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WISDOM WITHIN - April 2016 - Kansas City
How to Strengthen Your Self-Worth
By Suzette Scholtes
“I want Suzette in my life boat,” the guest teacher told our group of yogis. I was flattered! I asked her later why she said that.
“Well,” she said. “You are a teacher who looks for the greater good of all involved. From how I see you interact, you are not self-centered or self-absorbed. And you are organized.”
How kind of her to say that and how careful I am to remain humble in hearing those words.
Some confuse self-love and self-esteem with self-worth. However, self-worth starts out by enjoying who you are and having something you can take pride in. I think of a couple of students who worked hard to lose weight and keep it off. That served as a big boost to their self-worth.
We will all have days when we feel confident and happy and other days when we feel something is missing. There is a lot of ambiguity in the air this year and most of us are not comfortable with the unknown. Yet, if we are able to feel comfortable in the “not knowing,” it will give us peace and boost our confidence.
There are steps we may all take to add momentum to our self-worth.
Believe in yourself. When we question ourselves too much or take to heart what others may say or advise, we begin to doubt, and that is hurtful to our esteem. Support yourself with your choices and decisions even if some of those choices turn out to be wrong.
There is no mountain you must climb. Finding your true self is not arduous, there is no risk. Take steps forward and note when you are enjoying yourself.
Join a group you believe in. Whether a religious group or a charity, the primary benefit is for you to meet others of like-mindedness and whose company you may enjoy.
Find a confidante or mentor. Sometimes it may be a spouse or loved one, but the person should be mature and have a strong sense of self. It will lift you to feel a bond with someone you hold in high regard.
Find at least one activity every day you can enjoy alone and savor. It could be reading, a hobby, watching a favorite movie — anything that lifts your heart and spirit.
Give to others. Whether you watch someone’s house while they are away or you volunteer, this helps you feel good about yourself.
Seek kindness and understanding. When in a tough, place you are not looking for someone to “fix” you. It is the chance to share and talk and find warmth to fill the void you may be feeling.
Last, what is essential and I find the most difficult, let go of the past. Just as we must forgive ourselves for our mistakes and take ourselves off the hook as many times as needed, little benefit comes from staying stuck in the past. With courage, we may move beyond the pain and hurt and regret and connect with our spirit and soul as to who we are in this moment.
If ever in a life boat, your gang will work the waters ahead, not re-live the journeys of the past. Someone will know where life jackets and oars are kept. May we each catch the wind and make the life boat a great sailing vessel.
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Suzette Scholtes’ non-fiction writing won the prestigious “Writers Digest” award. Her passions are writing and yoga and she feels one needs a sense of humor for both. She founded The Yoga School of Therapeutics where she manages one of the regions prestige teacher training programs. 10400 W. 103rd Street,