- You have problems loving and accepting yourself the way you are.
- You criticise and judge yourself regularly.
- You expect perfection from yourself at all times.
- You wish you could look like or be like someone else.
- You struggle with social interactions and often feel overlooked and ignored in conversations.
- You exaggerate to appear more interesting when talking to others.
- You are easily embarrassed in conversations because you don’t feel important or intelligent enough to contribute something useful.
- You feel ashamed of yourself.
- You feel uncomfortable with too much attention.
- You are unsure how to react to praise.
- You are prone to stomach and bowel upsets, especially when you feel anxious.
- You struggle financially because, deep down, you feel you don’t deserve an abundant, worry-free life.
- You feel awkward asking for what you deserve or charging appropriately for your services.
- You tend to sabotage yourself because you subconsciously believe you do not deserve happiness.
- You think that happiness, wealth or love are not meant for “people like you”.
- You buy things you don’t need and your home is filled with clutter.
- You frequently demonstrate your superiority to overcompensate for feeling inferior.
- You disrespect other people because you have no respect for yourself.
- You can be aggressive or abusive towards other people because you believe your own life to be worthless and assume everybody else’s is too.
Successful people think differently.
They also act differently. They embody specific methods and principles to the way they govern their lives that allow them to succeed early on in life.
Don’t get me wrong, they also fail.
But they know how to gather their mental, physical, emotional and spiritual faculties to allow them to succeed over time while others end up giving up and throwing in that proverbial towel for good.
It boils down to a set of behaviors that are born from an insidious thought pattern with the clear intention of producing a specific end result. The culmination of those thoughts lead to repetitive behaviors that develop into good habits. And considering that habits govern 45% of our daily behavior, it’s those habitual routines that have become ingrained in our minds that help to dictate our chances for success.
Before we explore why self-respect is crucial for happiness, we must first learn to recognize the red flags of low self-esteem.
1. You’re the doormat.
If you’re always the one that people ask things for without giving back anything in return, then you might need to build up your self-love. Same is true if you let people walk all over you, giving in to their wishes even though you hate it.
2. You lose yourself in a relationship.
You start a relationship and then, in the process, completely forget who and what you are. Decisions are made without your approval or notice, and you just plod along. Your forget your values and find yourself doing things you wouldn’t normally do, and which is totally against your true nature.
3. You are attention seeking.
You’re dying for validation which your low self-esteem cannot provide. Instead, you follow an image or symbol in order to gain attention and sometimes do stupid and erratic things, like making a fool of yourself at a party or the office.
4. You overindulge in bad habits.
You’re drinking, drugging, overeating, self-harming, punishing yourself, and your body. Food and drugs become ways to indulge and to forget.
5. You care for people who don’t care for you.
You’ll move mountains for someone who doesn’t even take notice of you. You keep making excuses for those who wouldn’t think twice to throw you under the bus.
6. You tolerate verbal, mental, or physical abuse.
You tolerate abusive partners and nasty people because you remember that one time they really treated you nicely, and you hang on to that feeling of belonging.
7. You have desperate, casual sex.
You have sex with someone just because you need the attention. Your sex isn’t liberated, fun, or respectful. You don’t enjoy it, but instead, use sex as a way to feel you belong or are loved.
8. You are a puppet.
You meekly go along because you genuinely believe you have nothing of value to add to a conversation, relationship, or meeting because you think your opinions offer no value.
9. You became untidy and sloppy.
Your surroundings are in a mess. Your room is scattered with clothing and the sink in the kitchen is constantly full of dishes. You don’t’ care about cleaning up and just want to sleep all day.
- The practice of living consciously.
- The practice of self-acceptance.
- The practice of self-responsibility.
- The practice of self-assertiveness.
- The practice of living purposefully.
- The practice of personal integrity.
A word about self love
First though, a word about the difference between self love and self obsession. I work with women during the day, I own a clothing label but I also offer a style & image advice service and I also am a coach showing women how to be the best they can be from the inside out. To look and feel good on the outside always starts with feeling OK on the inside so this is where we always start. I also write about the subject.
We’ve aired a lot of views on narcissism recently which is an unhealthy attitude towards the self. It’s basically an over inflated ego that becomes self obsessed and attention seeking to the extent that the individual is selfishly unaware or lacks the ability to care for or empathize with others. Because of the me first attitude, we are seeing a lot of this self idolization and self aborbed, narcisstic behaviour in society at the moment.
Self love is completely different, We mentioned Robin Williams yesterday, adored and loved by millions. Sadly it appears he didn’t love himself. This is why he couldn’t escape his demons.
Self love is completely healthy because it provides a healthy level of self esteem. Self esteem is what we believe about ourselves, for example, if we believe we are deserving of love, we will feel loved. Self esteem also helps us believe in our own value and worth as deserving human beings. We all deserve and need love. Healthy levels of self love and self esteem create a loving, caring world in which others are drawn towards us. This is where we connect with like minded individuals so self love heals, nurtures, protects and validates.
Hopefully by now you can see the difference between the unhealthy traits of narcissism which is about obsession, control and a lack of love versus the healthy traits of self love which is essential to us all if we are going to feel welcome in our own world and welcome those who want to share our world with us.
We can all grow our own reserves of self love. But first we have to realise two things, a) we have to believe we deserve to be loved, b) we also have to recognise we must love ourselves first before we can expect to be loved by others.
So, let’s get started on how we create a more loving and kinder attitude towards ourselves. Life hasn’t exactly been easy so far, we’re all here because we’ve been abandoned and rejected so lesson number one should be??? That love does not come from outside of us. We cannot depend on our families or anyone else to love us. Love must come from inside us. A loving, more kind, more nurturing us creates a loving, more kind, nurturing world not just for us but for others too. The right kind of others that will enter our world once we’ve created it. The harsh people, those bitter, resentful, critical family members do not self love, that’s why they don’t love you. They can’t, they don’t love themselves. They blame you because you’re a soft target. Let them go, don’t wait for or expect love or inclusion from them. Stop waiting or hoping for change. Work on you first. Start creating your world of self love within you to see your world start changing on the outside.
So how do you start teaching yourself to self love? Begin by treating yourself as you would treat your best friend or child. Look after yourself. When you’re tired, rest, when you’re hungry eat. Make your health a priority. Say no to people who expect you to help but can help themselves. Start eating food that nurtures you and creates a stronger you. Think kinder thoughts towards yourself, stop beating yourself up, forgive yourself for any guilt you feel, if you’re a believer in God, ask for forgiveness and begin approving of yourself rather than expecting it from others. Create a comfortable home, a soft buffer from the outside world, cry when you feel like it but promise yourself you won’t be dragged down by others. Promise to love and care for yourself and teach yourself to believe that you deserve love. This builds self respect and once you start to respect yourself this is mirrored out there in the wider world. What you think and feel about yourself starts to show up on your doorstep and in your life. You may have been battered and down once but now you’re taking care of you and it’s bringing a better world to your door. If you have inner gremlins battling against you, learn to banish them from your thinking. You DO deserve love. We all do. This is where it all starts. Start to love you. Nina xxx
Written by Nina Wornham (c)