At the heart of self-esteem is action. It’s the implementation of self-care behaviors, that determine how one values themselves.
What that means is, If I do not love and value myself I may partake in activities that are self-punishing, and self-harming. Conversely, if I love myself, my behaviors will reflect love, respect and care for my well-being.
Self-Trust is an inner knowing that in all situations, I will act in ways that serve my best interest. Many of my clients struggle with the idea of when they will be ready to date again. My answer is always – when you have gained self-trust. Self-trust means that you have high expectations of yourself and others, that your well-being is a top priority and that you will not engage in any behaviors that are detrimental to your well-being.
The behaviors that I’ve listed below perpetuate self-trust. When they become your automatic, instinctual, go to reactions, you will know you have achieved self-trust.
Logic is the ability to take the emotion out of a situation and analyze it with reason, facts, experience and good judgement. We very often make poor decisions when we’re emotional. When we’re fighting back, trying to strike quickly and cause another the same harm that was done to us, we are missing key elements and not acting in our best interest. When you can control your emotions, let the actions and words of others bounce off of you like Teflon and take a step back and analyze every emotionally charged situation logically, you’re on your way to achieving self-trust.
Living in Reality
Many people that come from toxic childhoods have learned how to escape their environment by living inside their imaginations. It becomes a coping mechanism many employ when they engage in toxic adult relationships. Their ability to see things as they are and not as they wish them to be becomes impaired. In their minds they live out the relationship and have their partners act in loving, respectful ways, even when that is not what is happening in real life. Living in reality means that you are able to call a spade a spade even when it’s not what you want or hoped for. It means that you aren’t clouded by insecurity and uncertainty when trying to discern a person’s actions and motives. When you live in reality you can spot deception, you can spot insincerity, and you can spot situations that are harmful to your well-being, without being bogged down with self-doubt.
Being intuitive means that you trust your instincts. It appears to us as an inner knowing, an inclination or a feeling that something is either right or wrong. Many believe that it is our guides and departed loved ones trying to steer us in one direction or another and to protect us from danger, others believe that it is our link to spiritual consciousness. Regardless of what it is, or where it comes from, we all have it and it’s an essential element to self-trust. When your link to your intuition is strong, you can spot red flags and feelings that alert you that something is off. The voice of your Intuition can become drown out by the mental chaos that comes from self-doubt and low self-esteem. The more you trust your intuition the louder and clearer it becomes.
When you have discipline it means that you are able to curb your behavior and delay instant gratification in favor of long-term interests. Discipline in conjunction with logic allows you to control your thoughts and emotions and not act out on account of hurt feelings or a spurned ego. Discipline is action or a lack of action – it’s acting in your best interest, whether or not it means doing something you may not want to do or restraining yourself from doing something you want to do.
Autonomy is my favorite state of being. It means that you need nooooooobody to take care of you physically (you take care of your body), financially, (nobody pays your bills but you), emotionally (you don’t need anyone to show you your worth – you know who and what you are), spiritually (you don’t need anyone to show you the way or guide you to spirit), sexually (you don’t need an unhealthy hook up to get your needs met, get the tools you need and take care of your own business – yes that means what you think it does) When you are autonomous you make better relationship choices. Because you are coming from a place of strength, you’re not acting out of need, fear or desperation. It also means that your foundation is strong and that the ending of a relationship does not change any aspect of your being.
Openness means that you are flexible to change and able to let go of attachments you may have to things that no longer serve to better your existence. When you are open you are always growing, always seeking new and better ways to enhance your development. Being stuck and inflexible is often indicative of insecurity and fear. It keeps us from being our best selves and it shows us what we need to work on. We should always be looking to expand and change. When we can step into new situations and experiences with enthusiasm, and with the absence of fear, that is the essence of self-trust.
These behaviors together formulate self-trust, which is an essential aspect of self-esteem. Put them into daily use until they become habitual. The more you use them the more natural it will feel.
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