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Self-Worth versus Self-Esteem

April 30th, 2012 by Sherry Collier

We have all heard so much about the importance of having a good self-esteem, but as a therapist, I beg to differ.

What?!  A therapist who does not believe in having good self- esteem?!  Before you navigate away from this article, hear me out.  I believe that having a healthy self-concept is extremely important – and I’ll explain how I am defining and differentiating between self-esteem versus self-worth.

The working definition of self-esteem is as follows: a confidence and satisfaction with oneself, thinking highly of oneself.  Interestingly the dictionary (Merriam Webster online) also lists synonyms and antonyms for “self-esteem”.  The antonyms are: humbleness, humility, modesty.  Two of the synonyms are listed as:  ego and pride.

On the other hand the working definition of self-worth is as follows:  valuing oneself, respecting the fact that you were created with intrinsic value while respecting the intrinsic value of others as well.

In my view, we are to value ourselves while maintaining humbleness.  Self-worth takes into account the value of others as well as that of ourselves, while the way I am using self-esteem here refers to lifting ourselves up above others which feeds our ego and is not a truly healthy self-concept.

Now that I have defined the way I am differentiating between self-esteem and self-worth, I would like to give you 5 practical tips to build your self worth so that you can value yourself while also valuing others.

1.   Know This and Own This:  Intrinsic value comes from the fact that you were “fearfully and wonderfully made” by your Creator (Ps. 139:14).  I believe that God exists outside of time and space (God created time and space) and therefore knew you and designed you before you were even born.  It is a challenging mystery to wrap our minds around, but the more we study the Scriptures, the more we know just how much God loves us and how we came to this earth with unique plans and purposes seeded inside of us.

2.  Discover and Recognize:  actively set out to discover your unique personality traits, skills, gifts, talents, weaknesses and passions/interests.  The more you become acquainted with your unique self, the more you will come to see that there is only one you.  No one else has the exact same combination of these things.  You’ll begin to recognize that you were created to participate in, to support, and to enrich humankind in your own unique way.

3.  Nourish and Build:  nurture your mindset and your beliefs by feeding your mind positive, uplifting thoughts.  Turn away from negative, self-critical and other-critical thoughts.  When we criticize ourselves and others, we are “feeding the wrong dog”.  (The Cherokee story about which dog you feed is the one who grows).  Read information that builds you up, listen to music that enriches and uplifts you, fill your eyes with beautiful colors, shapes, and textures and read other Scriptures about how God has a love-story to tell you (God is in love with you because you are, after all, the Creator’s masterpiece).

4.  Act.  You’ve considered your uniqueness and your value, you discovered and recognized your unique traits, you’ve nourished and built proper mindsets and beliefs, now you must act on it.  To know that you are valuable is one thing, to start acting upon it is another.  One way to start acting on your personal value is to put your unique gifts to use – help others, enrich the world, build up other people so they can also know their own value.

5.  Keep Returning:  to truth.  Don’t let marketing and advertising lead you back down the path of thinking you must look a certain way, smell a certain way or hang out with certain people to be accepted.  Accept yourself unconditionally, faults, foibles, and ALL!  Look out your eyes at all the other people around you and find the preciousness in them as well.  The more you keep reminding yourself of your worth and others’ worth – the more you will strengthen your self-concept.

Having an excellent self-concept helps you serve humankind with confidence, respect, humility and love.  Let your light SHINE!

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Overcome Overwhelm: 5 Steps to Renew Your Mind

April 17th, 2012 by Sherry Collier

You know that frantic feeling that comes when you have way too much to do and not enough time to do it all?  The brain seems to be in a fog, unable to prioritize and put things in order.  Then you spin out and shut down – crumpled up on your couch with a huge bowl of ice cream and a mind-numbing television show?

Overwhelm hits all of us at various times throughout our life and it seems to come at the most inconvenient times.  When overwhelm overtakes your brain, what can you do to get things back on track?  I believe that we must take time, regularly, to “renew our minds”.  This renewing comes from taking time out to relax, reassess, realign, restructure and reset.

These 5 Steps to Renew Your Mind will help you overcome overwhelm and get back to being effective and productive.

1.  Relax.  Over the past 15 years in my career as a counselor, I have come to recognize the absolute vital need of our brain and body to relax.  Carve out specific time each day – start with 10 minutes and work up to 30 minutes – where you get quiet, breathe deeply and give yourself permission to relax while you seemingly do nothing.

When you are doing nothing (relaxing) – you are accomplishing a lot.  Your brain can re-order itself, your spirit can listen for God’s nudges, your body can calm itself and your breath can bring in the necessary oxygen to calm the Limbic system (the seat of emotions in the brain).

2.  Reassess.  Now that your brain and body have had a chance to relax a bit, you can begin to reassess your priorities and re-evaluate how your actions have been lining up with those priorities (or not lining up as the case may be).

For this step – reassessing may need to be done in writing – which helps to engage the left brain again.  There is a wonderful dance between the left and right hemispheres of our brain that must take place in order for us to make healthy, well-rounded decisions.  Writing out your priorities and the actions needed to accomplish your priorities is an important part of renewing your mind.

3.  Realign.  Now we ping back to the right brain hemisphere and get conscious about realigning our mind, body and spirit with our big picture life purpose.  For this step, take an active prayerful approach and ask your loving Creator to help you tap into the Creator’s priorities.  After all, you were created uniquely and when you align yourself with your own unique purpose and priorities – overwhelm can begin to drop away.

4.  Restructure.  Now we engage our left brain hemisphere again by analyzing and committing to a new structure or new system that will allow us to accomplish our priorities in the most effective and efficient manner.

To explain the restructuring step I’ll use myself as an example.  I had hit a huge pocket of overwhelm in my business when I realized that I had begun way too many marketing activities (blogging, social media, speaking to groups, newsletters, etc.).  I had unintentionally given myself too many hats to wear and too many activities for any one sane person to complete.

I had to take a break – so I dropped off the radar screen and relaxed for a bit.  I had a major realization that I was targeting too wide of an audience and that I needed to narrow.  I realigned with my core purposes and restructured my business to target a more narrow niche (heart-centered “solopreneurs” with a creative bent).  Suddenly my marketing efforts could become more pointed, taking less time and less effort.

5.  Reset.  Course-correcting involves both the left and right hemispheres of the brain as we set an intention to move forward in a fine-tuned way.  After resetting our intentions about which activities will get us closer to our goal faster, we can give ourselves permission to tap into our creativity every single day.

Tapping into our creative self each day will help us to “reset” on a regular basis.  We may find ourselves starting to add more (unnecessary) activities to our schedules and by examining this and allowing our creative ideas to flow, we can get back on track on a daily basis.  We can say no to extraneous activities and say yes to productivity-inviting activities each and every moment of our day.

Another aspect of “renewing the mind” that is vital to overcoming overwhelm is to get conscious about what thoughts you allow to play in your mind.  Sometimes our thoughts go through so quickly we don’t realize that we are actually thinking thoughts that invite negative and overwhelming emotions.  Slow those thoughts down as soon as you notice life beginning to spin out and capture those thoughts.  Then replace those thoughts with positive, uplifting thoughts.  This will keep your brain attuned to the bigger picture of your life and how you can keep putting one foot in front of the other.

Sherry Collier, Business Coach for Heart-Centered Solopreneurs,

Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist (MFC #42187)
CEO of Creative Path to Growth Coaching and Counseling
Founder and CEO of www.WomenWhoThrive.com

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Overcome Your Fear of Failure

March 26th, 2012 by Sherry Collier

Fear can be both a helpful response and a hindering response in life depending upon what kind of fear is occurring and how you respond to it. When you are growing up, fear played an important role in teaching you not to touch a hot stove or run into traffic. Later in life, those same […]

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How to Be Happy

March 5th, 2012 by Sherry Collier

Do you know how to be happy?  This could sound like a strange question, but too often people think happiness is something that happens TO them. Let’s stop a moment and see if we can properly define happiness.  Webster’s seems to think it is the following: ”a state of well-being and contentment.”  This seems about […]

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Excellent People Skills Means Business Success

February 20th, 2012 by Sherry Collier

If you are in business, then you ARE in the people business.  No matter what service or product you sell, ultimately this will be sold to people.  It follows that if you know how to have healthy and mutually fulfilling relationships with your client or customers, you will have more success in business.   I […]

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Anxiety: Types and Tips

February 6th, 2012 by Sherry Collier

Anxiety can be a sneaky emotion.  You can suffer from anxiety without fully realizing or understanding it.   The thing is, anxiety can interrupt success in life and in business.  When you can identify anxiety symptoms and learn how to deal with them, you can get back on the road to achieve your goals again.  In […]

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Ten Key Attributes of Successful Entrepreneurs

January 20th, 2012 by Sherry Collier

There are entrepreneurs who have seemed to have all the luck in the world – launching products, services or businesses at just the right time (filling a need) and in just the right way with key people who have been instrumental in supporting these successful launches.  I don’t call it luck, however, I do believe […]

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Five Tips for Heart-Centered Solopreneurs

January 9th, 2012 by Sherry Collier

As a heart-centered solopreneur, I am always looking for ways to be of service to my clients and to make a difference for good in the world.  For heart-centered solopreneurs who tend to be healers, creative types, and service providers it can be difficult to navigate the real world of business and profitablity. While heart-centered […]

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Renew Your Bigger Purpose: Recharge Your Life and Business

December 19th, 2011 by Sherry Collier

If you run your own business then you know how run down you can feel from time to time.  When the economy seems to be stacked against you and you feel like you are running on the hamster wheel of your own business, it is time for an intervention. Remember when you first started your […]

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The Path to Success: Act As If

December 13th, 2011 by Sherry Collier

We have all heard about the power of positive thinking.  “Just tell yourself you can – and you will”, they say.  But does this work on any level?  The traditional teachings of positive thinking have proven to be disappointing for some folks in certain situations.  There are some problems with the way positive thinking has […]

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