Tracee Ellis Ross Shares A Powerful Message Of Self-Acceptance

The 'Black-Ish' star spoke about perfection at the Essence Black Women In Hollywood luncheon.
Tracee Ellis Ross onstage during the 2016 ESSENCE Black Women In Hollywood awards luncheon.
Tracee Ellis Ross onstage during the 2016 ESSENCE Black Women In Hollywood awards luncheon.
Earl Gibson III via Getty Images

Tracee Ellis Ross shared a message of self-acceptance at Thursday's Essence Black Women in Hollywood luncheon, where she was honored with the Fierce & Fearless award.

In her acceptance speech, the "Black-ish" star revealed that just days before, she had gotten sick and lost her voice, and was almost unable to attend the event.

“I wasn't supposed to be here,” Ross said. “Two days ago I didn’t have a voice; I went to work as a silent actress. But [not having a voice] helped me learn that I am not the sound of my voice. I am me and I could be the same me without my voice.”

Ross then encouraged the women in the audience to embrace the idea that "perfect is not the goal."

“We should remind ourselves in daily life to make space for selfhood,” the actress added. "Boobs don't belong up here, they belong down here. This is where God put them. I am human. I listen to fear and lean into it. I don't always feel fierce but I do feel human."

Among attendees at the star-studded event iwere Oprah Winfrey, Shonda Rhimes, Issa Rae and Chris Rock.

View photos from the event below.

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Oprah Winfrey (C) and actress Holly Robinson (R) attend the 2016 ESSENCE Black Women In Hollywood awards luncheon.
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Actress Tika Sumpter (L) and guest.
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(L-R) Singer Zendaya, guest, actress Keke Palmer, and Multicultural Communications Manager at Lincoln Motor Company Raj Register.
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Actresses Kym Whitley (center) and Yvette Nicole Brown (R).
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(L-R) TV personalities Bevy Smith and Shaun Robinson and guest.
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Fashion stylist Ty Hunter (R).
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Actress Rhonda Ross Kendrick.
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(L-R) Actress Tika Sumpter, actress Holly Robinson, and author Iyanla Vanzant.
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(L-R) Rhonda Ross Kendrick, Tracee Ellis Ross, and SVP, Drama Development at ABC Studios Channing Dungey.
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Actress Angela Robinson (L) and Oprah Winfrey.
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Writer/producer Shonda Rhimes.
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(L-R) Actors Holly Robinson, Boris Kodjoe, and Nicole Ari Parker.
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Actress Issa Rae.
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Actress Meagan Good.
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Singer Kelly Rowland (L) and host Lala Anthony.
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Actress Vicky Jeudy.
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Actresses Garcelle Beauvais (L) and Keke Palmer.
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Fashion blogger Claire Sulmers.
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TV personality Demetria Lucas D'Oyley.
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Actress/singer Zendaya.
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Actress Anika Noni Rose.
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Actress Tia Mowry.
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Actress Omotola Jalade Ekeinde.
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Actress Lena Waithe.
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Actress Aja Naomi King.
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Actress Amber Riley.
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Actress Serayah McNeill.
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Singer Erica Campbell.
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Actress Tika Sumpter.
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Actress Wendy Raquel Robinson.
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Actor Nate Parker.
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