Tag Archives: self-esteem

Are You Settling For Less Than You Deserve?

Are you currently working at a job where you feel like your boss doesn’t really appreciate you?  Are you always doing favors for them but feel like you’re hardly getting what you give back in return?  Have you been working there several years but have hardly gotten any pay raise?

Or how about this… Are you currently dating someone who you feel doesn’t really “see” you?  Do you feel like the two of you don’t quite meet as eye-to-eye as you feel you should?  Do you feel like they don’t really value you and what you do as much as you would like your partner to?

Or how about… Are you always just barely getting by financially?  Are you always settling for a less-than-stellar pay from either your clients or your employer?  Are you always just settling for “anything you can get” rather than setting a high standard for yourself cause you know you’ve done enough work to deserve it?

If you relate to any of these above, then you’ve got a bad case of “struggling with settling for less than you deserve”.  We’ve probably all related to this to at least some extent at some point in our lives.  In fact, I know that I can tell you openly and honestly right now that I have related to all three of those scenarios in some way at some point in my life.

We all tend to catch this bad case of “struggling for less than you deserve” at some point or another.  And, honestly, it’s a hard bug to beat.  Our minds like to play tricks on us.  Our minds like to go into overdrive with thoughts like:

“I need to settle with this job even though I hate my employer because otherwise I won’t be able to financially support myself”

“I need to stay in this less-than-satisfying relationship cause I fear losing the security that this relationship brings.  I fear having to go out and date again.”

“I fear making more money because then family and friends might judge me and consider me to be a ‘rich snob’ since they have always told me that rich people are bad and greedy.”

The problem with all these thoughts is that they are just thoughts based on fear.  They are limiting.  They are debilitating to our being.  They hold us back from really truly following the calling of our soul; To live a life filled with all the joy, love, and fulfillment that we have ever dreamed of experiencing.

So how can we end this pattern?  How can we stop settling for less than what we know we deserve and give ourselves exactly what we know we really truly do deserve?  Here are 5 steps.  Get out a sheet of paper or journal to write out your answers to each of the steps below.

Step 1: Identify an area of your life where you have been settling for less than you deserve.

Is it financially or relationally?  Is it in your career or is it in your eating and exercise habits?

Identify just one area to focus on clearing first because identifying several at one time can be overwhelming and confusing and, therefore, less effective.  So identify how you have been setting for less in an area of your life and recognize how you have been settling for less.  So, for instance: Have you been taking on some clients that you probably shouldn’t have because they drain a lot of your time and energy?  Do you find yourself always putting up with bad employers?  Do you find yourself always dating people who are (somehow) on a different life path than you are?

Step 2:  Recognize and acknowledge that you do want instead.

Many times we can know what it is that we are unhappy or unsatisfied with but we may not really fully know what it is that we want instead because we are so disconnected from it due to our fear.

So ask yourself: What would I like instead?  And don’t worry about being 100% sure about it.  Just take a guess at first that might seem kind of radical in a way.  Such as: I would like a job where I can earn $500,000 a year, or I would like to be dating a guy who is as spiritual as me and shares my passion for travel.

Just write down whatever you feel you might like.  Even if in your head you notice thoughts come up of “Oh that’s too much” or “I don’t think I really need that”.  Just go along with the fairly radical desire in order to reflect and notice what comes up for you.

Step 3: Imagine that you have received what you want instead and recognize your reactions to the change.

Ask yourself the following questions:

– How does that make me feel?  Notice any feelings that come up.  Recognize the initial thought that comes up in reaction to potentially receiving this thing that you want instead — that higher income, that pay raise, that amazing employer or boyfriend, that feeling of higher energy and more in-control of your health, or whatever. Write down all thoughts and feelings that come up as a reaction to potentially receiving what you really desire.

– How will this effect the quality of my life?  How will having this one shift change your life?  How will you feel once you experience this change?  Write down your thoughts.

– Do you have any fears about how this will change you and your life?  Are there fears about how people will think about you?  Are there certain groups of people you feel like you will no longer be able to relate to after this change?

– Would you rather people know or not know about this change?  Do you feel the need to hide your change from others or not?

Step 4: Create a battle plan!

In order to make this happen in your life, what do you need to do?  Do you need to quit your job and get a new one?  Do you need to ask for a pay raise?  Do you need to change your rates?  Do you need to hang out with new kinds of people?  Do you need to hang out at new places to find a partner that is more on your life path?  Do you need to create a diet plan?  Try to visualize in your mind’s eye how that change will unfold in your life.  Write down whatever you foresee and whatever feels “right” to you in how you can take action right now.

Step 5: Take action!

Seriously: We can reflect, ask questions, and create plans for change all we want but if we don’t actually do it then we will never experience the change in our lives that we desire to experience.  So whatever plans you made for yourself, write it in your calendar.  Take the time today to do something that involves beginning to implement your plan.

TakeAction

Take action now!

Answer the questions above for yourself (if you haven’t already!) and then in the comments below, share what you will do today in order to move forward in the plans you wrote down to create lasting change in an area of your life.

Overcoming Our Inner Resistance

I spent my weekend indulging in some serious self-care through creative expression practice. Friday night I dusted off my art supplies and did some watercolor painting with a friend. On Saturday I created a Christmas centerpiece for my dinner table.

This was the first time I watercolor painted in nearly a year and it’s been even longer since I have done a flower arrangement. Because of this, I had a lot of self-defeating thoughts like “I don’t know if I can do this” “What if I mess this up?” “Is this okay?”

This process was intensified because not only had it been a year since I’ve painted but it was also the first time that I was painting without my art teacher there to guide me. I was filled with anxiety and worry. Even the simple process of drawing took me over an hour simply because I was so worried about everything being “just right”.

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Many of us experience this all the time when we are creating anything. Whether it be writing a paper for school, doing yoga, or writing a song we experience this inner resistance that has this hidden underlying message of “you are not good enough”.

Steven Pressfield discusses this resistance in great detail in his book “The War of Art”. In this book, Pressfield shares the many ways that resistance manifests in our lives. Rather than create what our hearts’ truly desire, we allow our inner resistance to take over. We can experience this resistance by turning to things like procrastination, watching TV, drinking and drugs, sex, medications, the limiting beliefs of our culture, and so on.

We turn to these various things in our outer world in order to, basically, avoid creating and doing what we truly want because, deep down, we feel unworthy and incapable.

Resistance can be a very difficult thing to overcome and there is certainly no “one time” solution. Though we may not want to hear it, conquering resistance is a life-long process. No matter how many degrees, certifications, and credentials you have there is always going to be something within you coming up and saying “that’s not good enough”.

So how can we begin to overcome this inner resistance of ours so that we allow ourselves to create so we can experience fulfillment and happiness?

Create something every day.

Many of us have ideas or goals of things that we would like to do or create but the trouble is that many of these ideas are long term. It’s something like “Well, once I do X, Y, Z then I’d like to do this”. By making such long-term goals it doesn’t help to satisfy you in the present. In fact, it may actually cause you more stress and dissatisfaction because you have to wait to get there.

So come up with some easy activities that you can do for yourself today. It may be in line with your bigger long term goal or it may not, but do something!

Recognize how your resistance manifests itself.

Do you procrastinate? Do you turn on the TV rather than write your book? Do you study or read more than write your own ideas? Do you spend more time shopping or drinking rather than doing something that you really truly enjoy? Notice what your inner resistance is like and write it down in a journal. Then try to make a conscious effort in your day to day life to catch yourself when you feel inclined to resist creating.

Set a specific time frame to create.

Whatever it is that you want to do – write, paint, knit, decorate, or prepare to put together a project – set a specific time frame to work on that activity. Cur yourself off from any possible distractions, set a timer and then work on the activity or project without stopping. Having a specific time set can be very effective in making sure that you get done what you really want to get done.

Focus more on what you’re gaining from the process and less on the mess ups.

Because we are so inclined to resistance, we tend to focus more on our little mess ups and less on how great it is for us to be creating to begin with. Sure, it’s good to critique so that you can become better, but be patient and easy yourself. If it’s something you can edit, then take your time reflecting on it and make sure it “feels” right to you. If not, then appreciate what you’ve gained from the activity and focus on the next thing.

Know that you are worthy.

We are all worthy. We are all capable. Like Marianne Williamson said, “It is our light, not our darkness that frightens us most”. Focus on allowing that light to emerge. The more you do that, then the happier and more fulfilled you will be.

LetYourselfFly

 

Start Overcoming Your Inner Resistance!

How do you stop yourself from creating or doing something that you really want to do?  What are some of your resistance habits?  Do you just go watch TV or go shopping?  Share your thoughts and experiences below!

You Might Be a People Pleaser If…

Have you been debating if you’re a people pleaser? Are you confused which of your traits are people pleaser traits and which are not? Do you want to know what defines a people pleaser?

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Nearly everyone has been a people pleaser are some point or another. We have all done something at some point with the hope keep someone else happy and avoid our own true nature. Learning to completely stop being a people pleaser is a long journey, but it is possible!  The biggest obstacle starting out is to understand what a people pleaser is well enough to catch ourselves in the act so that we stop doing it.

So what is the basis of every people pleaser trait?  Simply…

Any moment where you rely on another person to determine your own self-worth and happiness.

With this in mind, I have created this list of people pleaser characteristics. This is list is very long and provides a wide variety of possibilities.  You may only identify a few characteristics or you may find several. You may read some and think “Oh I did that back when I was…”, while others we may not identify with at all. You may feel shaken up or confused by some.  This is PERFECTLY OKAY, because whether you relate or understand all of them, it doesn’t matter. What matters is to be able to identify our people pleaser traits when they arises for us. After all, awareness the first step to become a recovering people pleaser!

Before you begin going through the list I want you to be GENTLE and EASY on yourself.  EVERYONE has experienced at least some of these at some point or another.  We’re all in this together!

You might be a people pleaser if…

  • You enters relationships with the thought of “Will they accept me?” rather than “Does this relationship give me what I truly deserve?”

  • You say “yes” when you truly mean to say “no”.

  • You greatly fear being alone and easily feel lonely when alone.

  • You are more focused on what you “should do” rather than what you truly want to do.

  • You worry about hurting other people’s feelings.

  • You feel unfulfilled in relationships.

  • You are very focused on trying to be “perfect”, according to what you believe is “perfect”.

  • You fear exposing your own faults and mistakes to others.

  • You naturally follow along with stereotypes or social and cultural expectations in order to feel accepted and avoid rejection.

  • You have trouble expressing your own feelings that differ from others.

  • You have trouble expressing your own views and opinions that differ from others.

  • You feel responsible for the happiness and well-being of others.

  • You focus more on other’s needs than their own.

  • You feel drained and worn out from trying to take care of everyone else.

  • You ignore your own feelings in hopes to avoid conflict or make someone else happy.

  • You feel like other people never consider your own feelings and needs.

  • You struggle to make decisions because you are so focused on how other people will react.

  • You feel guilty if you do something for yourself.

  • You hold back from true self-expression because you fear being criticized.

  • You have difficulty listening to and acting on your own intuition.

  • You often feel like you are always “giving” but hardly “receiving”.

  • You are scared of “stepping out of the box” in your career, fashion sense, or lifestyle because you fear judgement.

  • You have a mean inner critic (and, because of it, you may be critical of others as well).

  • You have difficulty accepting compliments.

  • You struggle to establish real intimacy due to a great fear of rejection and shame.

  • You are very unaware of your own emotions, but may be very in-tune with the emotions of others.

  • You have difficulty knowing where “someone ends and you begin” or, in other words, you struggle with boundaries.

  • You feel like you easily get “lost” in other people.

  • You may feel the need to provide and control everything in a relationship.

  • You secretly wish you could do other things, but you don’t because you either feel that others need you to survive or fear being rejected and abandoned.

  • You often feel suffocated or trapped.

  • You secretly wish you had deeper, more fulfilling, connections with people.

  • You are terrified of being called selfish and will do anything to avoid hearing it.

  • You rarely ask others for help or accept help from others.

  • You apologize too much or when apologies are truly not necessary.

  • You constantly seek validation and approval from others.

  • You try to avoid conflict at all costs.

  • You struggle to truly believe in your own abilities.

  • You feel you have to “save”, “rescue” or “be the foundation” for other people.

  • You continue to be a “giver” because you believe that one day someone is going to magically come into your life and make everything all better.
  • You struggle with self-care.

  • You struggle to decide what your own dreams, goals and purpose are in life.

  • You tend to either agree when you truly don’t or you have difficulty accepting it if someone has a different view or opinion.

  • You easily take on other people’s pain, fear, or negativity.

  • You spend more time thinking about other people and relationships than yourself.

  • You deeply question your own feelings and views because you are not sure whether they are “acceptable” or not.

  • You feel the need to convince other people of your belief or feeling in hopes to gain validation.

  • You act out of a mindset that others are “competition” and limited resources rather than a mindset of limitless abundance.

  • You struggle to take full control and responsibility of your life.
  • You believe and feel that there isn’t enough for you in the world to do what you truly want to do.

  • You have difficulty believing that you deserve what you truly deserve.

  • You fail to realize that you already have all that you need to experience happiness and love.

 

Begin your journey to fulfilling relationships and personal empowerment today!

What are your people pleasing traits?  How are these traits preventing you from having fulfilling relationships?  How are these traits preventing you from feeling empowered?