Originally Posted by mamacat
I've always had really terrible self-esteem. It's not a fun way to live. It makes me doubt all of my decisions and in the past has made me an easy target for controlling people in personal relationships. I think I might be getting a little better, but it takes a conscious effort on my part. My fiance said a really smart thing to me once, though, and it kind of stuck with me. He said, "Do you think I'm stupid?" and of course I said no, and he said, "Do you think I have bad judgment?", and again I said no, and he said, "So if you're really as terrible a person as you think you are, and I'm not stupid, and I don't have bad judgment, how could I love you so much?"
Made me think...
What a smart man:-). He sounds like a good partner with whom to spend a life.
I used to feel a great need for validation from other people. As I have got older, I have gained more experience in life and have come to realize that the most important person to validate me, is me. If I try to satisfy everyone else's expectations of me, then I will fail. It is more important to be the person I want and need to be:-). So, I have given myself permission to make mistakes and not beat myself over the head about them; I have given myself permission to be imperfect and human; I have given myself permission to indulge, occasionally, in bouts of self-pity and drama without feeling guilty or undeserving and then let it go; and I have promised myself that I will be true to who I am, not to who anyone else expects me to be or wants me to be. I have made myself a promise to do 3 things every day: to take time in my day, no matter how busy I am, to just stop and admire something beautiful in my world whether it is the colour of the sky, a child playing, or the feel of a gentle breeze; to try and do something postive for someone else every day whether by giving them a compliment, helping someone with a task, or listening to what they have to say with empathy without any expectation of return; and to be 'true' to myself even if it means I have to walk alone. At least I know I will like the company:-).
One 'mantra' I have found very useful and I will happily share is this: I am the best 'me' there is in this whole world -there is no one else who can be 'me' as well as I can, and there is just no way I can get that wrong". :-) Hope that helps.