How the beauty, fashion and advertising industries are messaging the false Ideal Beauty Standard and wreaking havoc on our self worth.
Oh my, this week’s topic applies to ALL of us.
This week’s Love Letter is focused intently on the very cornerstone that any search for love or attempts to nurture love, rests upon.
Our individual level of self-esteem.
We cannot have meaningful, healthy, long lasting connection with other human beings, if we first do not have a meaningful, healthy, long lasting connection with ourselves.
Doubt, distrust, resentment, anger, fear, unclear communications, poor conflict resolution, are all typical symptons of low self-esteem. Whilst empowerment, confidence, goodwill and yes, LOVE… need the fertile soil of high self-esteem in which to take root and grow!
Before we dive in, allow me to clarify, from the very start, some of the confusion around Self Esteem.
Many of us think that Confidence and Self Worth (or self-esteem) are one in the same. Let’s pull those two things apart, right now.
Confidence is our outward bravery.
Confidence is the value we wish to show the rest of the world and what is reflected back to us. Confidence can be called upon in the moment, we can pep talk ourselves into confidence before you walk into that big meeting at the office or showing u p for the first day of a course, or before walking into social situations and event.
WARNING. Confidence is TEMPORARY.
That’s okay, temporary is what confidence does best. It just means confidence has an expiration date. That expiration date, is directly triggered by our self-esteem.
SELF-ESTEEM is our inner bravery.
Self -Esteem (or Self-Worth) is how we truly value ourselves, for ourselves. It can also be how we believe we are valued on a universal level. Are we deserving? Are we a good person? Exactly how smart, funny, kind, beautiful do WE believe we are? No one can define our self-worth, our internal value, but us.
The more self-esteem we have, the longer and more genuine our confidence (the projection of that value) lasts.
Self-esteem is an issue that arises for every person I speak with and coach. EVERY PERSON. Regardless of relationship status.
So how do we garner higher self-esteem? The simplest answer to that is do to estimable things. Acts of contribution, giving, care and love worthy of great respect.
So… okay, how what exactly does THAT look like?
When 'the patient comes' to me, complaining of, or displaying low self-esteem, the very first thing I do is check the their vitals.
I ask them, what do they do to love and care for themselves? What estimable acts, what actions of self-love and self care is part of their DAILY practice?
For some, the concept of self-care and self-love is alien. For others, these concepts though familiar, have been cut away.
Sometimes, life gets hectic. Careers, relationships, dating, heartbreak, kids, aging parents, and for way too many of us, the first person to be bumped down the priority list, is US! Acts of kindness and care for ourselves get cancelled out of the diary, put off to tomorrow or next week.
We can’t make that yoga class this week. No time for guided mediation, need to read this research instead. We find ourselves skipping meals; no time for breakfast, totally forget to eat lunch or devour something fast and not so healthy at our desks. Sleep becomes elusive. No time to see friends, too much on our mind to have a giggle. Our hobbies, that give us such pleasure and joy, maybe next week! Holidays, museum days, going for long walks in the countryside… they’ll have to wait too. We’re just to busy; such and such needs my attention, so and so needs my care, this and that needs to get done! It will have to wait, I WILL HAVE TO WAIT!
We are so busy caring for others, meeting our boss's needs, our partners, our children, taking yet another call from a client, a heartbroken friend, or the school, or our parent. We lose any regular practice of self-love. We find ourselves, our happiness and pleasure first on the sacrificial alter.
Yes. Caring for others, making a contribution to the world around us, both small and large are crucial estimable acts HOWEVER today, I want to challenge you... to bump yourself to to the tippy top of the priority list!
We simply cannot go out into the world, with our pitcher filled with water, pouring it out wherever we go, without making sure we are regularly filling it up again, and again.
So here is my challenge to you, if you choose to accept it, that WILL help you garner higher self esteem in just 7 days!!!
Challenge Phase 1:
Make a list of at least 10 items you know are acts of self-care and self-love for you, and you alone.
Ten actions that bring you calm, happiness, wellbeing, pleasure and physical and mental health.
(this could be... yoga, reading a good book, long walk in the countryside, chocolate, spa day, running, facials, fav pod cast, coaching, time with nephews and nieces, spin class, jumping in the sea, fancy meal out, antiquing, live music, positive affirmations, therapy, lunch in the sunshine, open mic nights, and on and on and on!)
Challenge Phase 2:
Take some time here and line by line, item by item, make a numerical notation next to each item that correspond with how many times you actually participated and partook in each of these estimable acts of self care.. in the last 14 days.
Ex. Here is my personal list.
1. Ride my motorcycle (0)
2. Yoga/Pilates. (1)
3. Meditation (1)
4. A day at the seaside (2)
5. Dinner or coffee with friends (1)
6. Ice cream (!!) (2)
7. Going out for comedy/theatre (0)
8. Getting a Massage (1)
9. Bicycle ride (1)
10. Getting out of the office every day (3)
Challenge Phase 3:
Take out your calendar/diary and schedule in SOMETHING every day.
It doesn’t have to be an hour yoga class… maybe 15 minutes on a Yoga app before bed? It may not be 30 minutes of mediation at 7am, but instead a sleep mediation you find on youtube you use at bedtime. It may not be dinner with friends, but scheduling in a 10 minute phone call to your bestie for a giggle.
Intentionally CARVE out 5 minutes on one day, 20 minutes on another, 1-2 hours on a Sunday.. whatever it takes to implement even the smallest act of self care, EACH DAY. It’s high time, you make YOU the first stop on the self esteem your, and fill that pitcher.
Maybe you don’t have a top 10!?! Maybe you have never EVER considered yourself, your needs, your desires, your care as a priority? Maybe you’re not even sure what makes you happy?
WELCOME dearest one. You're in the right place!
I challenge you to come up with a list, let your fingers to the walking on google “What is self love?”, carve out those same blocks in your dairy with the notation ‘Find my joy!’ and “Self care’. Go out and experiment till you find your Top 10 list!
Challenge Phase 4:
Comment below your lists! This will also provide those who are struggling to come up with 10 self care acts with a fodder of ideas to try, so you get some points for contribution! Oooooh!
Post how you got on with putting you towards the top of that priority list this coming week!
Let me know how you are feeling AND how you believe this has effected your interactions and ability to contribute with and to others in your path!
I do hope you accept this 7 day Self-Esteem Challenge and boost that self esteem by engaging with some real kindness, care and joy for yourself... as it will revolutionize how you find, attract, give and receive LOVE!
“I can’t just walk up to people and start chatting them up, I get all flustered and tongue tied!”
“I don’t know how to talk to people I fancy.”
“The moment I know they’re interested, I run in the other direction.”
"I don’t know what to say or where to even begin.”
You’re not alone. It’s one of the more common problems clients come to me for help.
Is it low confidence? Poor self-esteem? OR just old fashioned lack of charisma?
ALL THE ABOVE, DOLL.
Want TWO quick tools, you can start using today, that nails all three???
Who wouldn’t, right?
Charisma is how people are drawn to engage with others. It is not about being the loudest cheekiest person in the room. Charisma is not an arena only for the extroverted! Introverts as well, can attract others to them, like bees to honey, too!
Confidence is our outward bravery. It’s what we show the rest of the world. Being brave enough to take up that bit more space in a room and to be unafraid to shine brighter. It’s temporary, but don’t let that word freak you out, temporary is what confidence does best, it just means it has an expiration date.
Self Esteem, is our inward bravery. What we know to be the truth about ourselves, our value, as measured by us and no one else. It must come from within. Ya’ know when your friends tell you how great you look, but you don’t believe that to be true, your self-esteem buckles and you give them an eye roll or even feel a sense of shame flush your cheeks in response to the compliments? Yeah. Self-esteem must come from within. And the expiration date of our confidence is directly linked to our sense of self-worth.
Discover and immerse yourself into your passions and things you love.
1. Charisma: When we are immersed in our passions, hobbies, etc. we are filled with excitement and conviction AND when we talk about what makes us happy, it innately will people will feel good in response. Everyone loves to be around people who make them feel good. It’s contagious!
2. Confidence: We don’t want to cultivate faux confidence or fool hearty bravery, we want to be standing tall in our space. The more often we are talking about and doing things we genuinely love, our confidence to engage with others in conversation about it, or even invite them along for the ride, soars!
3. Self Esteem: We build self-worth by doing worthy things in this life. That is not limited to epic Malala Yousafzai world changing level things; every time we take action to make our lives more bountiful, more fulfilling, and offer contribution we add to our own inner bravery and self worth. Not only do we feel confident enough to chat about what we are in to with others, we KNOW we have all the proof, actions, and lifestyle to back it up!
Feel excited when you meet someone.
1. Charisma: Walk into every date, energized with a high level of excitement. EX. Take a few moments and call on a time you were super excited about. Your first plane ride? The day your niece was born? That moment the call came in that you got the big job? Step into that moment and channel that excitement… then when you greet them, let that excitement show. If you are happy when you meet someone, they will also feel happy. Who doesn’t want to engage with someone who is genuinely overflowing with excitement to be there AND meet them.
2. Confidence: What better way to boost our confidence then to recall the factual evidence of other successes and exciting times in our lives? Confidence isn’t only shown verbally. Our body language is the difference between walking into a room like we own it AND wall flowering sheepishly through the front door. Conjuring up this confidence by using a prompt from moments we felt joy, transforms our body language.
3. Self Esteem: GRATITUDE! GRATITUDE! GRATITUDE! That’s me, banging my gratitude drum. People who actively curate an attitude of gratitude feed their self-worth feasts o’ plenty. Every example I gave above of ‘moments’ to remember, are also moments of gratitude. Every time we utilize gratitude, we build self-esteem.
Take these bad boys on a test drive! I always love to hear how you get on with applying these two tips into your life and taking the big step to connection!
Are you about that Score card life? FOUR things you need to stop doing in your relationship right away!
Have you found yourself starting your sentences with…
“ When you do X then I will do Y”?
Responded to your partner recently with…
“On Saturday February 10th at 10:01 am you said…”
Thinking to yourself…
“He would be perfect, if he would just change X, Y, and Z.”
Or found your self wandering your life and relationship, ticking boxes, tallying up the good, bad and simply not good enough?
Then chances are, you are indeed, all about that score card life.
Here are 4 reasons, this way that life, kills not only our relationships but our self worth.