A friendship or romantic relationship can go through many ups and downs. Sometimes, during the hurt we experience, we may feel as if our compassion has disappeared. However, we can often return to closeness because our deep hurt tells us that we care. In fact, relationships can become stronger after periods of disappointment.
What relationships cannot last is a loss of respect. When we feel disappointment and pain, it is often because of the actions of the other person. When we feel a loss of respect, it is because the other person's character has been called into question. We can tolerate disagreement with a spouse or business partner and often grow through resolution. What is more difficult to accept is betrayal and breach of trust. The person we trusted is not the person we hoped for. The issue is not bad actions, but bad actors.
Once respect is lost, can there be true care, admiration and love?
The element of self-esteem is missing in many discussions of personal growth and positive psychology. If we value and respect ourselves, we will naturally be attracted to what is good for us and avoid what is harmful. In the past, I have been offered opportunities to work with trading companies that I knew treated their traders poorly. I didn't bother to find out the compensation. I said no. This was the same reason I didn't want to put harmful drugs into my body or maintain abusive relationships. When we respect ourselves, our actions align with our well-being.
When we do things that we know are bad for us or remain in situations that we know are harmful despite constructive alternatives, we are acting out of lack of self-respect.. How we deal with ourselves He is Our relationship with ourselves. What we seek in life is a reflection of what we ultimately desire for ourselves. What we do with our lives reflects our personality. An empty life, a tolerant life, a life without an overarching purpose? Without self-esteem, there can be no positive psychology.
Self-esteem grows from what we do. When we act in accordance with our values we ultimately feel more valuable. Great question to ponder: What am I doing today that I would be proud to acknowledge in my obituary? If we don't do something every day, every week, that we're truly proud of, the result is self-betrayal and eroded self-esteem.
Life is a big gymnasium. If we practice our character strengths every day, we develop the kind of self-esteem that attracts the right opportunities and the right people. We cannot always be happy and we cannot always be successful. However, we can always live today with integrity.