Have you ever reached that stage within the span of a lifetime where everyone around you thinks you are wrong ? Perhaps, on reflection, there are areas of your life that you can improve yourself and self reflection is indeed a wonderful tool for appraising who you are, not just from the perspective of those people, but from the perspective of self esteem, personal value and worth.
There are many negative influences that change a persons' perception of who they are. Over the course of every stage of growth, those outside influences that inflict themselves on every member of society will affect who we are from the point of view of :
*The give and take factor
This is an area where many an error is made. We base our value sometimes on the value we give to others, when in fact each individual's value depends solely on that individual's approach to their lives. Those who feel that they have no worth will have no worth, simply because their negativity makes them the kind of person others don't want as a friend. This is an area where a human being can really truly assess themselves and improve who they are, or are perceived to be. I am worthless isn't a very good start to relationships is it ? By examining every area of life and deciding which areas of life your worth lies in, this takes away the negative element and helps the human being develop skills in weak areas.
Say for example the weakness lies with relationships with the opposite sex. Here look at what you do that is different to others. Look at how you can develop better skills, and by working on the skills that are lacking, what the individual achieves is a much more balanced personality. Similarly with friendships, people get the impression that they are a worthless friend by being too short sighted and not looking at why they think this way. Is the failing of relationships your problem or does the problem stem from the choices of friends made ? Often, those who surround themselves with people that reinforce their lack of worth will continue with the belief that they have little to offer. Broadening the scope of friendships, and making friends with people of similar tastes and interests helps to break down the cycle of defining self worth based on negative friendships.
What we think of ourselves and pride ourselves in helps us to gain self esteem. Surrounded by those kinds of people who do not value our skills, self esteem is a very hard concept to grasp. Here, making an honest appraisal of what we feel we are good at and what elements of our life deserve esteem is a great exercise. Taking a piece of paper and listing those activities within our lives which we excel at and then on the other side the parts of our lives where we don't do too well gives an overall picture of how self esteem is built. Working through negatives, and changing them to positives, the picture of self esteem builds up, until we feel ourself more worthy.
Here, the individual may have difficulty communicating with their peers, or elder or younger people. The generation gap is part of the process when different ages are concerned, although communication skills can be worked on in any area of life. Here, looking honestly at failures and fears, the individual should be able to define those areas of difficulty. If the communication stems from self esteem issues or past experience, it is here that a decision must be made about being more assertive, and learning to understand that the individual point of view matters, and the extent to which it can be used. Talking with friends and learning that each person within the conversation is an equal can help the individual to use communication skills to better effect.
Look at the different ways in which people around you communicate. There are many ways of communicating varying through the range from communication of a shy person right through the spectrum to those who communicate as if they know everything. Observe and compare the way that others communicate in comparison with how you communicate and by doing this you find a balance that gives you back your voice in the world.
The give and take factor.
This plays it's part in every relationship that a human being has within their lives. If you are the giving person and people around you are the takers in life, what happens is that you become this doormat that people like using because it is convenient and YOU let it happen. To make the most of relationships and what positive effect they have on the individual look at the way in which relationships work. Being honest with the approach is important, since being surrounded by people that use you actually makes an individual feel negative towards others, when there are so many relationships waiting out there that will be on a give and take basis.
Here, what happens with negative relationships is that they make your approach to others less trusting and the image that you project of who you are weak. It's great to be a giver, and not something to drop. What needs to happen is to cut those people that give nothing out of your social life and find those that are able to give and take, creating not only a balance in your life, but reinforcing positivity to a life that always felt negative. Many givers dismiss change and feel that they are happy with who they are, although there is a world of difference between give and take, and give, give, give. The giver becomes a worn out shell of the person they could be until they have little left to give to themselves, and thus become a less valuable friend to those around them.
We all strive for a happy balance in life, though many fail because of the imposition of friends and family, though what we fail to realize is that if we are basically unhappy, what we have to give others isn't very valuable. Looking at an individual's life and adding a little element of self interest isn't selfish. It's essential to find that happiness that hides within. Take up interests that make you happy, and what you present is a more balanced person without inner resentment and stress. Here, it may not be possible to make total changes to your life, though by introducing those areas to your life that can make YOU happy, what you end up with is a happier person for all those that surround your life, which means that what you give back to relationships is a lot more positive.
Just as you have expectations of others, others have expectations of you. There is a well known phrase that says Blessed are those that expect nothing because they will never be disappointed, and it rings true. Your expectations of others can make you extremely unhappy. You have very little control over what another person makes of their life. You can influence them in a positive way, though the very fact that you have expectations will make you unhappy, as people don't work around what you expect of them.
Similarly, those that expect you to react in a certain fashion are imposing their will on you as an individual. The moment you drop expectations of people, those around you respond better. You become less judgmental, and learn to accept people no matter what their weaknesses are, and the weaknesses melt into the background, letting you see the wonderful aspect of friendship that those with expectations will never see, because they let their expectations get in the way.
Behind every human being, there is an element of value and worth, and by self examination and examination of all the aspects that surround their lives, what a human being can achieve is self improvement beyond all measure. The secret to self improvement doesn't lie in drugs or alcohol, other people or outside influence. It is there for every human being to grasp and learn, by looking for the answers that lie within their own mind and soul.