A big part of searching for the perfect job, asking for a raise, or applying for a promotion is feeling that you deserve to have it. Deservingness is the hallmark of healthy self-esteem. Feeling deserving means you have an expectation that what you need and ask for will be provided. This is harder than it seems since it involves several elements:
First, do you believe that there are enough good things to go around and are you entitled to your share? If so then you can set aside envy and jealousy because there is no need to feel either. Rather than looking enviously at others, instead, you would notice what others have and decide if you’d like it too. Would having whatever you desire – that great job, the corner office, a higher expense account, a raise - enhance your life and, if so, in what ways? For example, if you desire success, you could discover what leads to success and try it out yourself, using your own unique blend of traits and skills. Trying to be like someone else would not be necessary. Finding success your own way would be the key.
Next, can you accept good things? The January issue of Yoga Journal includes a “wisdom” article by Sally Kempton which encourages being a “wide receiver,” someone who can open their arms and heart to the gifts that life offers. Giving to others is often easier than taking for ourselves, since no one wants to be labeled selfish. Sometimes even accepting a compliment is difficult because it means you feel deserving of the kind words. But giving to self is not selfish. It’s actually your number one job in life – to appreciate the gifts you’ve been given and to use them to gather good things to you, just because you want them, just because you deserve them. That’s not selfish. It’s being proud and grateful.
Finally, practice feeling deserving. Start with simple things like:
· Accept compliments graciously;
· Ask for help when necessary;
· Offer your opinion; and
· Notice what you envy and ask yourself what holds you back from having it.
Remember, there’s enough good things to go around in the world and you’re entitled to your share!
Ellen Diana is a psychologist, author of the Lucky Dreamer Tip Series, and co-author of the Charge up Your Life series of self-help books. She has 30 years’ experience working with children, adults, couples, and families in schools and in private practice in Scottsdale, Arizona. Helping women to evolve into their best selves through personal growth and self-awareness is a passion of hers. Ellen raised three successful children as a single parent and so has special interests in mentoring other women in transition and helping parents to raise resilient children. Contact Ellen at firstname.lastname@example.org or through her website www.ellendiana.com