As a former model, it’s kind of ironic that I like to model my life after certain people who I would like to emulate. I feel like having some personal heroes makes it easier to find my own truth and make strides in my personal life. Every time I see someone who inspires me living their life to the fullest, it is a wake up call for me to push myself to do the same. 

As I’ve gotten older, I’m really attracted to people who have two things in life: hustle and personality. You would be hard pressed to find a better example of extraordinary people who have both of those qualities than the stars of the various Bravo series. (After all, I married one!) 

Hey, anyone who is able to support themselves based on their personality and talent alone, are pretty incredible, in my book.

I’m a pretty serious person, so to see all of these amazing people on these shows who are so out there and loud about living their truth, has been a really cool thing for me to witness. Every time I see one of these shows I think of it as a constant reminder that it is possible to do whatever you want to do in life, and to also be rewarded for it with a fulfilling career. 

As someone who has enjoyed a lot of success doing something that I love and living a life that has afforded me a lot of privileges, I find it incredibly inspiring that the people on the show are being celebrated for who they are, and that they have found a way to monetize it. 

I’ve taken some lessons from some of my favorite stars on the shows that have actually really encouraged me to take more action in my real estate business. 

NeNe Leakes: Real Housewives of Atlanta

First up is none other than the incredible, NeNe Leakes. Nene has one of the biggest personalities you could ever hope to come across. A star on the Real HouseWives of Atlanta show, she is incredibly dedicated to her craft and driven to succeed. 

In addition to her reality television work, she has also achieved success with two scripted shows. She was on The New Normal, and this other little show called Glee–maybe you’ve heard of it? 😉 

She’s also performed in leading roles on Broadway and has her own production company. What I really admire about her is that she took some success and ran with it. She didn’t stop or get comfortable. She created a fashion line on the Home Shopping Network (HSN), which sold out in a matter of days. And she even has a one-woman touring comedy show. I mean the girl is killin’ it!

Erika Jayne: Real Housewives of Beverly Hills

Oh, I just love her–just writing this makes me excited! One of the reasons that I am so fond of her is the fact that she created Erika Jayne when she was in her mid-thirties. Married to a very famous and uber conservative attorney, she finally decided that she needed to return to the spotlight, after giving up her early ambitions as an actress. Rather than solely be his support system, she came out of her shell and created Erika Jayne and became this successful singer, dancer, and actress. 

She was always a performer at heart but she decided to give that up when they got together, so to see her make a comeback like that is very inspiring to me. 

I admire her, because to take that risk is pretty incredible. She has the balance of her family life and her performing life and it is amazing to witness. She gets the best of both worlds: a beautiful family, and her career is blowing up! She’s on Broadway, she has a book, and the sky truly is the limit. It’s absolutely amazing what she has done.

Lisa Rinna: Real Housewives of Beverly Hills

Lisa is a true hustler and as a byproduct of that she says “yes” to every job she’s offered (which I personally love because I am the exact same way). The first time I ever saw her she was playing Billy on Days of Our Lives. (My mother absolutely loved to watch soap operas.) She has really pushed herself for the past 35 years! She is really one of those remarkable ladies who has truly done it all. On top of her acting career, she has written multiple books, including a New York Times Bestseller. She has her own fashion line and was even a cover model for Playboy Magazine later in life, which is no easy feat. 

Bethenny Frankel: Real Housewives of New York City

Bethenny is a big inspiration to me, as well as two of my best friends, Matt and Chris. She really inspires us because her whole life she was considered a party girl. (I mean I’ve been known to have one or two, too many shots of tequila in my day as well. However, she completely changed her image and hustled her way up the food chain in the toughest industry in town. 

Her SkinnyGirl books have become a bestseller and have transformed everything for her. It is so inspiring to me to see that because she had this ability to celebrate her life, and basically use her personality to reach her dreams. People all over the world know her and love her because of who she is, which in my opinion, is such a beautiful reminder about the power of authenticity.

Also, one of my favorite little known facts about her that many people don’t know, is that she has an amazing real estate portfolio that most people would kill for today. And it is all because she believed in herself and had the courage to take a chance and write the SkinnyGirl books. She  also created the Skinny Girl brand, and she truly embodies the ethos behind it. Another fun fact about her is that (as she has said many times,) the first season on the show of the Real Housewives of New York she could barely afford the rent on her one bedroom apartment, and now look at her! 

Jax Taylor: Vanderpump Rules

This might be a little surprising to many of you, but I actually knew Jax before he was famous. 

As a matter of fact, I used to model with Jax. Even though we never did a photo shoot together we were often at the same castings and would see each other out in the waiting rooms before it was our turn to go in and audition. We developed a friendly rapport through these mini run-ins. 

Yes, it has been a while since then, but we actually would run into each other quite a bit on sets for photo shoots when we were both active in the modeling world. 

I have to admit that it is more than a little inspiring to have a peer go on and become so successful. It has actually been really amazing, because he really built up his reputation by showing not only the good, but also the bad. As a personal preference, I really admire people who are authentic and who don’t put up a front for who they are.

I also enjoyed watching his relationship with Brittany play out on TV. From experience I know that it is not an easy thing to do. When you open up your lives for everyone to watch, everyone now has an opinion on your relationship. 

He and Brittany’s dirty laundry has also been aired out on television and instead of breaking apart, they fought for each other, which I thought was really admirable. Going through therapy with Josh, I’ve learned how valuable that is, and how rare that type of connection is, so to see it in this celebrity couple is really cool. I loved how they both really fought for their relationship. In the end, it paid off. I just watched their wedding on TV that took place last summer and it was so beautiful. I am incredibly happy for this beautiful couple.

Also, every time I ran into Jax, he was always really nice to me and in an industry that is very competitive that was not the norm. Usually I would get death stares from other models, when I walked into a casting call! 

Kandi Burruss: Real Housewives of Atlanta

Kandi is a songwriter and has written a ton of hits, including “No Scrubs,” which won a Grammy. I love Kandi because everything she does, she does with passion. She is one of those people who sets her mind to something and accomplishes it with ease. 

She’s written and performed in her own plays, which I think takes an incredible amount of bravery and talent. Not to mention a healthy dose of creative genius, which was apparent in her success writing with successful groups like TLC and Destiny’s Child. 

She is the type of homeowner who buys houses in cash (as a realtor, that got my attention) and she is versatile in her endeavors. It’s such an inspiration to me to see somebody who had it all. She came to fame in a girl group (Xscape) and she has been constantly reinventing herself ever since. She has sex toy lines and family restaurants–one of those may make your mouth water. 😉  She has her hand in a lot of different cookie jars, and most of them have paid out for her. 

Patricia Altschul: Southern Charm

Last, but certainly not least is Patricia Altschul, who is the epitome of the hostess with the mostest. It is a dream of mine to be invited to one of her famous dinner parties. If any of you reading know her, please pass it along! Wink, wink!

I like her because she is very personable, and always entertaining. Her witty banter and off-the-cuff charm helps others to have a great time. I mean have you seen the way this woman lives? To quote the late Joan Rivers, “ this is how Marie Antoinette would have lived if she had money.” On a more serious note, she is also the person everyone comes to for advice and she never disappoints. She’s always giving out little gems of great advice.

The other thing that I like about her is that she is not only known for her husband’s legacy, but also for her own philanthropic work and her larger than life personality. On the Southern Charm show, she is always spot-on with her disses, which helps the audience to connect with her.

Overall, she is just someone that I can really relate to because of how real she can be even if she does have a live in butler . 

Who’s Your Favorite?

So there you have it! I hope you enjoyed reading this little glimpse into why I love Bravolebrities! I think we can all agree that there are some pretty amazing people who made the cut! 

Who is your favorite, and why? 

Let me know in the comments below 🙂

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Stephanie Anne Wing
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Stephanie Anne Wing

Hi, I am so glad I read your blog, it is fun, and very interesting. Bethany is definitely at that top of the list for who I admire and look up to. But, I have to say, your Josh is way up there too. Having followed him from the very beginning, I have always loved him the best. I also love when they feature his wonderful family, and who could of not fallen in love with Edith? I mean really. Lastly, he picked well, you are the perfect match for him, and I love you as well. You bring a… Read more »

Marilyn Carlos
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Marilyn Carlos

I love your content. I’m surprised that Kim Zolciak Biermann isn’t on this list. I love her personality!