For me working upon my self-esteem has been one of the most difficult and yet rewarding endeavors I have ever undertaken in therapy. One of the biggest lessons I learnt was that my character and my character alone was how I should measure how to view myself. Once I realized this everything else fell into place.
I finally understood that criticism, if founded, means I have done something wrong not that I am something wrong. Once I reached this understanding the impact upon my life was profound. I used criticism as a trigger to put things right if I had wronged anyone and to correct my behavior in future; rather than berating myself for messing up, I celebrated it as an opportunity to grow.
After having worked upon my self-esteem I recognized that I was an imperfect but loving person with many good qualities so if I received malicious criticism I knew it was more of a reflection on the other person than on me, as those that lash out at others are often those that are in the most pain.
I wish I could say that working on your self-esteem was effortless however that would be dishonest. The good news though is that you can begin the work in three simple and yet very effective steps. The hard part is reminding yourself of your good qualities whenever you feel insecure and remembering that your character alone determines your worth. But rest assured over time it will become your new inner dialogue! Once you have started this work you will be better placed to view criticism for what it is, an opportunity or a sad reflection on someone else.
If you would like to work on your self-esteem further please read my Tiny Buddha article titled ‘Learning to love yourself; 3 steps to instantly boost your self-esteem’.
Do you suffer from low self-esteem? Did you read my Tiny Buddha article on self-esteem and did you find it helpful? Do you think viewing criticism as either an opportunity for growth or an indication someone else is in pain is helpful when trying to avoid having criticism damage your self-esteem? Please share your thoughts in the comments below to gain encouragement, insight and support from our community, we’d love to hear from you.