Access Your Self Esteem & Self Confidence - Be Your Own Trigger Strength Master

Self Confidence and self esteem as I see it go hand in hand and are the keys to accomplishing anything your heart sets out to accomplish. A client I work with, Sandy, who is a wonderful, charismatic, great natured woman, came in because she was struggling with her self esteem. She told me that she needed my help in solidifying feelings of self esteem within herself. She didnít want to have to rely on outside sources: other peopleís compliments and validation, any longer for the source of her feelings of self esteem and confidence. She wanted, like the rest of us, to be able to access it internally.

She felt that she was lacking self esteem, and therefore was lacking true self confidence. What she didnít realize is that she always had this self esteem, as all human beings do. I had worked with Sandy for quite some time now and we both knew that there were times when she was fully immersed in the fact that she was a wonderful teacher, a caring person, fun loving, easy going, thoughtful, etc. All of these qualities that would tell her that she definitely had a container of self esteem within her. So what was happening to her now that made her question her self esteem and confidence? That made her unable to access these qualities from her self esteem container?

It was these other qualities from the self loathing container that resided within her, that we all possess: the angry, the sad, the frustrated, the lonely, the needy, the mean, etc. that were so loud at a time when she felt highly sensitive and highly vulnerable. She didnít feel she had the strength to fight these self loathing thoughts and feelings away and so they took over her state of well being. They were so loud that they blocked her ability to see the beautiful, the wonderful, the courageous, the confident, the strong that she had within herself.

She told me about a situation where one of her studentís mother had pointed out what a fabulous teacher she was and what a positive impact she had on her child. These words made Sandy feel great! They were so meaningful to her that they brought tears to her eyes. Sandy expressed strongly that she really wanted to be able to know that she was fabulous, all on her own, and from within! Without needing to hear it from someone else. I informed her that her studentís motherís comments that she was such a wonderful teacher were simply a trigger. And that trigger helped her to access her OWN feelings of confidence and self worth. That she already possessed these thoughts and feelings of herself, otherwise she would not have felt good from it at all. So it was not that she had to internalize what this woman was saying about her, it was that she needed to realize that she already had the feelings and thoughts of self esteem and self confidence and that it was simply a matter of having healthy triggers to be able to access these positive qualities.

In order to do so, she needed to quiet the storm of anger and self loathing to get there. How she would do this is through the practice of self love. Which meant giving the parts of her that were angry, sad, lonely, needy, etc. time, attention, understanding, compassion and acceptance. These parts of her did not want to be overworked in this way. They didnít want to be so angry, so sad, so madÖ they just wanted time, attention, encouragement, nurturance and affectionÖ essentially: love! They needed to be loved. They needed to be calmed and soothed, just like a child did after a fall on the ground. As a teacher, she knew how to provide this love to a child, so she could use these tools and apply them with her own inner child that was hurting.

Unfortunately, not everyone has immediate access to the ability to provide compassion, understanding and encouragement to others or oneself. In fact, many of us do not. It is definitely a learned practice to be able to access our own ability to provide self love and nurturance. So to help plant the seeds of starting this process of fostering self love, hereís an example of my own compassionate words to myself that came after I expressed my intense fears, sadness, and hurts when thinking of starting to write publicly again.

I love you Laura. I understand why you would be so scared. I understand why you are so hurt and so sad. Iím so sorry that you feel this way Sweetheart. You are precious and deserve to feel and be precious, always. Although itís a tough reality to face, that in this world, right now in this moment, sometimes we have to work towards feeling precious, feeling loved, feeling happy and whole. So this is our work my dear. I will help you every step of the way. I am always there for you, caring for you, voting you on, wishing you the best life has to offer you. You can relax now and you can move forward on your own time, on your own terms. Itís never a waste of time to love yourself. To allow yourself to express your pains and fears and to calm and sooth them afterwards. Itís the BEST and most intelligent investment you could EVER make. If you need to go slow, you go slow. Take your time. Be gentle with yourself. You deserve it.

Once these pieces within Sandy were soothed, she could then have the clarity and know how to use one of her triggers, whether it be positive self affirmation, recalling how she helped someone in a significant way, looking at her list of positive qualities, etc., to remind her of how awesome she truly was!

Mainstream psychology and psychiatry quite often speak of the triggers of trauma and pain and how these triggers impact us as human beings. I say we begin talking about the triggers of self esteem, self confidence, self worth, self fulfillment and happiness so we can foster and grow these beautiful containers of healthy power. What are your triggers of self esteem & confidence?