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  • Writer's pictureAmanda Betts


Updated: Jan 9, 2022

'If you want something you've never had, you're gonna have to do something you've never done.'

When was the last time you forged beyond your comfort zone? Did it suck the big turkey or was it worth it in the end? Will you do it again? And we've all been through stuff. How did getting through your stuff affect you in a positive way? Was it just you that was affected or did others benefit?

You've probably guessed this story's a bit about comfort zones, how there is beauty about getting through challenges and I've chucked in washboard abs, too.


I was sitting in a café terrified, quite honestly, that after leaving the company I co-founded in Red11 and after 29 years in the fashion industry, I had no idea what was next. My friend said what everyone says: “What do you love doing?”

“People. I love 'em. Scouting them and their faces when you say, ‘Hey. You’d make a great model’ or ‘You’d be good on TV’ then putting everything in place to make sure they get there. It’s amazing helping them earn extra money, realise a dream they'd never considered and having fun while they do it!" I was on a rave (and I don’t mean the dancing in Ibiza kind).

No sooner had the words danced off my tongue when a tall, slim but well-built Maori-Adonis strides past. He was beautiful! His mate made him laugh. He flashes a spectacular set of gnashers.

I chased after him, as a 46-year old mother of one and happily married wife does...

“Excuse me,” I tap him on the shoulder, praying he didn't have eyes that look in a completely different direction to each other. You may laugh. But that happened to me once...

Maori-Adonis turned around. Eyes: both straight. Nose: nice. Cheekbones: chiseled.

“Have you ever thought about modelling or TV work?” Maori-Adonis’s freckled cheeks flush. "Toldja, Bro!" one of them laughed.

Turns out his name is BEN and one of the other cuties was his brother, WIREMU. Lots of fast talking later, I arranged a digital posing session with him. Here're a few snaps:

I spent some time with Ben, him wearing FEDERATION clothing (good taste) and me teaching him posing and camera techniques because it’s important to learn posing and camera tricks for all of life, not just modelling.

Because I'm a MODEL & SCOUT, I have to check what my talent's bodies are like (I know. Terrible job. But someone has to do it). Ben’s a landscape gardener, he does MMA and he’s training for the Auckland Marathon. So after a bit of convincing, he let me take a video of him with no shirt on. Be rude not to share…

Ben was immediately signed by UNIQUE MODELS off my Instagram video alone, proof how powerful social media is.

And guess what?! BEN'S ALREADY PICKED UP NOT ONE BUT TWO (!!) TVC'S (MODEL SPEAK: television commercial). GO UNIQUE and BEN! So I reckon watch this face (and body). And keep an ear out, too as I am hooking up with some one who knows their music stuff.

In the meantime for my SCOUT page, I asked Ben some of THE BIG QUESTIONS.

WHAT ARE YOU MOST PROUD OF? My ability to see the beauty in every situation and conquer stress/negativity.

WHAT DO YOU THINK ARE SOME OF THE BIGGEST CHALLENGES FACING TEENS AND YOUNG PEOPLE TODAY? I think most of the problems facing youth are based on the ego, and lack of expression. The thought of not being accepted or liked holds them back from letting out their true selves, and they end up following others around losing their individualism. There's peer pressure and an education system which doesn’t teach youth how to be happy instead focusing on how to retain information to become a so-called functional member of society instead of working a balance between education with following their dreams.

WHAT HAS BEEN YOUR BIGGEST CHALLENGE? AND HOW HAS GOING THROUGH IT POSITIVELY AFFECTED YOU? The death of a close friend, which taught me to value my life and the lives of everyone around me with the utmost appreciation, because life is a beautiful ride, but can end at any time.


WHEN OPPORTUNITY PRESENTS ITSELF, GRAB IT with both hands. You can’t win the raffle if you don’t buy a ticket

PUSH BEYOND YOUR COMFORT ZONE. Although always uncomfortable and sometimes quite painful, the reward once you forge through it, is always worth it

STUFF HAPPENS. Life throws us some heavy challenges. But there’s always a positive in everything, even if it’s only to have learnt something (this will be a repeat message. Seems we keep missing it).

Thanks for joining me! If you pick up info here you think could be useful to someone, share it.

Until next time,

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