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From Our Readers: How to Overcome Self-Doubt

Be true and be strong.
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Everybody go through this but not everyone gets over it—whether you're a six-year-old singing at your family gathering or an 18-year-old getting into college or even a 21-year-old facing unemployment.

I have been struggling with low self-esteem since forever. I cannot say that I'm an introvert or that I'm just shy, because I am far from being those. I have a lot of lovely friends and most of the time, I am up for different tasks like public speaking or acting on stage. Others even think that I am so confident, but I am not.

I have been struggling with low self-esteem since forever. I cannot say that I'm an introvert or that I'm just shy, because I am far from being those.

I have done those things to simply reassure myself that somehow, I am worthy. I didn't do those things because I believe in myself but because I don't. Then later on, even performing became less and less fulfilling. That really stopped me from growing.


I started thinking that I can't do anything by myself. It made me dependent on others and hide behind the curtains, always watching from afar. My self-doubt got stronger over time and I succumbed to reading books in my room, spending less and less time with others. I struggled a lot. It got worse because I was constantly judged by others and because I always compared myself to others. Until one day, I had enough.

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Fake it until you make it, a saying that's been with me for a long time. I am not saying it's bad or it's good or that it works, but that helped me a lot when I was starting. Slowly I began going out more, learning new stuff, and getting into things I never knew I could. At first, there's this nagging feeling that says it's just a one time thing and that I can't do it again.


I pushed through. A lot of things helped me. I have this scrapbook of my life events that I regularly update. It became a diary to me and helped me realize a lot of things. It's like a memory lane. The first poem I wrote, the script of my first play I worked on, the IDs of various events and organizations I've been part of.

As I looked at them I see myself being brave and bold. I start really believing more and more on what I am capable of. I continously avoided comparing myself to others. It's hard, I know. But it is true that you should count your blessings. Always. Surround yourself with people who support you because a positive environment is key. Belief in God is also the answer. Overcoming your self-doubt is a continous process. But don't ever think you're worthless because nothing and nobody is. Look in the mirror and see the beauty in your scars. We all have one or two or even a lot. But they are scars from various battles that made you strong.


Look in the mirror and see the beauty in your scars. We all have one or two or even a lot. But they are scars from various battles that made you strong.










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Katherine Go A day ago

Cold Food

The most thrilling and delightful moment of any school day is opening up your baon during breaks. There is always so much excitement in unveiling your homemade meal and snacks housed inside matching heat-insulating containers. Because preparing packed meals is an age-old tradition of showing parental love, loved ones pour effort into curating a nutritious meal accompanied by a selection of side dishes, desserts, and beverages daily; it reminds us that we are being taken care of, even from far away.

Baon plays a significant role in a Filipino childhood. Almost every Filipino child comes to school with baon made especially for them by their parents or household helpers. Even Filipinos in the labor force continue to bring baon for varying reasons: to save money, recycle leftovers, cater to personal taste, or attend to special needs. Nonetheless, eating your baon is a heart-warming experience that allows Filipinos to bring a piece of home along with them wherever they go.

Even other cultures practice making packed lunch. In Japan, mothers create bento--Japanese meals in partitioned boxes. Because of the popularity of bento, trends have emerged, such as the Kyaraben, or character-themed bento. Naturally, Japanese parents and students began competing for who had the cutest and tastiest bento, and this is similar to what I have witnessed in my own childhood. I remember seeing my classmates sharing their snacks and lunches. They would compare and boast about their parents' or yayas’ cooking. In my case, I never had the chance to join in the competition or indulge in homemade cooking. Up until this day, I have never brought any baon to school.

For a long time, I envied others. As trivial or petty as it may seem, not having baon became a problem for my grade school self. During that time, I had to sit in a separate cafeteria away from my friends because the kids who bought food were assigned to sit elsewhere. You could consider me spoiled, but I wanted to experience something most kids did. I had food at home, so what made it so hard to bring some with me to school?

Now that I am on my final year in high school I have come to realize the benefits of purchasing my own food. Since I spent on food everyday, I learned to budget my allowance at a young age. Over the years, I learned to practice self-control whenever I wanted to eat more greasy fries and drink sweetened beverages. I have tasted the strangest viands at the school cafeterias, and I have repeatedly satiated myself over my latest delicious discoveries. Despite the struggles, I am thankful that I have never had baon because of what I have learned. Not to mention, I never had to experience eating cold food.

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