Stacy-Ann Smith - Taking charge of her world

Stacy-Ann Smith - Taking charge of her world

Monday, October 19, 2020

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BOLD, beautiful and vivacious mother of two, Stacy-Ann Smith, is a passionate, career-driven woman and entrepreneur. She is a public relations and communication specialist, media personality, and the proud creator and executive producer of local talk show, It's a Woman's World , which aired its first season in 2019. A former TV presenter, Smith has established herself as a familiar and eloquent voice on the media landscape and now hosts her own show that shines the spotlight on women and celebrates their authenticity and achievements.

But long before her current successes and embracing all of who she is, Smith struggled with insecurities and self-doubt, roots of which were planted from her childhood growing up in the inner-city community of Maverley in Kingston. Like many other young Jamaican girls who looked like her, she absorbed messages that often reinforced negative ideas about her complexion, her hair and her physical appearance. She shared the all too familiar experiences of being told by others, even family members, that her nose wasn't straight enough or that she was too fat or too black; all of which can shatter a child's self-esteem and confidence, impacting their sense of self-worth even later in adult life.

For Smith, it was not until years later, in her 20s, that she would begin to unpack the psychological implications of the negative messages she was fed as a child about how she looked. Two decades later, the 43-year-old shared that she has shifted the narrative and positioned her talents and platform to inspire powerful stories of female empowerment and self-love.

“I struggled with my self-esteem for some time, especially my body image throughout my childhood. I have always been a plus-sized girl and up until recently, full-figured girls were not celebrated. I grew up thinking I was fat and ugly and was teased horribly at primary school; and throughout my life, there would always be that one person who felt it was their duty to point out my weight,” she said.

She even recalled a time during her childhood when her love for musical legend Whitney Houston's powerful vocals had her dreaming of becoming a singer, but lack of confidence in her abilities led her to quickly abandon those aspirations.

“It wasn't until I became a Christian in my twenties that I started the journey to self-love and embracing my physical attributes and innate talents through an acceptance of God's unconditional love for me,” Smith shared.

Her advice to other women who are struggling with their self-confidence is to drown out the noise and the negative words people may throw at you.

“Don't ever allow anyone to tell you who you are,” she asserted. “Own all of who you are, embrace and love yourself knowing that there is beauty in self-discovery.”

Smith also emphasised the importance of self-talk, encouraging women to look in the mirror every day and compliment the woman they see.

“Tell yourself something you like about yourself every day and be specific about a particular feature or trait you admire. I promise you will find many if you spend time with yourself,” she insisted.

“I remind myself everyday say mi nice!” Smith said smiling with a witty charm. She also encouraged others to have a positive circle of friends and influence that make them feel “nothing less than amazing”.

Smith argues that when it comes to self-esteem, even family members can do more harm than good. “You have to know which voices to listen to. Yes, there's a place for constructive criticism, but you have to be able to spot those comments that tear down rather than build up.”

Describing her personal style as classy, elegant, and sassy, Smith said she has learnt the art of dressing to accentuate her best assets and features.

“I dress the body I have. But HOW you wear your clothes is more important. Confidence is what I wear best and I've found it's more attractive than any trend.”

The Immaculate Conception High School alumna, who has a first degree in media & communications, with a specialisation in television production, and a master of arts in communication studies from The University of the West Indies, said she always wanted to work in media, having been inspired by popular radio personality Alan Magnus, and others like him who could so thoroughly captivate an audience.

It is no wonder then that her journey led her to creating her own talk show, enchanting her own audience with It's A Woman's World, which highlights stories of women from all walks of life, sharing extraordinary stories of triumph and overcoming adversity.

It's A Woman's World was a dream I had, to create a platform where all women could celebrate themselves, not just celebrities. We turn the spotlight on the issues that are real and relevant to them, in a way that is authentic, new and fresh. Truth is, I also wanted to give myself a voice, and to prove to myself that I could do it,” she said, revealing that she is also now working on her first novel.

As Smith takes charge of her own destiny, the God-fearing, witty, opinionated, loyal and ambitious woman, says she is inspired to create a better life for her children — Daniel and Debra-Kaye. “I have a big vision for my life that keeps me motivated and I also want my children to be proud of the mother and the woman I am,” she said.

Viewers can watch all the episodes from Season 1 and 2 of It's A Woman's World on YouTube and Facebook at It's A Woman's World JA.

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