Everyone seems to have at least one aspect of their physical appearance that they just don't like. Whether it's your weight (too much or too little), your eyes being too close together, or your rear end looking not quite right in those jeans, it's human nature to want to change something about yourself. Even celebrities, whose beautiful faces and well-toned bodies are flaunted throughout the media, have their own hang-ups. Award winning singer-songwriter Ellie Goulding, for one, has admitted to having such uncertainties. "I went through a time of being quite insecure," she admitted in a 2013 interview. "I'd convinced myself I was fat; I didn't like my figure and I had a big nose."

In fact, Goulding's anxiety issues and lack of confidence had gotten so bad she started getting severe panic attacks that had her heart pounding and horrible thoughts going through her mind. "My brain was getting all these crazy signals… I didn't want to tell anyone, because I just felt so stupid. I never wanted people to see me as weak," she confessed when asked about her attacks. Like the millions of people who suffer from panic attacks worldwide, the fear of experiencing these distressing episodes interrupted her daily life, making her unable to go outside, see other people, shop, and at one point, prevented her from getting in her car to go to the studio.

How Ellie Goulding Overcame Her Anxiety with Cognitive Behavioral Therapy

Fortunately, the pop singer was able to tackle her anxiety with some medication and by using Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT), a type of psychotherapy that refocuses destructive emotions, thoughts, and behaviors, and modifies them into positive solutions. CBT places a strong emphasis on figuring out the causes and triggers of an individual's negative patterns, and like many others, Goulding's negativity had much to do with her difficult upbringing and past relationships. "It took a lot of going back to my childhood," she said about the treatment, "but the attacks slowly stopped." And not only that, but Goulding reports that her confidence in herself has only grown stronger since starting her therapy.

This healthy self-assurance shines through in her recent, "makeup free" selfie post on Instagram, where she showed off her flawless complexion and glowing skin. Although there were some less than flattering comments about her photo, Goulding didn't let them get to her. She responded to the haters with dignity and fortitude, telling them she'll keep posting makeup-free photos and if they don't like it, "please unfollow cos that's not really my vibe." And, to inspire self-assurance in others, she even encouraged her fans to share their own makeup-free pics. Their confidence and support had her tweeting, "I really do have the most awesome fans, all of you are beautiful people!"

Ellie Goulding's Success Overcoming Panic and Anxiety is an Example to Others

Although it took Goulding a few years to get through her problems with self-image, her resulting positivity and assurance can be seen as a motivating example for others dealing with their own insecurities and worries. Anyone struggling with anxiety about how they look or who they are should consider seeking help before things start getting overwhelming. With the right treatment and outlook, Goulding was able overcome self-doubt and worry and come out the other side as a stronger, more confident individual.

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Date of original publication:
Updated on: March 16, 2017

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