The other day, I was at a function where a bright young fella was stealing the show with his excellent display of some melodic dancing skills. He wasn’t the only one doing this; they were a team of five people actually. But he stole the show -along with my heart – and maybe of more people too!
No, I can’t say with a hundred percent accuracy whether he was the best of them all. Not that he did any moves besides their well-choreographed group pattern. But there was something about the look on his face, as he did justice to the rhythmic dance tunes.
There was a way he carried himself, as with the never fading smiles on his every rhythmic moves. His face shone brightly, rightly giving meaning to the lyrical expression. He was just it. You couldn’t deny that beyond just there dancing, the lad was also enjoying what he was doing. He was confident about his moves. And it showed. We could all sense it. And we loved him for it!
You know, there is something about self-esteem, and confidence, which one cannot deny; it is perceivable in the possessor. The way you walk, the words you give away about yourself, and others; and the carriage of your entire well sculptured body, is a pure reference to how you see yourself.
It shows because we can tell it even after an experience with you. And if it’s not there, the devourers would take advantage of that vacuum with their manipulations of you.
Just like the dancing fella, his confidence at the way he carried his body to the tune of the music was all an obvious statement about his personality. Maybe I might have been wrong. But I doubt that everyone sharing my table and their words about that particular guy could have been misguided, too? It was like we all came to watch one man, and his great ability at interpreting good music with rhythmical gyrate.
While some people worry about being unable to do things because of their lack of belief in themselves, as a result of low self-esteem, there are those who take the baby steps at what they believe they can do, and get the whole world’s attention, not because they claim to be the best at what they do; but in the way they do it, showing their own believe in their own abilities. This where having a good image of one self is critical to one’s success.
Having low self-esteem can lead to an inferiority complex by the way you see yourself as worthless, or not good enough in almost anything. It can affect your mind, especially when you are constantly thinking yourself as undeserving of happiness, or self-blaming for the things that happened which aren’t your fault. In fact, low self-esteem is a sabotage. Unfortunately, people usually take advantage of your poor opinion of self to victimize you. This is my reason for bringing this to you; that you’d take it seriously to improve on how you see yourself.
For the one who may not know what it means to be assertive in matters involving others’ misdemeanor for which he was blamed, he may see himself as being “humble” through these self-demeaning acts of his. And probably hailed as a “good” boy by those who may be taking advantages of his own ignorance, unfortunately. Humility is never demeaning. If you have the habit of constantly bringing down yourself, you may be a victim of your own insecurities as a result of low self-esteem.
Another sign of low self-esteem is the willingness to always please other people at your own detriment. I heard some people still dread using the word “NO” even in their obvious state of its necessity; such persons are afraid of being labelled as bad. Well, I am sorry for the niceness that could end up destroying you.
The painful part of some of these cases is the real issue of self-loathing underneath. It may be because you do not like yourself enough that you let down your life as prey to merciless predators.
How do you get out of this poor image of self?
Know thy self. Firstly, an awareness of self can help with the discovery of your true self and its essence. It is by being sure of who you are that you can know your strengths and those value you’re able to bring in to other people’s lives. Through the process of awareness, you can get to know the real root behind your low self-esteem.
Self-awareness can help you in form of some soul-searches in order to unravel what masks stands behind your show of such acts against yourself.
You see, our habits are merely the results of deeper causes in our lives which could be traced to either our pasts, childhood experiences, or in how we were brought up.
You may find that you act this way because of some abuses you might have suffered as a child, or even in the dysfunctional home you might have been raised. It could have been anything that had happened around your life much earlier.
As an adult, maybe your self-esteem dropped to its lowest point after you lost your job, failed an important professional exam, or when your family income dropped and you could no longer provide for the family? At times, it could be due to failed relationships, like a marriage or the loss of an engagement. Whatever it may be, it is usually as a result of something deeper underlying. Which self-awareness can help you unravel.
Once you have reflected on these things and you have found out where it all started, next is to accept your life as it is now. And forgive the mistakes your poor image of self might have caused you. I usually talk about self-acceptance a lot because a good image of self is often rooted in true acceptance of who you are, in the first place.
Also important here is the process of your transformation. You must be patient with it. Because change can take time. You would need have some self-talk in the days, and maybe, weeks to come, about this new journey towards your transformation of self.
The right evaluation of your current self and the circumstances around you can be helpful too. I have since realized that no matter how bad we may view the situations around us, it isn’t always as bad as we reckon it. Despite how deprived you may see yourself now, there are still a lot of other good things going on around you. Get a pen and paper, and begin to note them down. Write out as many masterly things that you can find about yourself, if need be, ask for opinions from others. The more, the better. This will help boost your esteem of self.
Sometimes, the reason you look down on yourself could be because you think that there is nothing good about you; that you are not enough. That is a lie from hell. Hardly anyone without something good about them, including you.
It is just too unfortunate that instead of tending our own garden, we use the time admiring how green another’s garden looks. You could have expended that energy at taking care of your own garden. Stop the comparisons, and focus on making things around you work instead.
One thing that has helped me greatly which is worthy of mention here, is being able to separate who I am from my circumstances; whatever it is. And I am still on this. Even now, when I fail at something, or maybe got myself embarrassed by an act, and that feeling of shame that usually culminates into a low self-esteem is about to begin internally, because of some negative self-talk I might have indulged in at those moments, I quickly do a reverse conversation as soon as possible. By this, I am able to change those otherwise self-damaging words to more positive ones by separating the event from who I am.
I think all of us should learn to talk to ourselves. We talk to people a lot. It’s time you turn that habit on self for good.
Another area of importance when it comes to the matters of improving on your self-esteem is adding value to people. When you know how much value you have to offer, it helps improve how you see yourself.
It is therefore cardinal that you sharpen your skills in areas where necessary. This may not in any way be in the show of some very big accomplishments. It could be in simple acts such as learning new words about a language, signing up for dance or swimming classes? Anything. As long as it will count in boosting your self-worth as per a sense of accomplishment, it is fine. Because the feeling of nothingness can be part of the reason some people suffer a low self-esteem.
You could even volunteer your time at an NGO, or anywhere else that might require your current skills. Please note my use of “current,” because there is always something you have now that would be of benefit somehow. You may not need to go and acquire something new before you can make the impact. That way, you enjoy that good feeling of contribution. This can serve as a good morale to your esteem, and also a reference for use during the low times.
By helping other people, you are in turn seeing value in yourself, and that can help in the way you see yourself, overall.
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To your evolving life.