How do you feel about yourself? What value do you place on you? Gloria Steinem once said, “It’s just that there’s nothing without it.” Self-esteem carries two dimensions—your self-image and your self-confidence. Self-image is what you believe yourself to be. Self-image is the image that you show to other people and it may not be who you really are.
SELF-IMAGE IS YOUR PERCEPTION OF YOURSELF
This self-image can be accurate or very misleading. How many people do you know that are successful and talented and have a poor self-image? There are several self-images.
PHYSICAL SELF-IMAGE – One does not have to look further than the daily newspaper to see what people will do to improve their physical self-image. Everyone has opinions about their appearance. Many people look at mostly the negatives that they see when they look into the mirror. In the image business, we help people to enhance this part of image. It is important to do what we can to be our best and then accept ourselves for what we look like.
INTELLECTUAL SELF-IMAGE – In your early years of school, this self-image may have been formed. While writing the book Successful Failures, I learned from someone how one teacher made him feel so inferior that it affected the rest of his life. There are many learning styles and people, not only learn differently, but each has their own pace. It is important to learn as a lifetime process. Do not allow others to make you feel you are not intelligent.
SOCIAL SELF-IMAGE – It is nice to be well thought of by your friends and colleagues but how “they” see “you” is really not what counts. Others are more worried about themselves and what everyone “thinks of them” to be that concerned with you. Have a good opinion about yourself where people are concerned. Do your best to be cordial, kind, and understanding. Be a good listener and watch your social self-image soar.
EMOTIONAL SELF-IMAGE – Our feelings are responsible for how we feel emotionally. If we are positive, we generally feel good; if we are negative, we do not. Emotions are governed by thoughts and you have the power to select what thoughts you have.
CAREER SELF-IMAGE – We need to decide to be in competition with ourselves. There is enough business for all of us and if you concentrate on your strengths and walk your walk, you will find that colleagues will only complement what you do and make you stronger. Competing will make you work harder to achieve your goals.
As times keep changing, it is important to remember that you can not afford to have a low self-esteem. You simply cannot be in charge of your life with a low self-esteem. In order to make dreams happen, one needs to have the strength it takes to move forward in life.
The following “tips” may be helpful as we enter the year 2007.
(1) Visualize yourself as a success.~If you can dream it, you can do it. Walt Disney
(2) Improve your self-talk. ~Are you talking to yourself positively or negatively?
(3) Rid yourself of negative forces. ~Are you allowing others to bring you down?
(4) Examine your strengths.~You have many more strengths than you think.
(5) Learn to embrace change.~ Without change, there is no growth.
(6) Concentrate on you.~It does not matter what others think; what is important is what you think. Stop being what others want you to be. Become an expert on yourself.
(7) Focus on what you do well.~If you are creative, concentrate on that. Devote yourself to something you are good at.
(8) Purchase a Journal~ I believe that once words are scrolled upon a page, they become more real. How can you know what you want if you do not take the time to decide what to write down?
(9) Take Action~Look at your journal and work on something every day to accomplish the goals you have set for yourself.
(10) Find a Mentor~Find someone you admire and work with them to accomplish your goals. A mentor is someone who has achieved the level that you aspire to.
(11) Let go of blame.~Forgive your friends, parents, and children. Forgiveness is Powerful! Blaming only drains you of positive energy.
(12) Persistence~If you work at something hard enough, and long enough, success is eminent. Do not stop until you reach your desired goal
A person with self-esteem is able to value themselves as a unique entity aside and apart from their role or ambition. They base their value on their own internal standards. This internal “happiness” with one’s self plays a crucial role in job performance and satisfaction.
For more information about self-confidence, go to http:www.businesspresentationsplus.com and order the eBook, From Head to Soul®International. This book can change your life.
Written by Joyce Knudsen, Ph.D., AICI Master (since l985) Self-image Counselor