|Gima Okhiulu delivering her speech at the Half the Sky Speech Contest in Akure, Ondo State.|
We attended Half the Sky, a speech contest commemorating the International Day of the Girl Child in Akure, Ondo State, and it was at this event that we met GimaOkhiulu, a student from the Evangelical Church Winning All (ECWA) Group of Schools in the State. Gima was amazing with her storytelling, linking each of her points to the next in a way that just made you stay glued to what she was saying. And because of how well she delivered her speech, we gave her a cash price and promised her a spot on the blog for any article of her choice. Here is Gima’s piece on her struggles with low self-esteem.
Low self-esteem is like a silent destiny killer in the lives of growing kids, especially girls. A lot of unfulfilled destinies can be attributed to this ‘plague’.
With a low self-esteem, a person sees themselves as useless, unappreciated and if you may, ‘down the ladder’. It is a state of strongly believing that others are better than you. It is a false sense of believing that nothing good will come out of whatever you do… a Siamese twin to hopelessness.
I’ve had to deal with serious low self-esteem, varying from feeling unimportant and useless, to feeling like I was born stupid and back to feeling useless and hated. Although, this was hidden from my parents, it wasn’t from my older brother – Remen – who was the only person I occasionally opened to and God, whom I prayed to about it sometimes. And even though my parents didn’t know about my struggles, my dad and Remen were constantly trying to boost my self-esteem and my mum was my spiritual backup. And yes… God helped me too!
Since I’ve been dealing with this, I feel like it is my duty to encourage people in similar situations. Low self-esteem starts when you start comparing yourself to other people and viewing them as being better than you. Like Remen said, ‘Everyone has their own star and their different ways of shinning.’ If you compare yourself to other people, you will blind yourself to seeing how important you are and your mind will begin to focus on what it may have convinced you is your ‘uselessness’.
Like I said earlier, I had always thought I was born stupid, one reason being because my parents are really smart. Some things I found hard to do, my younger brother would just do like it was nothing. I would be like ‘Gima, you’re such a dumbass!‘ But lately, with the help of Remen, I recognized that I am actually sharp when it comes to making accurate calculations; sometimes looking like I prophesied it.
The reason most of us feel like we’re not smart enough is that we are not looking at the bright side; we are too focused on the negatives.
Also I felt unimportant because many times, I felt denied of what I wanted and it seemed like my sister always got what she wanted. Eventually, I discovered that there was always something I really liked that was kept for me. Thinking my sister got everything and I didn’t affected me because I was negative, which is why I now believe that another way to get over low self-esteem is to be positive.
The last and best option is to go to God in prayer. This was the most effective method that worked for me.