The Best Way to Overcome Low Self-Esteem

Good morning! May you each have a lovely and profitable day. Today’s term that caught my eye deals with overcoming a low self-esteem. There are a couple of things you can do to increase your self-esteem.

The first thing to do to overcome a low self-esteem is to consider what you are telling yourself about yourself. When you identify these things, consider where they came from, i.e., who told you that you were these things? Consider, point-by-point, if what you were told about yourself is true. Usually, what you were told were lies, told by someone who was unhealed or insecure themselves.

Once you recognize these things you were told that were not true, begin to tell yourself the truth, and when the negative self-talk reappears, gently talk yourself past the negativity by reminding yourself that the person who said those things was wrong.

The next thing you can do to overcome low self-esteem is to make a list f all of your positive points. Fill two standard-sized pages of paper, 8 1/2 x 11. Be creative. If you are having difficulty coming up with positive attributes, google positive character traits and see the lists that come up. See which apply to you and write them down on your list.

When you have compiled your list, simply “be” with the positivity of who you are for three days. Then, make a list of all the things you did for others in the past three days that were kind, generous, and loving. Once that list is completed, “be” with it for three days. The point is, you are trying to imbed in your heart, your soul, that you are a good person with merit.

The final thing you can do to raise your self-esteem is to do esteem-able acts. Be of service to another. Get out of yourself for even a short period of time and do something nice for another. Help them out. Talk to them. Volunteer. The point is, be of service to another, in whatever manner feels comfortable for you.

Once you do all of these things, your self-esteem will begin to improve. When it slips, as it will do, remind yourself of your positive points and attributes, and do something for someone else. You will find that your self-esteem improves.

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Blaming Others for Your Sadness

Good morning, all! May this be a fabulous day for you!

I say that, and yet, from your search terms, I recognize that there are those of you who read this blog who are feeling sad, or worthless, or just plain down. Having a good day is far from your grasp… you think. Or is it?

In the search term for today, “blaming others for my sadness,” lies the clue to continued difficulty. You see, when you blame others for your sadness, you are looking in the wrong direction. You are looking outside of yourself, when it is far more productive and appropriate to be looking within.

You may avoid looking within, as it is painful to discover what it there… painful to see your hurts, your pains of life. And, yet, it is the only way to happiness. I’d like to say that once you deal with those pains, what lies on the other side is magnificent. Peace, happiness, and freedom lie on the other side of pain, sadness, and despair.

I invite you to consider that you have the task of being responsible only for yourself, no one else. It is your task in life to look within yourself for managing your feelings yourself, not blaming others for your woes.

For example, I spent 38 years blaming my parents and everyone else for my upset feelings, but when I started looking inside and taking responsibility for my own feelings, my own healing, the result was discovering how I was creating my own pain, my own sadness. When I stopped putting that on others and started healing myself by, for example, seeing a therapist, writing about my feelings, reading books about my wounds, I began to feel so much better about myself and feelings of peace and happiness started.

You can learn to manage your own feelings instead of blaming others for them. We each have the responsibility to make our own happiness through our thoughts, our action, our behaviors. Take as your challenge the task of doing that, of looking within for your happiness, focusing on yourself instead of another.

They don’t make you unhappy; you make yourself unhappy by your thoughts about what is going on. So, focus today on yourself, and take responsibility for your thoughts and feelings. Manage them by owning them, expressing them. Look within for your happiness instead of blaming others. When you stop blaming others, you will experience so much peace and freedom in your life. I invite you to own your feelings, and stop blaming others. Leave a comment and let us know how that is going.

 

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Welcoming Joy Into Your Life

Good morning! Happy Sunday and may it be a day of grace for you each. I am overflowing with emotion today and want to share it. It is deep gratitude, which is coming forth as joy, so wish to discuss this as my topic.

The dictionary defines joy as a very glad feeling, happiness, great pleasure, or delight. For me, joy manifests when I am at peace with myself and the world around me, and I am feeling grateful for everything. That is how I feel this morning. Joy is a place I live in most of the time nowadays. But it wasn’t always like this. Oh, no. Far from it.

I used to be an angry and bitter person, blaming others for my misery. I lived in that space for four decades. Then I got sober and through the course of keeping sober, began to be less angry and bitter, especially after I became able to forgive my parents. I gradually stopped blaming others when I learned that my feelings were my responsibility.

Really?? I had no idea that was the case! I started seeing that I often did the very things for which I was angry at others, so suddenly had less to be angry at them for, and more to be responsible for how I felt about it all. Blaming went away as I learned to do a continual check of my actions and behaviors, correcting bad behavior when it occurred.

At some point in sobriety, I began to be grateful. I think it happened a couple of years after I forgave my parents. It started with being grateful I woke up every morning and grew from there. Today, I find myself being in great gratitude for all my experiences, the easy and the difficult, as it all contains a lesson for my growth. This alone is enough reason to express joy.

Joy is intensified as I observe all the miracles around me… in nature, in others, and in myself. It is the end result of an ongoing celebration of life. It is a wonderful place to live!

How about you? Do you experience joy in your life? If you don’t, what is in your way? Your anger and bitterness… the blaming of others that you do, the looking to another to provide your happiness rather than providing it for yourself? These are all things that will rob you of joy in your life. Learn to do it differently, without the negative emotions and behaviors, and you, too, can experience joy.

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How to Practice Honesty

Good morning and happy Thursday! May this be a great day for each of you! Today’s search that got my attention was “how can I practice honesty?” Allow me to address this from my perspective…

When you think about honesty, you are most likely thinking about not lying to others, not cheating, and not stealing. These are all behaviors to practice which lead you to be an honest person. But there is more to honesty than that.

Consider that honesty can be expanded to include how you share what you are thinking or feeling at any given moment. When you keep quiet if you are angry or hurt, for example, you are not displaying honesty. The solution is to speak up in a matter-of-fact way, without attacking the other person or making them wrong, and letting them know what you are feeling. You may want to take some time to process your feelings first.

It also has to do with being honest with yourself about your actions and behaviors. This is very difficult for many of us. We have trouble admitting to less-than-stellar behavior. Yet, to be considered an honest person, you must look at and admit to your non-perfect behavior, your bad behavior.

We all have it, you know. We all act poorly at times. You are not the only one. That’s because we are human beings with feelings and often don’t know how to deal with those feelings. And practicing honesty has to do with owning your negative behavior, apologizing when indicated.

This is another slant on honesty, and I hope it provides food for thought for you.

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Coping with Despair

Well, hello! It has been several days since I have written, and many of you continued to visit; thank you for that. Today’s search term was despair… how to cope with it, so I will discuss that, with a bit of a twist of hope.

When you are in the grips of despair, you feel hopeless, like nothing is worth it, that things cannot get better. You are listless and depressed… It is difficult to hear that things can be any different, and, yet, they can be.

It is possible to rise above despair, to get through it, past it. I am living testimony to that, and if what I’m going to say worked for me, it can work for you.

The bottom line is, to get through despair, it is necessary to refocus your attention on another who is in need, another who is hurting. It is necessary to drag your attention to the other person, thinking of how you can be useful to them by sharing about your pain.

First, identify why you are feeling despair. Write it down, list the reasons out. Get it all out on paper. Then look for the ways in which you are feeling self-pity, ways in which you are feeling like a victim. Choose to look for a way out, a way to feel better.

Next, write down one thing you have done that makes you feel better, one thing for which you are grateful. Is it getting a cup of coffee every morning? Does that lift your spirits? Find that one thing for which you can be grateful, that one thing that makes your heart sing.

Then seek out someone else who is feeling down, feeling despair for the same or similar reasons that you are feeling despair. Go to them and let them know what worked for you to feel better, even if you felt better for just a second. Let them know of the one reason you were grateful in the midst of your despair. Share this humbly, not with an attitude of, “look at me. You need to do this, too.” Share with gentleness. Simply share your story.

Notice the flicker of hope in their eyes, on their face, as you have given them hope, even a glimmer, that things can be better for them. When you notice this, know that you were the one who brought them some hope from their despair by sharing what helped you. Know that you got out of yourself long enough to be of use to another.

This is your way out of despair. Keep being of use to others, one person at a time, and you will notice that you begin to feel more hope and less despair, simply by being grateful for one thing and then being of service to one other person.

 

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Forgiveness for the Substance Abuser

Forgiveness and Healing for the Substance Abuser

Apart from receiving the professional medical help they need to recover, a person who has experienced addiction needs emotional and spiritual healing also. They may feel many negative emotions about themselves and other people around them, see themselves as failures or undeserving of our love.

It is important for them to forgive themselves and to actively understand that they are in turn forgiven by those closest to them who were the most hurt by their behavior. This barrier to full recovery must and can be overcome. This can be as difficult a road to travel as that of physical recovery from addiction, but when true forgiveness takes place in our hearts and in the heart of the person we love and who is getting better, then healing can and does take place.

This is such a wonderful journey, this way back to full health, physical and emotional, mental and spiritual, a joy to see someone you thought was lost to you returned. Our hopes can be re-awakened and we can look to the future again, just as our loved one now has a future to walk towards.

With the forgiveness and the healing come a state of being that we all desire, that of a deep inner peace and tranquility which shines out of us and touches everything and everyone around us.

I would like to invite you all to open your hearts and minds to the miracle of healing that can take place and wish for you all that state of grace which comes from true reconciliation with ourselves and the world around us.

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Eve is a freelance writer, mother of two and has a passion for hiking.

This concludes the post by our special guest blogger, Eve Pearson.

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How to Offer Support for Substance Abuse

Good morning after a period of silence. I needed some down time, I guess. I am back, wishing you a beautiful Sunday!

Today and tomorrow, I am offering the writing of Eve Pearce, who speaks to the issue of substance/drug abuse. She offers a heart-felt way to approach people who are addicted, and so our topic for the day is “support for substance abuse.” Here’s Eve…

Living a Life Free of Substance Abuse

Good morning to you all and welcome to another day on this wonderful journey of life. I have been blessed in the last few days with a real insight into some of life’s trials and tribulations. I would like to share with you today my thoughts about addiction after talking to a dear friend in Boston earlier this week.

Substance abuse is a terrible thing to have to cope with; it takes an addict into a world that most of us, thank goodness, know nothing of. Before we judge someone and condemn them for having fallen into this trap, it is good to take a step back and put ourselves in their situation. We don’t know how or why they arrived at the point they did or whether we would have done the same if we were walking their path.

Someone who becomes an addict has often travelled a lonely road; a road of sorrow, loss or despair which takes them from what we think of as a normal life into one that has no hope and little joy. How can we, as heart-full people, be angered or judgmental about this? Rather we should feel their pain and see their injury; understand that they are very alone and deserve our understanding and forgiveness, especially when it is someone close to us, perhaps a member of our family or a friend.

Finding Help and Support

We should look for ways that we can show love to that person; can we help them, support them in finding an exit from their troubles. Sometimes caring can make enough difference to that person for them to look for the door out of their situation. We can throw out a lifeline of love and acceptance which can quite literally save that person’s life; we can help them to turn their life around and find hope and happiness again – a future. Of course caring by itself may not be enough. Sometimes professional help is needed: counseling; drug rehabilitation, spending some time in a center which specializes in helping people back to a normal drug-free life. Although it is sad that we have a need for these places in the world, it is good to know that there is help available when we need it. Massachusetts drug rehabilitation center listings give details of all the centers across state which offer support to people who have an addiction, either as an outpatient or as an inpatient on a residential abuse treatment program. I was so glad to be able to support my friend in their hour of need and truly hope that their family member will recover fully.

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Eve is a freelance writer, mother of two and has a passion for hiking.

Join Eve tomorrow when she talks about offering forgiveness to the person with a substance abuse problem.

 

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How to Practice Honesty

Good morning everyone, and top of the day to you on this lovely Memorial Day Weekend! The search term was “how to practice honesty,” and today I’m going to address this and the ways in which honesty can show up for you in your life.

When I refer to honesty, I am certainly including being honest and not cheating, lying, or stealing. Yet, I want to address the ways in which to practice honesty with yourself and others about who you really are, what you really feel.

Do you avoid looking at yourself and owning your behavior, both positive and negative? This was me for my life until I had many years in sobriety. The issue was, I just couldn’t be honest with myself about who I was and what I’d done. I was terrified to do so, and too ashamed. And I certainly couldn’t see my good points.

Gradually, as I learned to manage my fear, I began to be able to take an honest look at myself, owning my behavior, my actions, my words, owning my greatness. Can you relate? Am I describing you?

Consider this… do you shrink away from practicing honesty about who and what you really are because of fear of what you will find, because of shame, or because you just don’t know that’s your job? If you are doing these things, I suggest there’s another way…

I suggest there is the way of looking yourself right in the eye, in the heart, and openly admitting to yourself exactly who and what you are. Some of this means admitting to your strengths, your beauty, your good points, your greatness. No more pretending to be small. Practice honesty!

Spend some time making a list of all your strong traits, all the things that make you a grand person. Don’t play small. Really sing your praises. Sit with that list when you’re done and just “be” with who and what you are at your core. Then, take a period of 3-4 days and track every good thought, word, and deed you had during that 3-4 days. Practice honesty about who you really are. Revel in your kindness, your goodness. Know that no one can take that away from you.

Then make a list of your not-so-good points, the times you were selfish, or arrogant, or unkind to others. Spend time being honest about this. Then, take a 3-4 day time period and consider all the unkind and mean things you thought, said, or did during that time period and list them out. You will have a list of areas for improvement.

This is an excellent time to practice honesty, as you list out even the things for which you hold shame or embarrassment. Apologize for harms done to others in order to set the slate clean. Then, move forward and try to improve upon that part of yourself.

So, practice honesty by performing a self-appraisal and really looking at your positive and negative points. When you are done, you will have an honest appraisal of yourself. You will discover more peace as a result of this appraisal.

 

 

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The Five Stages of Grief and Sorrow

Good morning to each of you and a huge thank you for continuing to visit my site, even in the absence of new posts. May you have a wonderful day and a fabulous weekend. There were several search terms about sorrow and despair, and I’d like to discuss sorrow, or grief, and the five stages of recovery.

Elizabeth Kubler-Ross defined five stages of grief as it applies to death and dying. These stages occur at your own rate, and often show up like a “dance,” with gentle flowing from one stage to the next, back again to the second stage, skipping one or two, then back to one again, etc. Grief is such an individual process that each of you grieves uniquely.

In this discussion about grief and sorrow, I am expanding loss to be anything from a death of a loved one, to the death of a pet, the loss of a job (even if it’s your choice), a move, and loss of a relationship of any sort (even if you left). Anything that leads to the change in the familiar is a loss and needs to be grieved.

Here are the five stages, as defined by Kubler-Ross: denial, anger, bargaining, depression, and acceptance. In the denial stage, you cannot see that what is happening is real, and have difficulty grasping the situation. This stage is all about being in shock and not being able to respond much.

In anger, you are mad at the situation, as well as at the person that is/has leaving/left you, even if they died. Many of you may feel guilty for getting angry at a dying person, yet, that is typical to be mad that they are leaving you, that they did not take better care of themselves, etc. In the case of a move or loss of a job, even if you initiated these, anger hits when you mourn the loss of the familiar, and you get angry at yourself for making the change into the unknown.

Bargaining shows up and often is a plea to God, or whatever the power is you defer to that is bigger than yourself. “If only you’ll let Susie live, I will change xyz, I will be good…” The next stage is depression and this is quite normal to enter a state of depression for a period of time in response to your loss. Be aware, however, if it becomes prolonged or if it affects your ability to eat and sleep for long periods of time, or if you become suicidal. In these cases, seek the care of a physician to determine if you are clinically depressed and in need of medication.

The final stage is acceptance, as you realize you cannot change what has occurred. In this stage, you are not saying that you think everything is okay, yet, you accept things are as they are. You finally gain some peace from the situation and are able to move forward with your life.

That’s a summary of the five stages of grief and sorrow, as defined by Kubler-Ross. Tomorrow, I will talk about another philosophy of grief and sorrow that is related to loss.

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How to Deal with Injustice

Hello and good morning to all! May this be the beginning of a glorious week! Today, I am going to share about dealing with injustice.

I am reading the book Forgive For Good by Dr. Fred Luskin of Stanford University. First of all, let me say that if you are dealing with emotional pain from an injustice of any sort, I highly recommend this book. Dr. Luskin sheds lots of light on what we do in these situations that are harmful to us.

In the book, he talks about how we react to injustice, whether that is having to stand in line a long time, getting snarled up in traffic, being the recipient of abuse, or dealing with the death of a child. All are an injustice, and he talks about how we create misery for ourselves by our response.

We set ourselves on a path of pain when we take the injustice personally, blame the offender for feelings that are our responsibility, and tell a grievance story over and over again. Let’s look at each of these, as there is a way to have peace in your heart, even though the injustice may be difficult to deal with.

Dr. Luskin relays that we can feel the pain of the personal injustice and then move on to realize we are not alone, that many others have dealt with the same injustice. Furthermore, the offender rarely intended to hurt the other person. When we realize these things, we can allow the personal and impersonal to exist side-by-side.

There is a caution about not feeling an injustice personally, which is often denial of the situation, a minimizing of what happened. This is cautioned against.

The next thing we do which causes our misery is to blame the offender for our feelings. The thing is, we are responsible for our own feelings in the present, and blaming someone for something they did in the past prevents us from moving beyond the injustice. When we blame the other, we give away our power to someone who most likely doesn’t care about us, and certainly does not have our best interest at heart.

The third thing we do that creates our misery is to tell a grievance story. This is when we tell the story of how awful it was over and over again. Do you do that? Do you know others who do? The problem with this is, it sets our fight-or-flight response into motion automatically, leading to stress chemicals, which can be harmful to us, being released into the body.

Dr. Luskin talks about remedies for these three things. First, as I said, recognize the personal and impersonal aspects of an injustice and let them co-exist. Secondly, take full responsibility for your feelings in the present, without blaming another for them. Become willing to explore your pain, to feel it, so it can move through you.

What you resist, persists, and you want to feel your feelings so, as I said, they can move through you. Journal about them as a release, or talk to someone about them, but don’t keep them bottled up. Thirdly, look at the story you tell yourself or others about the injustice. Are you simply reporting the facts, or are you telling it in an emotionally-charged way, embellishing upon how awful it was, blaming the offender?

The more you practice just relaying the facts, the less charge the story will have and the less misery and pain will be generated.

How do you deal with injustice? Can you practice the above suggestions to minimize your pain, your misery? I hope you can and that you can relieve any suffering you are experiencing.

 

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