Lately, it seems like everywhere I turn I see friends who suffer from terrible self-esteem.
Why do so many of us feel like we must provide endless services to our family, friends and lovers in order to “earn” the right to be loved?
Where did we learn that love and respect can only be earned? Shouldn’t caring and love from others be given freely?
I find this all so sad because I see myself in all of this. This is how I used to feel too, so self-sacrificing for those around me in hopes that they might eventually find me worthy of positive attention, affection and acceptance. This I called selflessness, because I had no way to value my own Self.
It was only after I hit rock bottom emotionally that I finally found hidden treasures within. My intuition and inner wisdom demanded a few major changes. I suddenly found deep sources of caring and compassion for myself. This required me to demand more respect from everyone I knew.
Self-love is the source of all respect from others. If you treat yourself badly and “give yourself away” to others as if your time and energy is worth nothing, they will treat you accordingly.
I found I needed to jettison most of my previous friendships, and seek out a whole different class of people after finding self-compassion and respect in my 40s. I finally knew my own value and would not be disrespected ever again BY ANYONE!
This is only one of the many ways we can change in midlife, by becoming more clear about how we need our life to be NOW.
To learn more about mastering difficult life transitions you might enjoy my books: Midlife Magic: Becoming The Person You Are Inside! and my new one: Find Your Reason to be Here: The Search for Meaning in Midlife.
To find a new faith in love try: How to Believe In Love Again.