Today’s guest, Model Meals Founder and CEO, Danika Brysha, may look a little familiar to some of you as she’s been a part of several campaigns as a plus-size/curve model for big names such as Target and Old Navy. While she has a successful modeling career now, it was winding road to get there.
From a young age, Danika continually struggled to feel that she was enough when it came to her body. Growing up in the era of the size double-zero, she focused on her weight for more than a decade of her life. This fixation eventually reached its breaking point when it led to bulimia and dental issues.
Wanting to take care of her body better, Danika stopped throwing up but turned to drugs to keep the weight at bay. This went on for quite some time until she graduated college in the television industry and had had it with her body image struggle. She let go and let herself settle into where her body naturally fell (about a size 12/14). She was soon approached by an agent who suggested that she get into plus-size modeling. After signing with an agency and moving out to New York, her modeling career took off, but she soon hit another snag.
Wanting to start off the New Year (a new career and move, too) renewed, she tried the Whole30 meal plan. She was blown away by her results and not only did she lose 15 pounds, but she was amazed at how much clarity she had and how amazing she felt. Her plus-size modelings clients didn’t agree and she started to lose modeling gigs. As a way to earn money, Danika offered to help people in New York City eat cleaner by making meals for them. This side-business went well, but she still wasn’t able to make ends meet.
It wasn’t long before Danika moved back to California where she grew up and moved into her parents’ garage. This was a serendipitous moment, however as it led to the eventual launch of Model Meals with a friend and Danika has since signed with a new modeling agency.
Danika’s journey of self-love is one of several ups and downs, but instead of fighting against them she’s learned to surrender and use her own feelings as a guide through them. Her story is so relatable and there’s something that everyone can take away from it. I hope you enjoy our conversation as much I did.
Questions Asked in This Episode:
• How did you get your start with modeling and eventually Model Meals?
• Was there a defining moment when you decided to stop fighting with yourself about your body?
• Is there something you do now or tap into when you’re feeling stressed?
• What did you feel like when you did your first Whole30?
• If you don’t eat well, do you find that it affects how you feel and work?
• What does your meditation practice look like?
• What is a future bio?
• What is the book you’re writing about?
• What does it look like for you to surrender?
• What has been the most challenging thing that you’ve had to walk away from in order to become who you are?
• And many more.
“I get to do what I love every day and that’s all that matters.”
“Food wasn’t the problem. It was that I used it as my drug.”
“We get so used to eating our normal diet that we never know there’s an alternative.”
“It’s selfish if we don’t do the self-work to tune in and figure out what our gift is.”
“The way to manifest your life is to feel the feelings first and the physical catches up.”
“A series of great days equals a great life.”
“Trust your feelings, not your surroundings.”
Danika Brysha is an IMG Curve Model and the founder and CEO of Model Meals, a healthy meal delivery business. With a passion for personal growth and positive transformation, Danika sees food as the most valuable medicine available, and as an essential tool in fueling the body, mind, and soul, to build our best possible life. After nearly two decades of disordered eating, Danika used nutritious food, mindfulness, and an essential daily self-care routine, to heal herself and to build the business and life of her dreams. Danika helps others to do the same by providing resources like Model Meals that make a healthy diet easy and accessible, and through the sharing of knowledge and experience provided in her coaching practice, retreats, digital media, and more. Danika also uses her platform as a curve model to help women rethink the traditional notion that beauty has only one shape and size.