They come out unawares. We do not understand exactly why. We do not want them, but they take control, turning us into slaves. They make us off-balance and we can’t think rationally, we can no longer see the big picture. What do we talk about? About our emotions. And to be more precise, about negative emotions such as anger, jealousy, and the worst — envy. Where do they come from?
Negative emotions are the product of our past, upbringing, environment, and native character trait. These elements create certain image of ourselves. And all of this boils down to our low self-esteem or inflated ego.
Both elements are crucial in our life because they have influence on our mood, family relationships, contacts with our workmates, and other people. That’s why we’re going to occupy ourselves today with the subject of low self-esteem, and the next time we will discuss our exaggerated ego.
Regrettably, low self-esteem is often forwarded unawares from generation to generation by our parents. They were often victims of humiliating, maltreatment, abuse, and bullying. Even though they got over some of the things alone, they may still involuntarily transfer some of the bad behavior to us.
How often have you heard in your life: “You’re so dumb!”, “You’re too clumsy!”, and so on. We treat it as something casual, we heard this so many times that we think it’s normal, natural, but it’s not. Negative expressions that are repeated over and over have a negative influence on us. Even though it may seem that it’s not the case with us, they are embedded in our minds, and will come into play when we’re in a bad mood.
It is easy to determine whether we suffer from low self-esteem. If we build our value on what others say and think, or on what clothes we wear, what car we drive, and so on. If we meditate on what others think, then our self-assessment is distorted. The additional factor is how do we treat ourselves. Do we care about ourselves and our body? Do we treat ourselves kindly? Here’s how to check that: how do you react when you pour something on your clothes leaving a stain? Do you say: “I am so clumsy and lame, I can’t do anything right!”? If so, that means you think badly about yourself and you have low self-esteem. Moreover the person, who does not know his/her value, tends to destroy all relationships and friendships. He or she can’t stand when others are praised and achieve some success. When his friend is praised, he wouldn’t think: “Oh, superb! I am so happy!”, but rather he thinks about himself: “No one would commend me”, “No one sees my efforts.” A small child, who never grew up, comes and shouts: “I am here! Notice me!” It’s not hard to guess that jealousy is a great cause for breakup of every sort of relation. Jealousy, if controlled, may motivate, but when it gets out of control it often transforms into envy — and this not only hurts ourselves, but is focused on destroying someone else.
It would be so great if we could find a medicine to cure our low self-esteem. But for now we can only dream about that. However, the situation is not hopeless — we can still work out a balanced view of ourselves.
First of all, avoid this common trap. Media and advertisers try hard to make you believe that if you will buy their product: brand clothes, cosmetics, white teeth, new car, only then you can be someone valuable. This is just an illusion, fades away quickly, and bursts like a soap bubble. Wearing a nice outfit isn’t wrong. It may grant us some self-confidence, and make us feel more comfortable, but it shouldn’t have influence on our self-assessment.
Consequently we can see that a balanced view of ourselves comes from within us and we have to create it in our mind. In order to do that, first of all you need to locate your weaker points and divide them into two groups: the ones you can change, and the ones you can’t do anything about. For example your hangup may come from your poor reading or writing skills. These are the things you can change and take care of. You can read aloud every day, read more books, and so on. But there are things you can’t change. You may have crooked legs. You must accept it. How? You have to say it to yourself. Yes! So far people have told you that having crooked legs is not nice, even that is bad. You believed that. Now you can believe that this doesn’t matter. There are plenty of actresses, show business stars with crooked teeth or legs. It has no influence on your appeal, attractiveness, or value. The world is diverse — the thing that’s beautiful for one person may not be beautiful for another. Some men love slim women, others love plump ones. There’s no accounting for taste. So when you look in the mirror, find your beauty. Focus on the positive aspects of your person. Don’t let negative thoughts to overwhelm you. If you pour out something, do not say that you’re clumsy. Better say: “That happens to everyone.” Turn it into fun. Be indulgent with yourself.
The environment also matters. Spend time with people that know their value. They won’t be ashamed to commend you and to draw out your good qualities. If you hear something positive about yourself, accept it. Many people with low self-esteem like to say: “Oh, no, not really. I didn’t do anything.” That’s a mistake. If you did something good, then accept the commendation. Save it in your mind, enjoy it, let it last as long as possible. You put effort into it that so don’t play it down. You have the right to do that. This is what people with balanced view of themselves do. They say: “Thank you, I tried so hard. I appreciate that you noticed.” They celebrate the success. They buy a bottle of wine, light the candles, and let this beautiful moment last. Write down each positive word about your person. If the negative thoughts, or bad emotions like jealousy come to your head, go to this list of positive traits.You will realize that someone could praise another person, but you aren’t worse, because you did other good things.
When you build your self-esteem, then you won’t need the list. The positive thoughts will come quickly to your head, and you will be sure of your value. When you achieve it, you will feel awesome, you won’t be a slave of others’ opinion and building your ego on material things. These will become just additional things in your life. You will think more of goals and ways of achieving them. Your relationships will change dramatically. You won’t see the opinion of others as criticism, but as motivation to further progress. Instead of feeling jealous, you will be proud of others. This will move you to commend them and to help them improve. If you have such friends they will repay you with motivation. Remember that feelings are like a boomerang. If you spread the positive vibes, they will come back to you. A self-confident person isn’t focused on himself, but on others, on goals, and on acting. Therefore, look for your beauty and develop a balanced self-esteem!