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What Is The Secret To Winning A Pageant?

pageant interview, miss america
Former Miss America, Mallory Hagan

While your performance on stage is important, the reality is that mental preparation beforehand can go a long ways towards catapulting you to the crown. You need to be prepared well in advance in order to come out on top, and good mental exercises and positive thinking can help carry through situations where nerves emerge.

Visioning Exercises

I got a tip many years ago to prepare for any major event like Michael Jordan- make the scene happen in your head. The first pageant I ever won, I pictured the stage in my head, me being crowned and sashed by the outgoing queen. Guess what? This tip can help you in and out of pageants.  I’ve used Jordan’s exercise numerous times!

Meditating on the crown can help you! “Mind Over Matter: The Benefits of Meditation” can help you further your pageant career.

Acknowledge Where You Can Improve

In order to be confident enough to capture the crown, you have to be honest with yourself about your strengths and improvements. Take feedback and incorporate it into your practice, too. If you need help with feedback, it’s a good idea to partner up with a coach as well as review past pageant scores to get a sense of your strong suit and what needs help.


Practice, Practice, Practice

What’s your weakest area leading up to the pageant? Practice it over and over again. You need to practice it until the point that it’s annoying. Especially if your weakness is your walk or your talent- you need muscle memory to have those stored up for you come pageant time. The only way to get better is to keep working at it.


Don’t Let Others Shake You

Not every girl prepares for the pageant in the same way, and you can expect to show up and have people in different competition “modes” on the day of competition. Some girls may try to play mind games with you, but ignore it and focus on yourself. If this means listening to music, talking to others or simply meditating and praying before the big event, do what you need to do.

Pageant Mind Games: Do You Play Them?

Ignore Drama

In most pageants, there will be at least one contestant or parent who is causing some kind of drama. It can be a wide range of issues, including:

  • Complaints that the rules aren’t enforced fairly (like clothing regulations or time limits on optionals/talent)
  • Attempts to get you to gossip about other contestants/the director/staff
  • Nasty comments like “Wow…. so you went with that color for gown…bold”


Keep your eye on the prize and don’t fall prey to common mental mistakes that can cost you the crown!

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