Friday, November 13, 2009

Boost Your Self Esteem: Take a New View of You

By Amy Phillips-Gary

In the final scene of the movie “The Darjeeling Limited,” three brothers who have experienced a quirky and arduous journey together through India run for their train that's already in motion. They carry several pieces of luggage that once belonged to their father. At one point mid-run, each brother throws aside his suitcases and shoulder bags and finally leaps upon that departing train.

Have you ever felt weighted down by your low self esteem?

The limited beliefs and perceptions you have held of your own self worth are like the luggage that the brothers in “The Darjeeling Limited” hefted throughout their adventures in India. Perhaps a part of you is tired of feeling bad or inadequate about yourself.

Isn't it time to throw aside your own “luggage” and free yourself to be the person you have always wanted to be?

The strategies that I've suggested this week-- including stopping your stories and questioning lack mindset-- can help you to release your low self esteem habit. You can create space to take better care of yourself, as I wrote about yesterday.

And within this expanded and freer space, you can also develop a new view of you.

Two keys to improving self esteem are perspective and focus.
When you notice yourself thinking that you can't be, do or have something because of how you are, recognize that your low self esteem beliefs are doing the talking. Next, search for a different perspective of the situation.

Let's say that you hear about an available position at your workplace that would be a step-up from your current one. Perhaps the particular job really appeals to you, but almost as soon as you realize that you'd like to apply for the new job and promotion, a whole host of reasons why you will not ever get that kind of job crowd your mind.

This, of course, is a great time to question your story.

You can also make a conscious decision to adopt a new perspective. Some people find it helpful to literally move and stand in a different place to jar themselves out of the view they've become stuck in.

Make a list of the various ways you could look at this situation.

Write down the way that you currently see your capabilities and your prospects for getting this promotion. Now stretch yourself and write down the way that someone who admires you might see your prospects. How would a person who looked at your resume, training and experience see this? How about a person who knows only your strengths?

If you find yourself solely writing down limitations, return to questioning your story. It might also be helpful to ask a friend or family member to suggest some positive aspects about you that could be different from the perspective you usually take.

Another perspective change you might consider is to ask yourself what would happen if you apply for the promotion and you don't end up getting it. Will you really lose anything by trying? Taking the step to even apply is potentially transformational and it could lead you to eventually attaining that goal.

When you come upon a perspective that feels genuine and bolsters you, take some time to focus in on it. This new perspective might feel foreign and even uncomfortable. But if it still rings true for you on some level, spend time there.

Shift your focus to this different and more self-affirming way of viewing yourself and this situation. You can always return to that hefty “luggage” of low self esteem if that's what you really want. Now, however, you have an expanded range of perspectives to choose from.

You can begin to see the new you more and more of the time.

Personal Growth Planet blog is taking part in National Blog Posting Month ( Every weekday in November, you'll find shorter daily blogs linked by weekly themes.

1 comment:

  1. Good to read. Have been feeling empty imagination-wise and disengaged, a little uninspired and not really able/willing to step in any direction at all. I suppose I have to trust the downtime as perhaps "taking it all in," but it's a hard place to be. Shifting focus might be the key, will give it a try...