Self-Concept

I just wrote a post about how I feel very lucky to have been born into my particular circumstances, and how I feel sometimes that all that good luck will catch up with me and all the terrible things will happen. Then I have to expect good things. I think there’s a parallel with my self-concept. Let me explain.

I have good self-esteem physically. I have nothing to complain about, or at least nothing to complain about that’s difficult to fix. And I know that I could fix any complaints with a little exercise and healthy eating. My self-esteem related to my personality and personal traits is not as healthy. Most of the time I fee like I’m severely lacking in people skills (like being nice, listening, not being weird and awkward). I think it comes from my tendency to be really hard on myself, my general anxiety and paranoia, as well as my ability to see many things I need work on and want to improve. Everyone who I’ve mentioned this to disagrees with me, which is a good thing. I don’t go fishing for compliments. I genuinely believe I have a lot of room for improvement, but my friends (I really do have some great ones) tell me it’s not as bad as I think it is.

Since I was a shy child, I have told myself that I’m awkward. But I try really hard not to be awkward and most of the time I succeed. I still see myself as awkward. Since I’m honest, I have told myself that my honesty is mean. But I try really hard to be tactful and not say things that are rude or unnecessary. Since I think that a good way to let people know I understand what they’re saying is to relate a similar story of my own, I have told myself that I’m selfish and a bad conversational partner. But I try really hard to notice if someone is enjoying a conversation, and to validate their feelings.

So even though I’m always trying my best to understand how my actions are affecting others, I don’t always have faith in myself. I need to expect good things from myself. And not only expect good things, but I also need to recognize the good things. Trying my hardest is good enough.

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Lucky

I’m a lucky girl. I often think about how I was born in the right place at the right time. I had nothing to do with it, but I ended up with a charmed life. I won’t go into all the ways I’m lucky or privileged, but I would like to talk about how it makes me feel.

I always think about how there is balance in the universe and that makes me feel better when I am down, but it scares me because my life is so good. Sometimes I feel like if karma gives me good things after bad things happen to me, or it punishes me for bad things that I do, it will give me bad things because I’ve had so many good things. I also feel like typing these words will bring bad things upon myself, but I refuse to be superstitious. Instead, I remember that sad things will happen to me in my life, and because of my social support and clear thinking that I am so lucky to have, I will be able to deal with it in a healthy way.

I had a counsellor who told me that I had to learn how to expect good things to happen to me. Often, I don’t want to be disappointed when something turns out differently from what I wanted so I just skip a step and brace myself for bad things. There’s no way they’re going to call me after that awesome interview I did. There’s no way that friend will not cancel. There’s no way things will be the way I want them. But they always turn out, eventually. That job called me back, or it wasn’t one that would have worked out. That friend showed up, or I had time to just read my book.

Expecting good things is a difficult habit to start, but I think it’s worth it. Bringing positivity into my life by expecting good things has lifted my mood in general and allowed me to have faith that things will work out. That’s what it is, just having faith that good things will happen to you. There are always at least two ways to spin things, and the more I can spin towards the positive, the better life is.

 

I will continue with these ideas of optimism in another post coming soon.