough love be like, okay, Amanda, this happened, we can’t take it back, you can’t go back and make it not happen. There’s no point in just feeling bad for yourself, that’s only gonna hurt you at the end of the day. So, I’m really like the item mom, that kind of told me straightforward, because I know a lot of parents would have just pulled their kids out of that environment, and just said, let’s find something else to do. Which is completely understandable. If your kid is getting hurt, you’re going to want to take them out of that environment. But I’m lucky that she knew that it’s what I loved and that she, you know, really encouraged me to keep going. But that’s probably the biggest one of the most pivotal times are like traumatic experiences I’ve gone through, and I was only 11. So it was really, really difficult at such a young age. And even if I was now if someone did that, to me, I’d be really upset. Any age, that would hurt. But again, I’m kind of happy that it happened in a way. It did a lot of good things for me, at least mentally, like, now, I know how to kind of deal with, for lack of better term haters, or people like that. And I know that you know how to get through that and how to move on and how to push through. And it also acts as motivation for me. You know, I always think when I achieved something really big, you know when I was on the cover of Dance Spirit, or I danced with Rihanna, I always think, you know, he knows about this, and he’s watching and, you know, it’s really it helps me kind of stay motivated. And I’m glad it happened in some ways.

Steph Gaudreau
Yeah, you’re like, suck it. Yeah. That sounds like it was a really pivotal thing for you. And I mean, how amazing to have a mom, especially somebody super close to you, who could just be like, alright, can I keep going? I was gonna ask, you know, do you ever think about if he sees, you know, your workout in the world, and like, what he’s thinking, but you know, all the time. If you can sort of think about, you know, for those people who might not know, what is the dance world, like in terms of expectation, at least in your experience with, you’re talking about conforming to a certain body type? What has been your experience overall with the dance world? And, you know, maybe when you were younger, to now and how things maybe are changing, maybe not changing?

Amanda LaCount
Yeah, I definitely need to give credit where credit is due. And I definitely think it has improved, especially since you know, for example, when that incident happened to me, you know, in Colorado with that studio director, I definitely think it’s gotten better. But with that being said, we still have a very, very long way to go. And yeah, I mean, in LA especially, there’s such an emphasis on appearance, and sadly, that plays such a big role on you know, like your career and like, whether they book you or not, or, or things like that. And it’s sad. I mean, it is in my opinion, a lot of people ask me, you know, what, I want the future to look like you know, the dance world. And a lot of people think that I want every dancer with a huge artist or on TV or something to look like or to be a plus size. And that’s not what I’m saying what I’m what I want at least and this is just me speaking from my experience. I don’t speak for all others like plus-size entertainers or artists. But what I want to see is just your appearance, not being in the conversation at all. Like, look at my dancing. And that’s it. Do you know what I mean? It shouldn’t be, oh, she’s so good. But like her body or like he was to fit in the costume or like she’s too tall, she’s too short like that, you know what I mean? It shouldn’t be part of the conversation, then that shouldn’t make or break why you would hire someone or not. Do you know what I mean?

Amanda LaCount
So I just don’t want my body to be part of the discussion. I want my dancing to speak for itself. And again, that’s just my take on it, at least right now, that could change. But yeah, that’s what is so toxic, especially in LA. I mean, there’s a thing called typecasting where I went to an audition once we didn’t even dance yet, we all stood in lines, and the choreographer just went through and said, No, no, no, yes, yes. Like, just purely based on looks, we didn’t do one step. And that’s, that’s when it becomes really disheartening. Because it’s like, I didn’t even get a chance, because of the way I look. And that’s when it gets really messed up. And that’s when people you know, develop eating disorders or have body image issues or low self-esteem. It’s, it’s things like that, because they feel like something’s wrong with them, you know. So I definitely don’t want to typecast to be a thing either. I don’t think that should be a thing. But yeah, it’s getting better. I think we’re slowly getting a little more inclusive, but there’s still a long way to go. And even myself, you know, I’m complaining, but I’m really lucky. You know, I’ve done amazing things. And I’ve worked hard, but still, I’ve gotten a lot more opportunities and a lot of other people. So I have to, you know, see how, how lucky I am to have done the things I’ve done. But still, the industry needs work. And it’s still not where it should be.

Steph Gaudreau
Yeah, thanks for sharing that. And, and giving us some examples. Because I think if you’re not in the industry, or you’re not in LA, or whatever it happens to be, you may not have that insider perspective of I mean, how you could just go to a casting and they’re just like looking at you. And they’re like, nope, nope, nope, nope, nope. Like, huh, yeah, yeah. It’s crazy.

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So tell me about #breakingthestereotype and why you created this hashtag. Let’s talk about that first, and I have some other things I’d love to ask.

Amanda LaCount
Sure. Um, yeah, #breakingthestereotype is so so important. To me. It’s like a huge part of my life and who I am as a person, honestly. And it’s a huge reason why I am where I am today. And it’s given me so many opportunities, and I’m so thankful. But I kinda have to be thankful for myself because I made it up. But I created it in I believe that summer of 2016. Or, Oh, actually, my mom and I just saw this. I created it five years ago, like a week ago. Wow. Yeah. So about five years ago, a week ago, and it was very random, like very, at the moment, it was not premeditated. I was literally in the car, my mom was driving me to dance. And I saw that one of my friends that I was following, was using her own hashtag on all her photos. But it wasn’t something like breaking the stereotype. It was just like her age, and then like her name, or something like that, or does something kind of more fun and not like that really had nothing that had a message. And I thought, Oh, that’s kind of a cool idea, like having your own hashtag. And you can look back on like you and look at the hashtag and see like all your posts, or I just thought it was kind of a fun idea. But I knew that when I created it, I didn’t just want it to be like not something meaningless, but I wanted it to have more meaning and be something special and have a story behind it.

Amanda LaCount
And I wanted it to be something that meant a lot to me. And I came up with breaking the stereotype because that’s what I do. And that’s what I’m doing still. And you know, it’s really self-explanatory. But there are so many stereotypes not only in the dance world, which is where I mainly focus but also just in the entertainment industry and even outside of that, just in you know, nine to five jobs. There’s plenty of stereotypes out there. For any job and any anything, so I wanted to use it as a way to inspire people to do what they love, no matter what stereotype they may or may not fit in, or what people have to say about it, or anything like that, and just hope to inspire them to do what they love, and to be themselves. And just be confident, there’s so many things that I want to do with it. But I didn’t start it originally thinking, Oh, this is going to be a big thing. I honestly thought it was just going to be for me, like a fun little hashtag. But a few months after I started using it, people kind of picked up on it, and were really liking it. And then I started doing more like, talking about it, and doing like motivational speaking or, you know, events or I went on a tour. And so now it’s like my little baby, I love it so much. And I’m actually working on something, I’m not gonna say what it is because we just started, but we’re working on it, I’m planning something that the doing something that if we get it done will be really cool. And it’ll mean a lot to me, and it’ll help a lot of people. So we’re trying. Something’s in the works.

Steph Gaudreau
I love it. And I was looking on Instagram earlier, and it looks like you have something like 26,000 hashtags for breaking the stereotype out in the world. What is it? Like? How do you feel when you see that have of thinking, this came out of my brain, and now people all over the world are using this to, you know, send a message to mean something to them that’s really meaningful.

Amanda LaCount
This is, so I was not expecting this. I’m not like crying, but my eyes literally watered up. Um, it because I’ve never really thought about like, I, I’m not saying I’m the first one to ever use it, I’m sure someone’s used it before me, but like, I really kind of started it and got it out there. And like, just that number is crazy to me. And it’s crazy to think like those people could have done it because of me, I guess I’ve never thought about that. So like really big, but be like cheer up a little bit. Um, but, I mean, it means so much to me. And I always say, you know, I want to be the person that I didn’t have growing up, you know, for the younger generation. And, and every generation, I mean, it’s so cool, because I have such a large demographic and audience, like, I have people in their 60s that that look up to me and I have people they’re 12. So I love that. And if I can, you know, inspire them and show them that they can make it in the world, you know, you don’t have to be super skinny and tall and, and perfect to make it then that means so much to me. And like I said, If I had someone like that growing up, I would have had such an easier time growing up and dealing with, again, for lack of a better term haters or bullies or that studio director, it would have been so much easier to get over that and look past that and see the bigger picture and realize, you know, that I’m amazing and just realize your self-worth. So it means a lot, especially kids like kids are like my tender spot. And so when kids tell me stories are like, Oh, this person was bullying me at school and, and I told them that I’m beautiful because of you or something like whenever I hear like stories like that about kids in school or their parent or them wearing a swimsuit to a school Pool Party, or something. It means a lot to me and I really want to keep doing stuff with it. And, and traveling and yeah, we’re working on it. But it means a lot to me. It really does. And it’s so cool. And I’m so grateful.

Steph Gaudreau
Yeah, that I can tell it lights you up from inside because we’re recording this I can you know, we can see each other on video and that. And yeah, your whole, your whole demeanor just really is so warm when you’re talking about that and the impact it’s having on people, you know, talk to me about representation. I think that’s what I hear you saying really is like representation in the dance world and the choreography space like in the entertainment industry and like, why that’s so important, at least from your, your perspective and point of view. And I appreciate earlier you saying like this is, you know, this is your opinion, it’s like, you know, not everybody in a plus-sized body or in a larger body is a monolith. And we all have opinions of our own. But, you know, what do you think representation really means for somebody to be able to look out and see.

Amanda LaCount
Yeah, again, as you said, this is just my take on it. But for me, I feel like sometimes companies or shows or movies or whatever, it may be your magazines, not all the time, but I’ve definitely seen it before where it comes off as they’re using, you know, one fat person to kind of say they’re inclusive and you know, to check the box, you know, hey, we’re inclusive. We use one, you know, hourglass size 14. So we’re inclusive of all bodies and it’s like, no, you’re not. And I, I just I think there needs to there’s, there’s a lot more work that needs to be done. Like, for example, to me, a lot of people list movies where a fat person is like the lead role or something. But a lot of the time, it centers around the fact that their life is so miserable because they’re fat, and how they get through that and push through that, and how nobody wants to date them. And it’s the whole story of how they, they make someone fall in love with them, even though they’re fat and ugly. And it’s like, there’s always, not always there’s just sometimes a really negative connotation, or like, they make being fat look so terrible. And of course, as we have, we have problems that we have to deal with, we have people constantly telling us that we’re ugly and lazy, and we don’t take care of ourselves, and we can’t get proper medical treatment, and we can’t, you know, walk into any store in the mall and get clothes like of course, those things still happen. But that’s not our only story. And so for me, what I want to see is more fat people or fat films or fat movies, that that are positive and show the beautiful parts about being a plus-size person and show how strong we are and how beautiful we are. And, you know, things like that. And so there’s a positive to it. Because that would help so many people, especially again, kids growing up if they could see a film, that’s about a fat person, and it’s positive, and it doesn’t center around them doing everything they can to lose weight or, or things like that, it’ll make them feel so much better about themselves. So for me, it’s just about kind of making fat not a bad thing. And representing it not always in a bad light or a negative way. Yeah, that’s just my opinion, though.

Steph Gaudreau
I really appreciate you sharing that. And I think that’s an important perspective for listeners of this show to hear, especially people who are in straight-sized bodies, you know, and don’t have that lived experience. It’s so important to know and to know what it’s like or to hear what it’s like and, and to hear the things that we’re potentially not seeing because of our lived experience. And I think that’s so powerful. You know, I read an article one time that was talking about Disney movies. How the Disney movies, especially the Disney movies were like when I was a kid, so I’m talking about like, you know, when the Little Mermaid first came, like a million years ago, but yeah, how a lot of even in animated films. There are sometimes character larger characters, but they’re always like the villain. The villain.

Amanda LaCount
Yep, yep. Mm-hmm. Yeah, actually, that. Yeah, I’m glad you touched on that because I actually meant to say something. For that last question. I totally forgot. I got sidetracked. But that’s very true. Especially Disney films, like you said, Ursula. Yep. Always. They always use a fat person to make them eviler. Yeah, this makes them look even worse. And I’m like, okay, but how does that make, you know, less fat people feel, you know what I mean? We’re not villains. But also, not only in Disney films, which again, that’s very true. But also just in general, like on TV shows, we’re always like, the fat funny friend, or like the comic relief, or like, we’re, we never have the same like character development, as like, the other characters were always just like, Oh, that one fat friend that makes you laugh every once in a while, you know what I mean? It’s just there are stereotypes for fat people in fat bodies a lot of the time and TV shows and films and stuff. And we need to, to stop that or at least have other films and other TV shows where they’re just the main character, and they’re just living their normal life because we’re normal.

Steph Gaudreau
And also like living your best life. Yeah, my friends on Instagram, Bri Campos, also, you know, a wonderful wonderful person, therapists are so body image and she was like, you know, it’s just like, I just want to like live my best life and see more of that, you know, we’re multifaceted people are so complex, just like everybody else. And yeah, definitely. Okay, so you mentioned earlier, a really famous person that you’ve danced for and with and stuff like that, but you know, what are some of the things you’re proudest of? I want you to brag on yourself a little bit. You’re very modest at the top of this show, but you’ve been out there in the world, like, yes. Starting off just in a dance studio, like everybody else, but you’ve really achieved some amazing things. And so what are some of the cool things that you’ve, you’ve done?

Amanda LaCount
Oh, yeah, here we go, bragging. No, but I think it’s okay to brag every once in a while if you’re proud of something you’ve accomplished, you know, it’s okay to brag. So yeah, I mean, my favorite is probably the Savage Fenty show. I just, it was my favorite because I just love the message and the show. It was definitely, actually, I’m not gonna say one of, it was probably hands down the most inclusive, like Fashion Week show I’ve ever seen ever. Like, and that’s for like, across the board. There are different gender identities and sexualities and sizes and races and heights and abilities, and backgrounds and religions. Like they really tried their best to make it as inclusive as possible. And I just I really appreciate that. And again, it wasn’t like out of pity or anything you can tell that, like, Rihanna genuinely wants to show that like, everyone’s beautiful. Like for like, no matter what, you know what I mean? And you could tell it was just really genuine and it didn’t feel like fake or phony. And just the experience in general, like the energy with the show and the rehearsals and the costume designers and Rihanna herself like, you could just see the passion behind it. And I don’t know, it was just probably my favorite job today. Honestly, just everything. It was amazing. And I’m so so grateful. And the fact that she knows who I am and again, this subtle brag this isn’t on my resume, obviously. But she does follow me, which I almost died when I thought I was like, Oh my God, that’s not real. And then yeah, that’s one of my favorite. But besides that, I’ve danced with Lady Gaga for the Stupid Love video. I danced with Lizoo at Coachella on I’m 100% that bitch. I dance with Meghan Trainor. I danced with Katy Perry. I was the first plus-sized Disney mermaid at A Little Mermaid Live I did. That was really cool. Um, I was the cover of Dance Spirit magazine, which was my favorite magazine growing up as a kid. I’ve done modeling campaigns American Eagle, I did a huge international Dove commercial. I’ve worked with Nike. I’m currently in a partnership with Athleta. Um, yeah, it’s just, it’s amazing. And I’m so grateful. But at the same time, you know, I always say I’m so lucky. And I am very lucky in the sense that, you know, a lot of people don’t have the opportunities that I do. And, you know, they don’t live in LA, and they don’t have those resources. So I am very lucky in that way. But I’m also not lucky because I’ve worked very, very hard. And so I got myself here. But still, I’m very privileged, in the fact that I can even be here in this country in this city, with my body with my support, just all around a very lucky.

Steph Gaudreau
I love that. And yes, you are such a badass, like, I know some of the things you’ve done. And I’m like, I just want her to brag on herself a little bit. Because, like it is, it’s an amazing accomplishment. Like you’ve had some really cool experiences. And I think that gives people just, you know, hope for whatever that they want for themselves, you know, we can go for it. And like you said, hard work does factor into it as well. And Okay, so what is your best advice for somebody who is they’re like, you know, what, I want to move my body. Dance is something that I’m attracted to, or I’ve done it in the past or like, but how do I get started? I feel so intimidated or overwhelmed? Like, if you could talk to that person? What would you say?

Amanda LaCount
Yeah, um, I’ve definitely been there before even I started when I was too. And I’m sure a lot of people won’t think this. I definitely even sometimes still, depending on the class I’m taking, I’m like, well, there’s a lot of good people here like, or I’ve never taken this car, I’m a little nervous. Like, I hope I don’t make a fool out of myself. Like, I still have those thoughts all the time. So I think I don’t want to discourage anyone, but they might not go away. Like I feel like, sometimes they’ll always be there, just that little bit of like fear. Like, I don’t know how this is gonna go, but we’re gonna do it anyway. But I would just say, you know, I think a big reason why people are so afraid, isn’t because they’re scared. Or they’re scared of like themselves or feeling or failing, it’s more that they’re scared of what other people are going to say or think about it, or perceive them. And I would just say, you know, stop, stop caring so much what other people think or have to say, or anything like that, at the end of the day, if it makes you happy. That’s all that matters. And also this, this might not be the best advice. But someone told me this a while ago, and it’s really true. Most people are paying too much attention to themselves. People are so self-centered. They’re worried about themselves messing up or making a fool out of themselves. So they’re not watching you like, Oh, yeah, I’m going to watch her every move and see if she messes up. And I’m going to think about that and make fun of her. And no, there’s they’re so in their own head. Like when I’m in class, I’m barely looking at anyone I’m in my zone. I’m like, Okay, I need to get to sex and I don’t want to mess up and all that stuff. But just people I feel like we’re very dramatic. And we always think that everyone’s looking at us and judging us at all times. And to be fair, sometimes they are, and when that happens, we need to put them in their place. But a lot of the time they’re not and they’re just in their own head. So, but I would say that like the best actual advice, because that’s not very good advice, I would say to stop caring so much what other people say, um, like I said, If you love it, do it. And that’s that, you know.

Steph Gaudreau
I love it, it’s a time now where a lot of people are feeling like they’re ready to get back out there you know, things are opening up or they’re just more comfortable going out and so I have a feeling I’ve talked about this on some recent podcasts about going you know, going back to the gym or going back into a strength training practice or movement practice and sending this podcast came at such a perfect time to inspire people who want to get out and move or go take a dance class or even do one online maybe they can find one and beam it right in through zoom or something like that. Yeah, this has just been so perfect. Can you tell us okay, first of all, where can people find you on social media and your website and all that good stuff in case they want to go follow along which they should, I don’t say should very often, I’m gonna say should here.

Amanda LaCount
Sure. Oh, my main social media Instagram, which is just my main @AmandaLaCount. I have a Tik Tock, it’s the new thing I guess and I have Amanda_LaCount. And then those are my main social media. And my website is just AmandaLaCount.com. So even go there and find out anything you want to know about me, my merch. I’m working on new merch as well. That’s really cute. So keep an eye out for that.

Steph Gaudreau
I am going to. I want whatever you’re doing. I want it.

Amanda LaCount
It’s really, it’s my favorite. So cute, stylish.

Steph Gaudreau
Okay, well, if you ever come to San Diego, I want to learn how to dance with you. And I will totally video the whole thing and make a fool out of myself and it will be wonderful. Because you’re gonna be supportive, and it’s gonna be incredible. So I hope that that happens. I’m putting that out there into the universe. Yeah, it’d be wonderful. But this has just been so great. Amanda, I just adore you. Thank you so much for coming on the podcast for sharing your story, talking about breaking the stereotype, and in all the great stuff you’re up to in the world. I really appreciate it.

Amanda LaCount
Oh, thank you so much. Nice talking to you.

Steph Gaudreau
Thanks. All right, there we go. that is a wrap on this episode with Amanda LaCount and breaking the stereotype. Amanda has so many incredible videos, choreography. If you want to see her dancing, you want to get motivated and inspired by her you want to feel her energy, which you will if you go watch her videos, you can find her performances on America’s Got Talent. I mean, she’s out there in the world. We’ve linked a lot of that stuff in the show notes, or you can just hop over and follow her directly on the gram, of course. And if you would like a transcript of this show, you can also find it on my website in the show notes, which is StephGaudreau.com. That’s my website. Of course, I would love to see what you thought about this episodes if you want to share it out, share it out on Instagram stories, tag me and tag Amanda LaCount so that way we can see what really rang true in this episode for you what you really loved, what about Amanda’s message stood out, and that is so important to help share about the podcast out in the world. Because it’s through your sharing that new people find out about it. We don’t advertise. We don’t have anything fancy going on in terms of that. So we really do rely on sharing and word of mouth and what you love about it and telling friends and family and spreading the word in a really organic way. And it’s so so appreciated when I see those stories out there. So thanks. Thank you so much for doing that. Leave us a rating and review, of course, on your favorite podcast app. iTunes is super helpful, but just really grateful that you tuned into this episode, and can’t wait to bring you next week’s show as well. We are going to do it up good. All right. Until then, have an incredible week and stay strong.

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Hi, I'm Steph!

Lord of the Rings nerd, cold brew drinker, and depending on who you ask, crazy cat lady. My mission is to help you fuel for more, not less: bigger muscles, strength, energy, and possibilities. We’ll do it with my signature blend of science, strategy…and a little bit of sass.

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