Chalk Exclusive: Claudia Barretto on Conquering Her Inner Battles
Seeking and accepting help don’t always come naturally for most of us. Sure, we know what to do when we have an upset stomach or a tooth ache. But when we’re not feeling well mentally, we either brush it off or don’t even know that this aspect of our health requires serious attention. This is why so many of us are suffering in silence and falling deeper and deeper into the darkest caverns of our minds.
Owning our mental health journey is all about taking the first step. For 20-year-old artist Claudia Barretto, self-awareness is the initial key to opening yourself up to the nitty gritty of your mental wellbeing. “I think that by reflecting introspectively, you can really look into what it is about yourself that has room for improvement,” she shares.
Previously a Management student, Claudia shifted to a Psychology course last year to further fuel her budding passion for mental health. The “Head/Heart” singer has been vocal about her own inner struggles, which is a huge part of her decision to pursue it in higher education. “I was yearning for some kind of deeper understanding as to how and why my mind worked the way that it did,” she tells.
But aside from gaining formal grounding on the workings of the mind, Claudia is also active in campaigning for awareness and building a community through MINDGAMES, her very own platform that offers content to further the discussion on mental health. Aside from sharing her own insights, Claudia has collaborated with another organization called Mental Health PH and filmed conversations with the likes of her sister Julia Barretto and actress Sofia Andres. All of these are uploaded on the MINDGAMES YouTube channel which she launched recently, a timely and helpful tool that we can all benefit from amidst the quarantine period.
While educating ourselves and taking mindful breaks are surefire ways to improving our mental wellbeing, Claudia’s personal advice is to put our thoughts and feelings into writing. As a musician, she describes singing and songwriting as “cathartic” for her. “It’s helped me reconcile experiences from my past so that I’m able to move more effectively towards my future,” she shares.
Perhaps, you’re no stranger to how the mind can race with ideas that one can’t sometimes make sense of. It can get wildly overwhelming as if you no longer have a hold on your own thoughts. Writing, Claudia adds, provides a way for her to clear her head and focus on what’s at hand. “It has helped me rationalize my thought processes and create a structure for them,” she explains.
With a fair share of fighting her own inner battles, Claudia acknowledges how challenging life can often get. But it doesn’t mean that she or any of us is incapable of coming out it stronger. Furthermore, Claudia has been actively finding ways to equip herself when the going does get rough, a wisdom that we can all pick from her young and resilient mind. “It’s not my mission to change the reality of the world being a dark place. It is my mission to be the best person that I possibly can be in order to conquer it.”
Story Produced by Madel Asuncion
Video Produced by Deiniel Cuvin
Video Edited by Play It Forward
Art Direction by Mikka Caronan
Cover Art by Chinny Basinang