Halle Berry

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Ascending from low self-esteem

By By Nicole S Farrell

Songwriter, businesswoman and soca artiste Nadia Batson recently admitted in an interview that she once suffered from low self-esteem. As a background vocalist, she'd be encouraged to do frontline duties but said that low self-esteem held her back.

In the October 13 2012 issue of omg magazine, Batson said of her courage to do frontline singing, "It happened slowly because of my self-esteem issues but I always knew the power of my voice. I was very confident in that area. I was, however, very daunted when it came to image because I was told a lot of stupid things, like 'Only red woman singing in bands'; 'Yuh have to lose weight', and those types of advice kinda messed with me. After a while, the confidence came and I fell in love with Nadia and who I am."

She also referred to her voice. Having a very high-pitched voice, when performing, she would "scream and screech" and have people bewildered. Practising to use a low tone became a ritual for her.

Self-esteem is a term in psychology that is used to reflect a person's overall evaluation or appraisal of his or her own worth. It encompasses beliefs, positive or negative. For example, "I am competent", "I am worthy", "I am a waste of space", "I am useless."

Low self-esteem is developed over time. Once you have accepted that you are worthless, most or all of your choices in life will be in harmony with that belief. Those choices include settling for an abusive partner or even tolerating disrespectful friends and serve to compound an already fragile sense of worth.

Some signs of low self-esteem, according to experts, are a penchant for accentuating the negative, an inability to accept compliments, being overly concerned with other people's view, being socially withdrawn, neglecting one's self, adopting eating disorders, exaggerated perfectionism, and having a constant need for validation.

Experts maintain that low self-esteem is connected to serious conditions such as major depression, anorexia, body dysmorphic issues, "cutting", anti-social behaviour and domestic violence, some that have gone so far as to include hoarding and numerous addictions.

Some specific reference was made to self-hate, poor body image, oversensitivity and people pleasing.

Many people think that once a girl/boy/woman/man is attractive, wealthy or admired, that that person should possess a high self-esteem. This is simply untrue.

Actress Demi Moore, who's always regarded as a beautiful, sexy woman, apparently had problems that were influenced by her low sense of self-worth. She admitted, "What scares me is that I'm going to ultimately find out…that I'm really not lovable, that I'm not worthy of being loved…"

Halle Berry, who ranked No. 1 several times on the list of the 'Most Beautiful Woman…", suffers from self-doubt. "I think I've spent my adult life dealing with the sense of low self-esteem that is sort of implanted in me. Before I'm Halle Berry, I'm little Halle who was a little girl growing in this environment that damaged me in some ways." Halle has suggested that it stemmed from growing up witnessing her mother being abused.

Mariah Carey, one of the most beautiful, talented divas, said she grew up seeking the wrong kind of attention because of her low self-confidence.

In a 2009 interview, she shared, "I have had very low self-esteem my whole life. When I was 12 or 13 years old, I remember walking up the driveway and this guy who was 20 years old — which may have been highly inappropriate — said to me, 'I like your pants.' I was like, 'Oh, that looks good? Oh, okay, I will wear tight pants now.'"

It is suggested that counselling can conquer self-esteem issues. A more 'do-it-yourself' approach has been offered via these tips:

• Avoid comparing yourself to others because it only leads to insecurity. Accept that everyone is different and remember where your strengths lie.

• Look after your health. Exercise helps you feel better and leads to the release of endorphins, the body's feel-good hormones.

• Take care of your appearance. It simply makes you feel better.

• Learn how to say no. People should like and love you for who you are, not what you do for them.

• Think about your needs for a change. People with a healthy self-esteem know when it's important to put themselves first.

• Set limits on others. Feeling resentful and used stems from accepting things from friends and family that you personally feel is unacceptable. Start placing limits on what you will and won't do and your resentment will ease.

You can get inspired from anything. Below are some song excerpts that lend to feeling better…

"Firework" Excerpts – Katy Perry

Do you ever feel already buried deep?

6 feet under screams but no one seems to hear a thing

Do you know that there's still a chance for you

'Cause there's a spark in you

You just gotta ignite the light, and let it shine

Just own the night like the 4th of July

'Cause baby you're a firework

Come on, show 'em what you're worth

You don't have to feel like a wasted space

You're original, cannot be replaced

"I Like Me" Excerpts –

Kirk Franklin

I like me…

Short, big nose, big lips

Kinda st- st- stutter but - I never trip

Got my daddy's swagger and I walk with a limp

Got a hot wife — no need to be a pimp

Never been cute, never been fly

Since I been changed got that twinkle in my eye

Got my grill fixed, now I smile when I speak…

I just smile — I'm so content

And I ain't even got yellow stones on my wrist…

Have you told YOU lately how much you loved you? Sometimes it's not about being narcissistic.

nfpeters3434@gmail.com

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