[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=litXW91UauE&w=560&h=315]

Too often self-esteem means we see ourselves in a harsh critical light. This video captures exactly how deeply we twist reality and fail to see ourselves accurately. The video made me cry because I see this struggle with self-image & disgust on a daily basis.

Our culture, our mother’s voices, our friends who are prettier than we are or strangers who make an offhand comment all layer to feed our self-image problems and we end up being very self-conscious. The pain of our nose that’s too big, or face that’s too long or, or, or….the endless list of problems in how we disparage ourselves and thus lose track of who we really are.

Far too many women have a ruthless internal dialogue that combines their self-esteem with a distorted way that they see themselves which then robs them of confidence.

Whenever anyone does something “kooky”, I always believe there is a purpose too it. There is a way that being harsh with yourself works: “If I know all the ways I’m really ugly then no one can surprise me or hurt me by saying something because I already know.” This is only one possibility, ask yourself how you value being so critical with yourself.

I believe there is a sadistic flavor to the criticisms women apply to themselves and then a masochistic flavor to receiving the torture “Of course this is true, I knew it all along.” Consider the idea it’s a deadly self-inflicted “feeling loop of emotional danger”. “You can’t hurt me any more than I can hurt myself.”

The beauty of the above Dove ad is that it set’s up an honest experience that helps the “subject” literally see the distortion she’s created and compare it to a new reality. The experience creates
a more accurate reality side by side with the self distortion. We learn the most from new experiences.

I had two women just yesterday that I suggested that they watch this video over & over & over so they might “borrow” the experiences from the women in the video.

Women hide away buried in self-hatred believing that they are troll like creatures that don’t deserve to come out into the light. “No one would want to have sex with me because I’m so ugly.” They are unwilling to expose themselves to being vulnerable because they project their own beliefs & fears onto their partners. When their partners plead with them they do not feel this way, the pleas are completely ignored.

There is a huge range to the different degrees that women do this. There are beginners in self-hatred who have self-esteem problems who have weekly moments of feeling unworthy to those with body dysmorphic disorder who torture themselves every hour.

If you have self-esteem issues, try asking a trustworthy friend to be honest with you about what they find attractive about you. Digest what they say instead of blowing it off and build some new layers of acceptance & confidence within.

Ask yourself how would you act differently if you believed you are worthy & attractive?

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About the Rhoda Mills Sommer

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