Before I start, have a read below and see which set of questions sounds more like the way you think or feel about yourself, the first or the second:
• Overall I am happy with myself.
• On the whole I feel that I am living a quality life.
• I am happy with my job interview yesterday at the café and I am confident that I will get the job (hypothetically!)
• Although I will not get this job, I am confident that I will find another job (hypothetically!)
• No matter how much effort I put in preparing for an interview, I will never make it find a job.
• Sometimes I feel that I am useless
• At other times I feel that I cannot do something good for myself or others
• I am not good at trying new things so I cannot give new things a go.
It doesn’t matter which set of questions you feel represents you more accurately, it’s just useful for you to know. The reason, you ask? It’s because one box represents the thinking of someone with high self-esteem, and the other box represents the thinking of someone with lower self-esteem.
Our self-esteem affects how we view the world and relate to other people around us. It also influences the value each of us place on his/her own characteristics, abilities and behaviours. In other words, self-esteem is a collection of beliefs or feelings you hold about yourself; how you feel about yourself, how you value yourself in relation to others, how you relate to other people around you, how you trust yourself and how positive you are about yourself. Self-esteem affects the way we live our lives, how we make decisions in our everyday lives, and whether or not we are able to process difficult stuff.
Two aspects of self-esteem are high and low self-esteem.
High self-esteem is all about being confident and positive about yourself. For example, feeling good about your football skills indicate that you are confident and positive about yourself and therefore indicates your level of self-esteem in this area of your life. Low self-esteem, on the other hand, is all about feeling negative about yourself. For example, feeling that you cannot be a good basketball player regardless of how well you try indicates you feel poorly about yourself in this area.
Today’s blog is the start of an ongoing discussion I want to have with you about self-esteem. There are many aspects to self-esteem, the most important aspect is though that you can improve your self-esteem! Being aware of how you feel and think about yourself in general, and in specific situations, is the starting point to being able to change.
To finish for today, I want you to have a think about a time you wanted to apply for a job but were discouraged because you felt that you were not going to make it through the interview. Or think of another situation where you have wanted to do something, but not done it because you thought you couldn’t do it. What particularly stopped you? What fears got in your way? Is there anything that might have helped you do that thing despite your fear? Perhaps it’s worthwhile jotting these things down so you can remember them and reflect on them.
If you want to talk about anything that this has brought up for you, please do contact your Reconnect caseworker for a chat, or if you don’t have one, call the Reconnect Intake Worker or have a look at the other contacts listed on the blog.
Remember – being confident and positive about yourself not only helps you relate to other people but also to achieve great things that you wouldn’t imagine achieving otherwise.