The Sylvia VandeSlunt Podcast || Episode 01 || Our Mission & Definition for Authenticity

July 10, 2024

Cover image for The Sylvia VandeSlunt Podcast. Says " Episode 1: Our Mission & Definition for Authenticity"

With the official launch of The Sylvia VandeSlunt Podcast, I wanted to share a little bit more about what to expect from this podcast, why I created it, and give you my definition for authenticity. My goal for you in this episode is for you to have a few journal prompts to get you started defining authenticity in life and business for yourself. But it’s also to give you an idea of what to expect, so you can feel great about coming back week after week.

Transcript for Ep 01: Our Mission & Definition for Authenticity

We are social, little critters and copying each other, conforming, imitating – that’s how we’re built. It’s not necessarily a bad thing. It’s how we learn and bond and create society. In business, though, it gets tricky, right? You have to play the game a little in order to find success. But then success is often defined for you. The path is defined for you. 


Hello, hello, hello, and welcome to Episode One of the Sylvia VandeSlunt Podcast. I’m so excited that you’re here that I’m in your earbuds. This is going to be such a fun adventure. 

I wanted to share a little bit more about what to expect from this podcast, more than I can share in a 90-second trailer. So let’s dive into it. Since I’ve turned 30 especially – but, I mean, longer than that – I’ve been on this journey of self discovery. I’m sensing this shift in my life and in my business, where I’m asking more questions about how I show up in the world.

I’ve spent the last seven years in business, kind of following the rules and doing what other people say is the right way to do things, and trying to put my own unique spin on it, but not necessarily those things coming from within me. And in the last few years, I’ve started to shift into more… still kind of playing by the rules of the game, but finding ways to bring in my myself in a way that I haven’t before asking questions like… 

Who even am I – not in like, existential crisis way, but in a you know, what do I bring to The table that other people don’t. Aside from all of the titles, photographer, mom, business coach, who am I at my core, and how does that affect the people that I’m serving? 

Questions like, what do I want my life in business to look like? Something I’ve really struggled with in the past is, you know, looking at what other people have achieved in whatever space we’re in. So let’s say wedding photography. I would love to travel as part of my business. It’s not a feasible thing right now with little kids, but it is something that I would love to do in the future. And looking at locations that I would love to shoot, I found myself several years ago looking at all the classics, you know, Greece and Italy and the south of France. And as beautiful as those places are, and as much as I would love to shoot there, it’s not necessarily something that comes from inside me, it’s something that I’ve seen. And, you know, the photos were beautiful, and I imagined the experience to be amazing. 

Questions like, what brings me joy? So lately, I’ve been knitting and gardening, which I say my hobby is pulling weeds. Because if any of you are gardeners, you understand questions like, What does self care look like for me? Not what people are telling me I should do to care for myself, but what do I actually need in order to function at my highest ability. 

And the more I talk to people about all of this, it seems like everybody’s kind of in this place. So I don’t know if it’s my 30s bringing it on, or if it’s, you know, in the aftermath of the covid pandemic, when everything just kind of shut down and forced everything to stop and slow and give people a chance to question the status quo and what they like and what works for them.

So in light of all these conversations that I’ve been having with friends and family and other business owners, I wanted to bring those conversations into a public place. I wanted a chance to provide tangible tools to understand yourself and understand your business. I wanted to provide steps that you can take to use that information to build success. And not just the success that the industry or the world or social media says is success, but success that feels like success to you. I want this podcast to be full of all the good, effective business advice without feeling icky or salesy or inauthentic. And I want it to be more than just the business advice. I want to take it a step deeper.

So in this podcast, I just want to preface the entire thing by saying: I don’t have the answers. This journey is, you know, it’s only beginning in the last few years for me, and there’s a lot ahead that I’m gonna learn as we go, that I’m gonna learn from the guests that are on this podcast, that I’m gonna learn just from sitting with myself and asking myself questions. 

But no matter what, I want you to be along for the ride. I want to challenge expectations with you. I want you to ask questions. I want you to tell me what you’re thinking about, what’s kind of tumbling around in your brain, so that we can explore it again in a public place where the other people who are going through the same thing can listen in and can get ideas and can help build this more authentic online space that isn’t full of, you know, like people copying content and and people showing an overly polished version of reality. It’s not full of people lying about sales numbers to get clients instead of just showing up as themselves and sharing what they have to offer. Let’s work together to create a more authentic space.

What to Expect from The Sylvia VandeSlunt Podcast

I’ve been doing this for about seven years, but before that, in another life, I was an electrical engineer, I’ve been kind of all over the board in terms of what career looks like. I’ve been an electrical engineer, I’ve been a marketing manager, I’ve been a photographer, I’ve been a coach, I’ve been a consultant, I’ve been all kinds of things. I was even a writing center coach in another life. So I’ve been kind of everywhere. I’m not everywhere, far from everywhere, but I’ve been all over the place, and I feel like I have a pretty well rounded understanding of the business world. 

So some of these episodes are going to be full of my takes, my advice, my experience, not only trying to give you some of the rules of the game, but how to use your own individuality, your own secret sauce to really make that work for you, and to play the game in quotes in an authentic way, instead of a way that feels icky or salesy or like you’re wearing someone else’s clothes. But I’m definitely not an expert on everything. You know, I am great with marketing and websites and some social media, but not necessarily big following social media, a lot more local social media. 

So anything that I’m not necessarily an expert in, I’m gonna bring in the experts. I’m gonna bring in people who know more than me. So please, if you have questions or you’re struggling with anything at all in business, reach out. Let me know. I would love to create an episode for you. If I don’t know the answers, then I will bring in an expert that does right. I am here to learn with you, and of course, I’ll be sharing my own experience and expertise with tangible steps, because I don’t want you to leave a single podcast episode without some golden nugget for you to take and run with. 

We are social little critters and copying each other, conforming, imitating. That’s how we’re built. It’s not necessarily a bad thing. It’s how we learn and bond and create society in business, though, it gets tricky, right? You have to play the game a little in order to find success, but then success is often defined for you. The path is defined for you, and so much is being taught as if it’s the only way to do it. So often we idealize and we compare ourselves to people who are not us. 

You know, maybe you’re a wedding photographer and you’re comparing yourself to someone who’s charging $20,000 for a wedding and they’re traveling all over the world. It doesn’t help that a bunch of them are running ads that tell you that you’re less than if you don’t have the same business that they have in order to sell education or sell coaching or sell whatever, 90% of the education space, if not more, is full of people who don’t have your best interest in mind, who think that there is only one way to succeed, and I don’t like that. I don’t know how else to say it.

Definition of Authenticity

So on this journey, let’s create a definition for authenticity for ourselves. And honestly, if you’re a journaler, you might want to write this down as journal prompts for later. So authentic business owner, authentic person. This is how we’re defining it. 

You know who you are, regardless of what other people expect. 

You know what you want regardless of what other people are doing. 

You know what you don’t want again regardless of what other people are doing. 

You know what you value regardless of what other people value. 

You know what brings you real joy regardless of what other people enjoy. 

You know your boundaries. This one’s huge. You know your boundaries, regardless of what other people think you should allow.

And most importantly, you live it loud. You live it proud. You build your business to serve your real self. You build your life to make the most of this precious time that you have Earth side. And you do not change anything for anyone else unless you want to, unless it aligns with your values, unless it aligns with your boundaries and your identity.

Get Involved

If you are loving the idea of this podcast, I would love it if you would snag a screenshot of this episode, share it on your Instagram. Tag me @businesscoachsylvia. Share an area in your business where you are super proud of how authentic you are. 

If there is a topic that you would love to hear about, I would love it if you would send me a DM, let me know what the topic is. If you have any additional details, anything specific that you want me to talk about or get an expert on, I want to hear all of it. Shoot me a DM I read every single one I respond to every single one. I’m a one woman show, at least for the moment, and in the future, I will still be the one reading and responding to DMs. So shoot me a message. I would love to hear from you. 

I’m so excited to go on this journey with you and serve up a different kind of content. This is going to be an absolute blast. I am so excited. 

And one last note, if you have something to say, and you’d like to be featured on the podcast right now, I am looking for people to interview. I have a few lined up, but I would love to get some more. So shoot me a DM at @businesscoachsylvia to you in the DMs.


Instagram: @businesscoachsylvia
Facebook: @businesscoachsylvia
Pinterest: @thesylviadamaris

100 Prompts for Social Media Marketing
Blog Post SEO Checklist

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

get in touch

if you're still here...

You might be my kind of people!

If you've found the Han to your Leia, the chips to your guac, the princess to your toad, you need a photographer who will feel like a natural part of your wedding day but know when to hang back and let you have your moment. If you're loving what you see on this page, let's get you scheduled for your free consultation to find out if we're as great of a fit as I think we might be!

get in touch

get in touch —