Vivian Cole Interview – Model Vivian Cole became famous through the 16th season of GNTM and talked to us in an interview about her career after her GNTM participation, her time at Germany’s Next Topmodel and how she deals with her mental health. As an insider, she also gives tips for young models who are just starting their careers. In the interview, she also describes her path to more self-love and talks about her biggest inspirations.
Vivian Cole: Successful as a model since GNTM
FIV: Hello dear Vivian, how nice that it worked out with the interview today! Model With A Message – we immediately became aware of your profile! This beautiful sentence holds one and makes curious for more! Many know you from GNTM where you participated in 2020. Your perseverance has brought you far and you have even made it into the top 10 models 2020! Since the end of the season, some time has passed, how are you doing at the moment? What has happened to you since your time at GNTM?
Vivian: I’m doing great! A lot has happened in that time. I’ve been able to do a lot of work in Mental Health and with important organizations, I’ve launched my own jewelry collection and I’ve been doing further training to become a Mental Coach since the beginning of the year. Right now I am working on current and future goals.
GNTM Highlight: Entry into the Top 10
FIV: GNTM must have been a good start for your life as a model. You made your own experiences there with the model business and it was certainly not always easy! Still, you stuck it out as long as you did and showed everyone what you could do. Were there ups and downs that you remember fondly and would you participate in the show again at your current level?
Vivian: Definitely! It was a challenging, yet incredibly beautiful and unique experience, in every area. But then I would come out of myself sooner and show even more of myself. What was difficult was the time when my health went on strike and I could only slowly return to my normal physical performance due to the after-effects, which is why I had to drop out in the end. But I have so many more great memories: making it to the top 10, my interview on TV about Mental Health, the many different places and people I got to meet!
Vivian Cole: Your way to more self-love!
FIV: For many, the modeling business is daunting, full of Photoshop and perfectionism. You are a very natural model and also dare to post pictures without much make up, which we think is really great! We wonder, how big is the pressure in the business to always be “perfect”? How do you deal with it best?
Vivian: Social media in particular was a challenge for me. The pressure was enormous at the beginning. I have learned, especially in the last year, what self-love really means and how I can best distance myself in a healthy way from the pressure and unrealistic expectations. For example, I now only follow people who inspire me and stopped comparing myself to others when I learned how much editing, posing and lighting is behind the seemingly perfect (self-)presentation and how unrealistic it can be. The more I work on my own self-worth to do this as well, the easier it then slowly becomes to post images that are not “perfect”. It is a process.
This is how Vivian deals with her mental illness!
FIV: Model with a message – that also includes showing yourself as you are. I’m very interested in this question – can you make a statement for our readers about what your message is and what you want to give to people with your feed?
Vivian: I want to inspire, inspire courage, inspire hope. As a person who has lived with mental illness for more than ten years myself, but has found his own way out, I want to show what can happen when you prioritize working and healing on yourself and your inner self and surrender to the process; that these open whole new doors in our lives and our path to our own happiness. Challenges and lows will always be a part of it, but we can learn to actively shape the process ourselves and also to deal differently with difficult times.
The model educates her followers about Mental Health!
FIV: You talk about mental health on your channel and give tips on how to deal with depression and bad thoughts. You have a message here, too, because you’ve been suffering from mental problems since childhood. How do you deal with it when you’re feeling down? Do you have any tips, for people who feel the same way, on how to best get through this time?
Vivian: That’s what I always tell my community: let the feelings be and share them with the right people. Write down your thoughts to give them space and sort them out. I always try to treat myself like my best friend, especially in difficult times. Every day I take time just for me, even if it’s just 10 minutes. Daily walks are the order of the day, because exercise and nature are two very important factors for holistic health for me. Being mindful with myself has changed a lot for me; listening to what my body and mind feel and need. This is not a skill for me, but a way of life by now.
That’s why Vivian speaks openly about her experience with depression
FIV: Positive thoughts are one of the hangers-on in your profile – you share them with the world and want to show people how to see life more positively. Unfortunately, depression is still a rather unspoken condition in our society, people don’t like to talk about it. What gave you the impetus to share your story and raise awareness about depression?
Vivian: My dad passed away in early 2019, which was a hard event for me, but at the same time the trigger for my life change. Three months after his death, I came across a film about the impact of our mindset on our lives, and although I’ve always known it, at that moment it became clearer to me than ever: “There will be no one to take all this away from you. It’s entirely up to you where you go from here.” For the first time, I wholeheartedly decided to heal and came to terms with myself. After a few weeks, I noticed more progress than ever before. The big audition for GNTM, one of my big dreams, was coming up months later after that and I knew I wanted to take this chance. It was there that I spoke publicly about my experience for the first time, with the hope of encouraging other people with similar experiences.
Tip for young models: Use GNTM as a springboard, but also work on your own career!
FIV: You were still young when you started modeling. Aside from GNTM, what advice would you give to other/ younger models to start their career or would you recommend GNTM as a career start? Do you have any tips that you can/ would like to give to younger models for their career?
Vivian: GNTM is about modeling, of course, but primarily it’s more about entertainment. Accordingly, it can be a stepping stone, but there’s no guarantee. Regardless of that, I would try to gain as much experience as possible, actively approach photographers and model agencies myself, work on charisma and posing, and simply dare!
How the model motivates itself
FIV: As a model, you certainly have to show a lot of discipline and perseverance, but you certainly also have cheat days when you would prefer to do nothing at all. What is your recipe against listlessness, how do you motivate yourself to pursue your dreams?
Vivian: I have learned to listen consciously and mindfully to my inner self. When I feel listless or have a bad day, I give myself the rest and time out I need. But for me, every day is a new opportunity and discipline picks up where motivation leaves off. Each person has to find their individual and personal “something” that sparks fire and joy in them, that makes them get up every morning and keep going. I motivate myself by visualizing my goals, acknowledging my progress so far and setting deadlines for myself. What also helps a lot: Mel Robbins’ 5-second rule.
These are Vivian’s biggest inspirations
FIV: Speaking of discipline, many top models prove it to us again and again. With your posts, you inspire many people who follow you and enjoy watching your content. But let’s be honest, everyone needs inspiration or a role model to follow, whether it’s fashion, health or lifestyle topics. Do you have a role model, whether it’s a model, celebrity or influencer that you like to follow or are you your own role model?
Vivian: I don’t have any role models myself, but I have great inspirations, especially when it comes to development and mindset. I am moved by people with their stories and what they have done with them: for example, Dr. Nicole Lepera and her work on the holistic approach, Mel Robbins or Lisa Nichols.
Next Step: Move to Berlin
FIV: Finally, a short look into the future, we are curious what you have planned in the near future: Do you have big plans, like a move or something similar, or is there something special coming up? Give us a little teaser of what your fans and followers can look forward to in the near future!
Vivian: I’m going to move to Berlin! That will be very exciting, as a country bumpkin in the big city, but also professionally, because completely new doors and opportunities will open up, and I won’t be alone there either.