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Life & Work with Rachael Gomez

Today we’d like to introduce you to Rachael Gomez.

Rachael, we appreciate you taking the time to share your story with us today. Where does your story begin?
Growing up, I had always loved the idea of creating content-whether it was YouTube, blogging, or Instagram-I knew I always wanted to find a way to express myself and use my unique voice to inspire others. As a kid, I explored my creativity by going on “photoshoots” with my friends, making YouTube videos, and even creating a few of my own websites. Yet being raised in a small town, I always felt really self-conscious and held back from sharing anything I would create because I was worried about what the people around me would think. Eventually, I began to completely suppress my creativity and in high school, I started focusing a lot on things that I truly was not passionate about. I started prioritizing my social life and looking back, I spent way too much time on partying, boys, and overall trying to shape myself to fit into someone else’s narrative.

My style reflected that as well, and I dressed in a lot of outfits I thought I had to wear to be accepted by certain groups of people or to be found “attractive” even if I felt uncomfortable. As a result of repressing my true self and style, I started struggling a lot with my mental health and was diagnosed with Depression at the age of 16. In my first year of college, I still struggled with my mental health a lot. Luckily, it was a bit of a fresh start and I had the blessing to move from the East Bay to Southern California to attend California State University, Long Beach where I am currently pursuing a Bachelor’s degree in Psychology. Being near LA, I was exposed to a lot of creative energy and different styles that I had never seen before. I was really inspired by the way a lot of the people were not afraid to freely express themselves through their wardrobe, and deep down I wished that I had the courage to do the same.

During that point in my life, I was still stuck in my old high school mindset of trying to fit in and dress like everyone else. It wasn’t until the beginning of 2020 when all college campuses closed due to the Pandemic and I had to move back to my childhood home that I found myself breaking free from my old way of thinking. Being back home, I felt pretty alone and lost with myself…but through this alone time I was able to find myself and reconnect with myself. At the same time, Tiktok was at its early stages and I started seeing a lot of people go viral doing what I had dreamed about doing for years. One thing that stood out to me about TikTok was that a lot of the content on there was more casual and relatable than any other social media platform. It really broke down the notion that you had to look a certain way or be this “perfect person” to be an Influencer. I knew that this was my opportunity, so I decided to start working on my confidence and just started posting. I began posting a lot of fashion content due to my love for streetwear, which was influenced by my older brother and the music I listened to growing up. As I was finding out more about my style, I really just wanted to help others do the same so I created videos helping people find new brands and places to shop. Another dream of mine has also always been to model for clothing brands, so I started creating a lot more content about modeling and taking pictures in clothes from brands I wanted to work with.

Since then, I have gotten the opportunity to collaborate with some really amazing brands and create content for them. It is still surreal to me how much my life has changed in under a year, and I am proud of myself for what I have done to get here. Looking back, my mental health has improved drastically and I am the happiest I’ve been in a while. One thing this whole journey has taught me is that my self-worth comes from inside myself and is not dictated by what other people think of me. I want to continue to share this message with my followers and to let anyone struggling know that they are loved and valuable, and I encourage them to take a risk and follow their dreams. I am beyond grateful for my platform and the opportunity it has given me to connect with so many creative and inspiring individuals. I am grateful for all of my friends and especially my followers for motivating me to be the best version of myself and for supporting me endlessly. Every like, comment, follow, and DM doesn’t go unnoticed and I appreciate everyone who has been a part of my journey, you guys mean the world to me and I love you!!

Can you talk to us a bit about the challenges and lessons you’ve learned along the way. Looking back would you say it’s been easy or smooth in retrospect?
One of my biggest challenges has been overcoming my need for Perfectionism. Online, it seems like we get to create ourselves however we want and have people see us the way we envision ourselves in our heads, but this couldn’t be further from the truth. No matter what, people are going to perceive you the way they want to. It doesn’t matter how beautiful you are or how good your content is; someone is always going to have their own opinion of you and you can’t control that. Letting go of this control and being authentic is the key. People are going to resonate with that a lot more and gravitate towards someone living in their truth rather than someone trying to be something they’re not. On a trend-based app like Tiktok, it feels like you have to create the same content as everyone else to “go viral” or be like someone you’re not, but I promise anyone reading this that your true self will speak louder than this. Just consistently show up as yourself and let go of overthinking, I promise the right people will find you.

Appreciate you sharing that. What else should we know about what you do?
I am primarily known for my style, creativity, and positive energy. I believe my hardwork and resiliency really sets me apart, and I am most proud of myself for never giving up on my dreams! Anything is possible as long as you put your mind to it and do the work! Stop overthinking and talking down on yourself and put that energy into building yourself and those around you up!

What makes you happy?
I believe happiness can be found within each moment of our lives. For me, this comes from being truly present and grateful for everything life has to offer. Within the struggles and the highlights, each moment is teaching us something and bringing us closer to ourselves. Being able to express gratitude for every single moment and every person in my life makes me genuinely happy. Like that’s real, sustainable happiness, not just a rush of dopamine. It also makes me so happy and grateful to read comments from my viewers saying I inspired them or made a difference in their lives. Knowing that I was able to help someone else do or feel something is special and makes my life that much more worth living. Lastly, I love my friends, family, and anyone who believes in me, because they make me truly happy and motivate me to wake up everyday.

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Image Credits:

Professional images (1st image provided) done by Isabel Edmondson (@isabelmariephotography)

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