With Self Love X NayStar
NAYSTAR is a multi-talented R&B/Pop artist of proud Trinidadian descent, born in Queens, New York and raised in Atlanta, Georgia. Having spent the majority of her life around music and the performing arts, it seems destined that her heart would lead her in that direction. She has a passion for being on stage and finds joy in artistic expression. It is a potent mixture of talent, drive and passion that sets her apart, as an artist.
Always striving to remain relatable, when NAYSTAR writes, she puts her life into her songs. She wants listeners to simply “feel”, in a world that suppresses feelings and vulnerability. She hopes audiences will shed their inhibitions and get lost in her music. Her intention is to inspire people to dance, while radiating love and positivity.
In addition to singing and songwriting, NAYSTAR is a trained professional dancer/choreographer and fitness coach. She is also the owner of the brand, “BeautyInBlack”, which celebrates the beauty in blackness. Her brand advocates against oppression, systemic racism, and police brutality, through fashion, outreach and more.
NAYSTAR founded the nonprofit organization “The L.I.F.T. Family Inc.” to promote mental health awareness and self-worth in girls/women of all ages. She is a graduate student working to obtain her Masters in Clinical Mental Health. While her goal is to touch the world with her music, she uses her other gifts and her platform to spread love and champion causes near to her heart.
Her ultimate goal is to utilize her blessings to be a blessing to others. She aspires to give back to the community as a role model and advocate for women. NAYSTAR wants to remind women that they can be whomever and whatever they choose, while shattering all glass ceilings, everywhere. She wants every woman feels confident, no matter what society says she should look like.
Her motto is “To be different is to be irreplaceable”. With a positive attitude and GOD as the head of her life, she aims to succeed and strives to be the best in her every endeavor.
Pop/R&B Entertainer, Shanae Benito, (stage name “NayStar”), has an amazing story of overcoming heartbreak and disappointment to find self love.
Self-love is just that. The ability to love yourself. The acceptance and grace you have with yourself. Understanding that we are as we are supposed to be and feeling confidence and pride in who we are.
What are the challenges you face when thinking of self-love?
This day in age, I do a lot better with self love. In the past, I struggled loving myself as I should as a response to the negative way I was treated by some of the people who I loved. Particularly, in the realm of intimate relationships. When you do your best by people and they harm you mentally, emotionally or physically, there are times when you may question yourself and fail to see your own worth. I had to work through that and remember who I was.
How will you confront these challenges to move towards self-love?
It is through introspection and valuing mental health that I was able to move in a more positive direction as it relates to self-love. It is still a journey. I am not perfect, but I definitely know my worth.
Do you have a personal story that you can share with our readers about your struggles or successes along your journey of self-understanding and self-love? Was there ever a tipping point that triggered a change regarding your feelings of self love?
It was the breakup with my daughter’s father while I was pregnant that caused me to have to dig deep within myself and re-learn how to love myself. When you’re pregnant and hormonal while also suffering emotional pain and dealing with the physical changes with your body, you go through a whirlwind of emotions. I was at my emotional lowest, God was with me. It was hitting that bottom that I found my strength and love for myself, enough to rise up and bounce back in a major way. I learned so much about myself and my relationship with my creator during that time.
As cheesy as it might sound to truly understand and “love yourself,” can you share with our readers a few reasons why it’s so important?
Loving yourself is of the utmost importance because when you fail to love yourself, you indirectly give others the power to determine your worth and value. This world is beautiful but can truly be ugly because there are broken and evil people in it who will try to dim your light. You must always remember who you are and that you are beautiful no matter what anyone says. It also means loving yourself to be the best version of yourself, for you!
When we talk about self-love and understanding we don’t necessarily mean blindly loving and accepting ourselves the way we are. Many times self-understanding requires us to reflect and ask ourselves the tough questions, to realize perhaps where we need to make changes in ourselves to be better not only for ourselves but our relationships. What are some of those tough questions that will cut through the safe space of comfort we like to maintain, that our readers might want to ask themselves?
I encourage others to think about their opinions about themselves. Where do those ideas stem from? What factors play a part in how you see yourself? What patterns occur in your life that may contribute to how you see yourself? What is preventing you from being that best version of yourself? What causes you unhappiness about yourself. Self-reflection and reframing are two of the best things we can do for ourselves. Looking within ourselves and replacing negative thoughts with positive ones. It goes a long way.
I reflect anytime I find myself in a place of unhappiness, uncertainty or confusion. There is usually always something I can do to make the situation better.
What favorite book, podcast, or resource for self-psychology, intimacy, self love or relationships? What do you love about it and how did it resonate with you?
My absolute favorite podcast is The Secret to Succsss with ET the Hip-Hop Preacher. He is not a therapist or relationship expert per say, but he is truly motivating when it comes to understanding the importance of loving yourself, believing in yourself, and understanding the value of decision making and mindset. In regards to Intimacy, Self-Love and Relationship, it was a book I was required to read Internal Family Systems Couple Therapy Skills Manual: Healing Relationships with Intimacy from the Inside Out by Toni Herbine-Blank and Martha Sweezy. Super powerful.
You are a person of great influence. If you could inspire a movement that would bring the most amount of good to the most amount of people, what would that be? Maybe we’ll inspire our readers to start it…
I would start a movement for people to be okay not being okay. In other words, embracing vulnerability. Speaking your truth. Not running from emotions but rather learning how to manage them. We live in a world where so many are hurting but do not want to face it. Others feel like they do not have anyone to talk to. Let’s all work on not just being better people to others but also being better people to ourselves. And being okay with authenticity because none of us are perfect but we can all be better.
Can you please give us your favorite “Life Lesson Quote” that you use to guide yourself by? Can you share how that was relevant to you in your life and how our readers might learn to live by it in theirs?
My Motto or quote as you can call it is “To be different is to be irreplaceable”. It is a reminder to all that there is no one like you in this world. We are all different and uniquely made because that’s how our creator wanted it. We need to be proud of that. Don’t blend in. Be you. Always. No one can replace you