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Gatekeeping Is Not Doing Anything for You

On The Whorizon Interviews Noah Bensi

Blog Post Written By: MelRose Michaels

 

Noah Bensi is an entertainer, creator and mentor. She runs the YouTube channel Secret Life of a Cam Girl where she gives industry insight and tips to those who want to successfully navigate the sex industry.


On the Whorizon sat down with Noah to talk about gatekeeping in the adult industry, entrepreneurial mindset, and how to deal with burnout.



How did you get into the kind of mentoring and coaching that you do?


Noah Bensi: Well, funny story. Okay, so I started right when I was 18…and I got diagnosed with autism when I was 21. And it was before I knew I had autism. So I was entering this industry with really no help…


Every time I reached out to somebody, they were kind of mean at the time, and they were really gatekeep-y. I had a few girls being like: when you have more followers, come back and talk to me. I was not used to that. So I did it on my own, and I did all the research on my own. And I just watched hours and hours of girls and videos and all these different things. And then about six months into it, I was just like…Why is there no YouTube that exists just for like cam models and stuff? And that's kind of how that came about.


Do you think the industry has gotten better about gatekeeping?


NB: Yes, in a sense.. it is very oversaturated. So people are way more, I don't know, common girl next door, down to earth, sharing information kind of thing. But I will say there's always this — in business, in any industry in general — this scarcity. You really just hold on to everything, every little bit of information. You think that's gonna get you a leg up, and in reality, it's really not.


And gatekeeping is not going to do anything. I'm not you. You're not me. I can do the exact same thing as you and make no money. So, like, there's no point in gatekeeping.


What is a set of skills out of your toolkit from sex work that you could apply to anyone getting into business or entrepreneurship?


NB: I really feel like in a profession that you yourself is becoming commodified, to be successful you really have to be introspective with who you are — which in turn makes you really deep dive into, like, what you truly are and what you truly like, and all the amazing things you can offer to this world. And it's such an amazing moment… When you do that self-reflection, you discover your worth, and the price on it is subjective…


I feel like when you see people joke about us, like, on Tik Tok and stuff, a lot of times they’ll label our strength as like a narcissist, or some type of like, Oh, they're full of themselves, but they all think they're queens… It's not narcissism — it's the fact that I have done so much self-work and figuring myself out on such a level that I never ever dove into before, along with therapy and stuff over the years…You can’t shake me. I will fight to protect that in myself and in any person I help in the industry.


That whole narcissism argument irritates me to no end because it's like, no, I'm getting objectified whether or not I agree to it so don't get mad that I'm putting a price tag on it.


NB: When you're objectifying something, or when you're objectifying yourself, you're viewing yourself from an outside point of view in the sense of what society puts on you. So in our industry, it would be like the male gaze, right? So if we were literally just embodying the male gaze, that would be more on like the objectifying kind of side of it — like you kind of are objectifying yourself, because that's what that is.


But commodifying yourself is different. Because like I said, that's where you go into more of, like, the intro section of it all — like what makes you tick, what makes you different, what do you like? Not what they like, what do you like? That's the difference between those two things…


You have all these people looking at us, like, these girls are objectifying themselves. And I'm like, no. I might be pretty, I might look like what society looks at as, like, a pretty girl on the internet. Maybe my boobs are pushed up or something, I don't know. But that's something that I want to do. I've literally worn turtlenecks on cam before [laughs]. It’s literally anything you want to do. I have girls come to me all the time that are like, do I have to do this, or do I have to get naked? They say all these have to’s. And I'm like, no. Literally do whatever you want. And then the people that don't agree with it, block them [laughs].


Aside from introspective effectiveness, what's another entrepreneurial mindset that you've learned skill-wise from sex work that translates outside of it?


NB: I feel like a lot of people have issues, especially when they're doing their own businesses, where they spread themselves way too thin. And I've done it before. I almost quit a couple of years ago because I was, like, frazzled… But it was my doing because I didn't pull back. I didn’t start looking at what's bringing me joy, what's bringing me money, what do I need to work on…


I literally made a little Google doc when I started breaking down all of the sites that I was on, how much money they were bringing me, and all the different things like that, I was able to, like, nix out things that weren't benefiting me anymore, and that really, really helped with my burnout. Again, being an autistic adult, we get burnt out way more because we get overstimulated… But I feel like that literally goes with anyone in any business, in any field. Like if you're starting to feel super burnt out, before you freak out and quit and run off into the mountains, really just think about what are the things going on in your life, list them out, and then figure out what's serving you.


Some parts of the above interview have been condensed or edited for clarity. To hear the full interview with Noah Bensi, listen to On The Whorizon: What SWers Can Teach You About Entrepreneurship, Business, & Marketing.


Follow Noah Bensi on Twitter @NoahBensiSFW, Instagram @babybunnybensi, and TikTok @tinyspicypotato.


 

Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed in the blog post above are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of SexWorkCEO or MelRose Michaels. Any content provided by our bloggers or authors are of their opinion and are not intended to malign any religion, ethnic group, club, organization, company, individual or anyone or anything.



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