"What exactly is self-esteem and how do you tell someone how to increase it or obtain it if they do not have it?" I asked.
"It's a state of mind," my husband responded.
"It's what you tell yourself every day" our close friend chimed in.
Telling myself I am awesome regularly? Hmmmm....I had to think for a moment. I realized I have never viewed myself as awesome. I mean, of course, I have viewed things that I have done as pretty good but not necessarily rising to the level of awesome. Could this explain why high self-esteem for me has felt at times as an elusive characteristic that only others possessed?
Intrigued, I looked up the definition of awesome and discovered descriptors such as
Viewing myself as magnificent, amazing or even jaw-dropping sounded, well, as a matter a fact, awesome. What is interesting to me is that I have willingly showered others with this level of praise. Whether it was something my husband had done for me or an accomplishment the kids had obtained in school or even a task a teammate had completed, I have easily and without hesitation said, "You are AWESOME!"
I am a firm believer that self-esteem and confidence go hand in hand. I also believe that our words have the ability to build up or tear down our own sense of well-being as well as those around us. This is not simply a good idea, it's Biblical. Proverbs 18:21 states "Death and life are in the power of the tongue, and those who love it will eat its fruit."
So, what was my problem? What had I been telling myself? Had I conditioned myself to celebrate others while holding myself to some other much higher standard?
Awareness is the first step resolving an issue. Holding myself to a standard that may be higher than necessary is definitely an issue. I have decided to employ some different self-affirmations:
I can do it. Although, I can't do it all at once. How many times have I unknowingly beat myself up because I have tried to do this and tried to do that but eventually spread myself too thin? Realizing everything does not have to be done right at this moment is freedom.
It's OK to cry. Managing emotional health is absolutely important and to maintain a healthy self-esteem and a high level of confidence, crying may be just what the doctor ordered.
It's OK to rest. Sometimes sitting down and doing nothing is the best thing that can be done.
And more importantly....I am AWESOME!
Shatanese Reese is a freelance blogger and author of a future book who resides in Atlanta, GA with her husband and their six children. She enjoys walks on the beach and colorful sunrises. Shatanese’s goal is to find the extraordinary in every day moments. Follow Shatanese on YouTube, FaceBook, Twitter, Instagram, and Periscope.