Steverino on the life-changing difference between self-compassion and self-esteem...

Buenos Noches my talented friend...

A lot of folks out there trumpet on and on about self-esteem...

How you're smart enough...

Good enough...

Strong enough...

Etc. etc. etc.

Well, I think this is horsesh&%. I really do. 

And recent research would back me up on this...

Way back in college in the 90's I read William James' book, The Principles of Psychology, where the term, self-esteem was first coined. 

Old Willie thought it was not just about feeling good but also doing good. 

Somehow over the last 100 or so years, self-esteem has evolved into something completely different...

There's a subtle lie that has been adopted by society that everyone is exceptional and special...

Don't get me wrong, I love unicorns...

They're cute, magical, and they fly.

But, they aren't real.

Telling yourself (or even worse being told as a kid) that you're special and exceptional and unique actually has a negative effect on your ability to be successful in life, according to the latest research on the subject.

It's not honest...
 
It's not humble...

It's not real.

A better thing to do is to practice self-compassion. 

Self-compassion is treating yourself like you're your own best friend...

Being kind to yourself when you fail...

Not giving up on yourself when things get tough (and they always do)...

And, realising you're just like everybody else who suffers in life.

Yes, there is only one you.

And, yes, no one knows your story or your experience or your perspective the way you do...

But, lying to yourself about how great you are isn't going to make you happier or fix your problems.

It simply makes you delusional.

And, that my friend is no way to go through life.

A different (and better) way to face life is to be honest, open and willing to do the work that life demands of you. And, when you fall down, to pick yourself up, dust yourself off, and keep going. 

Here's to being a humble human being...

Steve Knox


PS. If this message upsets you in some small way, that's just your ego dying. 

And, that's a good thing. 

Embrace it.

Explore it.

Own it.