Respect Yourself – How to build your self esteem
“The people who get on in this world are the people who get up and look for the circumstances they want, and, if they can’t find them, make them.” ~ George Bernard Shaw
The greatest mistake of the most potential minds is to trick itself that it is not worthy, incapable and undeserving of achieving the most rewarding, happiest and amazing successes in life. And this is probably one of the most common characteristic found in today’s several above average intelligent and capable people. Some overcome this low self esteem phase in their lives over time by taking self motivated steps to achieve success in everything aspire for, and some never do over come this stifling characteristic within them and grow to become overly cynical, negative and critical of themselves and almost everything and everyone around them. But the two amusing facts about people suffering with low self esteem are:
- A good majority of them know that they are being unfair towards themselves and continue to wallow in their negative state of being stubbornly. Or some live in denial, try to adopt several different identities, and try to cope with the situation in several other ways they can.
- And many great achievers in life have faced the same stifling low self esteem in their lives as well, but they chose to muster up the courage to stand up to it, fought against it, took the responsibility to identify and work towards correcting their flaws, and overcame this phase in their lives to become very successful and achieve some of the greatest things in their lives.
And both of these characteristics and potential lie within many of us. But the difference is in which approach do we chose to take towards taking responsibility for our own life and successes. Would you rather wallow in your pitiable state and continue to see yourself as being incapable of becoming a better person and fall victim to people’s opinions about you, or chose to fight your way to great success, become a trend setter and let your amazing life shut your critics up in style?
The choice is yours, but so is the responsibility of your own life and its outcome.
Low Self Esteem is perfectly normal and very common:
Contrary to popular belief, a very high majority of us feel bad about ourselves at times in our lives. There can be several factors in life that triggers this feeling of low self esteem. One could have this feeling if they are battling a disability, depression, guilt, or more commonly being treated poorly by someone, thriving in highly critical social environment or by certain deep rooted experiences that gives way to poor judgement about self. And yes, this is lot more common than you ever know. There are several people around us that go through their daily life suffering from severe low self esteem and doing a good job in covering this fact up or fighting it daily to overcome it and live an enjoyable and gratifying life.
Let me share a list of few of the many achievers who chose to overcome and defy factors that could lower a person’s self esteem.
Abraham Lincoln – One of the most amazing and often referred to. Former US president Abraham Lincoln, lost his fiancé, had a nervous breakdown, first went into politics at the age of 23 when he campaigned for a seat in the Illinois General Assembly and failed. He was defeated in 8 elections. He once also opened a general store which failed after only a few months.
Robert M Pirsig – His well known book “Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance” was rejected by 121 publishers. Since finally being published in 1974 it has gone on to sell millions of copies in 27 languages.
Michael Jordan – A well publicized and well known fact about the most famous name in basketball was actually cut from his high school basketball team.
John Wayne – Before his successful acting career he was rejected from the United States Naval Academy.
Steven Spielberg – This household name dropped out of high school and applied to attend film school three times but was unsuccessful due to his C grade average.
Beethoven – His music teacher once told him that he was a hopeless composer.
Henry Ford – The Ford Motor Co was Henry Ford’s third business, the first two didn’t work out.
Winston Churchill – This former British Prime Minister did poorly in school and had a speech impediment in his early years.
Marilyn Monroe – Marilyn Monroe spent much of her younger years in foster homes. One of her first jobs, during the Second World War, was inspecting parachutes. Producer told her she was “unattractive” and could not act.
Walt Disney – He was fired by the editor of a newspaper for lacking in ideas.
Soichiro Honda – The founder of Honda was turned down for an engineering job by Toyota after World War Two.
Charles Darwin – His father told him he would amount to nothing and would be a disgrace to himself and his family.
Albert Einstein – He learned to speak at a late age and performed poorly in school.
Turned down by a recording company saying “We don’t like their sound and guitar music is on the way out” They were talking about the Beatles
So what can you do to build your self esteem and attempt to join the above list of achievers? They too were just people like you and faced obstacles and several challenges in their lives. They were just ordinary people like you and I, but who chose to do extraordinary things by taking the responsibility of their success in their own hands and to build their self esteem by taking a constructive approach towards becoming better. If they could do it, so can you. Below are a few eye elements you can adopt in your daily behaviours that can help you boost your self esteem and set you towards living a happier, positive and successful life.
5 Proven Steps to boost self esteem:
The world is full of cactus, but we don’t have to sit on it. ~Will Foley.
The attitude you take towards your life and happiness dictates the outcome. It is in your hands how you wish to see things in life. Life is full of hurdles and disappointments, but liek the quote above you do not have to sit on the very things that prick. Instead take a rational, intelligent and positive attitude and steer clear, walk away and focus on things that gives you happiness or a sense of accomplishment. For instance take up a hobby, or learn to play a musical instrument, take up a language course or enrol in a gym, a cooking class or anything that you think you have a flair for. Everyone is good in something. Ask yourself what are you good at trying mastering that skill.
2) BUILD AN IMPRESSIVE IDENTITY:
First say to yourself what you would be; and then do what you have to do. ~ Epictetus
Your identity comprises of your character, personality, image and behavior. Work towards making each of these characteristics an impressive one. Uphold good and strong morals, Always smile and speak from your heart and make positive statements, carry a clean and well groomed image always, and be self aware of your actions and behaviors – let them be positive, productive, intelligent, funny, and polite. Make these attributes your identity and watch people gyrate towards you. Such characteristics are loved by all and radiated positive energy.
3) SURROUND YOURSELF WITH POSITIVE PEOPLE:
The person who sends out positive thoughts activates the world around him positively and draws back to himself positive results.~ Norman Vincent Peale
Think of a time how you felt about a positive individual you met in your life and more so how this person made you feel about yourself or radiated positive feelings around in that room. Positivity is infectious. You develop and get inspired to adopt positive thinking, positive behaviours and positive attitudes by being in the company of such people. Similarly such positive people inspire you and you get to learn several things in life and you now surround yourself with people who can also teach you to feel good about yourself, become confident and approach each hurdle in your life as an opportunity to find a solution around it. Great politicians and successful CEO’s always surround themselves with people of influence, power, high intelligence, subject matter experts etc so that they can develop and rely on such positive wisdom.
4) BALANCE YOUR OPINIONS AND LEARN TO ACCEPT REALITIES:
Accept things as they are, and look realistically at the world around you. Have faith in yourself and in the direction you have chosen. ~ Ralph Marston
No one has ever said that this world is fair. It takes every possible kinds of people to balance our world. There is good, there is bad, there is forgiveness there is punishment, there is tyranny and there is justice etc. And all of these happen and are dealt with over time. Those who get oppressed eventually revolt, and those who cheat will get cheated. This is the way of the world. Your opinions change all the time as well and so does other peoples. What you believed to be right at one age will appear to be wrong as you grow older and the opposite will happen as well. But being highly critical about the world around you, not taking the time to learn the facts about issues, or accepting certain realities will only make you a bitter and cynical person. There are many things you can change and there are several you cannot. You rather spend your time, efforts and wisdom to learn and change the things you can for the better and let the rest take its course. And begin changing things from within yourself first. Strive to be understanding, always educate yourself on facts and accept the realities of life and the world around you. But do not be rigid and stubborn, for the only things that is has been constant about life is change.
5) RESPECT YOURSELF
“No one can make you feel inferior without your consent.” ~ Eleanor Roosevelt
If you do not respect yourself and conduct yourself in a manner that earns others respect, others will not extend you the respect you seek. You earn respect and people respect those who deserve it. You cannot demand respect or buy it, for it will not stick for long. You earn respect by respecting yourself, your culture, your family, your work, your behaviour your ideas and opinions. These are the elements that form your identity and character. If you do not respect these and degrade them, others have absolutely no need to respect them either. It takes a long time to earn respect and just one single moment of negligence to lose it. There are many things that cannot change about you or you do not wish to change them. Your skin color, your culture, your faith, your chosen profession, your family, your beliefs etc are things you may not want to or cannot change. But you can bring a lot of respectability to them by how you conduct yourself about them. How you carry them with respect, do things that brings that earns peoples respect towards these things about you.
“Destiny is not a matter of chance; it is a matter of choice. It is not something to be waited for; but, rather something to be achieved.” – William Jennings Bryan –