Self esteem: an overview

One of the very few conventional wisdoms regarding women that is actually true is that they’re attracted to confidence. This is fantastic, because there is plenty of research on what influences confidence and how to improve it. It’s also fantastic because the factors which improve it also directly lead to greater life satisfaction, so it’s like killing two birds with one stone, except unless you’re a psychopath you probably don’t murder animals randomly. This is also horrible, because for some reason, the conventional wisdoms on improving confidence have often NOTHING to do with any of this research. Thus we are once again inclined to leave the comforts of the very stupid herd to go our own way.

When we talk about confidence and improving it, we’re often really talking about our self-esteem, of which our confidence is a component and an outcome by the increase in self-esteem.

Self esteem has a long and complicated definition which, paraphrased, comes down to being your perceived ability to succeed combined with your perceived worthiness of that success. And it’s based largely on the reputation you have with yourself. Now this is critical because it’s at this juncture that most people fuck it up. It’s not JUST your perceived ability to succeed. If you’re this awesomely bombastic fantastic guy who wins at everything… None of that is worth shit IF it isn’t accompanied by a perception that you’re worthy of those successes. If you have your mother’s voice in the back of your head telling you that you don’t deserve this, that you’re a fraud and that you’ve forgotten where you came from…. You may as well have not succeeded in the first place. Fortunaly, these limiting beliefs CAN be worked on, and indeed I’ve done it myself. It’s perhaps for this reason of unworthiness so many famous people are miserable. Especially when they come from nothing or have an overbearing parent, they never overcome this or escape it. But they could if they dealt directly with the emotional issues, rather than just trying to be EVEN MORE rich and famous, which was never the problem to begin with.

Self esteem = perceived ability to succeed x perceived worthiness of success

The benefits of self-esteem are nearly endless, one of my favourites is the sense of pride it provides you from having this great reputation with yourself. I also like how much having an internally built, stable foundation for self esteem is able to turn down the music for what’s happening around you. Lose a business deal, be rejected by a woman, get stood up on a date… These things are not a reflection of who I am as a person. I already know I’m the shit, I’m not so easily manipulated by external events. You become a rock, unaffected and capable of weathering the storms of assaults upon your self esteem with ease. It’s like developing armour for your self worth. Situations which might lead you to feel bad about yourself if they go the wrong way are less scary, like running into battle with an adamantium chest-piece. You become fearless. It’s awesome.

The average miserable dickhead tends to be attracted to solutions that are as easy as possible, and blames someone else when they don’t work out. I am not the average miserable dickhead and so the solutions I found aren’t extremely tedious, but they do require SOME effort, like all things that yield a worth-while result. Thus praying for an improved self-esteem or looking in the mirror and lying to yourself about how great you are… Are off the table. Sorry.

There are many factors which influence your self esteem that are out of your control, but they don’t really matter if you build up the factors that are within your control. The unsatisfied man bemoans his circumstances and wails at the world for the hand he’s been dealt. He cries to an increasingly small audience about his problems and forges his shitty identity in victim hood. Not being a incompetent pile of shit, we will grant ourselves one sigh of sadness about the difficulties we may have faced that led to damage to our self-worth, and then we’ll roll up our sleeves, grit out teeth and begin focusing on what we can control and building that up internally.

The satisfied man with an excellent self-esteem must be doing the following:

– take Responsibility for his life

– live with Acceptance

– act Assertively

– gain a sense of Direction in life

– live with Integrity

Again we find ourselves fortunate that these factors that have been demonstrated to directly contribute to our self-esteem are also factors which would contribute to our successes in other regions anyway.

Taking responsibility for your life. Because no one else is going to fucking do it. Your problems are your problems and you either cry about them like a useless bitch, or you man the fuck up and take care of your shit. If something goes wrong, you own it and take steps to correct it. If something isn’t happening the right way, you step up and change it. One of the things I hate so much about the typical ordinary fuck wit who falsely claims the title of “man” is that they don’t do this. They sit as passive victims and spectators to their own lives. I respect other men who do this and so I respect myself more when I do this.

Live with acceptance. Not living with contentment, that means something totally different. Just acceptance. Acceptance is the opposite of denial, and it’s the first step alcoholics need to take to overcome their drinking problem, just like its the first step anyone needs to take to solve their problems. First you deny you have any problems, then you accept that those problems actually exist, and then and only then are you able to look for solutions. When people talk about “fat acceptance” what these truly disgusting and shameful creatures really mean is fat denial. They try and deny that there is any problem. If you live with acceptance, you live in reality. Reality is a seriously underpopulated area, as most people live in denial in their own ridiculous fantasy lands. Problems don’t get solved in fantasy land. You just look like a fucking dickhead and your problems escalate and spiral until you hopefully get hit by a bus and remove yourself from the gene pool. It is tempting to give into pleasant lies and shy away from salty truths, but you’ve got no choice if you want your life to actually improve. Again, I respect men who live in reality and who aren’t full of shit and in denial, so to do I respect myself more for living in reality and living with acceptance as opposed to denial.

Acting assertively. This may shock you, but your desires ARE actually important. Your happiness IS actually important. But just like how Alexander the Great wasn’t just handed his empire, so to are you not just going to be handed your dream lifestyle. You need to pursue it, and do so with a tenancity and confidence. In modern western cultures, assertiveness has become a dirty word, as it means that a person pursues what they actually want, prioritises their own happiness, and goes for things, without regard for the status quo or what others will think. This element many people have the most difficulty ingraining because it’s just such a radical departure from the unempowering, senseless bullshit they’ve been raised to believe. However, it’s the element which also contributes the most to your attractiveness to women, so with greater work comes greater reward.

Gaining a greater sense of direction in your life. For many years I struggled with this. In my second year of university I was finally coming to terms with the notion that I’d have to make some life-altering decisions about what career I wanted to pursue. Up until then I’d just been following the advice of my father pretty much, I hadn’t thought much about it because I didn’t have to. The result of these years of mental anguish fortunately yielded an ultimate insight grounded completely in logic, free of magical thinking, which has guided my every major decision for every day since then. It’s perhaps the best thing that’s ever happened to me and the sense of calm it provides, to know that you’re on track and you know what you’re doing with your life, is tremendous. And thus I feel much more highly of myself for having and pursuing the clear, life-long goals I have.

Living with integrity. You can lie to everyone, but you can’t lie to yourself, because deep down you know. Acting in a way that goes against your beliefs inevitably produces a feeling of shame that no amount of drink or drugs can smother. There is no workaround. Identifying and evaluating and living actively in accordance with these beliefs is freeing. It provides a greater sense of identity and you care much less what others think. You know who you are and what you are and what you stand for, which is what really matters. It’s developing your own code and living in congruency with that which is perhaps ultimately the most rewarding of all these traits, it certainly has been for me.

Just like everything else you’ve ever worked for in your entire life, a greater level of self confidence, self respect and self esteem won’t just happen. I can only show you the path, you must walk it. And as you begin that walk with a growing confidence it shall reinforce itself until it snowballs into a powerful sense of being and purpose that exudes authority and demands and commands respect.

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