We raised our kids in a era of "self-esteem" being all important. I'm so sorry to see children who have it. They are crushed by anything smacking of criticism, therefore are brittle and non-resilient in facing life's challenges. Their primary goal is self-affirmation, which is a low moral path indeed. Kids who are raised in an environment which is concerned with their self-esteem frequently grow to be obnoxious in their sense of entitlement to be regarded favorably, lest their "self-esteem" birthright be diminished.
What was meant as a good thing for kids has deprived them of developing self-confidence. Self-confidence is a strong ally in facing the turbulence of real, involved living. It is built by overcoming obstacles, facing challenges and working tenaciously to perservere over time - to try again and be somewhat impervious to failure - treating it not as a diagnosis of self, but a lesson in what doesn't work. Self-confidence is earned and developed - not given by others.
God spare us self-esteem - it's a cheap trick and a very damaging one. Let's work toward self-respect, self-confidence and, hopefully, a self-directed moral existence.
Saturday, March 20, 2010
Theoretically it's wonderful to understand the lack of significance of a clean and tidy house. In practice, however, it's necessary to let the mundane rise to the top of the priority list sometimes! Buddy (our dog) and I went for a long cold walk this morning which was great - but now I really must vacuum, dust, sweep, etc. Without those items being taken care of, there is less joy in our house and, surprisingly, less freedom. The mental clutter of stuff crying out to be taken care of is an obstacle of the first order to brain function. So, the simple joy of clean and tidy (at no cost, save some expenditure of time and effort) is the joy I seek this morning. Off to the joy of being a positive influence on my immediate environment!