Have you ever felt really good about reaching a milestone in your life but when one person downplays your accomplishment, all you can think about is that one comment? If lack of self-confidence has surfaced too often in your life, find out how learning meditation can transform your negative fixation and help you find a new sense of inner self-esteem.
Several years ago, the Dalai Lama met with a group of Western psychotherapists and asked them to name the most common issue that their patients reported. It didn’t take long to get unanimous response: a lack of self-confidence.
On another occasion, when the Dalai Lama was asked what the first thing he thought of when he awoke in the morning, he replied, “motivation.” He said that everyone, including himself, had to be vigilant so that each day our minds were focused in the right direction. For the Dalai Lama focusing his motivation each morning reminds him to extend loving kindness and compassion to all others. He described focusing in meditation on the kind of motivation that takes you beyond yourself so that you are not limited by a lack of confidence or self-esteem.
You might be asking yourself a question right about now. How can this apply to me? I have asked myself that very question many times. I am not a Buddhist and have never been comfortable with many aspects of Eastern meditation. I didn’t start meditating as a child and I certainly don’t have a lot of time to just “empty my mind”.
The good news is that even for skeptical Westerners, there are ways to customize a meditation practice so that it’s revitalizing and enjoyable. At the same time, there are, also, very specific ways meditation can help us to transform a lack of self-esteem into a healthy, balanced inner confidence.
First, meditation enables you to get to really get to know yourself and to be at peace with who you really are. After meditating for a few weeks, you’ll find that your doubts, insecurities or fears are really only superficial, as you begin to connect with a deeper place of trust, dignity and self-worth. You can also begin to connect to a deeper sense of your own unique mission.
The second benefit is that meditation awakens you to an inter-connectedness with everyone on the planet, the sense that you are not alone here. Rather, you are a part of this wondrous planet, and the more that you are able to extend yourself with kindness; the less you will be focused on your own limitations. Discovering this inter-connectedness takes you from a place of self-centeredness to other-centeredness and will build self-confidence.
Old ideas that you do not deserve to be happy, or that you are just not good enough— seem to dissolve with a dedicated meditation practice. Working to build self-confidence by learning meditation is one of the best things you can ever do for yourself and every aspect of your life will improve dramatically.