Understanding the Self – Esteem scale
Self-esteem is the honest value, appreciation and love you hold for yourself. Not to be confused with outside validation, which is the value, or love others show you. Self-esteem is vital but it is really your perception of yourself. You may see yourself in a negative light and thus have low esteem whilst others see you in a different light. The Self Esteem scale is a way to measure where you are.
This is the way the Self Esteem measurement works: If you were to rate this self-esteem on a scale of 1-10 (1 being Really low and 10 being Total) a pattern emerges. If your self esteem is low (say a 3) and someone treats you well (say as a 7) – though you may like the treatment you will feel like the person doesn’t really see you as they treat you better than you honestly (if secretly) feel you deserve to be treated –no matter what you tell others. You may feel they are foolish as they are fooled by the outside image and they don’t see the real you. One of the most important things in a relationship is that we feel the other person really sees us.
If with low self esteem (say a 3), however, you are treated badly (say as a 3), you may not like the way you are treated but (secretly) emotionally feel like the person sees you and gets who you really are.
On the Self Esteem scale if you honestly feel you are a 7 (honestly like, value and appreciate yourself) you’ll like it when someone treats you like a 7 and feel they really see you. If someone treats you like a 3, however, you will not stand for that sort of treatment.
As people it is essential that someone with whom we are close actually sees who we are, gets Us. You cannot be emotionally close with someone or really respect someone you feel does not see who you really are.
We teach others how to treat us by the way we treat ourselves. If we sacrifice ourselves for others, eventually we have nothing left to give of ourselves to those we supposedly gave so much up for. Take single parents for example, they often run them-selves ragged to try do everything for their kids but as they do not nurture themselves they often have northing left to give. This does three main damaging things:
1/ Demonstrates to the world they are not worth nurturing as they do not nurture themselves.
2/ Demonstrates to the child that you must sacrifice yourself for love.
3/ Leaves them drained and builds resentment over time.
Children learn development of their Self-Esteem from the tangible actions of their parents. It doesn’t matter what you say to them. It does matter the way you actually feel about yourself and treat yourself. They see everything and it all soaks in. Children also experience poor quality attention and caring from someone who does not nurture themselves or take care of their own nurturing needs. There is a level of resentment, which underlies sacrificial service to others that people pick up on. Ownership and nurturing are essential to good self-esteem. Doing what you do as you see a specific benefit for yourself and making sure you replenish yourself so you have something to give. Just like on an aircraft when they give the safety warning, you must put on your oxygen mask first, and then help small children. Develop your self-esteem first, then help develop it in your children and those you care about – by example.
Creating better Self – Esteem
- Be kind to yourself. Appreciate that no matter how wonderful or horrible you see yourself there is always someone better or worse than you. So don’t compare yourself to anyone else. You are a unique individual with positive and negative points. Strive to augment your positive points and reduce those parts of yourself that do not enrich your life.
- Be aware of the words and emotional pictures you hold and ideas you repeat about yourself. Depreciating yourself and putting yourself down only ads to the weight of your negative emotional pictures. These Emotional Pictures are what your body and brain will react to physically and chemically on a day-to-day basis. These are the same pictures other people react to.
- Accept praise and compliments. A simple thank you is a good choice rather than discounting it or saying it was nothing. The higher your self-esteem the easier it is to honestly accept a compliment or praise. If someone pays you a compliment, take some time to see if you can own it. They may see qualities in you that you are unable to see.
- Look for the beauty in life. Become aware of the amazing potential and spirit of people. Think of some of the choices people make that inspire and amaze us. Human beings have an amazing ability to love and give without negative agendas. Think how people have wonderfully given of themselves in times of dire need. They get a sense of joy from giving in this way so do get something out of it. Natural disasters such as earthquakes and hurricanes as during times of war tragic and destructive as they are can spur people to release a more humane and caring side. Be aware people are not just selfish and cruel but we have the potential to be amazing as well. Be aware that these people also gain a great deal through their “selfless” actions. Own the amazing feelings you get when you act in a loving and generous way toward others.
- Surround yourself with more positive supportive people who will accept and encourage you rather than negative people who prefer you to stay as you are or fail.
- Add activities to your life that enrich and enhance it. Hobbies, activities you enjoy and that use your own skills and talents. Do work or leisure activities that bring a smile and sense of satisfaction to your days. Discover your “bliss” things that inspire and excite you.
- Own your motivations. Positive motivations are those you own by your choice. If you live the life others have chosen for you your esteem will be damaged. If you act because you desire to, owning what you get out of it you will improve your self-esteem. Take action to implement your choices while holding the emotional pictures you desire to achieve.