Twelve Steps to Raise Your Self Esteem

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Twelve Steps to Raise Your Self Esteem

Step One

Stop comparing yourself with other people. There will always be some people who have more than you and some who have less. If you play the comparison game, you’ll run into too many “opponents” you can’t defeat.

Step Two

Stop putting yourself down. You can’t develop high self-esteem if you repeat negative phrases about yourself and your abilities. Whether speaking about your appearances, your career, your relationships, your financial situation, or any other aspects of your life, avoid self-deprecating comments.

Step Three

Accept all compliments with “thank you.” Ever received a compliment and replied,” Oh, it was nothing.” When you reject a compliment, the message you give yourself is that you are not worthy of praise. Respond to all compliments with a simple Thank You.”

Step Four

Use affirmations to enhance your self-esteem. On the back of a business card or small index card, write out a statement such as “I like and accept my self.” or “I am valuable, lovable person and deserve the best in life.” Carry the card with you. Repeat the statement several times during the day, especially at night before going to bed and after getting up in the morning. Whenever you say the affirmation, allow yourself to experience positive feelings about your statement.

Step Five

Take advantage of workshops, books and cassette tape programs on self-esteem. Whatever material you allow to dominate mind will eventually take root and affect your behavior. If you watch negative television programs or read newspaper reports of murders and business rip off; you will grow cynical and pessimistic. Similarly, if you read books or listen to programs, that are positive in nature, you will take on these characteristics.

Step Six

Associate with positive, supportive people. When you are surrounded by negative people who constantly put you and your ideas down, your self-esteem is lowered. On the other hand, when you are accepted and encouraged, you feel better about yourself in the best possible environment to raise your self-esteem.

Step Seven

Make a list of your past successes. This doesn’t necessarily have to consist of monumental accomplishments. It can include your “minor victories,” like learning to skate, graduating from high school, receiving an award or promotion, reaching a business goal, etc. Read this list often. While reviewing it, close your eyes and recreate the feelings of satisfaction and joy you experienced when you first attained each success.

Step Eight

Make a list of your positive qualities. Are you honest? Unselfish? Helpful? Creative? Be generous with yourself and write down at least 20 positive qualities. Again, it’s important to review this list often. Most people dwell on their inadequacies and then wonder why their life isn’t working out. Start focusing on your positive traits and you’ll stand a much better chance of achieving what you wish to achieve.

Step Nine

Start giving more. I’m not talking about money. Rather, I mean that you must begin to give more of yourself to those around your. When you do things for others, you are making a positive contribution and you begin to feel more valuable, which, in turn, lifts your spirits and raises your own self-esteem.

Step Ten

Get involved in work and activities you love. It’s hard to feel good about yourself if your days are spent in work you despise. Self-esteem flourishes when you are engaged in work and activities that you enjoy and make you feel valuable. Even if you can’t explore alternative career options at the present time, you can still devote leisure time to hobbies and activities, which you find stimulating and enjoyable.

Step Eleven

Be true to yourself. Live your own life – not the life others have decided is best for you. You’ll never gain your own respect and feel good about yourself if you aren’t leading the life you want to lead. If you’re making decisions based on getting approval from friends and relatives, you aren’t being true to yourself and your self-esteem is lowered.

Step Twelve

Take action! You won’t develop high self-esteem if you sit on the sidelines and back away from challenges. When you take action – regardless of the ensuing result – you feel better about yourself. When you fail to move forward because of fear and anxiety, you’ll be frustrated and unhappy – and you will undoubtedly deal a damaging blow to your self-esteem.

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Closing the gap

SLOW and steady wins the race; only the women are picking up pace and men are slowing down! In a major blow to the male ego, a new Oxford University study on women sprinters has found that with the passage of time women will overtake men in the 100m sprint. The study has found that if women continue to close the gap at the present rate of improvement they would soon be outrunning men within 150 years. None of us will be here for the 2156 Olympics to see that happen, but when it does, the last male bastion will have fallen. The steady rise and rise of women in virtually all fields can be seen. From housewives to secretaries, to CEOs, presidents and prime ministers, their rise up the ladder of success has been steady. Slowly but surely they have been chipping away at the once male-run world and the exclusive old boys club is taking a severe beating as more and more women take on roles that were once their exclusive preserve. But back to the study.

How did they come about this conclusion that many a man will scoff at — former British Olympic sprinter Derek Redmond has already gone on record saying, I find it difficult to believe. The study compared the winning times for the Olympic 100m since 1900 and calculated that by 2156 a woman sprinter would breast the tape in the 100m run in 8.079 seconds putting her ahead of her male colleague by 0.1 fraction of a second (men are expected to manage a best result of 8.098). Mathematics is never wrong. And this study was a mathematical calculation based on women’s run timings over the years.

At the first women’s 100m event, staged in Amsterdam in 1928, the winning time was 12.2 seconds compared with the men’s 10.8 — a difference of 1.4 seconds. By 1952, the margin had decreased to 1.1 seconds, with the men breasting the tape at 10.4 seconds and the women at 11.5. In Olympics between 1988 and 2000, the difference was under one second. But in Athens this summer, the gap widened to 1.08 seconds. But, says the study, if overall trends continued, the gap would close up again to 0.84 seconds at the 2008 Beijing Olympics — just one year away!


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In 1883, a creative engineer named John Roebling was inspired by an idea to build a spectacular bridge connecting New York with the Long Island. However bridge building experts throughout the world thought that this was an impossible feat and told Roebling to forget the idea. It just could not be done. It was not practical. It had never been done before.

Roebling could not ignore the vision he had in his mind of this bridge. He thought about it all the time and he knew deep in his heart that it could be done. He just had to share the dream with someone else. After much discussion and persuasion he managed to convince his son Washington, an upcoming engineer, that the bridge in fact could be built.

Working together for the first time, the father and son developed concepts of how it could be accomplished and how the obstacles could be overcome. With great excitement and inspiration, they hired their crew and began to build their dream bridge.

The project started well, but when it was only a few months underway, a tragic accident on the site took the life of John Roebling. Washington was injured and left with a certain amount of brain damage; he was not able to move even.

Everyone had a negative comment about the crazy project and felt that the it should be scrapped since the Roeblings were the only ones who knew how the bridge could be built. In spite of his handicap, Washington was never discouraged and still had a burning desire to complete the bridge. He tried to motivate and pass on his enthusiasm to some of his friends, but they were too daunted by the task. As he lay on his bed in his hospital room, with the sunlight streaming through the windows, a gentle breeze blew the flimsy white curtains apart and he was able to see the sky and the tops of the trees outside for just a moment.

It seemed that there was a message for him not to give up. Suddenly an idea hit him. All he could do was move one finger and he decided to make the best use of it. By moving this, he slowly developed a code of communication with his wife.

He touched his wife’s arm with that finger, indicating to her that he wanted her to call the engineers again. Then he used the same method of tapping her arm to tell the engineers what to do. It seemed foolish but the project was under way again.

For 13 years Washington tapped out his instructions with his finger on his wife’s arm, until the bridge was finally completed. Today the spectacular Brooklyn Bridge stands in all its glory as a tribute to the triumph of one man’s indomitable spirit and his determination not to be defeated by circumstances. It is also a tribute to the engineers and their teamwork, and to their faith in a man who was considered mad by half the world. It stands as a tangible monument to the love and devotion of his wife who for 13 long years patiently decoded the messages of her husband and told the engineers, what to do.

Perhaps this is one of the best examples of a NEVER-SAY-DIE attitude that defeated a terrible physical handicap and achieved an impossible goal.

Often when we face obstacles in our day-to-day life, our hurdles seem very small in comparison to what many others have to face. The Brooklyn Bridge shows us that dreams that seem impossible can be realized with determination and persistence, no matter what the odds are.

Even the most distant dream can be realized with determination and persistence. It was courage, faith, endurance and a dogged determination to surmount all obstacles that built this bridge.

Do you recall small brands?

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Do you recall small brands?

Fevicol did it and how. Its advertising established it as a a household name and a generic for the category and won the agency O&M tonnes of awards. Other brands in low involvement categories like plywood, pens, glass are now following suit. So, why are agencies and advertisers getting so involved with these brands?

Plywood – now how many people are really excited about this product category? Chances are that very few don’t even know that there are atleast a 100 brands in the market. A majority of these brands don’t invest in any form of advertising. But market leaders Greenply and Century Ply want consumers to remember just their brand names. And they are doing this by creating some simple yet eye- catching advertising. Advertising that is winning awards like the Greenply film that won an Abby Gold early this year or the Century Ply ad which is getting talked about within days of its launch. This film took a year from conception to execution and finally hit television channels only in December. The brief given to the agency was just to create an interesting ad with a single-minded proposition!
Deputy MD, Century Ply, Sanjay Agarwal , “There have been certain failures as far as certain creatives are concerned in the past. But this time, it has to be good. We are trying to reach the masses. Plywood maybe low interest category but when you make your house, you are spending 15% of your expenditure on plywood.”

“This is a lot of money and if the name Century Ply is in your mind and if we can convert even 3%-4% of people from other brands – that’s a big development for me. It’s a Rs 10,000 crore market and a small shift for us. Another reason is we are into plywood but diversifying into cement and the agri business, and for that we have to create a brand and Century Ply is the brand that will go to the masses.”

It’s every brand’s attempt to reach out to the masses, even if they are not going to directly buy your product. Brands that have very low consumer involvment tend to make the mistake of focusing on what they think is their USP. The trick actually according to other brands like Camlin is, to forget about product applications and focus on creating a high involvment emotional product that will eventually deliver sales.

Executive Director, Camlin, Shriram Dandekar says, “Any soft sell ad will never give you direct information on the number of units sold or the number of units picked up but we believe that over a period of time in a continuity, when people see this ad, it will have good recall value – the theme will have a record and will leave an impression that Camlin has created a good ad and that means Camlin has a good product.”

Group Creative Director, Lowe, Preeti Nair explains, “Unlike a detergent or a soap, your involvment is very clear, these are the categories you don’t care what you are buying, therefore what name remains salient is what you will ask for. Saliency will happen only if you are memorable. A brand gets registered – it’s not because of how often the brand name comes, it’s at what time it comes, so if you take a single-minded benefit and do a commercial they’ll remember, you’ll get saliency on the brands. Brands like Fevicol, Greenply have done it.”

Such advertising has a definate advantage in terms of longer shelf life over advertising campaigns in the FMCG space. For most such brands, there is greater emphasis on the creative idea rather than the media plans. Most of these brands don’t spend more than Rs 3 crore annually on advertising, but definitely get a lot more bang for their buck!