Control, Alter, Delete: How to Manage Your Thoughts and Boost Your Self-Esteem
By John H. Thurman Jr., M.Div., M.A., LPCC
Did you know that you have the power to control your thoughts, alter the path you are currently on and delete or reduce your limitations?
Do you hit replay every time you have a regret, make a mistake or take a wrong step? If you do, here are some proven tips you can use to turn those thoughts around and get your mind going in the right direction.
John Maxwell’s book, “The 15 Invaluable Laws of Growth,” shows you and I must actively work on our own personal development. Nobody else is going to do it for us.
There are four simple, practical things you can do to boost your self-esteem. Before I get into them, I want to mention two principles that should be operating in the background as you implement these new ways of thinking.
The first is resistance. This sounds odd, but developing resistance means that as you try new things it will be easy to quit. Resistance helps you predict the fact that sometimes you might not want to do the work that you need to do, but that you will do it any way. You will learn to resist the temptation to go back to your old ways of thinking and behaving.
The second is resilience. Resilience is a naturally occurring skill, which most people have in their psychological toolbox. Most people have always had resilience in their psychological locker, according to Dr. George Bonanno, who says that resilience is enhanced or weakened by experience and circumstances. In a nutshell, resilience is the power to overcome adversity, trauma and low self-esteem – and emerge strengthened.
Here is the first of four tips that will boost your self-esteem.
Tip # 1 – Supervise your self-talk. Right now, whether you realize it or not, you are having a running conversation with yourself.
Here is the question: Is it a life-giving conversation or a energy-stealing one? If the conversation is positive and hope-filled, you are creating and sustaining a positive view of yourself. If you are negative, you undermine your self-worth.
You diminish the fact that God says you are fearfully and wonderfully made.
In their book “The Answer,” businessmen-authors John Assaraf and Murray Smith talk about the negative messages children receive growing up. They write:
By the time you’re 17 years old, you’ve heard “No, you can’t” an average of 150,000 times. You’ve heard “Yes, you can” 5,000 times. That’s 30 no’s for every yes, creating a powerful belief of “I can’t so, why even try?”
Wow! That is a lot to overcome. If we want to change our lives, we need to change the way we think about ourselves. Ethel Waters, a famous jazz and gospel singer, whose birth was the result of her mother’s rape, spoke for us all: “I know I’m somebody ’cause God don’t make no junk.”
You need to learn to become your own encourager, your own cheerleader. Every time you do a good job, don’t just let it pass; give yourself a compliment. Every time you choose discipline over indulgence, recognize how much you are helping yourself. When you do make a mistake, don’t bring up everything that is wrong with yourself; tell yourself that you are paying the price for growth and that you will learn to do better next time. Every positive thing you can say to yourself will help.
On Wednesday I will give you two more brain changing tips.
John is a Counselor, Author, Speaker and Photographer that helps people "Get a Grip on Life."