I recently read a very encouraging article titled How to Become Women and Men of Unlimited Self-Esteem written by SGI-USA General Director Danny Nagashima. I’ve always lacked self-confidence and self-esteem and I really try to work on this aspect of myself whenever I can. Self-confidence and self-esteem (or lack of) has a lot to do with why I find it so difficult to talk to other people. I am easily intimidated. Yet the title of this article is telling me how to become a woman of unlimited self-esteem. How wonderful! Given the anger and negativity I sometimes feel about my circumstances, this was the perfect advice for me to read.
Danny Nagashima writes (paraphrased):
The obstacles we face are the answer to our prayer. We need to confront our feelings of self-doubt and self-loathing by valuing our own lives and appreciating that our self-worth has nothing to do with anyone else validating us. Appreciate everything in your lives – your flaws, your accomplishments, your defeats and losses, your victories, and everything you have created – everything that makes you unique and wonderful. All your sufferings, problems, and heartaches will be exactly what we need to share our experiences and to encourage and inspire others. Not achieving a goal we have set out to accomplish is a manifestation deep down of your feelings of fear, that you are not good enough, that you don’t have it in you. We must believe in our own Buddha (enlightened) nature, and praise our wonderful lives. Trust that you have everything you need for your own happiness.
I feel this article is especially relevant to women and in my case, women writers. I’ve been dealing with negative and insulting voices in my head for quite awhile, so I really need to be able to build myself up and not give in to their negativity. Especially when it is very personal. Now I know not to listen to what I hear, but this was not always the case. I often believed what the evil voices said, even though it could not have been further from the truth. The voices capitalized on my own self-doubt and negativity, exaggerating and making me believe I was a horrible person. In reality, it is the complete opposite.
Now, when I chant and pray to become a woman of unlimited self-esteem, I feel very happy. I am not angry and I don’t feel the need to judge others. In a society where other people, especially women are judged so harshly, having a plentiful supply of self-esteem is invaluable.