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Self Esteem And Career Success

February is National Self Esteem month.

It’s a good time to reflect a bit on how confident you are.  Your self-esteem and confidence are directly related to how optimistic you are.

Tweet 42 in my book Success Tweets says it well. “Choose optimism.  It builds your confidence.  Believe that today will be better than yesterday, and that tomorrow will be better yet.”

I’m a big believer in the power of optimism.  It is the foundation of all self-esteem and confidence.  You can’t be confident if you’re not optimistic.  And, optimism is a choice.  I get up every day believing that good things will happen – and then I go about making them happen.

When I was a kid, I participated in the local Optimist International chapter’s oratory contest.

I won my section, and finished third in the state.  The topic that year was “Optimism, Youth’s Greatest Asset.”  That’s hard enough for a ninth grader to say (think Joe Pesci in “My Cousin Vinnie”), let alone write and deliver a ten-minute talk.

Optimist International is a great service organization.  They help kids build their self-esteem and become more optimistic.  The Optimist Creed defines them.  It’s powerful stuff.  Take a look…

The Optimist Creed

Promise Yourself:

  • To be so strong that nothing can disturb your peace of mind.
  • To talk health, happiness and prosperity to every person you meet.
  • To make all your friends feel that there is something in them.
  • To look at the sunny side of everything and make your optimism come true.
  • To think only of the best, to work only for the best, and to expect only the best.
  • To be just as enthusiastic about the success of others as you are about your own.
  • To forget the mistakes of the past and press on to the greater achievements of the future.
  • To wear a cheerful countenance at all times and give every living creature you meet a smile.
  • To give so much time to the improvement of yourself that you have no time to criticize others.
  • To be too large for worry, too noble for anger, too strong for fear, and too happy to permit the presence of trouble.

The Optimist Creed is proactive.

It asks you to promise yourself to do ten things that will help you build your self-esteem and create the life and career success that you want and deserve.  It suggests that optimism is related to action – action you can take to become more optimistic and to build your career success.  It is some of the best career advice I’ve come across.  I do my best to live the 10 points in The Optimist Creed every day.  You should too.

I especially like the fourth point – “Promise yourself to look at the sunny side of everything and make your optimism come true.”  This point goes directly to the idea of building your self-esteem by committing to taking personal responsibility for your life and career success.  I know it’s difficult to look at the sunny side of things when you’re mired in a problem or are dealing with a failure.  However, if you look for what you can learn from problems and failures, you’ll be looking at the sunny side.  More important, you’ll be on your way to making your optimism come true.

Christopher Reeve is no longer with us, but he exemplified the idea of looking at the sunny side of things.  Even though he was paralyzed from the neck down after a riding accident, he devoted himself to finding a cure for spinal cord injuries.  I love the way his optimism comes across in this quote…

“So many of our dreams at first seem impossible, then they seem improbable, and then, when we summon the will, they soon become inevitable.”

Christopher Reeve looked at the sunny side of his injury and did what he could to make his optimism come true.  His foundation carries on the work he started.

The common sense career success point here is simple.  Successful people have high self-esteem.  They are confident.  Confident people are optimists.  They follow the career advice in Tweet 42 in Success Tweets. Choose optimism.  It builds your confidence.  Believe that today will be better than yesterday, and that tomorrow will be better yet.”  The Optimist Creed is a great guide to becoming more optimistic and self-confident.  Its proactive approach to life is a great guide to creating the life and career success you want and deserve.  Remember the old saying, “Whether you’re an optimist, or a pessimist you’ll be proven right.”  I choose optimism, and suggest you do too.

You can download a copy of Success Tweets at http://budurl.com/STexpl

I love The Optimist Creed.  I have it framed and hanging in my office, just above my desk.  I have made a .pdf of The Optimist Creed that is suitable for framing.  If you want a copy, just go to http://budbilanich.com/optimist.

Read more posts by Bud Bilanich, Ed.D., The Common Sense Guy, a career success coach, leadership consultant, motivational speaker, bestselling author and influential blogger.