Accepting Responsibility for Your Self-Esteem
Accepting responsibility for your self-esteem is crucial for overcoming low self-esteem. That means taking ownership and being accountable for your own life. If you don’t take responsibility, you’re disempowering yourself. You may be self-sabotaging your self-esteem by your words, thoughts and actions that effectively shift the responsibility elsewhere. You may not even realise it. However, you have the power to change that. Accepting responsibility for your self-esteem is the key to moving forwards with your life.
Signs that You're Not Accepting Responsibility for Your Self-Esteem
Blame, excuses and denial (sometimes called BED-time stories) are general signs that you’re not accepting responsibility for your self-esteem. These are stories that you tell yourself that prevent you from taking action, as if you were in bed. You may believe them to be true, however, they're a distorted picture. Specific signs of not accepting responsibility include, but are not limited to:
- Blaming other people, your current circumstances or your past
- Being overly focused on, or dwelling on the past
- Being resistant to change
- Making excuses. E.g. “too hard”, "too busy" or "no money”
- Having a victim mentality; believing, thinking or talking like you're a victim
- Denial of issues
- Basing your self-esteem on something external to yourself, or subject to condition
- Disempowering thoughts or words
Specific words or thoughts that may be warning signs are:
- "If only”
- “I can’t”
- “Life’s not fair”
- “I would if”
- “I’m useless”
- “I will when”
- “It’s their fault”
These are just a few examples and you probably have your own warning signs. You may not even be aware of them and it’s important to develop that awareness. Be honest with yourself. You may initially need someone else to help point those out to you. It can help to get an honest, unbiased opinion.
Tips on Accepting Responsibility for Your Self-Esteem
A critical step to building self-esteem is making the decision to accept responsibility. Take ownership and be accountable for your own life, and commit to it. Change the BED-time stories to OAR-some stories (where OAR-some means taking ownership, accountability and responsibility). That is your choice. Your self-esteem is your own perception of yourself and only you can change your thoughts and behaviours. Be aware of your own warning signs and understand how you’re disempowering yourself. Work on changing your destructive thoughts and behaviours. Get help if you need it. Realise that your power is in the present moment and it’s up to you to take action now.
Even with good intention, you will probably find yourself repeating old thoughts or behaviours, blaming or making excuses. You may be resistant to change or have trouble letting go of the past. That’s to be expected as habits are hard to break. However, you need to make the effort and persevere. Know that unless you stay committed to changing your destructive habits, you will stay exactly where you are now. To move forwards, you need to let go of the blame and excuses, and commit to doing so.
It’s very important to be kind to yourself, particularly if you’re finding it hard to take responsibility. There might be mental barriers getting in your way. Deeply ingrained patterns can be challenging to change and there is a reason for resistance. If you are having trouble letting go, it’s okay to seek mental health help. Wanting to change, and believing that you can makes all the difference. Know that you are never alone.
As with everything, change does require time and effort, and it does require you to step outside of your comfort zone. It’s not always easy but well worth the effort. Accepting responsibility for your self-esteem is crucial step in your journey to a healthy self-esteem.
Accepting Responsibility for Your Self-Esteem to Overcome Low Self-Esteem
In this self-esteem video, I talk about overcoming low self-esteem by accepting responsibility.
Agathangelou, F. (2015, May 26). Accepting Responsibility for Your Self-Esteem, HealthyPlace. Retrieved on 2019, July 18 from https://www.healthyplace.com/blogs/buildingselfesteem/2015/05/accepting-responsibility-for-your-self-esteem
Author: Fay Agathangelou
Thanks for your comment, I agree. Teaching this at a young age would make huge difference to so many lives.
Glad you like the video.
Thanks for your comment. We can certainly learn to make better choices for ourselves and live a more fulfilling life. The power is within us.