In life, we have lots of people who care for us. Spouses, parents, kids, friends, co-workers, and countless others love us and think about our well-being. But their involvement is never enough by itself. We have to believe and accept that we truly are valuable, whether or not others care about us. It’s then and only then that we can conquer the challenges that come our way.
Lack of self-esteem is often the cause of many problems in life, and restoring it is usually the only reliable solution. Building it, keeping it, and believing in it are essential to our self-realization. Self-worth is at the heart of dealing with almost any problem we face.
“There is no substitute for
no one else can have it for you.
You must develop it in yourself,
and feed it every day to
keep it strong.”
We think of addiction as something that spirals out of control from a more manageable level of consumption. And this can certainly be true of alcohol, which is legal and is safe when consumed at a reasonable rate.
But addiction can also be a result of deliberate self-destructive behavior, a manifestation of a deeper problem. The problem can be compounded when initial attempts to overcome the problem end in failure.
It’s during this time that self-worth becomes the critical strength you need. If a traditional 12-step program hasn’t conquered your problem, you need to believe in yourself and find a non-12-step rehab for your next attempt at sobriety. If you relapse, you get help and you try again.
Whatever the particulars of the situation, you have to value your health and your future enough to do what you have to do to be successful.
There may be no other more cyclical problem than weight gain. Some outside factor–stress, a relationship issue, even an injury that reduces your activity level–can trigger weight gain. You become frustrated and get down on yourself, and you address your emotions by eating. The added weight decreases your activity level, feeds into your self-loathing, and it just goes downhill from there.
The only thing to stop this decline is the understanding that your health and your quality of life matter because you matter. Stopping, thinking, and realizing that it’s important to get healthy is the only thing you can do to head off all the bad things that you are burdened by. Circle a date on the calendar, and make that the first day of the new you.
Succeeding At Work
One of the most fundamental things we must understand about our careers is that getting there isn’t enough. Just getting hired is the beginning, and it takes real confidence to go any further.
The building blocks of your success are promotions and assignments. Even when they don’t carry title changes or salary increases, they build your value to the organization and position you for those opportunities when you will get to make improvements to your pay stub.
But no one will ever think you deserve to be there if you don’t think so yourself. You have to believe in your skills, your education, your accomplishments, and your work ethic in order to look the part of the next step up, even before the next step up is opened.
From your first day on the job–at the absolute latest–you need to acknowledge your own strengths and fear nothing in the path of your advancement. Keep a journal of your big moments; remember that you won’t necessarily get a plaque or even a mention of your success from others. Be your own cheerleader.
These are just a few examples of the things in life that can be avoided or reversed if you have good self-esteem. There is no substitute for it; no one else can have it for you. You must develop it in yourself, and feed it every day to keep it strong. In this way, you’ll achieve the things you want to do in life.
How strong is your sense of self-worth?
What are your tips for building your self-esteem?
Share your thoughts and comments with us.