ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

Self Help: Embrace Who You Are

Updated on October 23, 2012

THE MAN IN THE MIRROR

I was reading an article by a good friend of mine; Carol is her name, a fine writer in her own right, and a person I admire and respect. Carol writes quite often about astrology, and even though I spend very little time dabbling in astrology, I do find her articles interesting.

That led me to looking up my astrological sign, and the characteristics assigned to Libras. Here is what I found:

Libra is the only zodiac symbol that's neither animal nor human -- but surely that doesn't make you any less human. In fact, Libra is among the most sociable of the signs. As scales of old were really "balances," so to do you seek balance in all that Libra does. You respond to situations with grace as Libra attempts to put others at ease. Artistically, Libra tries to balance form, content, colors and elements, and for this reason can be drawn toward creative endeavors.

The greatest balancing act is between self and others, and it is here that many Libras focus their energy. Here, in the realm of interpersonal relationships, you are a champion. Libra know how to be the charming host or hostess. Libra can sense what others want before they ask for it. And you can make the needs of others a higher priority than your own. In fact, Libra is the shuttle diplomats of the zodiac, going back and forth between the extremes until a solution is negotiated.

Okay, interesting, and fairly accurate in describing me….I guess!

There was a day, not so long ago, when the opinion I had of myself was not nearly as flattering as the one mentioned above. I would have described myself as selfish, fear-driven, and dissatisfied with life in general. I cannot blame alcohol for that low self-esteem; in fact, alcoholism did not help, but that low opinion of myself has been with me for many decades.

A picture of low self-esteem
A picture of low self-esteem | Source

A TRIP BACK IN TIME

Many of us are, as children, carefree and happy. We get up in the morning, our moms and dads pat us on the head, we play with our toys, and we give not a thought to our self-image. If we are lucky we can go a good six, seven, or eight years before we begin to take inventory of ourselves and decide that we are lacking in certain attributes we wish we had. I remember it clearly, the conversations with self…..I’m too short, too ugly, too shy, too dorky, too skinny, and too stupid. I wish my ears weren’t so big and I wish my teeth weren’t crooked. I wish I could talk to girls without being such a dweeb, and I wish my hair wasn’t so frizzy and drab.

I moved into the teen years and I swear to you, there were days I did not want to leave the safety of my home, so powerful was my conviction that once in public, everyone would see me for the loser that I was. My parents were understanding, and continually told me that everyone goes through these “stages”, that it was perfectly normal, and that they loved me. Wonderful words for sure, but nowhere near what I needed.

As I matured there was no doubt that I gained in confidence, but always there were the nagging voices in my head…..my hair is too gray, I don’t have the muscles other guys have, I need to dress better so I fit in better….it was endless and exhausting.

AND THEN THE TEACHING YEARS

Low self-esteem seems to be a phenomenon that translates well in any era; I had low self-esteem in the 50’s and 60’s, and students that I taught in the 90’s and beyond had low self-esteem. It is universal and timeless, applicable to young and old, and it is debilitating and pointless.

I was saddened daily as a teacher, watching my students struggle with who they were. Girls struggling with their weight, their hair, their makeup, and their clothes; boys off by themselves, too shy or too embarrassed to interact with their peers; all of the compassion I could muster could not serve as an elixir for what ailed them….low self-esteem!

But surely they would outgrow that angst, right? I mean, you expect a certain amount of “suffering” from middle school and high school students. Surely they will turn into adults and find happiness in who they are! Right? Right?

The one...the only
The one...the only | Source
Cosmetic surgery.....my, my, my!
Cosmetic surgery.....my, my, my! | Source

AND ON AND ON IT GOES

Plastic surgeons, the 21st Century salutes you. A little slice and dice, a little nip and tuck, you’ll have us feeling better about ourselves in no time. Hey, give this facial cream a try; guaranteed to get rid of those unsightly….unsightly wrinkles! Wash away that gray and look, over there, that’s Heidi Klum, and don’t you wish you looked like her? Well you can of course, just send us a check for $49.95 and three labels from Clairol and we’ll fix you right up.

Are you shy? We’ve got the course for you! Are you homely? A new wardrobe will fix you right up and have you looking oh so GQ! What the hell are you doing with your hair looking like that? That’s oh so 80’s of you! Get with it, let’s see some highlights, let’s see some body, let’s see a whole new you because seriously, honey, that look is not working for you.

How can I ever go out in public; I have nothing new to wear and I look so….retro with a touch of homeless! Look at me now, gentlemen; I’ve got the boobs lifted, the tummy tucked, the latest ten-inch heels and I read only the best of the best sellers. Ain’t I hot? Ain’t I desirable? Ain’t I oh so sexy?

Hey, dude, yes, you over there! Seriously, buddy, your abs need some work and those arms…listen, come with me, let’s go hit the weights, then a nice sauna and you just have to try this mango smoothie that I guarantee with give you added virility when the ladies start calling and they will start calling. After that, you just have to go with me to the latest bar in town; we’ll strut our stuff and pick up a plastic, fantastic lover for the night, but only for the night; don’t want any damn chick getting too close to the truth, know what I mean? Sweet, let’s get it on…..how about a sniff, a snort, a trip to Strawberry Fields, before we head out?

Sit With Me For A Moment

EVERYBODY SING WITH ME…..INSANITY!

Here’s an idea that I’m just going to throw out there; let’s run it up the flagpole and see if anyone salutes it. You are perfect just the way you are! Okay, let it float around in your subconscious for a little while. Try it on and see if it fits. Repeat the words…..I am perfect just the way I am!

I’m going to be blunt here, so excuse me in advance, but the “beautiful people” turn me off and leave me feeling sad. We were all born unique; out of seven billion there is not another one like us, and yet so many people want to look like the beautiful people. “If only I could lose a few pounds, men would find me more attractive.” “If only I wore better clothes, women would want to date me.” “If only….if only….if only.” They overlook the fact that they are the rarest of rare, and if they would only embrace their rarity, rather than treat it like it’s a curse, they might just find that elusive thing called self-worth.

GIGO….garbage in/garbage out! If all you think about are the things you believe are lacking, you will believe yourself to be less than others. It is an irrefutable law of existence, and it needs to change.

Now for the tough part: change is an inside game!

Not an ounce of pretense in Bev
Not an ounce of pretense in Bev | Source

NOBODY CAN DO IT BUT YOU

That’s the tough part; nobody can give you self-worth. It needs to come from within. No amount of the latest trendy clothes will do it for you; no amount of beauty cream or hair dye, surgical improvements or magic potions, can do it for you.

Self-worth comes from one thing - thinking that you are worthy.
Wayne Dyer

So there you have it! The secret to self-worth….you must believe that you are worthy! Once that happens, you can begin to embrace your assets and celebrate in your unique qualities.

One of the first things that attracted me to Bev, the love of my life, was the fact that she didn’t wear makeup. There was no pretense with her; what you saw was what you got, and it was, for me, incredibly refreshing to experience. Her hair is graying and she doesn’t care! I love seeing her every morning, and I love growing older with her. She is as unique an individual as I have ever known, and I love everything about her. She is one of a kind, the rarest of rare, and I wouldn’t have her any other way.

My hope for all of you reading this is that one day you will wake up, look in the mirror, and celebrate who you are rather than mourn who you are not. When that morning arrives, the person you truly are will arrive with it.

Make that morning today! Embrace who you are….accept who you are….love who you are…and then begin the celebration of life!

2012 William D. Holland (aka billybuc)

Comments

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    • krbalram profile image

      rahul 4 years ago from Bangalore

      billybuc,you have very efficeintly describe your journey from child hood.Specially your childhood part is very interesting.Voting up and interesting.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      krbalram, thank you so much! I appreciate your visit.

    • Jools99 profile image

      Jools99 4 years ago from North-East UK

      I think self love and self worth are great if you have both but they're often something you don't become acquainted with until you're a bit more mature and have 'lived' a bit. I live with a teenager and I'm glad all of that keeping up with my peers is over with :o) I am happy in my own skin now (most of the time).

    • carol7777 profile image

      carol stanley 4 years ago from Arizona

      Wow...I was surprised to find myself your first paragraph..but I loved it..Of course. I was thinking about something you said before about your childhood...unless I remember wrong..It was good so I assume you had supportive parents..which was different in days past. You still grew up with self doubts and feeling uncomfortable in your body as you explained. And I know what you mean about kids not being able to fit in. My younger son had many problems in that department. What saved him was getting into Junior Achievement program where he built a lot of confidence.

      I laugh at all the solutions of promise there are today about what we can do to look gorgeous or have perfect bodies by using exercise machines. Diets to make us anorexic looking. I am working on an Obesity hub..not to be confused with wearing a perfect size 2.

      Living life naturally and accepting what we have been given both physically, mentally and emotionally is the pinnacle of happiness within. We are all still going to worry about changes that occur in our life. I like staying healthy the best. Great and introspective hub..one of my favorites of yours..even though I have yet to fine one I have not liked a lot.

      A note here: Astrology is not just your sign. In my estimation it is only a shooting point. The other planets play a huge role..moon, rising, mercury, mars, venus etc. Thanks for allowing me to be your opening statement..from another Libra ..oops I have a Virgo moon. Great hub..Voting UP and sharing (with everyone of course).

    • Janine Huldie profile image

      Janine Huldie 4 years ago from New York, New York

      Beautiful message Bill and can totally agree self worth does come from within. In my youth, I always worried what others thought of me, but as I am getting older I am seeing that is not always as important as what I think of myself and have come to like who I am (and I feel that is truly all that matters). That said thank you once again for sharing and for putting this out there for all. I have of course voted up and shared all over!!

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Thank you as always, Janine! It is a tough road to travel until we find self-esteem and self-worth, but it is well-worth traveling. I appreciate you greatly my friend, and thank you for sharing.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Julie, as am I, and it is so peaceful now.....I'm surprised the inner-angst didn't kill me when I was younger. :) Thank you my friend!

    • profile image

      SilverGenes 4 years ago

      Bill, I agree that low self-esteem is pandemic. In my opinion, it's once again all about business. Fashion designers need to make money and tell us that what looked divine last season now makes us look dumpy and unkempt. Why doesn't it occur to us that if this is so, they obviously don't know their own business since they are the people responsible for telling us those 'dumpy' clothes were fashionable at one point? And don't get me started on "the beautiful people"! Most of Hollywood now looks related thanks to botox and restylane and the 'common ancestor' looks as if they might have been cyborg LOL.

      Music videos teach girls that showing skin and gyrating is essential for popularity and teach boys that it's normal to refer to girls as b**ch.

      The result of this manipulation is low self-esteem, confused kids, and parents obsessed with perfection. We need to stop paying attention to the 'man behind the curtain' and live honest lives but that's hard to do when you are a kid. Peer pressure is immense.

      It affects relationships, too. This I know from first-hand experience. For years, I bought into the fallacy that I had to wear makeup, be a certain size, dress a certain way, have just the right jewelry etc in order to maintain a relationship. I tested the theory and it confirmed my suspicions. I've finally figured out that any relationship built on such prerequisites is not a healthy one. It's not real. Finally, after decades, I am waking up and looking in the mirror at a woman who is just fine the way she is. Any relationship that may come will be an honest one but it is not a requirement for my happiness.

      Your words of wisdom are a refreshing change from the diatribe that assaults us daily from TV and advertising. Vote UP and all the rest!

    • profile image

      Old Poolman 4 years ago

      Bill, Outstanding as always.

      For a major portion of our lives, we are forced into role playing. Let me explain that just a bit. For purposes of this comment we will use a man.

      #1 - Husband - This is a role that all married men must play by virtue of the union. This role is full of responsibility, frustration, fear, and love. Based on the basic wiring differences between the male and the female brain, it is not always easy to know exactly how to be the perfect husband at all times.

      #2 - Father - One of the most difficult roles a man must play. As a father it is a responsibility to set a good example, teach, police, referee, provide for, and on an on.

      #3 - Boss or Employee - Most workplaces are full of frustration. Yet we must do our best in order to provide for our families.

      So, coming back to your hub, everyday a man is required to wear at least three separate hats. What works well while wearing hat #1 or #2, would not work while wearing hat #3, or any combination of the three.

      To feel good about yourself in all three of these hats is difficult if not impossible. Most of us are very good in at least one of these roles, and some are lucky enough to be good at all three. It is hard to maintain that self-esteem when you know in your heart you are weak in any one of these three difficult and important roles.

      Then one day, life changes. The children are grown and out of the nest. You hit that magic age where you no longer have to go to that workplace every day. Now if luck is with you, you are left with hat #1 - Husband.

      If you did it right, wearing hat #1 is now your only focus, and it can be a wonderful thing. You are living with that one person who stuck with you in your journey through life. She helped, encouraged, scolded, loved, and was the driving force behind who you are today. Even though you are nearing the end of life's trail, you have that needed self-esteem when you look back at all you accomplished in life with your chosen mate by your side.

      We all wonder if it would have been different if we had tried this journey on our own, or perhaps had chosen a different partner, but it is what it is. Be proud of what you have accomplished, live your remaining years with that person you love, and enjoy what life has to offer.

    • innerspin profile image

      innerspin 4 years ago from uk

      A great message, something that should be taught in schools. So many people feel " different," unable to fit in with the crowd. You don't need to fit in with the crowd. You don't need to be perfect, just good enough. When a person is happy within themself, it shows in their whole manner.

      I love how you talk about Bev, she sounds beautiful through and through. And I'm so glad you found peace with yourself. It's not always easy, took me into my twenties, but it's so worthwhile.

    • poojasd7 profile image

      poojasd7 4 years ago from India

      "I’m going to be blunt here, so excuse me in advance, but the “beautiful people” turn me off and leave me feeling sad. We were all born unique; out of seven billion there is not another one like us, and yet so many people want to look like the beautiful people."

      These lines are so apt! Really, people need to come out of the stereotypes and celebrate the individuality. The moment we start comparing ourselves to others, is the moment we start disrespecting ourselves, in turn our precious lives.

      I loved this hub a lot mainly because of the personal touch you have given to this topic. It makes an impact.

      The lines about Bev you have written, it just puts smile across my face. Such a sweet relationship it is. :-)

    • Michele Travis profile image

      Michele Travis 4 years ago from U.S.A. Ohio

      Self esteem, a lot a people have low self esteem even if they hide it. Look at all the people around us ( well on TV) women are beautiful, tall, thin, rich. Men are masculine, have so many women attracted to them, rich. But in reality, most of us are not like that. This type of women on TV have caused girls to have anorexia. So, many people want to be perfect, but that is never going to happen.

      It is hard to accept that you are who you are. If you can, that is a very good thing.

      Wonderful hub

    • tobusiness profile image

      Jo Alexis-Hagues 4 years ago from Bedfordshire, U.K

      I totally agree with Janine, we stress so much when we are young, trying to find out who we really are, attempting to be the person we believe others admire, then as we get older we come into ourselves.

      The acid test is do we like who we've become? I quite like old Jo, her heart's in the right place. while I find other people's opinion of me interesting, I know who I am and I'm true to my self.

    • DabbleYou profile image

      DabbleYou 4 years ago

      Wow. Thanks for a really nice advice. Funny you must say there are so many of us that have low self esteem. I have seen people who think so highly of themselves. ;)

    • midget38 profile image

      Michelle Liew 4 years ago from Singapore

      If we believe that we are lacking in things....we attract that, and we WILL be lacking. The best is to accept who we are, build on strengths and slowly correct the weaknesses. Thanks for giving me something to think about this evening! Shared!

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Thank you Carol! I am so happy that I have reached a point in my life where self-image is not a controlling factor in my life. And you are very welcome for the mention; I didn't realize that I had not linked it to your site until I posted it; now I've taken care of that little problem. :)

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Alex, thank you so much for some great reflections. There is no doubt we are being manipulated by the media and by corporations, and sadly, many fall for it. I know I did when I was younger, and I know many of my friends who have done the same. Isn't it grand when we reach the point where we don't play those games any longer?

      Thank you very much for adding some great points to this discussion, and as always, thank you for your loyal following.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Innerspin, if you reached that point in your twenties then you are light years ahead of where I was. :) Good for you and yes, I agree, this should be taught in schools. Far too many young people go through life confused and sad because they don't fit in with the crowd.

      Thank you my friend!

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Pooja, thank you....I love your line about disrespecting ourselves when we try to be like others. So true! As for Bev, well, she is one in a million and I am a very lucky man!

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Michele, you are so right! We try to compare ourselves to the perfect people on tv and it is impossible to do....we will never be one of them and we shouldn't want to be. It is indeed a very good thing when we accept who we are. Thank you Michele!

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Jo, I love that...."I quite like old Jo." Great line and good for you; I quite like her too. :)

      Thank you!

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Dabble, I am not fooled by those people at all, especially the very loud ones. I think they are every bit as insecure as the rest of us; they just shout so people don't realize it. :) thank you!

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Michelle, it threw me off when you said "this evening." lol It will always seem strange to me that I am communicating with people around the world. Thank you my friend, and I wish you a great evening.

    • Barbara Kay profile image

      Barbara Kay Badder 4 years ago from USA

      Excellent article as always. I think liking yourself and knowing who you really are takes some maturity, but yes some of us older folks still wish we didn't have the wrinkles and gray hair. I'll try to take your words to heart and be nicer to myself.

    • btrbell profile image

      Randi Benlulu 4 years ago from Mesa, AZ

      Another great one! Not that I expected less! Yes, it is a sad message we receive from society (I have spent sometime on my other website on this very subject) Hope fully there will be more and more people like you spreading the word thta it's ok to be ourselves. I will say that I really like the Dove campaign as a role model for girls and young women. Thank you for this, Bill! Have a wonderful day!

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Randi, without tv I don't know about the Dove campaign, but if you like it then it must be good. I just wish the companies did not spend so much time manipulating young kids and in effect encouraging their low self-esteem.

      Thank you my friend; I hope you are having a great day in Mesa!

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Barbara, I agree, maturity helps greatly. As for wrinkles....I don't know....part of that isn't a lack of self-esteem....I think part of it is tied into the fact that wrinkles remind us that our days are numbered. :) At least that's what I think about when I pay attention to my "laugh lines." Thank you!

    • btrbell profile image

      Randi Benlulu 4 years ago from Mesa, AZ

      This is not self promotion so I hope it is ok to post a link here. I think you will enjoy it and what it stands for. i appreciate your high opinion!

      http://www.dove.us/Social-Mission/campaign-for-rea...

    • xstatic profile image

      Jim Higgins 4 years ago from Eugene, Oregon

      One of your best Bill! We all hear that little voice that says, "what the hell is the matter with you." I took a mens' self esteem class offered by a counselor I went to after a divorce from a woman I'd spent eighteen years with, and the class taught me a lot about myself. It is good to read a reminder though. We all need affirmations from ourselves.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Randi, I love it....real women...what a concept! I am quite impressed that a corporation would travel down that road. I hope that campaign has been successful. It certainly speaks to this hub and the message, doesn't it? Thanks for sharing that.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Xstatic, thank you and yes, we all need affirmation. We really are a very fragile race, aren't we? I know I'll have moments that come out of nowhere when I feel l'm less than I should be. Weird!

      Anyway, thank you for your kind words.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Poolman, I was holding off on this one so I could give you the time it deserved. Thank you for a great comment, as you always leave, and you have added an interesting avenue of thought.

      Yes, we all do wear different hats, and different expectations go along with each hat. To a certain extent, the only hat I wear now is that of a father, although as I gain more time on HubPages, I feel the need to put on a hat as a mentor to new writers. As long as I keep my expectations for myself realistic then I'm fine. It's when I start thinking I'm capable of more than realistic goals that I start thinking that I am failing. I am, my friend, my own worst critic and judge. :)

      Thank you and I hope you are doing well in Arizona!

      bill

    • Trinity M profile image

      Trinity M 4 years ago

      One of the things I love most about getting older is that in small ways I’m also getting wiser! :) When I was younger I hated my crooked teeth, short-sightedness, freckles and chubby knees; now I’m a grown woman, with great teeth, perfect eyes, freckles, chubby knees and a husband who loves me more today than on the day we met. The best part though is that I love me more than I used to and because of that I am a better, self-actualised woman.

      As always your writing is not only thought provoking it is insightful and uplifting. Great job my dear friend. Hugs to you always. :)

    • rcrumple profile image

      Rich 4 years ago from Kentucky

      Bill - Without self worth comes frustration for sure. If one's not happy with themselves, they can't be happy with anything. That's a major problem in today's world. All this politically correct crap and the images you see around you depict perfect people. We're not perfect, none of us. Even the models hate their bodies and constantly seek out flaws in their appearance to have plastic surgery on. If God would've wanted everyone to be perfect, he'd of made us all look alike and not given us the ability to lose or gain weight. We we can't accept that, we're actually saying that God didn't know what he was doing when he created us. Take that to the pearly gates and see how far it gets you! lol I'm me and you're you, thank goodness we're not the same. If you got up one morning and saw me in the mirror, you'd freak out (just like I do, lol). Great Job, my friend!

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Trinity, I literally smiled when I saw I had a comment from you. You are missed my dear, and I think of you often and send you warm thoughts. Isn't it wonderful to reach that point in life when you are simply comfortable in your own skin? And isn't it wonderful to have a mate who supports and loves you? Life is so good, Trinity!

      Thank you dear one!

      bill

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Rich....lmao! Great point my friend; this is how God intended us to look, so who are we to argue with that? It makes no sense and yet it is happening more now than ever before. Self worth....it's a bitch to attain sometimes, but man oh man, it is well worth having.

      Thank you Rich; I greatly appreciate you!

    • LauraGSpeaks profile image

      LauraGSpeaks 4 years ago from Raleigh, NC

      billybuc, you are becoming one of my favorite hubbers! I love your down-to-earth style of writing and your true messages. Your description of your wife, Bev, is nothing short of beautiful.

    • vox vocis profile image

      Jasmine 4 years ago

      Self-worth really does come from within. If you don't appreciate yourself, nobody else will. And, if nobody appreciates you, including yourself, then you're in trouble. I had self-esteem problems myself when I was younger, especially as a teenager, but today, although I know I'm not perfect, I'm satisfied with myself because I'm the best me I can ever be :) Love your encouraging hubs!

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Laura, thank you so much! I'm a pretty simple guy; I know what I believe to be true, and I try to share those beliefs in a conversational manner. I appreciate your kind words and Bev is truly my greatest gift!

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Vox, I love to hear that people are happy with who they are. Hooray for you and I.....and thank you so much for the visit.

    • Ruchi Urvashi profile image

      Ruchi Urvashi 4 years ago from Singapore

      Very wisely written. I also suffered low self esteem and confusion during my teens and even 20s. After I started going to church, things began to improve. Now, I am out of low self esteem issues and I have healthy self esteem. I think good self esteem helps to protect oneself from dangers and making wrong decisions too. When we are confident and self assured, we tend to think wisely and take good decisions for ourselves as well as for our love ones. It is really important for today generations.

    • Relationshipc profile image

      Kari 4 years ago from Alberta, Canada

      Yep, I am perfect just the way I am. Inspirational message billy, hope it hits home with a lot of people.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Relationship, I am so happy to see you write that; what a great testament...yes, you are perfect just the way you are. :) thank you!

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Ruchi, I could not agree more; good self-esteem is so important in making wise decisions. Very good comment my friend, and thank you!

    • lrc7815 profile image

      Linda Crist 4 years ago from Central Virginia

      I'm so late I thought I would never find the open comment box. lol

      What a great read. Self examination and acceptance are huge challenges for most of us but when you get there, you can't believe it took so long. It's good place to be. I remember a time when I literally thought I was invisible. I thought I was not even worthy of people gossiping about me. When I finally realized that people gossip whether you are worthy or not, it was a major milestone. This piece was a nice reminder to look in the mirror once in a a while and deal with it. :-)

      Another terrific piece of advice and writing my friend.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Linda, thank you and you are oh, so kind! I felt better about this one than the ones I've done of late. You know how once in awhile you feel like you are going stale, that everything you write sounds the same? That's been me of late, so this hub felt better for whatever reason.

      Anyway, I see you have a new one waiting for me, so off I go.

      Thanks; I truly do appreciate your friendship.

      bill

    • janshares profile image

      Janis Leslie Evans 4 years ago from Washington, DC

      billybuc, this is incredible. It's such a personal and touching piece. You share your experience with a blend of vulnerability and wisdom that I admire. I watched the video as well. I wish we could sit down and talk more about it as it is at the core of all that ails my clients, your students, all who are recovering, and all who are unhappy. I think that the answer lies somewhere in the untapped proliferation of child neglect and abuse, benign neglect, and lack of a child receiving validation that they are worthy. Sorry for the soapbox but you pulled it out of me :-) Voted up, beautiful, and awesome.

    • lrc7815 profile image

      Linda Crist 4 years ago from Central Virginia

      Bill, the one you're about to read of mne is one of those "feeling stale" ones so yes, I do understand. Sometimes it's more "us" that we need to address, isn't it? I personally really loved this one and send the appreciation for our friendship right back to you.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Thank you Linda! That helped. :)

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Jan, you can soapbox any old time you feel like it; my site is open to all comers, as long as they are respectful, and that certainly describes you.

      I truly don't know, but your theories are as sound as any I have heard. I'm adopted and I believe that has something to do with the lack of self-esteem early on for me. It's that old abandonment issue that seems to always be hiding in the corners of my mind, or at least did when I was younger.

      Anyway, if you ever find yourself in Olympia, I'll be more than happy to buy you a coffee and talk all you want about this. :) Thank you!

    • toknowinfo profile image

      toknowinfo 4 years ago

      Hi Bill, I really enjoyed this hub and I enjoyed watching your video. You taught high school in the late 1970's, and that is when I went to high school. When I think back to my high school days, I had a mixture of low self esteem and also feeling comfortable with who I was. With maturity, being comfortable with who I am became more dominant, and I feel lucky for it. Maturity teaches us that life is not what we aren't but what we are. Because there are many more things we are not. And we and everything around us, exist for what we are, otherwise what is there? Another thing I learned, is that no one is good at everything and everyone is good at something. All of this fits in with your statement about the uniqueness we all possess. And there is one other thing I would like to add. Often people let others choose their value, their self worth. But many times we don't pre-qualify who we let make these judgments about us. After all, works of art, fine diamonds, and the value of anything can only truly be judged by someone who is an expert in that painting, or that diamond. I can't tell the difference between a diamond and a cubic zirconia. Who is really an expert in another person, so why would we let another person's opinion about us matter?

    • ChristyWrites profile image

      Christy Birmingham 4 years ago from British Columbia, Canada

      A beautiful read about such an important topic Bill. I was sad as I read what you thought to yourself as a boy. I am glad you have gained confidence. Some days I struggle and have self-doubt. Your hub gives me strength, thank-you.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Christy, it takes what it takes; for me, I had to grow into maturity and self-confidence. It doesn't happen overnight but it sure is worth the journey. Thank you my friend; I am happy if my writing helps you in any way.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Rhonda, I like your comment about letting other people choose our value for us. Very insightful and very true. I think it just takes time for many of us. Sadly, there are those who never reach that point and are forever viewing themselves by a set of standards that are impossible to live by.

      Thank you my friend!

    • janshares profile image

      Janis Leslie Evans 4 years ago from Washington, DC

      Thanks for sharing that, you're right. And thank you for the invite.

    • always exploring profile image

      Ruby Jean Fuller 4 years ago from Southern Illinois

      I think it takes a little age for people to grasp the knowledge to love yourself. What some see as beauty, others find false and would never venture into the cosmetic world. Joan Rivers is a good example of over- kill. It appears she can hardly smile, her facial skin has been streatched so tight. Great topic Bill..Cheers

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Anytime Jan! :)

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Thank you Ruby and you are right of course; I hate seeing what some people do to themselves. Sigh! Well, we'll try to help one person at a time, right? :)

    • Mhatter99 profile image

      Martin Kloess 4 years ago from San Francisco

      I shared with you the story of the funeral I performed for a man whose only accomplishment was the funeral.

    • Faith Reaper profile image

      Faith Reaper 4 years ago from southern USA

      Excellent write dear one.

      When I was younger I did not have confidence in myself due to my environment, but then as I matured of course all of that changed, as I found my true self. You know me, I believe we are all beautiful in our own unique way as that is how He created us in His own image, whether that is lovely on the outside or not, in the eyes of the world view. It is the heart that determines that true beauty, especially when one can see one's love for others overflowing out of it - nothing more beautiful than that to me.

      Voted Way up, up, up.

      In His Love, Faith Reaper

    • Dancing Water profile image

      Dancing Water 4 years ago

      Thank you for a beautiful hub that delineates the way our society fosters self- hatred. Your personal story is candid and poignant as well. I so agree with you. Everyone is so very beautiful! I love to look beneath the surface of each and individual I meet, and discover the beauty that dwells in the spirit. Once again, Bill, you touch us all with your wisdom and compassion. You are such a gift to the world! Blessings always, Reba

    • fpherj48 profile image

      Paula 4 years ago from Beautiful Upstate New York

      Again...... I feel your disappointment in such little traffic. I don't know how you will fix this.

      In any event, bill.....BRAVO, Mr. Holland...and Amen to Dr. Wayne Dyer (I've met him twice and had nice conversations with him, btw) Really nice guy, just as he portrays himself to be.

      You will be happy to know that I am into embracing myself....I'm a hugger anyway......I try to keep my weight down, for the sole purpose of being able to give myself a big bear hug......and yes, I know that you are not speaking of a LITERAL embrace, bill...but you know me. Always gotta be an annoying brat!....Great hub....UP+++ Look...I can always try to recruit people to come to your site...I'll try.

    • Jordanwalker39 profile image

      Jordanwalker39 4 years ago from GA

      You did a wonderful job taking me on a journey. I think that your answer for self worth is the best I have ever come across. Thank you.

    • shiningirisheyes profile image

      Shining Irish Eyes 4 years ago from Upstate, New York

      Although I continue to struggle with self esteem, mine are more related to

      "I made a fool of myself" or "I just said a stupid thing" type. I will say I've met some beautiful people who quickly turned rather ugly once they opened their mouth.

      I find my self esteem improves with age. I have no problem leaving the house without makeup or my hair quaffed.

      Although when the dog pulled my pants down and there was my "have a nice Day" smiling symbol on the underwear my esteem took a bit of a hit! LOL ( I recover quite well as I am used to it and have learned to laugh at myself)

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Martin, indeed, a rather sketchy life! :( Thank you!

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Faith, it comes as no surprise that you understand this hub quite well. You are a breath of fresh air each and every time you visit. Peace and happiness to you my dear lady.

      bill

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Reba, thank you so much! There were days, obviously, when I did not think I was a gift for anyone. Now I understand and I see, and I celebrate each and every person that I meet. Life is good my friend.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Paula, if you have the spare time, I would really appreciate you getting the word out. It's lonely on HP when nobody visits or comments. :) Yes, you are a brat, but a lovable one, so here is a big bear hug to you, and give yourself one for extra measure, and thank you as always!

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Jordan, that journey was over some rough roads, but it was all so worth it. Thank you Sir!

    • Dexter Yarbrough profile image

      Dexter Yarbrough 4 years ago from United States

      Billybuc! Another great hub! Unfortunately, a lot of people succumb to the Madison Avenue, media driven image of what we are supposed to be like.

      Be true to self and the beauty within will outshine any and all outward appearances!

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Beckie, I will forever regret not seeing that Kodak moment. Sigh! I will have to be satisfied with my imagination I'm afraid. Thank you my friend; you are a joy to know and I wish you a wonderful day.

      bill

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Dexter, I learned early on that even Madison Ave. couldn't help this face. LOL Thank you my friend; I appreciate your visit and hope you are well in Chicago!

    • fpherj48 profile image

      Paula 4 years ago from Beautiful Upstate New York

      I tried recruiting.....they want money. You're outta luck, buddy. I'm broke.

    • profile image

      lovedoctor926 4 years ago

      Hi Billy; I am a Libra and perceptive too. I agree. Self worth must come from within. I like your writing style

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      LOL....that's okay, Paula, you tried! Thanks buddy!

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Love, thank you very much; we Libras always stick together. :)

    • ishwaryaa22 profile image

      Ishwaryaa Dhandapani 4 years ago from Chennai, India

      A well-said hub! We all should happily accept ourselves for who we are and never try to be someone or emulate others. At one point of time, most of us go through temporary periods of low self-esteem and gradually gain our confidence. Even I suffered from low self-esteem long ago and thankfully, I came out of this problem. Good to know that now you are full of confidence and happiness. Your note about your Bev is sweet. Well-done!

      Thanks for SHARING. Useful & Interesting. Voted up

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Ishwaryaa, you are so very kind! Thank you for being who you are. At such a young age, you are so wise, and I mean that sincerely. Bless you my friend!

    • Melovy profile image

      Yvonne Spence 4 years ago from UK

      I liked the title of this hub Bill, so even though I probably should be writing this month's hubs or replying to comments, instead I am stopping by read this and to say that I like it! I have just finished reading an astonishing book, "Dying to be Me," by Anita Moorjani, who was admitted to hospital in a coma and dying of cancer but who a few days later was and about with doctors no longer able to find any trace of cancer in her cells. What happened in between was that during a near-death experience she experienced unconditional love (or she describes it as realising that she was unconditional love.) She writes that if we all fully loved ourselves exactly as we are that there would be no more war or unkindness towards others, and I can't help but think she's right.

      By embracing ourselves we embrace others.

      Great hub.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Yvonne, what an incredible book and comment. I love that....by embracing ourselves we embrace others. There is nothing more for me to add to that. Thank you for that, and thank you for taking the time to read my hub when you had so much to do.

    • rajan jolly profile image

      Rajan Singh Jolly 4 years ago from From Mumbai, presently in Jalandhar,INDIA.

      If only we embrace ourselves the way we are and are satisfied with who we are, happiness would fill our hearts. But looking looking around I wonder how many of us really feel good about ourselves. And I'm talking not only of individuals but of as countries as well.

      Your hub hits the nail right on the head Bill.

      Voted up and awesome.

    • tammyswallow profile image

      Tammy 4 years ago from North Carolina

      I think self acceptance is something that comes with age. I think it is hard for young people to master because of the peer pressure and because teens are just mean. I am a take it or leave it kind of person. One of the best lessons I ever learned was that I am not going to be liked by everyone. Excellent hub! Oh, and libras are some of the easiest people in the world to get along with. :)

    • profile image

      Sueswan 4 years ago

      Hi Bill,

      I am one who believes in being true and accepting one's self. I agree with Tammy that self acceptance is something that comes with age. I am comfortable in my own skin at the age of 53. I could not say the same thing when I was a teenager.

      Voted up and away

      Sharing

      Take care :)

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Rajan, that is an incredible piece of wisdom....countries, I believe, can have a collective shame about themselves. Very nice my friend, and I agree!

      Thank you Rajan; you are appreciated!

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Tammy, I agree about teens....as a teacher I saw some pretty serious cruelty....and then hopefully people grow out of it. Well, most people grow out of it! :) We Libras thank you! :)

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Thank you Sue and it's always nice to see you! I agree of course; it takes time to get comfortable with who we are....thank God we finally get there. :)

    • teaches12345 profile image

      Dianna Mendez 4 years ago

      Bev has a natural beauty that all women would love to possess. From what I read, Bill, you have found who you are and are living a life of happiness. Truly you are a blessed man.

    • ImKarn23 profile image

      Karen Silverman 4 years ago

      omg..i read your stuff, Bill and i DO NOT know where to begin commenting so i'll start where you said: ' I am perfect just the way i am" and - YOUare SO not a 'dweeb'!

      Why does it not surprise me in any way that we share the sign of libra!

      Those goddamned scales of justice have been driving me crazy my entire life - wanting to single-handedly balance them...LOL..

      One thing i must add is that libra is the only sign that is governed by only one 'goddess' - Venus - whereas all others have at least 2. Because venus is the goddess of love - libras are also known to be the most sensual sign in the zodiac...(just the facts, folks, nothin' but the facts...lol)..

      I 'feel' your vibe, my friend - if i may age myself by saying so...

      Namastexx

      up and out, naturally...

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Dianna, there is much truth in your comment....I am a blessed man. :) Thank you!

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Leslie, you are definitely going back in history with "I feel your vibe." lol Thank you kindly young lady! As for sensual.....well, it is much too early in the morning for me to even attempt to comment on that statement. :)

      Balancing those damn scales can be a full-time job for sure; wears me out at times.

      Thank you so much my friend!

    • kidikirous1 profile image

      kidikirous1 4 years ago

      Good one, life can be heaven or hell...your choice!

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Kidikirous, you put it exactly right....our choice! Thank you!

    • HLPhoenix profile image

      HLPhoenix 4 years ago

      Self Esteem ...a truly important Hub, and an elusive goal. Over a lifetime I have had it lost it and found it again ... but without it, true happiness cannot be found. Not one for Zodiac signs, I usually don't read articles invoking them... I'm glad I read this one.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      HLPhoenix, in truth I am not much for the zodiac either, and I'm glad you stopped by with a great comment. Thank you!

    • profile image

      lovedoctor926 4 years ago

      Great video. I can relate to this girl so much. I've felt like an outcast myself since I was never part of the popular clique in middle school and high-school. Some people even referred to me as a nerd even though I never wore glasses. It took a lot of work for me as well. I finally got over this stage. I no longer feel the need to prove myself to others. At this stage of my life, I am a confident person. I have talents, skills and abilities. I now see challenges as opportunities to grow. The mirror exercise is a very useful tool. Your hubs are excellent and a good tool. I usually come back and revisit.

    • Armchair Builder profile image

      Michael Luckado 4 years ago from Hawaii

      It's interesting. I just read and commented on your Hub about living life to the fullest each day. And then while scanning all of the articles here landed on this one without noticing it was you. Apparently you struck a nerve. Thanks again.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Armchair, it's good to see you back. :) Whatever the reason for your sudden appearance, I am grateful.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Love, that means a lot to me, that you come back and revisit. I write to make human connections, and to find the commonalities in all of us. I love comments like this one; I was a nerd as well, and not widely accepted, and it feels so good now, at this stage of my life, to love myself and be confident.

      Thank you my friend!

    • Jamie Brock profile image

      Jamie Brock 4 years ago from Texas

      Great hub, Bill.. I often do get discouraged with how our society focuses so much on physical attributes.. it's everywhere.. kids are almost automatically programed to believe that it's what is on the outside that's important. Makes me kinda sick actually when I think about it. Can you tell I'm a little resentful?LOL! Love the message in this hub.. please keep going. The world needs more people like you :)

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Jamie, you are spoiling me today; three hubs in one day and my head is swelling from the attention! :) Thank you my kind friend and yes, there was a bit of resentment in your tone. LOL Seriously, it is an important message; I wish I could somehow get every kid to understand this.

    • Jamie Brock profile image

      Jamie Brock 4 years ago from Texas

      Hehe... I am trying to catch up on my email digests.. I tend to let them pile up so I'm always trying to go through and see what I missed from the past week or so.. anyway, I enjoy your hubs very much- to me it's almost like going to a meeting.. your hubs help to "plug" me back into that Power that I forget that I need so much. Hope you are having a great night and until the next hub :)

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Well, Jamie, I do appreciate it! I'm quite certain much of my writing style comes from meetings....maybe not my voice, but the message most definitely.

      I will have a wonderful evening; now I need to go make dinner for Bev and I; she's had a long, tough day. :) I hope your evening in Texas is equally wonderful.

    • Pamela99 profile image

      Pamela Oglesby 4 years ago from United States

      Very upbeat message! Accepting yourself just as you are is a big relief, as I've made that change also. My faith helps me with that as God don't make no junk! Hollywood tells women they all have to be a size 0, which is so unrealistic for most women. Poor self esteem is a huge problem in this country and it is sad. It is important to raise children with good self esteem and not that difficult if they are disciplined correctly, without name calling, etc. This is an outstanding hub. Bev sounds like a gem and you had better hang onto her!

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Pamela, I had a sponsor in AA who used to say the same thing....God don't make no junk! I smiled when I read your comment. Thank you, and believe me, I am holding onto Bev with both hands and a prayer. :)

    • fpherj48 profile image

      Paula 4 years ago from Beautiful Upstate New York

      Mr. Holland... Do you never check your email?

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Paula, we were gone for four hours, but I just checked and I didn't see anything from you...what am I looking for?

    • Lady_E profile image

      Elena 4 years ago from London, UK

      ~Aaawh that was beautiful to read. You're a lucky guy. I love the way your parents encouraged you and brilliant to know you later grew in confidence. Thanks for sharing.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Elena, I am a lucky man! I was given all the tools and all the love I could ever hope for. Thank you kind lady; you are greatly appreciated.

    • Eiddwen profile image

      Eiddwen 4 years ago from Wales

      Oh where do these comments end ???I was asking myself!!! Can see why there are so many though.

      Wow great hubs my friend and talking of self-worth it is not something that anyone can give us it is something we have to find for ourselves;if we are lacking that is. Which I was for many a year but not anymore.

      Your writing finds its way into hearts and soothes many I am sure. Such a natural writer;such a natural person and a wonderful friend.

      I am voting across the board and sharing. Have a wonderful day my very dear friend.

      Eddy.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Eddy, there are days when I am blown away by the number of comments that I receive. I am about as grateful as a writer can be. Thank you my dear friend! Wishing you a wonderful day!

      love,

      billy

    • bravewarrior profile image

      Shauna L Bowling 4 years ago from Central Florida

      Before I begin, I must tell you, my brother is a Libra and very talented artist. He is an old soul and will cry for you, give you the shirt off his back, even if that's all he has, in order to alleviate the suffering of his fellow man.

      Now, back to your message. I am thankful that I have relinquished vanity and replaced it with acceptance. My body is what it has become in my mid fifties. It is no longer my 'selling' point. However, what I've discovered is, Shauna is pretty phenominal, regardless of her outward appearance. I am beautiful where it counts. Those that don't want to see beneath the skin are not worthy of my tremendous self! That's not being conceited, as I have finally gotten off that train. It is being real and I like me!

      Awesome, awesome hub my friend!!!

      All my love,

      Sha

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Sha, those of us who have gotten to know you know what an incredible person you are...loving, compassionate, passionate about life.....I'm on your team all the way.

      love always,

      bill

    Click to Rate This Article