We all yearn and struggle, work and compete, fight and scratch for what we want in life. We do this, day after day in hopes of feeling good about ourselves, taking care of others and solidifying meaning to our lives. Titles, positions, responsibilities, goals, dreams, conditions, we put these milestones and objectives in place to guide us towards what we feel will be our true self-esteem.
But, how many people do you know who truly found their best healthy selves, became the people they had always dreamed of, but even more... how many people do you know achieved far greater accomplishments, sensations, positive echos and fulfillment than they had always dreamed of?
We look back at our youth, our adolescence, our prime time of our lives and reminisce. We talk about how much fun we used to have, how great we used to feel, how happy everyone seemed to be and we inflate and expand our traditions and value of the environments that have evolved to become something many see as unrecognizable today. And their self-esteem slowly diminishes.
Do this, do that, chase this, chase that. We were all given a list of goals for our lives, like a treasure map towards the people we want to be, before any of us were old enough to make sense of that direction for ourselves. Go to school, make friends, find hobbies, follow in others' footsteps, memorize information, do what others have proven "works," have children and influence them to continue the same traditions and principals. Protect the lineage, as if it is our only purpose in life.
But what if self-esteem has been misunderstood, mischaracterized and marketed as happiness, but stems from a sense of fulfillment? Every single open mind is too young and susceptible to the pressure, conditions and the seemingly "successful" paths and "opportunities" in front of them to maintain a truly objective perspective of life, above a more easily developed subjective point of view of our own sense of insecurity and desire to fill what we feel is missing within ourselves.
If only... I had this, looked like this, did this, made this... If only they saw the real me. If only they paid attention to my best qualities, if only I didn't make those mistakes back then.
If only I was happy. If only this worked.. if only I wasn't... me.
Self-esteem misunderstood is terminal. It is literally a death sentence for your soul and begins as soon as your ability to maintain a healthy bright objective sense of direction, momentum and integrity fades. Whether they are superficial imperfections, trauma, assault, support systems, failures and mistakes, there's an infinite list of internal and external factors, variables and summations that equates to crippling and consuming pressures of inescapable regret & sadness.
Fulfillment is about overcoming these pressures, conditions and complexes. Fulfillment stems from learning to reevaluate our choices, our environment, our influences and our sources of comfort within our overwhelming periods of discomfort and disillusionment. The affects of our lack of conscious evolution. The effects of our lifestyles, our melancholy, our sacrifices we made for the sake of happiness that only lead to the loss of our sense of fulfillment and dreams we once had before the world & peers corrupted them for the sake of their own insecurities and benefits.
Our happiness came from our ability to imagine a life whole, fulfilled and us becoming a better version with a far greater sense of self-esteem than we ever thought possible. It's the foundation to all the stories that lasted the test of time, space, culture and evolution. Unimaginable growth.
Experience. People who rose (Heroes) above the fray. But instead we are marketed short-term and short-sighted happiness for the sake of our pursuit of fulfilment and timeless self-esteem. We chase comfortable identities based on a current that will not exist in several decades. Mindsets, beliefs, traditions, values, geography, genetics, politics and social systems that will become obsolete. And as each generations watches time pass, and their ways of living and thinking devalued, their self-esteem suffers, their sense of relevancy dwindles and fades into irrelevancy.
Except for the bright few who chose to maintain an open mind, with the ability to reevaluate their points of view, diversifying and dividing the concepts and insecurities that were imposed onto and into them before they were even aware, and rise in ways older generations refused. To challenge the dim and ignorant conventions, for the purpose of greater understanding and sense of self.
Self-esteem is something real and the foundation of health, if grasped for oneself in healthy ways. Otherwise, self-esteem transitions into toxic disillusionment and loss of our sense of ourselves.