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Self esteem: undervalued world transformer

If we all had high self esteem we would all be:

  • Happy in our jobs
  • Chasing our passions, making all our dreams come true
  • Exercising with healthy bodies – no eating disorders
  • Employed – knowing that we can be somebody
  • Fulfilled –a girl on a weight loss ad says “I wasn’t living before”

I bet there would also be:

  • No punch ups, vandalism, burnouts, graffiti (in instances where they are seeking peer approval or status)
  • No casual sex, unprotected sex, or unwanted pregnancies
  • No domestic violence (seeking/ asserting control and fear)
  • No bullies (work, home, school, cell/email)
  • Low re-offend rate of criminals
  • No use of prostitutes
  • Fewer smokers

It’s amazing how this ONE thing ‘self esteem’ can create such a variety of problems.

Low self esteem can be caused by:

  • Not letting go of past hurts
  • Believing hurtful comments like ‘you are worthless/will never be anyone’
  • Allowing your personal standards to drop lower and lower till you don’t recognise yourself
  • Lack of resilience after life changes

How do you get SE?

  1. Work on your inside – release the pain. Write down your past hurts and ask if you are still allowing this to hurt you now. (Often the person that caused this hurt has no idea we still carry it and don’t care either – its only hurting us.)
  2. Tell yourself you are stronger than the hurts and figure out what it will take for you to get past them and release them. If you are currently living like ‘victim’ ask yourself if you’ll be able to live your dream life like that. If not, and you really want that dream life something has to change.
  3. Ask yourself the right questions ‘why am I still hanging onto this/what can I do to release it/is it wasting my life away’. (If we picked up a stone for every hurt on our human journey it wouldn’t take long for us to stagnate and we’d have to set up camp, as we can no longer move forward.)
  4. Find books that will help you get past your hurts.
  5. What are areas you currently show self esteem? Grow them.
  6. What are areas you currently show lack of self esteem? Reduce them.
  7. Think about your identity, what is it, what would you like it to be, what are your personal standards – what will you and won’t you accept from yourself, others and your life? If you shoplift, take drugs, are lazy and smoke ask yourself if in your dream life you would accept such things?
  8. Find a person that has a life you want and ask for advice, check in with them regularly. It might be that they have a great job, lost a lot of weight, save successfully or own a home. Nelson Mandela overcame great injustice and Oprah was sexually abused by two uncles at age 9 and 11, fell pregnant at 14 and the baby died when a few weeks old yet this women is the queen of self development and achievement. She helps millions of people daily. She learnt from her hurts and has created an amazing life and career despite them. She chose to, just like she could have chosen to turn to the bottle or work on minimum wage.
  9. Ask any successful person how they became so and the answer is always the same – visualisation. Picture and really feel your dreams and goals. Apparently the subconscious mind can’t tell the difference between a daydream and real life, so if you visualise what you want, you will find yourself gravitating towards achieving it.
  10. If you aren’t being respected by people it’s your fault, you don’t get given respect – you have to command it. By the way you carry yourself, present yourself, speak and act. You have to respect yourself before anyone will respect you. If your boyfriend, mates or workmates are walking over you don’t settle for it, change your standards. Tell them you won’t tolerate them speaking or treating you like that.

Your circumstances are a direct representation of the expectations of your peer group.
Read that again. It’s true.
If you are very overweight I bet you have a few friends who are too. If you earn 100k I bet you’ve got a few mates who do. If you abuse alcohol I bet your mates do. If you are unemployed, mopey, and suffering ‘poor me’ syndrome I bet you can list plenty of mates who are too. People often stay trapped as they are too scared to raise their standards and not settle for this kind of life anymore for fear of tall poppy syndrome – i.e. your peer group will think you are becoming too ‘big for you boots’ and not fitting their ‘norm’ anymore. By raising your standards they may feel you are saying theirs ‘aren’t good enough’. Bring them on the journey if they want to otherwise ask yourself if you need to distance yourself from them to create the kind of life you want. Don’t punish yourself and sacrifice your goals because your friends lack motivation and belief in their dreams.

You can’t control death, nature or the economy but you can control your attitude. A man in a concentration camp was cheerful as he refused to let the soldiers take his choice of attitude away. Picture yourself there, are you slumped in the corner feeling sorry for yourself or interacting with others keeping energy up, and deciding to make the best of a truly terrible situation? Are you motivating others, helping them visualise the future, dreaming with them and being positive? Having the right attitude gives you a new perspective and will make you happier.

Making your dreams come true is bloody difficult – which is why so many people leave them as just that – dreams, instead of turning them into goals. If you break it down into baby steps and approach your goals and dreams the same way you approach eating an elephant (one bite at a time) it won’t be as scary as you first thought and with each step ticked off your self esteem will grow.

A few things are certain in chasing your dreams – you need self esteem to do it, you will never regret achieving them and the first step is always the hardest. TAKE IT!

Some great quotes:
Remember that professionals built the Titanic and amateurs build Noah’s ark!
What would you attempt to do if you knew you could not fail?

Author Bio:
Ideas Architect Allison Toner runs company Niche Forecasting which is based in Christchurch New Zealand. She creates brand personality and loyalty, emotional marketing, motivating KPI’s, USP’s, staff fulfillment and brand culture. She is also passionate about social change. Check out Niche Forecasting’s inaugural list of ‘100 Problems to Solve in 2007’ at

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