Are you “Coming Up Short” When You Compare Yourself to Other people? There is a 1 in 5 Chance You Have Low Self-Esteem…. Introduction
A Neuro Linguistic Programming (NLP) Perspective
This article is part of a series on how low self-esteem could create a serious problem in your life.
Since NLP and especially Time Line Therapy® techniques are extremely useful in dealing with these issues and have consistently provided great results for people, it is our desire is to provide you, the readers, with information and insights on this subject. It is our hope that this series will shed some light on the subject and will be valuable for you. And of course, the whole subject is discussed from the NLP (Neuro LInguistic Programming) and Time Line Therapy ® point of view.
How many people have low self-esteem?
Are you one of these people? Even if you’re taking a predictive questionnaire it is hard to say.
Studies and statistics have been done over time trying to put a number or a percentage on how many people deal with this issue. But that number would be inaccurate because it may not be on-going (only from time to time) or lots of people would deny having it even if is obvious to others.
It also depends on the geographical location, culture, and other sociological factors. There are individuals for whom self-esteem is equated to an irrational opinion of invincibility, superiority and god-like powers. There are cultures where self-esteem is a “must” because it is equated to modesty. That being said let’s explore why would you even worry about it?
There seems to be a magic number 87.9% circulating on several websites which means that one in 5 people could have low self-esteem. However our opinion remains that it is an unclear number, and it is impossible to say with precision.
Are You One Of These People?
Based on the feedback we received over the years in our NLPCoaching trainings and also in your emails to us, we realized that most – and most in this respect simply means more than half – of people experience at times some degree of trouble with self-confidence, lack of self-esteem, inadequacy, not being good enough, unworthy, unlovable, insignificant, not deserving, what have you….
Irene is an accomplished woman. At least as one sees her from outside. If you talk to her though, it becomes quickly obvious that she feels in many respects inadequate and basically not good enough.
Here Is the Glitch Folks, and It Is A Big One!
Because deep down she feels this way, she expects to be treated accordingly. She is permanently unhappy with herself, with her performance (whether at work or in her relationship), she is her worst critic even though at first she becomes defensive when confronted with any negative feedback. When she is honestly complimented for a good job, she tends to reject the compliment, assume that people are “just polite” and put herself down.
We cover this extensively in our Time Line Therapy® trainings – but I will do my best to summarize it here in a few words (although I am aware that I don’t do justice to the whole issue).
When you have a belief or a decision about yourself that limits you – we call that a limiting belief or limiting decision – you cannot notice anything else. Your view of yourself and the world is perceived through that belief. It is like you have a colored lens on your camera, and everything you photograph comes out in that color.
So, Irene believes she is not worthy, she is insignificant, etc. and she has this lens on. As a result of that she expects to be treated poorly, rejected, not appreciated and to be ignored. When pushed really hard by feedback from certain situations and events, she always finds fault in herself as the cause of other’s behaviors.
It is a self-fulfilling prophecy. She believes this about herself, therefore she unconsciously expects it from others, and even if she does not like it when it happens, deep down she knows “it is her truth”. From here on, since she is an intelligent woman, she starts analyzing it more and more, and so she begins a never ending cycle whereby she always ends up short. The conclusion – even if not logically enacted – is a bunch of non-reasonable but emotionally charged conclusions by which she reinforces more limiting beliefs.
More negative emotions and limiting beliefs and limiting decisions about the self. Every times this happens she reinforces that original belief. A completely lose-lose situation.
The only way out of this vicious circle is to let go of the original belief. You can now notice that because of that original belief, there is no way out for her. Everything she does, thinks or feels is clouded by that belief.
Now, I am well aware that what I am saying here goes against everything you heard generally in the world. You have been told over and over again that once something happens to you there is nothing you can do, that it was not your fault and you better get used to feeling bad, because this is how it is. And maybe after years of some sort of treatment you will be able to overcome it – if you’re lucky.
• What I am saying here does not sit well with the above mentioned dogma.
• What I am saying here is that the original belief that plagues Irene can be let go completely so that it ceases to be an issue in her life.
• What I am saying here is that this task it is easily accomplished by Time Line Therapy®.
We do this all the time when we coach people, when we teach our NLP Coaching trainings and our students learn how to do this in all of our NLP trainings and programs.
More about this in our next article.
Until then, be well.