My Top 8 Tips to Turbo Charge your Self-Esteem
“Ambition means tying your well-being to what other people say or do. Self-indulgence means tying it to things that happen to you. Sanity means tying it to your actions”.
Thank you Marcus Aurelius for these wise words, but herein lies the rub — for many of us it’s just not that simple!
It’s generally agreed that there are 3 basic human needs:
But if we feel vulnerable and open to criticism, or are knocked-back by even the smallest of set-backs, then it’s all too easy to believe we’re powerless to act, incompetent, unable to relate, and doubt our-self in every area of our life.
So, what is self-worth?
Is it something mysterious, unattainable, unknowable, and in plain-fact, indefinable? Or, can we pin it down? Is it, in fact, tangible, mutable, something complete, knowable and in plain-sight?
Is it pride, without arrogance? Is it self-awareness, without pretension?
I rather like to think of it in the following ways:
- a Phoenix-like vitality
- a most congenial place to inhabit; &
- a transport for the soul
It is my essence, my definition of self — Yet I know that I am always a work in progress, more sinning than sinned against, yet constantly creating and recreating myself through action, and always with the possibility to be in constant motion and commotion.
I need then an Anchor
Fear of failure may keep us close to the shore, as it is a fundamental instinct to protect our sense of self, our competence and our reputation.
For myself however, the fear of not doing can be worse, and worse still can mean I drift. I need to accept and permit myself to just Be and Mindfulness allows me to be fully self-aware, able to understand complex emotions, have the capacity for empathy and remain rooted in the moment, accepting whatever is.
It is then my Anchor! But it is not my only one!
Self-worth — self esteem — self respect — self regard — common regard — shared purpose…
The value and worth I place upon myself and how I perceive my value to the world and to others, is also anchored in how I see my place and my role in the world.
My self-worth is something that takes me beyond myself and gives me common purpose.
“The small work hard to serve themselves in a big way. The big work hard to serve the world in a small way”, Simon Sinek.
An Unshakable Optimist
I might have called this piece, ‘Meditations on becoming an Unshakable Optimist’.
I suppose through trial and error that’s what I have become — and I know that without self-worth, one of the first things to go would be trust — in myself, in others, in my relationships, and in my work — and then it’s a slippery, slippery slope.
To not feel of worth though, is ultimately a judgement we make on our-self — It is however, one we should never wittingly make, no matter how bad we feel, no matter what others tell us they think about us, and no matter whatever slings and arrows of outrageous fortune life throws at us.
My 8 Top Tips
So, if you feel in clear and present danger of making that judgement — if your self-worth has tanked — or, has never even got out of the starting gate — here’s a few things I have done in the past to get back on track:
- I seek to Understand: I try my utmost to understand, make sense of and peace with what’s affecting my sense of self and self-worth
- I fake it till I Make It: I feign positivism until I am positive — I create and give myself value by focusing on what makes me unique & different, &, then I create a ‘Personal Balance Sheet’ with all the pluses and stick it on the fridge door
- I cultivate Wellness: I take care of myself both physically and emotionally — Even if I just walk more and spend just 5 minutes each day doing absolutely nothing, but appreciating the silence and the moment, that can be enough and enough is all you need
- I Assert: I practice being assertive and reaffirm my right and entitlement to be just who I am
- I set myself a Challenge: Something that’s outside my comfort zone and I don’t just try to achieve it, I try to knock it out of the Ball Park
- I Never Talk Myself Down: The Brazilian lyricist and novelist, Paulo Coelho writes, “The less you respond to negative people, the better your life will become” — So, no colluding with the negativity that others may lay at your door
- I Relate: As John Donne the 17th century English metaphysical poet and Cleric said, “No one is an Island” and how right he was — Yet if our self-worth has got up and gone, or never even entered the building, it is all too easy to withdraw and push people away — Don’t, but rather Reach-out and connect, or reconnect, with those people who love and care for you; &
- Ask for Help: Never ever be afraid to ask for help if things get too much — You owe yourself that much!
And believe me we are better together
Increasingly we live in an interconnected world — there will be 50 billion connected electronic devices globally by 2020 — and the evidence tells us that as social animals we do better emotionally and intellectually when we are part of something bigger, so don’t cut yourself off.
And when you permit and give your self-worth some added Va Va Voom, then perhaps this is what you’ll see,
“…the world in a grain of sand, and heaven in a wild flower, infinity in the palm of your hand, and eternity in an hour”, William Blake.
because it’s been there all along.
Here’s to waking up and smelling the coffee.
Paul Mudd is the author of ‘Uncovering Mindfulness: In Search Of A Life More Meaningful’ available on Amazon and www.bookboon.com; the ‘Coffee & A Cup of Mindfulness’ and the ‘Mindful Hacks For Mindful Living & Mindful Working’ series. He is also a Contributing Author to The Huffington Post and a Contributing Writer to Thrive Global. Through The Mudd Partnership he works with business leaders, organisations and individuals in support of change, leadership excellence, business growth, organistional and individual wellbeing and well doing, and introducing Mindfulness. He can be contacted at [email protected] and you can follow the continuing journey uncovering Mindfulness on Twitter @TheMindfulBook and at @Paul_Mudd
Originally published at medium.com