Kristy Chong is the CEO and founder of Modibodi, a revolutionary women’s high-tech underwear company that empowers women of all ages, shapes, and sizes to live a better life. Kristy’s personal experience with the common “taboo” of Light Bladder Leakage (LBL) saw her design, develop, and scientifically prove her parent-pending Modifier Technology absorbent underpants and transform this into the ModiBodi collection, which now includes tops, singlets, and moisture wicking underpants.
She knew it was time for a change and that she wanted to create a beautiful and functional line of underwear that would allow women to feel attractive and confident and never fear an embarrassing mishap again.
One of Modibodi’s core pillars is empowerment, empowering women no matter their socio-economic status, religion, issues, or where in the world they live. Modibodi actively supports causes and organisations that champion the empowerment of women including: Share the Dignity, Days for Girls, Endometriosis Australia to name a select few. Kristy is a mum on a mission, fashtech entrepreneur, and social advocate for women’s health issues and rights.
What does confidence mean to you?
Confidence is feeling good about yourself, it’s believing you are enough and ‘can’ instead of ‘can’t’ do something, it’s focusing on your strengths instead of worrying about your faults or flaws, it’s not being afraid to speak your mind, it’s not living in fear or worry, it’s trying to look for the positive instead of dramatising the negative.
Where did you learn how to be confident, or how are you learning now?
From an early age my mum encouraged me to give everything a go, be it piano lessons, sport, public speaking, or dancing, she felt it was important to try different things. I excelled at some things and did so-so at others but what she did was taught me to focus on the areas within each activity I was good at and to cherish that instead of worrying or fixating on the areas I wasn’t. Of course, it’s still good to make improvements on your weaknesses, but confidence comes from reminding ourselves what’s good about ourselves.
What do you think makes it difficult for women to love themselves and own who they are?
This is not a simple question to answer. For me as a young woman I definitely struggled with seeing images of skinny, tanned, big breasted women in magazines it made me feel unattractive and I desperately wanted to change parts about myself. This is why I encourage diversity in advertising, and hope to continue to include women of all ages, races and disability in our advertising as we grow so young girls can start to see that beauty comes in many forms. For me learning to accept that my body is a vessel, it allows me to walk, run, play with my kids, so I want it to be strong, but I don’t need big boobs or skinny legs for that vessel to work at its best. Ultimately what is most important is our mind, it is our minds that allow us to truly experience life and succeed. When we learn to shut down the demon talk and let the angels have a voice, we can truly love ourselves.
What challenges do you face that dampens your confident levels?
I face challenges every single day as a mum of three children and a business owner whose mission this year is to quadruple our sales. I try to see a challenge as exciting rather than stressful, but I would have to say the biggest challenge that dampens my confidence levels is just fear in itself. When a certain activity causes the fear to rise, I recognize it and instead of letting it takeover I switch my emotion to excitement or thrill, it’s amazing how much this distraction works.
Who is the most confident person in your life and what qualities do they have?
My mother. She is extremely resilient, compassionate, and as a stage performer/singer has acted in some roles that I think most people would run with fear from. She is outspoken, but fair, she is willing to admit her flaws and faults, she has balance in her life physically and emotionally.
When do you feel your most confident, powerful, or beautiful?
I feel confident at work and with my children. Even though at work I am exposing myself to new challenges, once I have gone through that challenge and faced it poorly or successfully, it all adds to me as a person. Even if the business failed tomorrow, nothing can take away the learning and life experience. I also feel confident as a mother, which is great, because I think back to those early baby days with my firs-born and I was a total mess, and had little confidence in my abilities. Thankfully time and 3 children helped erase those fears.
Do you have any quick confidence tips when you want to boost your self-esteem?
I know it might sound daft, but I read some customer testimonials, they are a reminder that women really do like my brand and that makes me feel really good. I also look at the photo of my self crossing the Seattle marathon finish line. This photo is a reminder that running a business is like running a marathon, so when I am feeling down about how slow it is moving, I remember I just need to be patient.
Is there anything else you would like to share or advice for other women who may be struggling with their own confidence and self-worth?
For every event or action we experience in life we attach an emotion, it is in the end our choice as to what that emotion might be. It may not sound easy, but next time you experience a bad emotion caused by an event, catch yourself and try to attach a good emotion, instantly you feel better.
We have to learn to be our own best friends, because we fall to easily into the trap of being our own worst enemies.
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