Sheryl Lee Ralph's viral speech about self love is something we should all take on board

"When you look in the mirror, you better love what you see."

Sheryl Lee Ralph
(Image credit: Michael Kovac/Getty Images for Champagne Collet & OBC Wines)

We all need a bit of encouragement, especially in January - and this week it has come in the form of a viral video of actress Sheryl Lee Ralph.

Picking up an award at the Critics Choice ceremony this week, she joined the likes of Jennifer Collidge as the Abbott Elementary star told viewers at home to 'love themselves'. 

The actress, who has also starred in Dream Girls and Sister Act 2, picked up the award for Best Supporting Actress, and after thanking the crowd she also made an inspiring speech to her fans at home - and it's a self-love message we can totally get on board with.

Sheryl, 66, has been acting since the late 70s and said this about her journey as she accepted her award: "Every mistake, every back break, every ‘No’, every rejection, in an industry that when I was 19 years old was quick to tell me there was no place for me.

"That Sidney Poitier looked at me and said, 'You’re a damn good actress.' That God could lead me to a moment when a young woman by the name of Quinta Brunson would look at me and say, 'Ms. Ralph, I’m not sleeping on your talent.'"

As Sheryl held up her award, she added: "To the best cast on TV. Thank you. As a supporting actress, I am supported well, by an incredible crew, by incredible staff, by incredible producers, who put in the work, each and every day."

However, the part of her speech which has gone viral was all about self love, and she said something which we can all relate with: "To all of you watching here, come close to the screen and listen: people don’t have to like you, people don’t have to love you. They don’t even have to respect you. But when you look in the mirror, you better love what you see."

Fans have been sharing the clip online, with one joking: "Sheryl Lee Ralph did more for me in 30 seconds than my therapist in 10 years."

Another added: "Sheryl Lee Ralph is really the greatest motivational speaker of our time."

Hear, hear!

Sarah Finley
Sarah is a freelance journalist - writing about the royals and celebrities for Marie Claire, fitness for Women's Health and Tech Radar and travel for the Evening Standard and Woman & Home. She covers a variety of other subjects too and loves interviewing leaders and innovators in the beauty, travel and wellness worlds for numerous UK and overseas publications. Sarah can normally be found trying out the latest fitness class or on a plane to an exotic destination - and of course, writing about them.