Self-esteem

Community Leader
Registered: 07-16-2001
Self-esteem
13
Wed, 09-14-2011 - 6:00pm
Mine has taken a lot of blows lately. Between school stuff and friends leaving and being single so long, I can't help but think I'm an awful person. But at the same time, I can only do what I think is right. I'm the one who has to live with myself after all. I'm just struggling with the conflict of doing what I know to be right and what others want me to do.

I know confidence is supposed to come from within, but doesn't that sound like something a bully would say? As in- "I should be able to say whatever mean things I want to you because my words/actions shouldn't hurt anyway!". Sticks and stones and all that...
But the truth is, words DO hurt. Others can affect us negatively. I guess I don't buy into the concept of self-esteem being entirely internal. Other people do have an influence on our feelings about ourselves. There is no question about that.

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iVillage Member
Registered: 11-28-1999
In reply to: shywon
Wed, 09-14-2011 - 7:31pm

The whole point of "self" esteem is how you feel about yourself.

Community Leader
Registered: 07-16-2001
In reply to: shywon
Wed, 09-14-2011 - 9:19pm
I'm the same way with my looks. You can tell me all day long that I'm attractive, but unless men start to notice - and lots of them - I won't really believe it. I grew up with one group of people teasing me for being "too smart" and another teasing me for being not smart enough, so I know that I can't win that battle. I know I'm smart, and that's all that matters.

I just keep telling myself that the people who made the biggest difference in the lives and the lives of others are the ones who weren't afraid to stick with their beliefs and go against the grain a bit. It's hard to do, though, when most people are perfectly content to do whatever it takes just to make others happy, even if it's not the right thing to do. In this particular case, I have fellow teachers (and parents, I'm sure) who agree with me. But no one else is really standing up for themselves like I am.
iVillage Member
Registered: 02-26-2011
In reply to: shywon
Wed, 09-14-2011 - 11:41pm

This post presents a very deep issue.

iVillage Member
Registered: 04-15-2009
In reply to: shywon
Thu, 09-15-2011 - 12:16am
Sounds like professionally you are standing your ground and know you have support from your peers so believe that you are strong and right in that respect. Like Marina has demonstrated you can brush off those comments that are made from a place of ignorance.
On the other hand Marina has also pointed out people's ability to hone in one's weak spot, now THAT is difficult place to be. This is were the development of self-esteem is needed. I too have lack of esteem where looks are concerned, and when I had one particular issue that has plagued me since childhood brought up, I was surprisingly strong and told the guy that what he said as completely inappropriate and disrespectful. I have to say I surprised myself I think I am growing a thick skin. My point is, know what you can and can't accept as criticism, know what itu can and can't change and don't take it! Sure, it was very hurtful and made me cry when I was alone, but I did call him out, stupid jerk.
You know what I have found as an interesting exercise in self-esteem? Trying something completely new, boy was I humbled. Playing drums when I have never doje it before. I know criticsm in this case is constructive but my poor ego struggles with it. I think its healthy, because I am proving to myself that with hard work I can get better. You see, for so long I have only done things I am confident I can do, not much room for growth. My point is maybe a venture out of your comfort zone is in order. Plus you get major attention from men for having the guts.
iVillage Member
Registered: 02-26-2011
In reply to: shywon
Thu, 09-15-2011 - 12:54am

You make a good point, Meliss. One of the most humbling things I've done was about two years ago, I started in a new sport.

iVillage Member
Registered: 04-15-2009
In reply to: shywon
Thu, 09-15-2011 - 1:34am
Thanks for elaborating on my point, Marina. It got me thinking further on my point on the added benefit, being able to see constructive criticsm as opposed to downright mean criticsm. Once you put yourself in a healthy place where you expect the healthy constructive sort, you start to be ale to differentiate the healthy from the mean spirited critcism. Also a higher sense of sensitivity to newbies as Marina suggested is always healthy. I am still in the beginning phase and am learning to improve my skills unlike you, but I'll get there!

A more obvious benefit of trying something new is also a new dating pool ;) So l would suggest something that a good number of men (particularly those you would want to date) would be great.
iVillage Member
Registered: 11-28-1999
In reply to: shywon
Thu, 09-15-2011 - 10:51am

I was going to say something similar to what you are saying.

iVillage Member
Registered: 11-28-1999
In reply to: shywon
Thu, 09-15-2011 - 10:53am

Marina, why the big mystery about which sport you play?

iVillage Member
Registered: 01-02-2008
In reply to: shywon
Thu, 09-15-2011 - 11:55am

I went to school for recreation therapy years ago and the most difficult sport was archery.. I would love to take that up again but at 57 I am not sure that I would be accepted and not sure if I could handle that again....but it is a very challening sport.. I think maybe Marina is talking about rowing..which is also a competitive sport..

I have done alot of things over the years to get out of my comfort zone and have done alot out of the box stuff which has totally raised my self esteem and self awareness but I am always a work in progress.

We have to take a chance and look beyond our comfort even with the insecurites we might have and yes its tough alot of the times.

I agree with you Music in that

Avatar for cfk_3
iVillage Member
Registered: 05-14-1999
In reply to: shywon
Thu, 09-15-2011 - 4:08pm
I think, if one doesn't have a healthy sense of oneself, then, they make decisions that others don't necessarily agree with, it just compounds the underlying problem. I wouldn't imagine that someone with a healthy view of themselves, beats themselves up for every action they make. Does that make sense? I guess what I'm trying to say is, maybe if you could get to the root of the cause, you would feel better about your decisions...even if nobody backed you up on them. And, kudos to you for sticking to your guns...you have to have some level of self worth if you are kind of bucking the system. I would think that someone with poor SE would just follow the flock.

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