My mom had a bad day at work.
She was the new vice principal at school. She was in a leadership position, which included directing staff meetings.
In one of the staff meetings she said something wrong. She gave the wrong answer. People were obviously shocked that she didn’t know the right answer. She was so embarrassed.
She came home and cried, but she didn’t want to tell me what she said. She was so angry at herself.
Finally she told me.
“Mom, you’re a teacher right?”
“Well when one of your students doesn’t know something they ‘should’ know, do you get angry with them and tell them they should be ashamed?”
“No, I just teach them.”
“So why can’t you do that for yourself?” I asked.
The saying goes: “Treat others as you would like to be treated.”
But what about yourself? Somehow we never learned that how we treated ourselves in our moments of weakness, insecurity, and pain was important.
For some reason we believe the only way to improve and grow is to treat ourselves with hatred. And the way to support others is to treat them in a compassionate, respectful way.
What would happen to your confidence if you treated yourself with the same respect and kindness as you do others?
When you are extremely hard on yourself each time you mess something up or don’t get the result you wanted, it won’t motivate you into action. It will paralyze you with fear of trying anything outside of your comfort-zone. If we want to take chances, succeed, grow, and finally stop feeling like we are inadequate, we need to give ourselves permission to accept ourselves even when we don’t live up to our standards of perfection on a daily basis.
Most of us have heard advice along the lines of “fail your way to success,” as in the way to succeed is to try a lot of things that don’t work so that you can eventually find what does. No matter what you try you will never be an expert at the very beginning. You’ll always make mistakes and try things that don’t work.
How do you expect to go through all that without a little self-love?