We hear the term “self-esteem” a lot…usually in a negative way, as in someone having “low self-esteem.” I used to fall victim to that a lot. I was my own worst enemy! And then if someone else even hinted that I was falling short in some way…boy, did I take a nose dive into beating myself up! Guess what came next? Pity party!
Well…with the help of a gracious and loving God…I have learned a few things and I would like to share them with you. Now, please remember, this is my experience…if it helps you…great. If not…keep seeking God for what works for you.
I discovered that the only way I could get out of the pit of low self-esteem was to check out what I was feeling down on myself about. I mean what was really at the bottom of it.
I found most of it was because I was not doing what I should be doing. I was not doing what I already knew would make me feel better about myself, and about my life. Most of it was rooted in my lack of self-discipline! I felt bad about myself when I started to get dressed to go somewhere. Why? Because all those extra helpings and snacks had come home to roost. I knew better! Now, all of a sudden I had to face it and I felt bad about myself! My self-esteem just took a major hit!
If I didn’t get in the Word and spend time in prayer, I felt like a bad Christian. How could I not take the time to seek Him when He has done so much for me! Again, no self-discipline to do what I knew I should have done…one more shot to the self-esteem department. I could go on and on with one example after another, but I think you get it.
I decided to try something new! Every time I faced a situation where I had a choice of doing what I knew was the “right thing” to do, or take the easy way out, I did what I knew was right. I did it! Wasn’t easy! Sometimes there was quite a wrestling match going on inside of me. You know what happened? At the end of each one of these incidents, when I made the right choice and carried it out…I felt better about me! Self-esteem went up….instead of down. Self-discipline, no matter what area it is in, has a victorious outcome.
What I was doing was practicing victory and success, instead of defeat and failure. I really enjoyed the great “feelings” that followed a job well done! And, as I practiced self-discipline, I won small victories and, in that, I encourage my own heart and the “beating myself up” or “low self-esteem” sessions had less and less fuel. It didn’t happen over night, and it certainly is still a work-in-progress, but what a dramatic change it has made in my life.
Sometimes there are still little accusatory voices that flare up and try to bring me down…but you know what…I just start laying out my victories and the voice turns to a whisper and then, after a bit, goes silent. I have found the “mute” button! My self-esteem is no longer a constant battleground.
I am who God says I am, and as I walk in obedience, and use the truths and tools He has given me, I am becoming all that I am destined to be! Thank you, Lord!