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Self Respect and Your Self Esteem -

Updated on September 22, 2012

The Things that Are Most Important to You

What story do you want to tell about yourself in years to come?

Your self esteem and the self beliefs you hold about you and your world have everything to do with the way you feel about yourself and choices you make. Your decisions will affect you in the days and years ahead. What is your path? Where are you headed? How does what you do match with what you see for yourself? Identify your passions. Make sure you make a place for the things you love and the things that are most important to you, in your life.

Knowing your passion is the fire in your engine. It is the thing that will be your self motivating love. Passions give us energy and affect our spiritual selves in such positive ways. Leading a meaningful life adds to our self esteem.

Be True to Your Own Values

You owe it to yourself to pursue your passions. Your daily activities can’t always focus on your passions, but you need to make room in your life to enjoy what you find meaningful. You become, to a great extent, what you are loyal to. Your self esteem, your self worth helps you determine how you spend your time. In accomplishing our daily to do’s, we sometimes put our own desires to the side. It is important to be true to yourself. It is just as important to include on your to do list, the things that make you happy.

Know your priorities.Be loyal to your real values. Are you pursing healthy aims? It is important that your aims match your passions. Let your vision guide you. Keep yourself on track. Keep your vision clear so that you can see you are heading where you want to go.

Before You Say Yes

When people request our time and energy we may be seduced into helping others. Ask yourself if your efforts will contribute to the common good. Ask yourself how this is affecting your ego and your self esteem. How does this impact the direction you see for yourself? Does this fit who you are and go easily with your skills and your time? How does it affect the other responsibilities and committments you have going on? Will you enjoy doing this? What are the rewards, good and bad for you to do this? Sometimes we might not gain pleasure from taking this responsibility on, but the importance of doing it may outweigh the decision.

Before you say yes to taking something on, just because someone asked you, make sure you can answer these questions reasonably and logically. It is not worth it to burn yourself out trying to please others and do everything that is asked of you. Having others direct your life will not lead you where you want to go. People with a lower self esteem tend to want to please others, hoping they will feel better about themselves through the approval of someone else.

It is easy to say yes. But giving into the moment, may have lingering affects. If we say yes, we may feel angry afterwards, because saying yes doesn’t fit what we need to do for ourselves. We may even end up not doing a good job because of the resentment we feel. Often people are afraid to say no. We want to please, we want to avoid confrontation, we want to avoid negative feedback. We don’t feel good enough about ourselves, and we respond to our vulnerability, our lower self esteem.

There Are Ways to Say No

There are ways to say no, create a positive situation, and most importantly hold onto your self respect.

  • If you need to say no, you don’t need to explain yourself. You can just say no
  • You can say sorry, but I can’t because...
  • You can say no, and tell them you will let them know if you can recommend someone else
  • You can say not at this moment and explain how trying to do it will be detrimental to you. But be cautious not to ask for their approval.

Self Respect and Saying Yes

Having self respect is important for ourselves always. Raising our self esteem within, is important. Other people respect those who say no when it is appropriate. We don’t respect people who yes others all the time. It is important to keep in mind, even if someone else asks you to do something and they wanted you to say yes, on a level they may never show you, they will respect you for taking care of your priorities. People respect people who respect themselves.

It is okay to say yes. It is okay to say no. Ask yourself if saying yes is harmful to you now and in the long run. If it is healthier for you to say no, then do it, even if it is uncomfortable right now. You will gain so much when you respect yourself and show others you respect yourself.

Manage Your Time and Gain Self Respect
Manage Your Time and Gain Self Respect

Time Management

If you do say yes to taking on a task, it is important to know how much time it will take and what is expected of you. If you are afraid to ask, you can be getting into something deeper than you want it to be. If this takes too much of a toll, what are you willing to give up. Your self esteem may even be hurt. And what you give up may impact the direction you want to head.

For brief periods of time, we can handle multiple tasks that demand a lot of our time and energy. But studies have shown that overscheduling yourself will lead to stress and distress.

Time management is an important aspect to juggling the demands in your life. If your time controls you, it may be time to re-evaluate what you are doing with your time. Ideally, you want to accomplish what you can without trying to do it all. Prioritizing and protecting yourself from burn-out is key. Too many tasks, even enjoyable ones will exhaust you. The result may be that we do many or all of them poorly. Protect your ego, protect your self esteem.

Time management and deciding our priorities are choices we make. While we have some obligations, we are also free to choose some of the tasks we choose to do. You owe it to yourself to protect you from doing too many things. The joy in achieving a task is magnified when we accomplish it with realistic expectations and protect ourselves from the stress that we put on ourselves. If someone asks you to take on a task and it conflicts with something else you want or need to do, reconsider what you are really saying yes to.

Self Esteem and Your Happiness

You have a lot to offer the world. You have needs and these needs deserve for you to pay attention to. Overextending yourself, fear of saying no, lack of prioritizing your time, erode your self esteem. It is important to feel good about who you are and know where you want to lead yourself. Your wants and needs count as much as anyone else’s. The direction you see for yourself and the seeds you sow today need to be parallel. Take care of yourself and your self esteem will grow.

Be in charge of your own life. You self worth, your self esteem is not based on the opinion of others, how much you accomplish, or how many people ask you do something for them. Your self worth, is what you think about yourself. Your inner messages have everything to do with your self esteem. You will feel great about yourself when you know you have made the right decisions for yourself and for what you view as the greater good.

Reinforce Your Worthiness Through Your Actions

So stop and think before you say yes the next time. If the chore asked of you is not congruent with what you need to do now and ahead, think about the worthiness of the task.

Think about yourself. Think about your self esteem. If you do say yes, get specifics about what you need to do, time, money and energy wise. Encourage yourself to drop commitments if they become too burdensome or if other priorities emerge. Make time for yourself.

Reinforce through your actions and thoughts that you are a worthwhile person. If you say yes, and it doesn’t feel good, you are eroding your own self esteem. It will feel okay to say no, when you feel okay about yourself.


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    • profile image 6 years ago

      thanks TKI, grand hub. Keeping the balance - true to ourselves and service to others - I am going down this road at the moment and I keep thinking I need to be a model of integrity to myself for my kids!

    • trish1048 profile image

      trish1048 6 years ago

      For far too many years, I said yes. It is only in the past 5 or so years that I've learned to say no and mean it. It is quite liberating.

      One area I struggle with at times is the workplace. It is a job that requires multi-tasking on a daily basis, to the point at times that it becomes overwhelming, adding to the stress and frustration levels. It actually came to a head several weeks back, and the result has been a good one. I finally spoke of my concerns with the situation, rather than bottling them up inside, and to my delight, it got some results. Now, I just have to keep the momentum going :)

    • Danette Watt profile image

      Danette Watt 6 years ago from Illinois

      Saying "no" is probably the hardest thing for me to do because I do like to help people and because I am the type of person who gives 110% of myself in anything I do, I often feel pulled in too many directions. It's something I am aware of in myself and have to continually work on. Thanks for the hub

    • toknowinfo profile image

      toknowinfo 6 years ago

      Hi Build, Thanks for reading and commenting. Welcome to HubPages. I am sure you will find this community to be warm and embracing. I look forward to reading more of yor writing. Keep in touch. Feel free to contact me if you have any questions. I am always learning, but I will be glad to offer you what I know.

    • toknowinfo profile image

      toknowinfo 6 years ago

      Hi Susannah, Thanks for stopping by and commenting. You are right, our self esteem is important in so many aspects of our lives. We need to take good care of our self esteem and value ourselves more.

    • BuildYourLifeNow profile image

      BuildYourLifeNow 6 years ago from Tennessee

      Nice Hub with good info...

    • susannah42 profile image

      susannah42 6 years ago from Florida

      Self esteem is so important to ones success in life. Great hub.

    • toknowinfo profile image

      toknowinfo 6 years ago

      Hi Fossillady, It is always nice for me when you drop by. I am glad you dropped by and appreciate your kind comments.

    • toknowinfo profile image

      toknowinfo 6 years ago

      Hi C-Bless. Thanks for stopping by and commenting. No is a powerful word and we are afraid to use it and if we do, we seem to apologize for using the no word. I appreciate your up rating.

    • Fossillady profile image

      Kathi 6 years ago from Saugatuck Michigan

      Oh this was just a really great reminder to be true to ourselves and take good care! Well written and informative my friend, thank you for the boost!

    • C-Bless profile image

      C-Bless 6 years ago from Canada

      A very good read with lots of good information. I once read that "no" is a complete sentence so no need to follow with an explanation. Voted up...

    • toknowinfo profile image

      toknowinfo 6 years ago

      Thanks for all the kind words. I am glad all of you find this hub useful. It is difficult to stand up for ourselves and realize how we let others treat us. Thanks to all of you for stopping by and leaving your interesting comments. Your thoughts add so much to my hubs and I really appreciate your feedback. I gratefully appreciate all the up ratings you give me. Thanks.

    • Chatkath profile image

      Kathy 6 years ago from California

      Thank you toknowinfo! I have always had a hard time with saying "no" - I guess because I have had very low self esteem lately and I am afraid that I will be judged or seen in a negative light because I am not giving in. It begins to snowball too, people begin to assume that you are always available and when you must say no finally it is earth shattering. Great timing, very useful hub!

    • WillStarr profile image

      WillStarr 6 years ago from Phoenix, Arizona

      The people who knock on your door to sell you something you neither want nor need count on low self esteem, and they try to make you feel guilty.

      My wife just turns them over to me with a smirk on her face. She knows what's coming.

      Great Hub!

    • profile image

      Fay Paxton 6 years ago

      Toknow, if you ever consider changing your name, you might consider Britannica. As always this hub is packed full of

      useful information. You're the best.


    • toknowinfo profile image

      toknowinfo 6 years ago

      I am glad all of you found this hub valuable. We all have difficulties in dealing with people and with our own struggles. It is nice to know we are not alone in the things we struggle with. I hope this hope helps many to understand ourselves better and grow emotionally.

    • Betty Johansen profile image

      Betty Johansen 6 years ago

      You are amazing, tki! This hub is packed with valuable information and advice. Like anginwu, I really liked your list of ways to say no. Thank you for all the ways you broaden my scope and enlighten my understanding with your wide variety of informative hubs. You are a blessing!

    • anglnwu profile image

      anglnwu 6 years ago

      Good pointers. Personally, I've a hard time saying no. Glad you have a list of ways to say no. Rated up.

    • b. Malin profile image

      b. Malin 6 years ago

      Another Wonderful, Teachable Hub, Toknowinfo...We all can relate and vow to change what we don't like into Something Positive. Thanks for Sharing.

    • kashmir56 profile image

      Thomas Silvia 6 years ago from Massachusetts

      Hi toknowinfo Awesome hub with a lot of valuable and useful information written within this well written hub !

      Awesome and vote up !!!

    • Cogerson profile image

      Cogerson 6 years ago from Virginia

      Excellent hub.....I really liked the part about saying yes and saying no and how the answers make us feel and the end result of doing things you do not want to....great information and written in an entertaining fashion....great job...voted up and useful

    • drbj profile image

      drbj and sherry 6 years ago from south Florida

      You tackled a number of very interesting topics with this hub, tki, and I do endorse your recommendations regarding self esteem and self-respect. Rated up.

      With regard to saying no most effectively, I have learned never to use the word, "Sorry." It is a word that often provokes an emotional reaction on the part of the recipient, e.g., ... "if you were really sorry, you wouldn't say no ... " To see more, read my hub - "Assertive Behavior - How to Say No."

    • Amy Becherer profile image

      Amy Becherer 6 years ago from St. Louis, MO

      Fantastic, pertinent information, toknowinfo, that comes at a time in my life when I need these lessons. I have been "held hostage" for some time now, by a loved one that goes to ridiculous ends to justify their means. She spends inordinate amounts of time conjuring ways of manipulating in a futile attempt to con me. Usually, by the time she has stated her life and death situations, I am too exhausted to deny the unending requests. I have had to deal with divorce and a layoff, making this past year one of great difficulty, yet, the vampires (one was a neighbor I got off my back) I have encountered refuse to accept "no". I am constantly on call for much of my time and money. I am still trying to help myself by writing at a website that pays me, but I am "squeezing it in" rather than enjoying my freedom. I have none. Making this so difficult is the fact it is my own adult child, who I love with all my heart, that causes my grief. Thank you for this very useful, well-written, clear and direct piece. I am going to refer to it often, especially the questions for clarity.

    • pearlmacb profile image

      pearlmacb 6 years ago from Switzerland

      Super Hub!...a good reminder, from section3 and below every word was speaking to me, for me, at such a time needed. I get myself overcommitted, although Im getting much better. Such truth " respect yourself above all"!! :))))

    • jannthomassen profile image

      jannthomassen 6 years ago from Norway

      Nice hub with valauble content. Voted up.

    • Pamela99 profile image

      Pamela Oglesby 6 years ago from United States

      This hub really explains these important concepts very well. Rated up and awesome.

    • tlpoague profile image

      Tammy 6 years ago from USA

      Great hub! I love to journal and found some old journals from years ago. It was interesting to see how much I had changed over the years. Self respect and self esteem is everything! Thanks!