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High self-esteem leads to a happy, gratifying and powerful life. Unless you perceive yourself as worthwhile, you can not have high self esteem. All great world leaders and teachers throughout history have concluded that one must be internally driven in order to be success.
People with high self-esteem grow in conviction, competence and willingness to accept responsibility. They face life with optimism, have better relationships and are more sensitive, motivated, and ambitious. They are open to new opportunities and challenges. They can give and receive criticism and compliments tactfully and with ease.
Self-esteem is a feeling which comes from an awareness of what is good and having done it.
Advantages of high Self-esteem :
- Build strong conviction.
- Creates willingness to accept responsibility.
- Builds optimistic attitude.
- Leads to better relationship and fulfilling lives.
- Makes a person more sensitive to other’s need and develop a caring attitude.
- Makes a person self-motivated and ambitious.
- Makes a person open to new opportunities and challenges.
- Improve performance and increase risk taking ability.
- Helps a person give and receive both criticism and complements tactfully and easily.
They put a mask :
A young executive with poor self-esteem was promoted, but he could not reconcile himself to his new office and position. There was a knock at his door. To show how important and busy he was, he picked up the phone and then asked the visitors to come in. As the man waited for the executive, the executive kept talking on the phone, nodding and saying, "No problem, I can handle that." After few minutes he hung up and asked the visitor what he could do for him. The man replied, "Sir I'm here to connect your phone."
Why pretend ? what are we trying to prove?
What do we want to accomplish ?
why do we need to lie ?
why look for feeling of false importance ?
All these come from insecurity and low self esteem.
SOME CHARACTERISTIC OF PEOPLE WITH POSITIVE SELF ESTEEM:
Sl. HIGH SELF ESTEEM vs LOW SELF ESTEEM
1. Talk about ideas / Talk about people
2. Caring attitude / Critical Attitude
3. Humility / Arrogance
4. Respect authority / Rebel against authority
5. Courage of conviction / Go along with
6. Confidence / Confusion
7. Concerned about character / Concerned about reputation
8. Assertive / Aggressive
9. Accept responsibility / Blames the whole world
10 Optimistic / Fatalistic
11. Willing to learn / Know it all
12. Sensitive / Touchy
13. Discuss / Argue
14. Believe in self worth / Believe in net worth
15. Guided / Misguided
16. Discipline / Distorted sense of freedom
17. Internally driven / Externally driven
18. Respect others / Lookdown on others
19. Knows the limit / Everything goes
20. Giver / Taker
STEPS TO BUILD POSITIVE SELF ESTEEM
1. Turn scars into stars :
Read the life history of people who have turned a negative into positive, adversity into advantage, stumbling blocks into stepping stones. They refuse to let disappointment and failure pull them down.
Some of the best music was composed by Beeth Oven -he was deaf.
Some of the best peotry was written by Milton - he was Blind
Greatest world Leader US President Franklin D. Roosevelt- He served from a wheel chair.
2. Learn Intelligent Ignorance :
Education teaches us what we can do and also teaches us what we can not do.
“I am looking for a lot of men with an infinite capacity for not knowing what can not be done.”
……… Henry Ford.
Henry ford and his V8 engine invention :
Henry ford gave this world the V8 engine. He did not have much formal education. In fact, he did not go to school beyond the age of 14. He was intelligent enough to know that V8 engine would be of great value of his company but he didn’t know how to build it. So he asked all his qualified and educated people to build one. According to them V8 engine was impossible to build. But Henry Ford insisted on having his V8 engine. A few months later he asked his people if they had the V8 and they replied “we know what can be done and we also know what can not be done. The V8 is an impossibility.” This went on for many months and still Henry Ford said “ I want my V8.” And shortly thereafter the same people who said it was impossible produced his V8 engine. The educated highly qualified limited themselves within their academic knowledge of what can be done and what can not be done. So we must Learn Intelligent Ignorance.
The bumble bee : we need to learn from nature. According to scientists, the bumble bee’s body is too heavy and wing span too small. Aerodynamically the bumble bee can not fly. But the bumble bee does not know and keeps flying.
When you do not know your limitation, you go out and surprise yourself. In hind sight you wonder if you have any limitations. The only limitation a person has are those that are self imposed. Don’t let education put limitations on you.
3. Do something for others who can’t repay you in cash or kind:
Dr Karl Menninger, a world renowned psychologist was once asked, ‘what is the advice some one if you knew that person was going to have a nervous breakdown?’ the audience expected Dr. Menninger to advice consulting a professional. But he did not. He said, ‘I would advise that person to lock home, go to the other side of town, find someone in need and help that person. By doing that we get gratification and it represents a high self esteem.
4. Learn to give and receive complement : Don’t miss out any opportunity to give sincere compliments. Remember the key word sincerely. When other gives you a compliment, accept it graciously and gracefully with two words ‘Thank you’ that is the sign of humility.
5. Accept responsibility : We need to accept responsibility for our behavior and our actions and insulate ourselves from excuses. Don’t be like the student who failed just because he did not like the teachers or the subject. Who is he hurting the most? We have to accept responsibility and stop blaming others, then and only then will productivity and quality of life improve.
Our privileges can be no greater than our obligations. The protection of our rights can endure no longer than the performance of our responsibility.
6. Practice discipline : Self discipline does not kill joy but builds it. You see people with talents and ability and yet unsuccessful. They are frustrated and the same behavior pattern affects their business, their health and their relationship with others. They are dissatisfied and blame it on luck with out realizing that many problems are caused by lack of discipline.
7. Set goals : Well defined goals give a person a sense of direction, a feeling of accomplishment, when he reaches his goals. More important than the goal is the sense of purpose and vision. It given meaning and fulfillment to life.
In goal setting, we need to be realistic. Unrealistic goals remain unaccomplished, leading to poor self esteem. Where as realistic goals are encouraging and build high self esteem.
8. Associate with people with high moral character : Associate yourself with people of good quality, it esteem your reputation, for it is ‘better to be alone, than to be in bad company.’
Associate with people of high moral character helps build self esteem.
9. Becoming internally driven, not externally :
If some one in the first day says you “ you are the greatest guy” you feel great and the next day when the same person says “ you rascal, you cheat, you crook….etc” you feel terrible.
So who is controlling your life ? Obviously he is. That is you are being externally driven.
So long we blame outside sources, our miseries will continue and we will feel helpless. Unless we accept responsibility for our feelings and behavior, we can’t change. The first step is to ask :
Ø Why did I get upset ?
Ø Why am I angry ?
Ø Why am I depressed ?
Then we start getting the clues to overcome them. Happiness is a result of positive self-esteem. Happiness is internal, happiness is like butterfly you ran after it, it keeps flying away. If you stand still, it comes and sits on your shoulder.
No one can make you feel inferior without your permission.
10. Develop a mind set that brings Happiness :
Bitterness is a sign of emotional failure. It paralyzes our capacity to do good. Set your own standards, be honest to yourself. Compete against yourself. Do the following :
- Look for positive in every person and in every situation.
- Resolve to be happy.
- Set your own standards judiciously.
- Learn to find pleasure in every little thing.
- Remember all times are not the same. Ups and downs are part of life.
- Make the best of every situation.
- Keep yourself constructively occupied.
- Help others less fortunate than yourself.
- Learn to get over things, don’t brood.
- Forgive yourself and others. Don’t hold guilt or bear grudges.
11. Give yourself positive auto-suggestions :
Develop the habit of giving yourself positive self talk. Autosuggestion alter our belief system by influencing the subconscious mind. Our behavior reflects our believe system. It becomes a self fulfilling prophecy-
Examples of autosuggestion :
- I have a good memory
- I can succeed
- I will win
- I am good at math
- I can create wealth and get rich
- I have good analytical ability
- I have good imagination capacity
- I can handle any situation better.
- I am industrious and intelligent.
- I am good in my decision
12. Our greatest weakness can become our greatest strength :
Anger is a weakness. How can it be turned into a strength ?
Anger is a weakness. How can it be turned into a strength ?
One lady lost her child because of drunk drivers. She got so angry that she organized people ( in intolerance) all over the US to fight drunk driving. By getting MADD ( Mothers Against Drunk Driving). Today she and her association have become a significant force, with thousands of members, and are succeeding in their pursuit to change legislation in congress. That is turning a negative emotion like anger into a strength by doing positive.
13. Have Patience :
A lot of time we here people saying that one exposure to a positive or negative material does not have any impact. That is not true.
In China there is a bamboo tree which is planted, watered and fertilized for the first four years. Nothing happens. There is no visible sign of growth. But sometime during the fifth year, the bamboo tree grows about 90 ft in six weeks. The question is “ did the bamboo tree grow in six weeks or did it take five years to grow. Even though there is no visible sign it was taking root in the ground. When there is no visible sign, if someone had stopped watering and fertilizing it, would this have happened ? certainly not. The bamboo tree would have died.
We learn to have patience and faith and keep doing the right thing. Even though the results may not be visible, something is happening.
14. Take inventory ; Make a list of all your strength and weakness :
Successful people realize their limitation. But build on their strength. Unless we know these how can we build on them ? Focus on what you want to do and be, rather what you do not.
Courtesy: Shiv Khera ‘You Can Win’
By : Abhishek Kumar Sadhu