Self-esteem doesn’t grow on trees.

It would be preferable to many of us, if you were just able to pluck some self-esteem from the nearest tree; as if feeling good about our selves were a natural right of every human being. Or at least that it should come easily.

As is often the case, we want valuable things without cost. We want things that have worth to us, without paying for them. Many of us, are like closet shoplifters, that don’t have the courage to actually steal anything, but resent paying for the thing they want. So, we end up in the aisles paralysed between our conflicting desires.

Pilfering self-esteem as and when we find it from the pockets of life, is a decent enough ploy, but it is a tactic that rewards the minimal effort with a minimal pleasure. You get what you give. And so, there is nothing quite like getting down to business…putting in a bit of elbow grease.

For many of us, our esteem, is dependent on someone else.

We glue ourselves into relationships where someone else takes charge, and takes responsibility. While we glean off some of the profits, which can never be anything more than crumbs from the table.

What if we became self-sufficient?

I don’t mean that we become hermits who never communicate with anyone. Nor am I suggesting that we ought to live our lives free from other people, even though there are times when that would seem idyllic.

I am, however, suggesting that the satisfaction of looking after one’s self, far outweighs the satisfaction we might get from letting others do the dirty work.

Self-esteem only comes with sacrifice and hard work. It comes with perseverance and determination, and of course, sometimes we don’t have those, and so we slip back into the quicksand of our more protective selves. The more we slip back, into feeling crap about ourselves, the less likely we are to find the tools we need to change; like rummaging for a nail in a toolbox when you have no torch and the lights have gone out. In this scenario, one can become fixated with the task of finding the nail, and not try to sort out the lighting issue.

Sometimes we need to go back to basics…you’d be as lucky to find self-esteem, without looking after the basics of your physical and practical well-being, as you would be to find that nail in the toolbox.

Either way, it is no one else’s job to sort it out for us; there is only you, and the journey for your self-esteem is an entirely solitary one.

There is something better

There is something better for us…not out there…not in the wide blue yonder…just in here. Inside, in that little room inside yourself, where you have those million secret conversations, commentaries, monologues and diatribes that no one else ever gets to hear.

Maybe in those conversations with yourself, you can find a nurturing voice. A voice from yourself, to yourself and for yourself; a voice free from judgement and criticism, and free from wish and fantasy, free from the curses that you have whispered over your self for far too long.

And maybe, if you find this nurturing voice, you will encourage a movement that will become a few movements, which will over time become the makings of a journey, or maybe nothing as grandiose as that…maybe just a wee trip to some place nicer than where you were.

I wish you well for that journey