Self-esteem

Having self-esteem means feeling good about yourself.  It means you feel worthy of happiness, health, love and forgiveness.  When you have a healthy level of self-esteem you have a strong sense of your personal power.  Then, and only then, can you move forward positively in your life.

When your self-esteem isn’t it tact, it has been diminished by constant reminders that you are worthless, useless and nobody wants you, you feel frightened and vulnerable.  You are open to the challenges life brings but as they breeze in they knock you over and you feel incapable.

To rebuild your self-esteem and ultimately your self-confidence, you have to examine your beliefs about who you are and remind yourself daily of your talents, your qualities and your abilities.  You must dare to question your direction in life and learn to dream again.  And, by taking some very gentle baby steps you will being to rebuild your foundation again and build your self-esteem and confidence on that foundation.

One of the first ways to begin this process is to stop worrying about what other people think of you.  What other people think of you is none of your business.  Let them think whatever they like.

What you will usually find is that other people are far more worried about what you think of them to even begin to think about what they think of you.

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You are human.  All human beings make mistakes and we usually recover.  From now on I want you to do what is right for YOU, regardless of what other people think.

I want you to take personal responsibility for your role in each and every situation you face in your life.  Understand that your thinking and your attitude create your life.

Consider how you respond to people and situations.  Look at how you can change your responses to put you in control of your life – NOW.

You can’t change other people, but you can change your response to them.

One of the very steps to rebuilding your self-esteem is to let go of the past.  By holding on to negative and angry feelings and emotions you are the only person who is suffering.  It is like picking up a burning coal to throw at something and not letting go.  The longer you hold on to it, the more you are burned.

Learn to forgive yourself for your mistakes. As I said, we are all human.  You are doing the best that you can.

Set yourself free to move your life forward.  Don’t allow past mistakes to weigh you down.

the past

Another thing to let go of is perfection.  Accept yourself as you are, now in this moment. Life is a huge learning curve and you are doing the best that you can with the resources, knowledge and insights that you have.

By judging yourself as imperfect you are removing your opportunity to grow, learn and experience happiness in your life.

Gently nurture yourself, as you would a small child.  Accept that others can make mistakes and are imperfect too.

Don’t compare yourself to other people.  Drop your expectation of others having to be perfect. We are all human with human imperfections.

Choose not to scream at yourself or condemn yourself for perceiving you are stupid or for not being perfect.

Be kind, gentle and patient with yourself in all situations.  Quieten that harsh voice that is terrorising your mind.  Know that you can deal with much more than you think.

Try one or more of the following:

Is there anything you enjoyed as a child – drawing, painting, dancing, singing for instance – that you would love to experience again, but the fear of being not good enough stops you from doing it? What is it?

If you were to suggest to a friend something they could do to treat themselves, what would that be? Would you like that treat yourself?

What would really make you jump for joy if you were to allow yourself the opportunity to experience it?

What would you love to treat yourself to that you can afford – however you have never allowed yourself to go for it?

Make a list of five tiny little treats that would allow you to enjoy your days more.

If anything you have read resonates with you, let me know.

Maggie Currie

maggieheart
Professional Transformational Coach, Consultant
Founder of MAGGIE CURRIE COACHING

Website:       http://www.maggiecurrie.co.uk

Facebook:    https://www.facebook.com/maggielifecoach/

Email:            hello@maggiecurrie.co.uk

Shopping in charity shops – Is there a stigma?

When you walk along most high streets you will find several charity shops.  There are those that raise funds for animals, those that raise funds for research, those that raise funds to aid people, those that raise funds for a hospice or hospital.  All are for good causes and are usually well supported.

There are many and varied reasons that people donate to charity shops, and equally many and varied reasons why people buy from charity shops.

Let’s take the reasons people donate first.  There are those who donate their items because they no longer want or use them and they feel there is life left in them. They feel that they could be used and enjoyed for a few more years by someone else.

There are those who donate their items because they don’t work, are broken or have pieces missing. They would rather do that and let the charity shop dispose of it than take it to the tip or put it in the dustbin themselves.  They may feel they are doing someone a favour, but in fact the charity shop ends up having to pay someone to take these items away.

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Now let’s take the reasons buy from charity shops.  There are those who buy from charity shops because the items are priced at much below usual retail prices. They have a budget to spend on clothes, shoes etc., and find they get good value buying in a charity shop.  There are those who buy from charity shops to support their preferred charity.  There are those who buy from charity shops to buy upmarket items at a reduced price so they feel and look good but would never admit they bought the items in a charity shop. I am sure there are many more reasons too.

Whatever the reasons, more people will buy from a charity shop that looks clean, is bright and inviting, is laid out properly and has friendly staff.

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I saw a news item on the television the other evening explaining how a company is upcycling shop fittings that have been thrown in the skip or are no longer required to refit charity shops.  The results are amazing in that shops that were previously cramped and dour looking, are now able to display their items to their best advantage and thus sales have increased.  Additionally, the refitted charity shops have reported that their donations are of higher quality now than before the refit.

I would rather go into a bright and cheerful, well laid out shop than one that is crowded, cramped and often smelly.

I can’t see anything wrong with buying second hand clothes or items.  I remember there used to be shops in Carnaby Street in the 1960’s where second hand clothes were sold and it was the fashionable thing to do, so it is nothing new. These day, there are, of course, costumes and festival clothes for sale both at festivals and in the surrounding areas to enhance the festival experience.

Getting our lives back after divorce

Is there a stigma attached to buying items from a charity shop?  In some people’s eyes yes there definitely is, in other people’s eyes no there isn’t, and of course there are those who don’t know.

The charity shops fill a gap in the market.  They occupy what would otherwise be empty shops.  They employ a manager and give volunteers the opportunity to learn about retail and also give back to the community.

Do you shop in charity shops? I would love to hear your views on this subject.  Get in touch and let me know what you think.

 

Maggie Currie

maggieheart
Consultant, Coach, Author
Founder of MAGGIE CURRIE COACHING

Website:       http://www.maggiecurrie.co.uk

Facebook:    https://www.facebook.com/Maggie-Currie-Coaching-527886050648208/?ref=hl
Email:            hello@maggiecurrie.co.uk

Improve your body language, improve your confidence!

The way that you move your body, and how you walk has an enormous effect on the way that you feel and affects your confidence levels.

Lets start with an exercise.

Imagine there are two people standing in front of you – one with “negative body language” and one with “positive body language”.

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I’d now like you to write down what you are observing with each of these people:

Positive                                                                                                                                        Negative

  • How are they standing?
  • Where are their eyes looking?
  • What position are they holding their head?
  • How are they talking?
  • How are they moving?

How you feel at any moment in time is linked to what is going on in your mind and how you are moving your body. The way that you move sends subconscious messages to your mind and this either helps or hinders the way that you feel.

Emotion is created by motion. If you sit still for a long period of time your natural energy levels automatically get lower. And what happens when you get up, walk around and return to your seat?  Yes, you have more energy and you’re given a boost.

I can’t stress how important it is to move and act confidently and positively. You will give off all the right vibes to everyone around you and it will make them think that you are confident even if you’re not feeling it inside. Yes, that’s right. Even if you’re not feeling confident, act as though you are.

So, how do you do this?

  • Walk swiftly and with a purpose. Don’t saunter along, walk like you know exactly where you are going and when you get there you mean business!
  • Gesture with your hands as you talk, it will create motion and you know what that leads to – EMOTION! The right gestures also have a major impact on building rapport as long as you’re not shaking your fist!
  • All it takes is a smile!  Think for a moment about your confidence role model. One thing that he/she and confident people in general have in common is that they all probably smile a lot and are happier than their negative counterparts. It may sound silly, but there is a lot of power associated with a smile.

Start smiling more often. Now, that doesn’t mean that you have to walk around with a silly grin on your face all of the time. But smile as you walk down the street, when you talk to someone, even when you look in the mirror at yourself. You will be surprised at how much better you will feel for it, and it will project a positive image to all others – one that will attract opportunities and people.

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Remember that confident people are happy people and negative people are not. Happy people are also seen as more attractive than unhappy and sad people so that is an added bonus!

You know, the way that we communicate in our appearance, posture, gesture, gaze and expression can be such a powerful tool in the way that we feel and when communicating with others. The manner in which you communicate and your interpersonal skills are also very important indeed. Effective communication is vital if you are going to succeed no matter what you are doing.

The way in which we communicate with people is broken down into component parts, and it is popularly believed that people to whom we are speaking understand what we say by interpreting these different elements in varying proportions:

VERBAL – 7% of our message is interpreted from the words we use.

VOCAL – 38% is picked up from our voice – speed, tone , pitch, rhythm etc

VISUAL – 55% is what the other person sees – our body language

Please bear the above in mind when you are communicating to people.

If you are ever feeling down, just have a look at your body language and change it immediately. Even if it has to be false – YOU WILL start to feel better and more confident immediately.

First impressions count – notice body language. You can normally tell what others are feeling by the way that they are moving and using their body too. You can use this to your advantage when you are more aware of it.

Maggie Currie

Thought Leader, Coach, Speaker, Author, Survivor
Founder of MAGGIE CURRIE COACHING

maggieheart
Website:       http://www.maggiecurrie.co.uk

Facebook:    https://goo.gl/ZByKGW
Email:            hello@maggiecurrie.co.uk

Your wedding day – do you have to conform?

I have spent many years helping my hubby out at weddings and wedding fairs.  He is a mobile DJ and does a lot of work at weddings, besides all the usual parties for 18th, 21st, 50th birthdays and of course anniversaries. I have been to hundreds of weddings over the past 10 years.

The wedding industry is huge and caters for everything you could possibly think of to help make your day the best day of your life.  There is something for everyone at the wedding fairs – wedding dresses for brides, suits for the grooms and their entourage, dresses for bridesmaids, outfits for page boys, dresses for mothers of the brides.  There are venues, photographers, videographers, photo booths, florists with fresh flowers, florists with silk flowers, decorations for the tables, balloons for arches, makeup artists, hairdressers, barbers, lingerie suppliers, marquees, tableware, furniture, caterers, waiting staff, bars (either dry or wet), dance floors, bands, discos, karaoke – to name but a few.

And one thing I have noticed over the years is that there is a huge amount of pressure on the brides to conform.  I say the brides, although it could equally be the grooms at a same sex wedding.  In general, wedding fairs are organised and aimed at the brides and the mothers of the brides.  Often it is the mother of the bride who has the expectations for a wedding for her daughter.

There is pressure to have the right wedding dress, the right venue, the right wedding breakfast, the right buffet, the right music, the right wine/champagne, to invite the right people and so on.

groom

I have attended many weddings where everything is just the same as the last one.  It all happens in the same order –  a bit like a conveyor belt.  Bride and groom come in one end, perform all the ceremonies, appear at top table, make speeches, cut the cake, do first dance, party and then go off on honeymoon.

And the pressure is on for your wedding to be better than the last one you went to.  Or better than your best friend’s or better than your mother’s best friend’s daughter’s wedding.  And so on.

If what I have described is exactly what you want for your wedding, go ahead and do it.  It may be your dream wedding, the one you have been yearning for since you were five years old.  If that is the case, enjoy your day safe in the knowledge that it is exactly what you want.  After all it is your day.

 But does it have to be that way? No it doesn’t. What if you want something more relaxed, lower key, less pressured, more simple or just completely different?

Go for it!

I have attended a couple of weddings where the whole thing was relaxed.  At one the bride and groom wanted to emulate a beach party.  They hired a hall with a piece of land outside.  The bride and groom wore ‘beach wear’ – she was in a smart, summer dress, he was in casual trousers and Hawaiin type shirt.  The men on the top table had straw hats and light jackets.  The rest of the guests were in smart, casual beach wear.  The table decorations were simple with a circular mirror on each which had pebbles and sand on them, a little candle and that was it.  The table names were all referred to something to do with the sea or the beach.  The food was a hog roast outside, the bar was a trestle table stocked with cans, bottles etc., which the guests helped themselves from.  They all had a great time and were relaxed.

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At another reception, the bride wore a very smart, short dress and the groom wore smart trousers and a jacket.  The guests were all in casual clothes, the food and bar were organised by the family and a great time was had by all.

There was no pressure to conform, no pressure to look the same or better than someone else, no pressure to provide the best food.  They had a perfectly relaxed and enjoyable day.

At another wedding, the couple each had children and grandchildren, they wanted them all to be involved and invited them all to be bridesmaids, ushers, page boys and the day was loosely planned, but they went with the flow.  When the little grandchildren wanted to play, they played.  Once the wedding ceremony was completed, the reception carried on in a way that was good for everyone.  All the formalities were completed and the rest of the time, the party went on with everyone involved.

If you want to be married in the forest by a friend, you may have to do the legal bit first in a Register Office, but you can have the ceremony you want, where you want, with whom you want without the need to compare yourself or your wedding to anyone or anybody else’s.

Why not spend the weekend at a vintage caravan site, hire a small marquee, hire some sound gear and speakers, put on the music from your ipod, get some deckchairs, a barbecue and your friends and have a party outside.  Be relaxed, really enjoy the day and the company.

caravan

Invite the people to your wedding who you really want to be there.  If you don’t want Great Aunt Vi to attend, then don’t invite her.  If you want to have a small wedding with only a handful of guests, do just that.  It is your day. No matter what sort of wedding you have, there is bound to be someone you don’t to be there and who you fear you will offend.  Let them be offended.  It is your day – have the day that you want.

Some people go off to another country to get married on the beach.  The couple go without any guests and enjoy the ceremony on their own terms.  But then they have a party when they come back and invite those they want to help them celebrate.  Do that if you would like.  The reception can be as large or as small as you want.

Remember it is your day.  Have the wedding you want, not what somebody else wants.  If you are happy on your wedding day and everything is as you have planned, you will enjoy it so much more, the memories you create will live with you forever.  Be yourself, have what you want and don’t have what you don’t want forced upon you.

If any of this resonates with you, and you would like some help building your confidence and gaining the courage to stand up for what you really want, get in touch with me and we can have a free 15 minute chat.

 

Maggie Currie

Thought Leader, Coach, Speaker, Author, Survivor
 
Contributor to BBC Radio, Vectis Radio, Susan Rich Radio
Published author and regularly write articles for national and international magazines.
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Find out more about me and my ‘Why’ on my website