google-site-verification: googleae9556121f128741.html Healing Meditations: July 2013

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Creating Authentic Self Esteem: Step 5 Use Your Own Yardstick (or maybe not?)

I've always enjoyed the bumper sticker, " I'm unique. Just like everyone else. "
The sticker is meant to be humorous, but it is, in fact, literally true. We are born within certain physical, genetic, environmental and emotional/mental  parameters that make us unique. And yet there are probably more commonalities between people than differences. We are all human beings with weaknesses, strengths, gifts and dreams. I personally believe that we are born with talents and tendencies from past lives as well. I believe  that we are all here for a purpose or many purposes that we are meant to express and refine through Spirit.

Loving what you are doing in the moment  builds self esteem!

Whether you believe there is a Spiritual purpose to our lives or not, it is true we all have certain limitations, which oddly can also be our strengths. For instance, I am absolutely certain that at 5'2 and 58 years old I will NEVER be an NBA basketball player. This knowledge helps me as I don't waste my time wishing for this or pursuing this dream.

Although the above example is extreme to the point of silliness, it is very helpful to know who we are. It is important to  know what we can do and what we can't do and be at peace with that. Of course, within the boundaries of  our limitations there  is immense freedom. I personally feel that I am a good massage therapist, hypnotherapist, and healer and this is who I am meant to be. I also feel that I could be a writer, a computer programmer, gardener, landscaper or even scientist  as I do have a very analytical side to my brain.

The key to knowing who we are is to notice what it is that you  do that comes easily to you. It is important to notice what we seem to be naturally good at and what brings us joy. And then embrace that even if it runs contrary to who we think we should be, or what society or our parents have told us we should be. This is using our own Yardstick to escape the tyranny of outer expectations and the way to build authentic self esteem.

One of the most detrimental things we can do is compare ourselves to others. Comparing ourselves to others is rooted in competition. Competition is rooted in fear. Fear that we are not good enough, that if there is a limited supply of goodness in all forms out there, and if we aren't better than someone else we might not get the goodies.
Of course, there is such a thing as healthy competition. Healthy competition is upfront and overt, not hidden. When playing a game, a sport, running a race, auditioning for a part, the goal is to win! And that is fine. And if we lose, we take our loss with grace and although it may be temporarily deflating, it doesn't touch our core self esteem. This is healthy.

The really detrimental activity that we all, at least sometimes engage in , is to  compare ourselves to others in our heads. This always makes us anxious. It makes us anxious because the reality is that we can never be like or be  better than anyone else. So it is a  futile activity. Anytime we engage in a futile or impossible endeavor, our subconscious mind lets us know, by producing feelings of anxiety and discomfort. Comparing ourselves to others also allows us to escape responsibility for our own lives. We sometimes say to ourselves, "Well, she is better at......(fill in the blank) because she has/had .....(fill in the blank) and I didn't.

To have authentic self esteem we need grab our lives as they are and really OWN it. Its our life, not anyone Else's! We all have and have had disadvantages, difficulties and have had the cards stacked against us. We own that and move forward regardless. We all have strengths, advantages and amazing gifts as well that need to utilized and expressed. And we can't use what we perceive as our weakness or difficulties  as an excuse not express our gifts and have true self esteem.

I look often look at my relationship with my dog, Osage, as a guide for how I want to relate to myself and others. This may sound silly, but it is, for me,absolutely true. I love my dog unconditionally. And although I think he is a handsome smart animal, I really never compare him to other dogs. He is who he is so completely that the idea of comparison just never arises in my mind. I wish I  could consistently  view  myself  that way!

 If we completely accept and honor ourselves exactly as we are, the thought of comparison would never arise. Just like we probably wouldn't think to compare an apple to watermelon. They are both fruits to be sure,but so completely different that comparison does not arise. We are all human beings, but so unique, that there really is no need to compare.

As I am writing this blog I am realizing that the title "Use your Own Yardstick" misses the mark.  A better title would be "Don't Use a Yardstick!"

Accept yourself completely and express your gifts and talents.  Grab your life and with and
no excuses and move forward into the beautiful self that you are.

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