I’ve been thinking and learning a great deal in recent months about becoming more self-confident, authentic and empowered. There are quite a few terms used in articles about personal growth and transformation. These include things such as values, self-validation, authenticity, self-awareness, self-confidence and self-belief. I decided to write down my own definitions and I thought you might find the list helpful.
My goal is to live in alignment with my values, have faith and confidence in myself, be self-reliant and have control over my own future. I also want to trust in my own opinion of myself, rather than what other people think.
I’d love to know if you find this useful, or if you agree with my definitions.
Self-validation is the process of being aware of your own thoughts and feelings, then accepting them and what caused them in a positive way. It means always supporting and encouraging yourself, rather than being self-critical. For instance, if you are upset or angry about something, you might say to yourself, “No wonder you feel like that, after what happened.” By doing this, you’re learning to be your own best friend. You’re becoming self-reliant and not being affected by what other people think.
Values are those principles you believe are important and fundamental to the way you live your life. They might include things such as honesty, loyalty, responsibility, creativity, health and fitness, integrity, simplicity, independence and integrity. There are, of course, many more of them. You should try to work out your own core values and live in alignment with them.
An authentic person lives in a way that is consistent with their core values and beliefs. They are accepting of themselves and understand their own motivations. They are realistic, genuine, and able to learn from their own mistakes. They don’t appear to be a fake or trying to live someone else’s version of who they should be.
Self-reliance is being independent and looking after yourself, rather than relying on other people. This includes being responsible for your own financial and household affairs and having your own career so that you can support yourself. You should be fully involved in making decisions and plans. If you’ve allowed someone else to take over aspects of your life, then make it a personal project to take back control – and acquire the skills needed to do this.
Self-awareness is having a good understanding of yourself, able to look at yourself objectively and think about your goals, plans and priorities. You then have the confidence to make positive changes and improvements to your life.
Empowerment is taking control of your own life and making positive choices. It involves being self-aware, knowing your strengths and weaknesses, setting realistic goals and fulfilling your potential. An empowered person does not undervalue their true abilities.
Becoming evolved means leading a simpler, happier and more productive life. It starts with a fresh look at yourself. You commit to something, take control of your own future and work towards achieving your goals. You spend time on the things that are important to you and take on new challenges. You care about others but don’t compare yourself to them or try to compete with them. You are only focused on your own development.
Self-belief is having a positive feeling about yourself, knowing that you are capable of achieving many things. It includes having confidence in your own appearance, social skills, abilities and judgement. It’s also having motivation and resilience. To improve your self-belief, improve your skills and encourage yourself. But, most importantly, have a positive vision of yourself and don’t be self-critical or negative.
Self-confidence is feeling secure and assured about your abilities to achieve or do certain things. You may feel confident in some situations and not others. It generally relates to how you interact with the world.
Self-esteem is your inner sense of personal value and worth. Some people may appear extremely self-confident but may have very low self-esteem. They will rarely feel good about their achievements, no matter how successful they appear. Others may lack confidence in something, but because they have good self-esteem they will be willing to try it. If they don’t succeed, they will still feel good about themselves. The ideal situation would be to have both self-confidence and good self-esteem.
Self-actualisation is becoming a fulfilled human being living up to their maximum potential. This involves developing the skills needed in all areas of your life. It can be thought of as the ultimate goal of education.
Self-care is making an effort to maintain or improve your health, well-being and happiness. It includes things like having a healthy diet, keeping fit, personal grooming, having medical checks, relaxing, having fun, socialising and improving your own mental and psychological health. An important part of this is setting boundaries with other people and organising your own activities so that you can allocate some time for self-care. In other words, don’t neglect this aspect of your life.
Let me know if you have any thoughts about authenticity, becoming self-reliant and having good self-esteem.
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