Rhonda Rabow’s Newsletter
Rhonda Rabow, M.A.
Many people talk about self-esteem, needing it, having it and raising it. For some, it isn’t really clear what self-esteem really means, so I have decided to write this article clarifying it to you as well as giving you a quiz so you can determine where you fall on the scale.
Self-esteem is a way of thinking, feeling, and acting that implies you accept, respect, trust and believe in yourself. Self-esteem means that you have confidence that you can fulfill your deepest personal needs, aspirations and goals. It comes from within where you see yourself as a worthy, secure person who feels capable and able to handle whatever challenges may arise. Your self-esteem is developed at a very early age and it was your parents and caregivers who were the primary influence for how you developed your self-esteem. As an adult, however, it is up to you how long you continue to hold onto those childhood tapes in your mind vs how much you work to improve and reject those negative influences and distorted beliefs. Self-esteem is seen as being elastic, in that it can be increased or decreased at any time in your life, depending on your own life experiences, how you perceive these experiences, what you learn from them and how it affects what you tell yourself.
Happiness is always within you. Your thoughts and feelings hide it, as the clouds hide the sun. Your mind is your instrument. Learn to be its master and not its slave – Remez Sasson.
The Self-esteem Quiz
- 1. Do you self-sabotage i.e. make great plans but don’t follow through because you are afraid you may fail?
- 2. When things go wrong are you able to take it in stride or do you blame yourself?
- 3. Do you find yourself calling yourself names like “dummy” or stupid” when you make mistakes?
- 4 Do you frequently doubt yourself?
- 5. Do you really believe that no matter what, you are worthwhile and deserving?
- 6 Do you take good care of yourself and your body
- 7. Do you feel less intelligent compared to others
- 8. Do you like your own company? Can you be alone without being lonely?
- 9. Do you feel that you handle most situations well?
- 10. If you could change your life with someone else, would you do it
- 11. Do you take credit for your accomplishments or do you minimize them?
- 12. Are there times when you feel worthless?
- 13. Are you often afraid of looking silly or sounding foolish?
- 14. Do you focus more on making other people happy, then taking care of yourself?
- 15. Is it close to impossible for you to take risks?
Self-esteem is largely affected by what you tell yourself. The average person thinks 80,000 thoughts per day. Most of those thoughts are negative and most of them are the same thoughts they had yesterday and last year. What you say to yourself does affect your self=-esteem whether you are conscious of these thoughts or not. How you rate yourself on the quiz is also an indication of how many negative vs. positive thoughts you are thinking on a daily basis. You might want to ask yourself what is it costing you to stay at this level? The only thing you know for sure is that self-esteem cannot improve as long as these negative thoughts are predominant in your mind.
P.S. Please pass this newsletter forward to any friends or family members who may be interested in this topic.
P.P.S. Your children mirror how you act and behave, more than what you tell them or say. Their self-esteem is just as influenced by you as your self-esteem was formed by your parents.
Rhonda Rabow, M.A.
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Guest Rhonda discussing Anxiety on CJAD radio,
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