Friday, 5 June 2009

Affirmation Nation

What I am

I am loveable, capable and a unique human being

I am already worthy as a person, I don't have to prove myself

I deserve the respect of others, I easily accept compliments and praise from others

What I am learning

I am learning to forgive myself and others

I am learning the more I love myself, the more I am able to love others

I am learning that it is not necessary for me to be liked or accepted by every important person in my life, for everything I do.


It was very alarming to discover that the only things about myself which I value are those which relate to other people.

The approval of others is pleasant but not essential. In order to live life fully, we need to express ourselves, which means that at times we will do things of which others disapprove. If we are constantly trying to avoid disapproval, we will either become passive individuals or people with a poor sense of self. If, despite our efforts, we are disapproved of, the result can be devastating, because our self-esteem is based on what others think of us.

When my counsellor told me that he thought I was both brave and intelligent for having worked out so much about what is wrong with my life, I was very uncomfortable. I feel neither brave nor intelligent. By trying to please everyone all the time, I have painted myself into a corner as a non-person. Someone whose feelings don't matter. Who will bend over backwards to avoid hurting another person and yet will allow that same person to inflict grievous wounds upon my own psyche without a challenge.

I have to acknowledge the things that are good about myself... which is hard because I still cannot think of many things that are unique to me, rather than being appealling to others. And I have to learn to accept a compliment with a thank you and embrace it. Not allow it to bounce off the positive jar into the abyss, whilst hoarding any negative critiques and regularly beating myself over the head with them.

A friend told me last week that, not only have I been an inspiration to him personally, but when I walk into a room, people start smiling. He's been one of them.

I think that's definitely something to hold on to.


Shelagh said...

Years ago, when I worked for the Civil Service, it was all the rage for them to send us all on assertiveness courses. One of the hardest exercises we had to do was sit and be complimented by every other person in the group and the only thing we were allowed to say was "Thank You". I was surprised how difficult it was! You are a pretty amazing person, maybe you should start getting used to it :D

Anonymous said...

You are brave and intelligent and it comes across in your blog all the time. That's why it's been such a delightful new discovery for me.

Fat Controller said...

Brave and ittelligent are two of the adjectives I would use to describe you, based on what I have read over the past couple of years.

I would love to be in any room you walked into. i'm sure you would light the place up.

Cate said...


Cate xxx

Joanna Cake said...

LOL, I knew I should have disabled comments. Now I have to do my therapy.

Shelagh - Thank you

Mrwriteon - Thank you

FC - Thank you

Cate - Thank you

Kyra said...

Yep. Brave and Intelligent. Most definitely.

I'd add sexy and caring, among other things.

Helen said...

Courage looks very messy in the first person. I doubt many people who have won medals for bravery really, truly felt brave taking the actions that won them those medals. They probably felt scared as hell and beat themselves up for letting things get so bad, telling themselves, "If I wasn't so stupid I never would have X and then Y wouldn't have happened and I wouldn't have ever had to do Z."