Look within first…

April 25, 2019

Do you know someone who is always seeking your approval or the approval of others? Maybe that describes you.

There are many things in life that require someone’s approval before we proceed; but just being yourself is not one of them. Yet, far too many people are so unsure of themselves that they constantly seek the input and approval of others. They need constant reassurance that they are OK; that they look OK (maybe beautiful); that what they are doing is OK (maybe trendy). This insecurity and constant need for approval is a sure sign of low self-esteem.

Perhaps parents or siblings who constantly tore them down as children – telling them that they were ugly or dumb or bad –  causing their low opinion of themselves. Maybe cruel people at school made fun or you or shunned you. Maybe you were bullied at bully.pngschool or at work. Maybe you have fallen into an abusive relationship where control is achieve by constantly tearing you down. Maybe some or all of that has happened to you.

No matter what the root cause, the path to a better, more productive and satisfying life starts by first looking within and becoming comfortable with what you see. You must accept yourself and love yourself, before you interact with others. A key to that self-acceptance is to understand that God accepts you and loves you as you are. God does not judge you. You are beautiful in God’s jesus-as-lighteyes. He forgives you whatever sins you may have committed and opens His arms to welcome you.

Once you accept God onto your life and understand that He accepts you just as you are, you will find that your need for acceptance and approval by others is gone. Once you realize that God loves you, you can love yourself and that is the bedrock of self-confidence. The approval of others is no longer required and the control of you by others is no longer possible, once you embrace God and learn to love yourself.

Some who lack self-esteem may fall into the pit of depression. It is important to realizedepression3 that no matter how dark it may seem or how deep the hole is that you find yourself in; you are not alone. God is there with you and He is always ready to help, if you will only let Him in. The way to do that is simple – surrender yourself to Him. I have written here many times about the simple, short prayer that I’ve used in times when I needed God’s help – “Not my will, but thy will be done.” The results can be immediate and dramatic.

You do not need the constant approval and reassurances of others. You only need the peace that comes with your acceptance by God. Who else really matters? What else really matters? Start by realizing that God loves you and then you will find that you can love this-is-meyourself and that is the ultimate in self-esteem.

Start your day by looking within and liking what you see. If you don’t see it, ask God to had you a new mirror. There’s a you in His mirror that you’re really going to love.

Have a great and confident day. You are OK.

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Three little words that can change your life… Bring it on. (13 of ?)

April 3, 2014

Sometimes the simplest little things can have big impact on our lives. In this series of posts I examine very short sentences (each just three words long) that can make a difference in your life. If you have a three word sentence that changed your life somehow, share it with me and I will share it with the world.

Today’s three little words are about self-confidence and self-esteem.  You have to like yourself and be confident to challenge life to say, Bring it on.

anxiousSaying bring it on doesn’t mean that you have no fears or concerns about whatever the challenge is that you are facing; but, it does mean that you are confident enough in your ability to deal with whatever life throws you way to be able to look it in the eye and say, Bring it on.

You don’t get to the stage in life where you can confidently face any challenge without having been through quite a few challenges already – it’s called experience. Experiences in life allow us to build a knowledge base of what worked and what didn’t work. It also allows us to understand that most of the time the fears that we had going into situations seldom turned out to be anything more than our own imagination. We are better equipped to sort through the real and the imagined dangers in life to control our anxieties and say, Bring it on.

While this little saying seems on the surface to be a testosterone laden response to life’s trials, it is really more about inner strength and inner peace and women tend to actually be better at it than men. The old saying goes that men toil from sun to sun, woman boxerbut a woman’s work is never done. Women may not be able to lift as heavy a single load as men, but they do seem to be able to bear their loads much longer than men and with much less drama. When life’s burden’s overwhelm them and men give up, saying they can’t take this anymore, it’s often the women in their lives who pick them up, offering support and comfort and saying, Bring it on.

An interesting side benefit from taking this positive, unafraid approach to life is that it actually strengthens and empowers you. Tentativeness and timidity cause you shrink and be less than you are capable of being. Standing up to be counted in the face of hardships or difficulties in life makes you feel alive and good about yourself. You stick out your chest, face into the winds of challenge and say, Bring it on.

desperateSo, as you start your day each morning, you have the choice of sitting there wallowing in fear, uncertainty and doubt; hoping that whatever bad things you have imagined might happen today won’t; or you can choose to suck it up, look at yourself in the mirror and with confidence say, Bring it on.

If you need just a little reinforcement each morning try this little prayer, “Lord give me the strength today to do what is right, the courage to resist doing want is wrong and the wisdom to be able to tell the difference between the two.” Then, open the door and start your new day by saying, BRING IT ON!