Tag Archives: Self Esteem

A Purpose For Doubt

A Purpose For Doubt

Does it feel like you are living in tough times right now? Do you personally have doubt about your ability to cope with challenges in your life? Did you know that your doubt can help open the door to more critical thinking?

Tough times bring multiple things into focus and for many their first instinct is to hope it all goes away.  Doubt emerges on a cognitive level but on an emotional level our lack of belief doesn’t need to be debilitating.

Doubt can be the next motivator and an opportunity to strategize. How? Well, I will give an example:

I took a course once that was really tough. I questioned why I was even doing the course and doubted my ability to complete it. Armed with multiple reasons why I was not a good student, and a history of procrastination to wear as a badge, I believed it was going to be impossible to get assignments done.

Slowly but surely I pulled in support from various people who would help me stay on track. I looked for examples in my own life when I overcame an obstacle or challenged myself to do something I had never done before. My strategy was to plug away on the easier content and assignments first and build up my confidence to tackle the next level. Before I knew it I was done.

Doubt helped me to look critically at myself and encouraged me to find internal and external resources. The opportunity to know more and to believe that my narrative could change from being an average struggling student to a graduate of a program, opened up my awareness of what is possible.

Doubt has a purpose and we should acknowledge its role in our personal development.

Careers – The Best One’s Are Born From Passion

A warm welcome is extended to guest blogger Shelly Stinson. Shelly is a freelance writer based out of Denver, Colorado, who is turning her passion for health & wellness into a career by eventually starting her own website. Here is Shelly’s contribution to Esteem Rising ®.

There’s an old English proverb that says that “necessity is the mother of invention.” While this has certainly been true time and time again, prompting the conception of many life-enhancing products and services, there is also another important quality to consider when it comes to creating something that turns into a wild success—and that is passion.

While passion might seem like a fairly easy concept to nail down, the reality is that some people spend a lifetime searching for it. In fact, if you Google “how do you find your passion?” you wind up with roughly 141 million results, proving that it can be a very elusive concept. So, what exactly is passion?

The Definition of Passion

Passion has been defined as a “powerful or compelling emotion or feeling” or “a strong or extravagant fondness, enthusiasm, or desire.” In real life terms, it is the excitement that you get in the pit of your stomach when you’re talking about a specific topic or see a certain person. It is also commonly referred to as the “burning” or “longing” that you feel about something or someone that you know will make your life complete.

But passion is also something a bit more. It is the drive that pushes you to want to spend the rest of your life working in a particular field or doing a specific function. Ultimately, this usually involves leaving your mark on the world by taking whatever it is you feel strongly about and turning it into a long, satisfying, and successful career. Which is exactly what one woman named Jil Larsen did.

Jil’s Story

In 2006, Jil was diagnosed with melasma, a skin condition characterized by grayish-brown patches that appear on various parts of the body. Usually, one of those places is the face (specifically on the cheeks, forehead, and chin); however, it can also appear on other areas of the body as well, especially those that typically get a lot of sun. Either way, these dark spots can really impact a person’s self-esteem, which makes the consequences of this condition as much mental as they are physical.

When using traditional medical methods, melasma treatment usually involves taking corticosteroids or getting chemical peels, yet Jil chose to take a different route. After doing some thorough and in-depth research about what causes this particular condition and the various treatment options that exist, she decided that there was something she could do that didn’t involve taking medication. She had to change her eating habits.

Jil gave up meat and dairy products, cleaned up other areas of her diet and focused on eating healthier and more nutritious foods, and even started juicing. And she did this with one simple goal of clearing her skin and removing the dark patches that had suddenly appeared. Fortunately, within just a few months, her condition started to reverse but, almost better yet, a passion had been ignited.

In fact, Jil became so passionate about the positive benefits that healthy eating and juicing offered for her that she decided to turn it into a career. She obtained her health coach certification from the Institute for Integrative Nutrition and, from there, opened her own healthy-eating business on Fulton Street in New York City called Magic Mix Juicery.

What Is Your Passion?

Many woman like Jil have taken their passion, their twists and turns in life that seemingly started out pretty negative, and turned them into something not only positive for themselves but for others as well. This allows them to live a life that brings them joy, satisfaction, and contentment both personally and in their careers.

So, now the only question that remains is: What is your passion and how can you turn it into a career? In other words, what is the one thing that, when you think about it, makes you smile not only on your face, but also deep down in your soul?

This isn’t an easy question to answer sometimes because we tend to get focused on working for money in order to support ourselves and our families. To help you overcome this way of thinking and find your true passion, ask yourself what you would do to keep busy if you were to win the lottery tomorrow and didn’t have to sweat paying your bills. What areas would you get involved in? What type of job would make you want to get out of bed in the morning, excited about the day ahead?

Even if you can’t just jump into a career that you’re passionate about full-time right now, there are often lots of things you can do on a part-time basis until you’re able to earn enough to make the final leap. Once you take that first step, the final step is often much easier and, before you know it, you’re doing what you love…just like Jil.

 

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(Jennifer Chandler Consulting does not endorse any products, services or health claims)

 

You Look Marvelous: What a style & image consultant can do for you

It is hard to deny that fashion plays a key role in our lives, unless of course you are a nudist. Since most of us are not conducting business or pleasure in the buff deciding what to wear can be a daunting task. As I rummaged through my own closet lately I was struck by how many pieces hang there untouched. The other day I flung at least six outfits onto the bed looking for the right look for a casual business appointment.  In the end I put on something that just didn’t feel right.

I took transit into the city and noticed so many interesting outfits worn by fashion savvy young women and I couldn’t help but think “I used to be like them; putting more effort into my fashion choices,” “Where did they buy that?” and “Would I look good in that outfit?”

The fact is I feel some days like I have lost my sense of fashion direction. I’m not sure what to wear and trying on clothes at the stores often turns into an exercise in frustration. I know I’m not alone in the quest to find the perfect pieces to compliment my body and lifestyle. The good news is we don’t have to be famous to enjoy the expertise of a personal stylist or image consultant because there are people like Diana Kilgour who can come to our rescue. 

choosingclothes

What is a personal style and image consultant? A person who knows how to bring out the best in her client’s appearance and manner. I do it by working with clothing and accessories that uniquely suit a person’s lifestyle, colouring, shape and size; suggesting improvements in speech, body language or posture if needed. It’s about impression management and equipping someone to live a freer, more confident life. Some people call me a personal shopper, dresser or stylist.

A good personal style and image consultant is a combination of three things: Caring friend with great taste who wants you to be happy and successful in life and isn’t afraid to tell you the truth, in a constructive and positive way.

Fairy-godmother who is able to help you transform your appearance so that you’ll fit in at the ball, in the office, at the resort or even the gym. Ensuring that your wardrobe and style formula is uniquely yours and not a carbon copy of others.

Consumer advocate who helps you make the best choices with your wardrobe dollars. I work for you, not for any particular store, so I can take you shopping anywhere and your long term satisfaction with your clothes is what I aim for.

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Flat Abs at the checkout

Lose 100 pounds of stress fat, Body after Baby, How she lost the weight after pregnancy, Curb your cravings, Flat Sexy Abs, Your hormones your weight…shall I go on or are you already sucking in the stomach muscles and gearing up for the gym.

The minute you stand in a checkout the eye can’t help but scan the magazine covers. If not reading the latest headline about Brad and Angelina or the sex lives of the chronically relationship disabled, we are most likely catching a glimpse of what the body could look like if we did……something.

Wading in the sea of bikini wearing, air brushed stars and models I couldn’t help but laugh inside about the irony of loading our carts with food only to get a dose of why not to have bought most of it in the first place. Maybe the trick is to use the time wisely as you enter the aisles of doom.

I have some ideas for the next visit on how we can go from passive shopper to workout wonder!

1. After properly sanitizing the handle on your cart (yuk!) grip it hard and release, grip hard and release, repeat… do at least 3 reps of ten.

2. In the vegetable section, with bag in hand, lunge toward the back of the fruit and vegetable sections with a strong reach. Lift back leg slightly off the floor and reach forward. Not only will you get a stretch into the leg and arms but the freshest fruits and vegetables are placed at the back anyway.

3. Squat down, tighten that butt as you reach to the lower shelf for that can of green beans. Just doing a quick bend over doesn’t cut it, feel those buns contract and release as you squat for each item.

4. If your laundry soap comes in a plastic container with a handle, do three quick bicep curls per arm.

5. This is more of resistance training….avoid the cake aisle. Realize the happy wishes and icing colours are just trying to draw you in, resist I say. Take that opportunity to tighten the abs and release, tighten, release.

It is important to realize that all those supposedly happy, weightless, tanned, perky breasted, wrinkle free, washboard abs, buns of steel, yummy mommies and models are not much different than the rest of us. Except, they have a good plastic surgeon, an overpaid physical trainer, in house chef or the finances to buy better, magnified body image pressure, good technology  to air brush the flaws and enhance the appeal, the best hair, expensive makeup to cover everything, regular spa treatments and a wardrobe stylist so they don’t have to think about what to wear.  Other than all of that they are just like the rest of us.

🙂

Maybe it would be fun to explore what it would be like if magazines were covering men:

Lose that beer gut, From couch bum to tight buns, Exercise your way back into that Speedo (OK, bad visual), Minding your midlife spread, Burn off those sympathy pregnancy pounds, Lose your remote control lose weight, How to perk up your pecs.    —– Of course each magazine would have the tanned twenty something year old guy on the cover.

I’m not mocking being healthy that is good, but it is even better to be a great human being. So, here are the tags for my mock magazine:

You don’t need flat abs to accomplish your goals

Size only matters if you let it

Fake anything is just that, “fake”finding your authentic self

The minute your born you’re dying – fighting age is a waste of energy

Live life in the temple you were given.

So, next time we all walk into that store, cruise the aisles and get spit out at the other end for a walk down body image lane; take a deep breath and know you don’t have to buy what their selling.

Dove Evolution

When anti-aging is aging you

It is always odd in life when a conversation or observation plays itself out more than once in a short period of time. Of late it has been individuals who are trying desperately to defy aging. For many years I watched women try various treatments, creams, workouts, diets and clothing styles in an attempt to divert attention away from the signs of aging. Two very good examples of that presented themselves this past couple of weeks and my interest was peaked…Can the obsession with anti-aging, age you?

Women have long thought that by doing all of the above treatments they would somehow feel better about their bodies and overall image. It also appears that many believe that what they are doing is making them more beautiful to the public eye. I don’t have a problem with people who want to keep themselves healthy or even change up their personal style but some women are appearing older; trying to drink from the fountain of youth may have proved poisonous.

In the pursuit of the sun-kissed glow there are people who take that to the extreme and after years of tanning now sport the “leather look.” It has increased their wrinkles, moles and other skin related conditions and ultimately does not look youthful at all.

Clothing that belongs on a teenager or twenty year old is not flattering to the forty+  body. Yet we see many women attempting to claim their youth, through the wearing of styles so inappropriate it draws more negative attention than positive.

There are surgical enhancements/treatments that look mismatched in comparison to the body parts that are not altered. Not to mention botched jobs that cost some people more than what they bargained for.

How about injections that create an expressionless face that has everyone fixated on how nothing moves, rather than on what the person is saying.

What we see in the mirror is not always a true reflection and as a result we may never know how damaging the anti-aging pursuits have been.

It is a fact that we age and all of us have the choice to grow old with grace and acceptance, or fight it all the way to the grave. The fighting is futile; as sure as we will age, so shall we die. The amount of time, money and self battering associated with all of this may only hasten the process. The diets and dyes, drugs and surgeries, stresses with dressing and constant obsessing, may indeed age us quicker.

I know the pressure is there, streamed and beamed into every part of our life. A youth centric culture with air-brushed women and a warped sense of what makes a woman sexy. We can not enter any store, open a magazine, flip a channel, drive past a billboard or peruse the Internet without being reminded we are not good enough. Our attractiveness is measured constantly by society and even partners/family. So, it is no wonder that there are people who will never feel like they measure up.

We all do a self examination, myself included. After entering my forties I found myself on occasion assessing this new me, it comes with laugh and worry lines, a size up in clothing, more gray hair and a workout that takes me twice as long.  It is the work out that has me most perplexed. Apparently, muscles have memory but I think mine are suffering from a memory lapse, as they can’t remember my abs of steel and contoured triceps.

Having said that, I am not prepared to succumb to the pressures of being something I am not. What I wish for my body is health and happiness. What I want is to wear clothing that flatters the body that carried me this far, despite some bad decisions in the past. I don’t want to spend my money on anti-aging, just healthy living. If for some reason I have a case of missing my youthful looks too much, I’m hoping I have people around who can set me straight before I do irreversible damage to what was beautiful to begin with.

INVEST IN YOUR SELF ESTEEM, IT WILL CARRY YOU FARTHER IN LIFE AND LOVE.

What do you Value?

What are the guiding principals of your life?

Values can be described as the beliefs, attitudes and philosophies which you consider important. They don’t change from personal life to work, they are not situational. You don’t just walk out the door and change your values. The decisions you make in life and the actions associated with those decisions are influenced by your values alone.

We have certain things in life we value more than others. Over the course of our lifetime they remain firmly intact, but some may differ in terms of priority. For instance: there are certain things you may have valued more as a youth than in your adult life. They are still there, just possibly a bit farther down the list.

What we value shows up in how we shop, when we vote, in our friendships, work and play. Some values may be protected and defended more than others, compromise may not be an option. When asked to compromise values you are placed in a bad position, one that can affect you personally, emotionally, spiritually and professionally.

Being clear about what you value can help in your career and your relationships. If you value Honesty, Integrity, Loyalty and Self Respect you will try to live accordingly and seek out others of like mind. You will not be inclined to work for a company that is dishonest or makes you feel uncomfortable because what you value, clashes with their organization. If you value, Action, Adventure, Excitement you may seek this out personally and/or professionally through activities and people.

It was Roy Disney who was quoted as saying “When your values are clear to you, making decisions become easier.” This is true. So, I encourage you to take some time for yourself and clarify “What do I value in my life?” List out what is important to you in order of priority. That will help you build the confidence necessary to make the right decisions in life and work.

Here is a small list of values to get you started:

affection, emotion, love, athletics, health, beauty, nature, peace, challenge, change, curiosity, travel, wealth, enjoyment, fun, humour, family, marriage, parenthood, friendship, ideas, intelligence, logic, wisdom, inner harmony, social welfare, spiritual life, power, prestige, recognition, financial security, pleasure, sensuality and play.

Life Mastery Skills

Communication, Relationships, Abundance, Self Esteem, Empowerment and Self Awareness.

What if you had the opportunity to obtain a better understanding of yourself through personal exercises, all from the comfort of your own home or office? I recently had the great fortune to talk with Sheila Radha Conrad about Life Mastery Skills, a program she has developed and offers through her website.

I was amazed how much information and support was provided on the site including free exercises to assist anyone who wishes to begin their journey inward. Upon speaking with Sheila Radha Conrad, I knew why she had chosen this route to reach people. This is a woman with an extensive background in Counselling Psychology; her wisdom runs deep and her spirit is generous, as you will see in the following excerpts from our conversation.

I really enjoyed your website and the exercises you provided. Can you tell us more about Life Mastery Skills?

Life Mastery Skills allows people to develop the practice of going inside to access their inner wisdom and their inner knowing. Usually, if we have a problem we go outside of ourselves to get the information that will help us, but this is how to go inside. Because, within each of us we really do know the answers once we learn how to access it. I’m sure because you have done this for so many years, you know that the secret is knowing the right question.

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Recession Talk

Too much recession talk, is there anyone out there thinking positively about the near future?

The word “recession” is getting attached to almost everything in life. “Recession proof your marriage”, “Recession recipes”, “Recession fashion”, “Recession protection for your job”, recession, recession, recession! Ahhhhh!

The word itself is making money for anyone who can work it in to their portfolio. As long as we have an audience who bathes in the doom and gloom, the Internet and TV  will be primed for any bad news. People scanning for information on how to protect themselves from what is here and coming, they will awake to “recession” everyday.

“Depression”, is also bantered around. This word has a whole other power; debilitating, the end of the world type power. The vision of black and white pictures begin rolling, previously only seen in history books or movies, are now shown with regularity to feed the appetite of doom seekers. 

Breaking News: The dawn of the new and improved Great Depression. We will be better at it than our predecessors as we have more to lose.

Stop already!

There are services available that were not available in previous times. Crime is not rampant and unemployment is not at its all time worst. If you want to arm yourself with anything, it is a good support network and turn off the doomsday forecasters. Try to replace the word “recession” with the words we used to attach to our daily life challenges.

* My fashion choices are thrifty and stylish.

* My recipes are good for more than one meal and freeze well.

* My marriage is important to me, we’ve chosen to maintain healthy communication,”for better or for worse.”

I don’t need to keep up with Joneses and never really wanted to. I didn’t need most of what I have purchased over the last few years, I just wanted it. This is a unique opportunity to learn lessons I may have missed before.

Build up your self esteem with solid networking, help your self and others by changing your language right now, move away from the word “recession”. Put on the good news and turn off the bad. I’m not asking you to bury your head in the sand, but its easier to get clarity if your mind isn’t being bombarded by negative messages. Talk the right talk and you will walk the right walk.

Michelle Obama’s School Visit

The first lady Michelle Obama had a lot of focus on her while her husband  President Obama attended the G20 summit. A friend of mine who lives in England and I were talking about the coverage of her visit. She sent me a link to an article that spoke about a visit Michelle Obama made to Islington’s Elizabeth Garrett Anderson Language College.

http://www.guardian.co.uk/education/2009/apr/05/michelle-obama-school-london

The speech she gave really appeared to resonate with the students, I especially enjoyed both the power in the message and the simplicity of the language. All too often politicians or their representatives tend to speak too much and say very little of value or they clumsily dance through the photo op and leave the site soon after. This was not the case. Michelle Obama, by all accounts, was very present and her words gave a glimpse of the girl in the woman, memories from her own years as a student.

More importantly she inspired the girls attending that school. That is exciting to me; one, five, ten or 100 more girls feeling good about themselves, affirming the importance of their own education, caring about today and looking optimistically toward their future!

Empowerment is a beautiful thing.