Confidence and self-esteem are not only personality plus points that influence our wellbeing and the way we interact with others but are two of the main ingredients for personal success.
I was once hearing a speech given by his holiness the Dalai Lama in an audio book entitled “A Path to Happiness”, where he confessed how he was dumbfounded to learn, in his first encounters with the west, that there are people who disapprove of themselves or are unhappy with themselves even to the point of self-hatred. He mentioned how up to that point in time self-hatred was something he had never heard of. There is no conceptual equivalence of self-hatred in Tibetan culture and language. So for him it was not only a foreign and alien concept but completely absent in his stock of experiences.
I remember that this had struck me as a very peculiar notion. It begged the question of how is it that we come to a point of not liking ourselves or become uncomfortable with ourselves. Surely this is not a natural thing to happen. There is no evolutionary purpose for it.
So why do we sometimes feel this way about ourselves? Ok, perhaps self-hatred is an extreme example and as far as I know, or rather I hope, it’s not that common. However it comes in a myriad of forms as it goes down in scale. Lack of self-confidence and low self-esteem are examples which in this case happen to be considerably common among us. (more…)