Be yourself

This summer, some of the most talented and beautiful women from all over the country will compete on RAW and SmackDown to win a $250,000 contract, and the right to be WWE's newest Diva. Last year, Ashley Massaro outlasted the competition and claimed that right, in the process fulfilling a lifelong goal and laying the groundwork for what will hopefully be a long and successful career. sat down with the 2005 Diva Search winner to get her feelings on this year's contest.   

Ashley, who is now SmackDown's newest Diva, had been an avid WWE fan for several years by the time she arrived at the 2005 competition. For her, winning the Diva Search was nothing short of a dream come true. "I know it sounds corny, but winning the contest was the greatest thing that ever happened to me. It was something I never thought would happen and I was so overwhelmed when it finally did. The Diva Search changed my life forever."

As a past winner, Ashley can now serve in the role of consultant to this year's contestants. The attractive young Diva offers up a couple bits of advice, and she recommends that this year's aspiring competitors take note. "I can't stress enough the importance of just being yourself. A lot of the girls get too concerned with pleasing everyone. They end up trying to play a character and it doesn't work. You need to be natural, and be genuine. That is what the people really want. The fans can spot a fake from a mile away, and once they catch you, it's over."

The popular SmackDown Superstar learned early on in the competition that attitude is everything. "You need to show up the first night with an open mind, and a humble attitude. If you come in on the first day with your nose in the air thinking you're the hottest thing in the arena, you'll be put in your place immediately. If you come in with a bad attitude, you're going to rub the established Divas and Superstars the wrong way, and they will hesitate to help you out. Also, the fans don't want to vote for a girl that thinks they are better than everyone else."

Ashley's first year as a WWE Diva was going smoothly until things hit a snag a few months ago when she broke her leg during a match on RAW. The major setback however, was only temporary. Now fully recovered and in a new home on SmackDown, Ashley is looking to the future with great excitement. "Last year was a big learning experience. The injury was definitely disappointing, but it really just motivated me to train harder for my return. This year, I'm going to work harder than ever and I can't wait to get back in the ring. I hope the other Divas are ready because I'm fully healed, and I'm ready to bring it."

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