As far back as I can remember everything bad that ever happened to me was always someone else’s fault. “It’s not my fault, I’m not to blame” was one of my favorite sayings.
However, self-examination requires that you go against your nature to do what you’re unaccustomed to doing – honestly assessing yourself.
Self-examination can be difficult because you’re looking past your filters to the truth, and it is our filters that protect us, that shield us from real and perceived dangers. But filters, by their very nature, cloud your thinking and distort your vision, preventing you from seeing things as they really are.
Filters include moods, attitudes, and other people’s behavior. When you’re not feeling well, it’s easy to see yourself as someone who’s misunderstood and who should be given a break. While we all could be a little more tolerant of one another’s feelings, when moods and attitudes are used continually as an excuse for bad behavior, it doesn’t work. Everyone has a bad day or two, but to always be in a bad mood and expect people not to react is asking for a lot.
Real and Lasting Self-Esteem.
Then sometimes we use other people’s behavior as a reason to behave poorly ourselves, this justifying our actions. For example, “She talked about me to my boss, that’s why I sent a hurtful email about her to everyone on the company’s email list,” said Stella. While you may think you have a valid reason for acting a certain way in response to someone’s behavior, over the long haul ask yourself, “How does it make me feel?” Does your behavior bring you closer to or push you further away from real and lasting self-esteem? What could you do differently?
So if you find you are in a conflict with someone, take a moment and ask yourself, “Is there something I did or could have done to make the other person react the way he or she did?” “Could my tone of voice, my body language, a look, or a word I chose to use have triggered the person in some way?” Because we don’t see ourselves as others do, it might be hard to assess this, but do the best you can. It’s a beginning.
To assist you on your journey, consider the following affirmations:
- I am not afraid of knowing who I am.
- I welcome the opportunity to know myself better.
- I am open to knowing and loving all of me.
- I am willing to step out of the darkness and into the light.
- I am willing to see the part I play in my interactions with others.
Who do you think you are right now? How do you see yourself? Without giving it too much thought, write out your answers in a journal.
Feel free to join my conversation on Facebook, Facebook Esteemableacts Fan Page, or my Facebook Law Page, you can also interact with me on my Twitter Esteemable Acts page, Twitter Law Page, or on LinkedIn.