In order to be successful in placing ourselves first we will have to work through issues of guilt and low self-esteem. How do we do this? We can accomplish this each time we face a situation where we are tempted to please someone else and instead we take action to do what is best for us first. Each time we do this we see that people don’t ever get as mad as we think they will, we see that even if they do get mad they get over it, and that the more we say no when we need to say no the less frequently these same people will try and push us off course. It is like building a new muscle we have never used.
Life is designed to be uncomfortable in an effort to get us to grow and to become more true to ourselves. If we are people-pleasing we are trying to skip the uncomfortable growth opportunity and although we may have the immediate relief of avoiding conflict in the moment, we are not having the long term relief of a strong sense of self or the ability to withstand conflict, and thus we never grow. Over time then, self-esteem will just continue to plummet and positive self-esteem and/or a strong identity will not develop. This is when we begin to live a life with much depression and a loss of hope. If we are here, what we have lost is not other people, but rather, the love of ourselves. The good news is that we can start to love ourselves anytime we choose.
As we love ourselves we become irresistible. We walk with a different swagger, we have confidence within, our heads are held high and we have emotional composure. There is nothing more irresistible than composure. When we are saying no when we need to we are developing that inner calm and composure we need to be magnetic. When this happens and we strengthen this muscle we find that miracles begin to show up in our lives. We start to attract all new people, new job opportunities, new interests and new opportunities. We start to come alive with the love of who we are with each no we successfully state. We become true to ourselves. How irresistible is that!
Little life message: If we do not learn to put ourselves first, no one else will put us first either. Courage dismantles fear and when we choose to be centered-on-self this is all we have to remember.
Sherrie Campbell Ph.D.