Relationships & Emotional Health
Many people young and old, male and female, struggle with recognizing their self-worth and their true potential in life. Often we are our worst critics. Most of us would gasp in horror if we heard another person speak out loud the thoughts we tell ourselves because it would be considered abusive!
Recently, as I was speaking to a group of young people and their parents on the topic of self-esteem, we broke down the definition of what self-esteem truly means. This is an interesting concept and I think helpful to break down into segments.
- To esteem something is to hold it in high regard, to treasure it, to value it.
- The self is you, the individual
How amazing it would be to think of your self in this manner. Is it possible to hold yourself in high regard, to value yourself, and to treasure it – i.e. to treasure you, the real you?
(c) Can Stock Photo
Martin Seligman, a known happiness researcher, stated that, “other people are the best antidote to the downs of life and the single most reliable up” (Flourish, 2011, p. 20). Research shows that one of the fastest ways to feel a burst of happiness is by doing an act of kindness for someone else.
Here is a challenge for you!
In the next week, find one wholly unexpected, kind thing to do for someone and do it! It can be someone you know, or a complete stranger. Please comment on our Facebook page and share what you did and how it felt. This way we can get ideas from each other and share in the fun that is random acts of kindness.
For my random act of kindness I decided to take cookies to my widowed neighbor that I do not know very well. It completely made her day. It was amazing to see how grateful she was just to have a visitor, the cookies were not even necessary. Not only did it make me feel great to make someone else feel good, but I also created another positive relationship in my life which always ends up benefitting me in the long run.
Take the challenge and see how amazing you feel. It can be something as simple as saying hi to the coworker that you normally don’t talk to, or something more extravagant. Either way, I promise it will be one the quickest pick-me-ups you can find.
Whether it’s physical appearance, parenting skills, possessions, talents, homes, weight, success, money, creativity, marital status, our children’s behavior…it seems that we women view other women’s success as a threat to our own worth. In order to manage our own fears and insecurities, we try to prove that we are “good enough” by one-upping someone else. While this may lead to temporary feelings of validation, it never leads to long-term feelings of self-worth. Why do women compete with one another? Here are a few common reasons that competitive feeling can settle in: Read the rest of this entry »
Our goal this month on Studio 5 is to help you “Live without Pretending.” We’re giving you a chance to put that theme into practice, starting with the conversations you have every day. Therapist Julie Hanks says it’s time to stop pretending you’re fine, when you’re not.
When someone asks, “How are you?”, do you automatically say, “I’m fine”? If so, you’re not alone. “Fine” seems to be the default answer for many of us. Sometimes we’re not fine but we feel like we should be fine. Here are some ways to stop pretending you’re find and become more authentic.
On Studio 5, I argued the upside of “50 is the new 40″ and how we can use it to motivate us. Here are some positives of being over 50.
People are living longer today, they’re healthier, and they’re enjoying life more. Due to an increased understanding of the importance of good diet and a more active lifestyle, people are feeling much younger than people their age felt in previous generations. For example, 1964 the average age for someone to move into a nursing home was 64. Currently, it’s 81 years old.
Motherhood: There is a distinct trend for women to delay motherhood. So at 50, their kids ages are more similar to their mother’s kid’s ages when she was 40. It used to be when you turned 50 you were becoming a grandmother. Now, by 50 most of their kids are teens or young adults and less demanding. This creates a period of more freedom and self-reflection.
More happiness, more sex, more money and confidence who wouldn’t want to be 50. A recent research study showed that people over the age of 50 experience more joy than younger adults. Proposed reasons for these findings were because they had their priorities set on friends and family. Other related studies showed that 50-somethings have a more fulfilling sex life, are more confident, and are more financially stable.
Mind body connection and self-fulfilling prophecy: If we tell ourselves we are old, our body will act old. We will purposely look for things that are failing because of our age, even if it has nothing to do with aging. Believing that 50 is the new 40 creates hope and provides positive self-affirmation. We don’t have to limit ourselves physically or expect deterioration just because we are getting older.
Holly Willard was featured on KSL about the importance of unconditional love and understanding when a family member comes out of the closet. The issue is very emotional and difficult so here are some tips when a family member discloses their homosexuality to you:
1. Let them know that you love them. They need your acceptance and unconditional love. They have felt alone and rejected for a long time. Saying you love them defuses the fear and provides healing.
2. Tell them they belong and will always be a part of your family. The decision to come out of the closet takes a lot of courage because of the many horror stories of families who disown their children. They need to know that they are yours and will always be. They need to know they belong.
3. Don’t Lecture. They are probably aware of your religious beliefs/values. Most likely they have done a lot of research on the topic because they are trying to reconcile their beliefs and feelings.
4. Recognize that they have come out to you because they care about your relationship. When someone comes out of the closet, they are asking, ” Can you see me for who I am and accept that.” They are being open and honest. The emotional message that they are trying to convey is that they want to be closer to you.
5. Find a safe and supportive place to explore your feelings. Acceptance is a process, be patient with yourself. Find someone you can talk to i.e. support group, friend, or therapist. The process can be especially difficult when your child discloses. Most parents grieve who they thought their child was or what they wanted for their future. Parents want to protect their child and they might be scared of the societal challenges their child may face. It is usually not helpful to talk through these issues with the person because they may see it as rejection or you wanting to change them.
6. Have an open dialogue about what they want for their future. Keep the door open to continue the conversation so you can discuss their goals and how you can support them.
“If only they’d see things the way I see them, and do things the way I do them, life would be so much easier!” Sound familiar? It is very common in relationships to spend most of your time and energy on trying to get your partner to “see things your way” or to prove that you’re right and they’re wrong-to attempt to change them in order to make your relationship better. How is this working for you? Probably not very well. The problem with this strategy is that it places blame on the other person, causing them to feel defensive. From then on, they spend all of their time and energy trying to fight back, rather than attempting to listen to and understand what you’re saying. Pretty soon, one of you gives up and walks away, leaving the problem hanging awkwardly out in the open.
Rather than continuing this pattern, try something a little different and unexpected the next time you and your partner have a conflict.