Mika Stefano is South Africa’s social blogger with a big personality and an even larger, more diverse following. Known as GP’s Gossip gangster, he brings all the latest tabloid and celebrity news to SA from the red carpet, or the twittersphere.
While he has many celebrities shaking in their boots and stilettos, Mika also campaigns for gay rights, heroes an anti-bullying campaign and runs online radio station, Trans Africa. Mika Stefano is bridging gaps in SA, breaking down stereotypes and using his influence to do good.
My Definition Of Success | Initially,My idea of success would be the person who is living in a big house, with a fast car and wears fancy clothing. However, over the past few years, I have come to learn that is not true success. In my (newly found) opinion, success is a scientific combination of happiness and self-content. I mean, a single mother, who puts her child through good schooling, through hard times is successful at what she does. However the friend who lives in a fancy house in a fancy area may not be happy and in turn is not successful.
I Am Driven By | One needs to drive themselves. If you have a burning desire to succeed, then it will happen. Sure the desire and drive can fade, but it’s up to you to reignite it and continue pushing forward. Friends and family and things around me inspire me, but it’s up to me to make it happen!
My Highlights | There have been many highlights, including being featured right here on TheLegacyProject.co.za. I think in general, the biggest highlight is the fact that I have used my name and celeb profile to inspire young people. Recently I was in Durban for a launch of a festival. Part of the launch we were invited to a rural school in Stanger. Now, to paint the picture, the school was situated on a mountain-top, with rolling fields of green grass and roaming cows. The school was filled with young children, none who were wearing an official uniform, yet they were all neatly dressed. When we arrived, one child, who obviously has no access to internet or DStv, came up to me. Out of 400+ children, this one young child came to thank me for inspiring him. He was obviously gay and dealing with his sexuality, but he braved being ridiculed to come talk to me. This was a surreal experience. Adding to this, it happened to be on the day of my Push Purple campaign. An anti-bullying campaign aimed at children in schools and universities. I think this was a combination of both life and career highlights. The fact that my work and my personality travelled all the way to rural Kwa-Zulu Natal and created hope for some young boy still makes me feel all warm and fuzzy inside.
A Key Talent | The thing that has made me, Mika Stefano, is the fact that I have always been 100% real. What you see is what you get. In my social commentary and regular TV appearances, I am always honest in my thoughts. In my online commentary I always shoot from the hip and often shy away from candy coating anything. Fearless and doing me. So often people conform to the rules… But I say, rules are there to be broken. Envelopes are there to be pushed. If people didn’t challenge the status quo, would we be where we are today? I don’t think I can pin point my strength, but if I could attempt to, I would say my strength is me.
Lessons I Have Learnt | I have learnt that you need to be patient yet persistent. Never give up and always push for something you truly want. If you don’t want it, then you will give up. This proves you didn’t REALLY want it.
Dealing With Doubt | In the entertainment industry, there will always be negativity thrown your way. In fact, it is a must. Once you know your own flaws, you then have the ability to own them. Once you are in charge of your weaknesses, they transform into unique things about you. And once you love them, then no one can throw insults your way.
Performing At My Peak | Recently I have become a gym bunny. Often going to gym twice a day. In the morning’s I do a nice cardio session and usually after this session, I feel great. We all know exercise releases endorphins and endorphins make you happy. And if you are happy, then you will achieve greatness. When I skip a day at gym, I often feel sluggish and don’t perform well. So, ya, that is my new secret!
Resources I Use To Stay Inspired | Friends. I have a close group of great friends, who all inspire me. Their humour and wit, their work commitment and fitness frame of mind, their love for life and eagerness to achieve. So yes, I find a lot of inspiration in my friends. I also find a great deal of inspiration in music, especially local music. I love hearing new local tracks that are on par, or even better than international tracks. Its proof that we are a melting pot of talent. My website and all my commentary is 100% African and I feel it is important to be proud of our people, and our successes. The people who are leading this movement are inspiring…
The Best Advice I’ve Received | Be yourself… I know it sounds silly and hardly motivational, but I think it’s so important. Don’t be a copy when you can be a 100% original you!