There are many ways a person can fall into self-hatred and lack of inner esteem:
1) Abuse (toxicity in relationships with others, mainly the people who bring bad energy into your domain and try to induce you to feel as less than you are. Note: Toxic relationships are filled with storms and whirlwinds and tornadoes and tsunamis where an enemy of your soul is trying to take you down by blowing dust and other crap around in your life while trying to make themselves feel better about what they are by using your backside as leverage.)
2) Bad parenting (feelings of uselessness and worthlessness)
3) Constant humiliation in public or private
6) Lack of training in absorbing the habits of persons of confidence
7) Perfectionist tendencies
8) Media images and messaging
9) Learning that what you thought was true turned out not to be true
10) Untruths from others about who and what you are.
The Differences Between Eternal Creation and Temporal Creation
The entire book of John in the much-maligned and disputed Bible is about the Son of God taking a stand and standing His ground against those who disparaged Him and tried to make their lies hold out over His truth. But He knew who He was and He wasn’t about to be gas-lit into thinking otherwise. Even when they threatened to kill Him, he stood His ground, CONFIDENT about what He knew to be the indisputable truth.
“Are you yet not even 50 years of age and you say you KNOW Abraham?” And all He could answer them was the absolute truth … “Before Abraham was, I AM.”
That’s some scandalously serious SELF-CONFIDENCE … I Am. I AM simply ends all conversation to the contrary. Who’s going to contend with “I AM”? Period. That’s it. The only thing they can say to that is “Yes, I suppose YOU ARE.”
They tried to stone Him … but at- and for -the moment, they could not touch Him because it wasn’t yet His time to depart. But sooner or later, they was gonna get Him, we already know this. It was mandated before He was born, that He should make such a sacrifice as to heal and save the entire world.
Only you know your purpose in this world, in this life, in your holiest of holy temples on earth–your body–, but in that knowing is the one and only deal-breaker: YOU MUST KNOW WHO YOU ARE and WHAT or WHOSE AUTHORITY YOU STAND WHERE YOU ARE STANDING YOUR GROUND RIGHT NOW.
If you do NOT know who (and whose) you are, as He did/does, you are as good as dead anyway. Only ONE made a supreme sacrifice for humanity that was to last all eternity. You can’t die a death that is going to save the world, it’s impossible; but you can die one that is going to save YOU.
STANDING DOWN YOUR STORMS: Liars and Tempters and Bores, OH MY!
One of the reasons there is, or was at one time, a tendency of persons of color of African, American, and Asian origins and descent to think of themselves as “beneath” others is improper indoctrination and bad school training.
Most of the things that we are taught in school, as “Black” (Afrocentric) Americans, are devised to teach us that we are beneath all others in the world. This also happened because we, as a people, tend to be too loving, caring, and too trusting of those that never earned our love, our respect, nor did they ever give us a reason to love them more than we do ourselves.
We were created by God Almighty with the ability to sense that there should be no conditions placed on love. However, the “son of man” -as opposed to the Sons of God- were not made with that ability. They were created by men who wished to “be” gods, who were unsatisfied with being made “in His Image,” so they were never endowed with eternal instincts. They came into this world with no ability to view or perceive of life in any other terms than what they could surmise from what they could see.
They had no faith, all they had was self-induced haughtiness.
Some of this toxicity is self-inflicted … too many of us cause the most innocent among us to be harmed and endangered because we don’t understand how our singular behavior impacts the entirety of us. President Obama isn’t even a man of the Lion’s tribe of Judah, he is a Hamite by birth; but he couldn’t even bring himself to understand how it is that even he knew who we are and we had (and still have) no clue.
The grand message is: We are NOTHING like them.
We were not created by Almighty God to be anything like them, so the enemy is right to tell us that WE ARE NOTHING–LIKE THEM. We aren’t allowed to be what they are because God didn’t even hard-wire us that way.
It’s beyond us to even desire to be ‘like’ them. We are not created in their image. It’s the other way around.
Outside Influences (Media and Racists and Misogynists) Aren’t the Only Measure of Low Self-Esteem
Lack of family support, or internalized family strife can cause children to become adults who are not only confused, but who are trained to think of themselves as “less than” others who have that support, or whose families are trained to deal with strife and conflict in healthy and productive ways.
Quick Quiz on Self-Evaluation About Your Level of Confidence
i.e., “Psychology Today”
Answer (A) if this line is mostly true for you; (B) if it is half-true; and (C) if it is mostly untrue:
I have a realistic sense of my strengths and weaknesses. A B C
I am willing to take risks for something I believe in. A B C
I plan and prepare for new experiences. A B C
I have ways to cope with fear and doubt. A B C
I take time to remember my past successes. A B C
I recognize failure as a part of life. A B C
I can cope with unexpected changes. A B C
I am comfortable asking for help and support. A B C
I know what I value in life. A B C
My actions generally line up with my values. A B C
I don’t give up easily. A B C
I realize not everyone will like or approve of me. A B C
I have a sense of my inherent worth. A B C
I understand setbacks are normal and to be expected. A B C
I don’t beat up on myself when I’m going through a rough time. A B C
My thoughts don’t paralyze me when trying something new. A B C
Here’s how to interpret your score:
Mostly A’s: Your confidence is on solid ground. You’re doing a great job of not allowing obstacles to get in your way of meeting valued goals.
Mostly B’s: You’re right in the middle, sometimes recognizing your accomplishments and other times, focusing on where you’re falling short. Your answers indicate you may fall prey to common pitfalls that undermine self-confidence.
Mostly C’s: Your self-confidence is a little shaky, but that’s OK. Remember, there is no one with “total” self-confidence all of the time. You may need to ease up on yourself, notice your accomplishments, and find ways to handle setbacks.
Untwisting the Narrative
It is important to understand European philosophy in order to untwist ourselves from it and restate the narratives on our own terms. We are trained to understand our strengths and weaknesses only in relation to the color of our skin, no matter what “shade” of Black we are.
Our strengths and weaknesses, risk, experiences, fears, doubts, successes, failures, changes, support systems, values, actions, sustainability, worth, setbacks, paralysis … all of our opportunities in this dispensation of glory are based on the extraordinary slug of outstanding racism in, of, by, and for European nations.
It is this way because we have allowed it. It is this way because we need to learn that our self-value and esteem does not come from believing we are ‘above it all’, but it must come from understanding our proper position in the world.
We are not what white people say, but we are what God created from the very beginning until we “fell short” trying to be what we are not and not trying hard enough to become what we were created to be.
This “white nationalist” belief system of superiority has had a severe and inhumane impact on the way we treat our communities and on the way we behave in that body of persons that we call a community.
Rather Than Blame Why Not Sustain?
Recently, Steve Harvey got into a bit of a nouveau ‘slave’ situation when he had a conversation with Mo’Nique with regard to how green (money) trumps white and black, and it appeared that the whites who own him had something different to say about it when they relieved him of two of his money-making enterprises.
Now, as typical and expected of those of Harvey’s ilk, the first thing he did was reached out beyond his own issues to blame a Black woman or words that came out of his own mouth.
It is not hard to see Adam’s lack of responsibility when God, walking in the cool of the evening in the Great Garden, asked him “Where are you?” and “What have you done?” and the first thing this Black man did was say “Well, see, what had happened was … the WOMAN that YOU gave ME, SHE took the fruit from the tree and bit it first, so when SHE gave it to ME, I was tempted and I bit it, too…” or in other words, “It’s all her fault, and besides, YOU were the one who gave her to me in the first place.”
Rather than seeing Eve as the blessing and helpmeet God intended for her to be, she became Adam’s scapegoat…and basically, black men have been blaming everybody but themselves ever since. Everybody is responsible for his plight in life BUT himself.
We watched Steve Harvey take the low road on a Black woman just because Mo’Nique told him an uncomfortable truth that he did not want to admit or face about the filth, the nastiness and the low road of trying to live the shameful “Hollywood” life.
Harvey swallowed, choked, and then when his anchor onions were peeled away just so his owners could send him a message about it being a “white man’s thing,” which tops money as far as they are concerned [POR: Power Over Riches] … the first thing he did was reach to blame her instead of taking responsibility for his own lack of vision and insight.
What it should have done was allowed him to see that they fear his Black skin more than they do any possibility that they will ever go broke … what it should have done was allowed him to admit that white power is more important to them than money, but that’s not what happened.
Instead of trying to sustain, he decided to frame and blame, and another BLACK woman, at that. President Obama even had to admit, when it was all said and done, that there was no doubt about the impact of racism on the nation. Even he had to stop denying it.
In the face of internal and external strife, what are some of the workable solutions that could cause us to shore up our self-worth so that we can move to the positive column of what is GOOD about being a bona fide member of the Afrocentric communities of America?
1) Awareness: Understand that your internalized feelings of inadequacy are not coming from within, but from the outside. Choose a better response than beating yourself up just because someone who came at you wrong is coming off like an idiot.
2) Judgment: Often, you may find yourself being accused of judging others, and more than likely, the reason for it is because you are a harsher critic of yourself than anyone else. If you can so easily condemn yourself, it ‘ain’t no thang’ to try to bring another person down with you. Be aware that your criticisms of others could be you telling on yourself. Monitor those reactions, but rather than internalize them, feed that vomit back to the enemy of your soul and tell him to go choke on it.
3) The Autopilot: It is more than ‘negative self-talk’ that makes you a slave to the will of others who mean you no good, but it is also the need to be such a people-pleaser, to be so addicted to people and their opinions that you forget you have needs too. Put yourself first, because if you are not around to kiss anyone’s behind because you didn’t take care of yourself, you won’t be missed. They’ll just get some other self-depreciating person in denial to do it in your place.
4) Meditate: You were not created to measure your life by what white people, or your low-balling low-hanging fruit family, think is valuable. You may have to live with decrepit things like ‘money’ (the root of all evil) because it’s there and was there before you were born and isn’t going away, but that doesn’t mean it’s a proper or necessary gauge of who you are or what you are all about. Heed and hold to the knowledge that no one righteously has the final say on where you are going in the future. Even those who kill the body have no control over the soul. Al they can do is damn themselves while they are trying to damn you.
…”for her (Mystery Babylon’s) sins are piled up to heaven, and God has remembered her crimes. Give back to her as she has given; pay her back double for what she has done. Pour her a double portion fro her own cup. Give her as much torment and grief as the glory and luxury she gave herself“… Rev. 18:4-8
“Babylon the Great” has been judged, and there is no backpedaling on what is already written in stone. Even King David prayed that his enemies would reap the penalty of their sins against him, that they would be buried in the graves they planned for him.
King David had to deal with a lot of jealous souls of his time who tried to make him think less of himself than what he was appointed by God to be; but he referred to them, hilariously enough, as UNCIRCUMCISED PHILISTINES.
I Samuel 17…25 Now the men of Israel had been saying, “Do you see this man who keeps coming out to defy Israel? To the man who kills him the king will give great riches. And he will give him his daughter in marriage and exempt his father’s house from taxation in Israel.” 26 David asked the men who were standing with him, “What will be done for the man who kills this Philistine and removes this disgrace from Israel? Just who is this uncircumcised Philistine, that he should defy the armies of the living God?”
That’s some AWESOME MIND-BLOWING self-confidence for him (the king) to know that his armies were of the LIVING GOD and that the others were not of God. How in the world did he know he was in the right, or acting in righteousness and not high-minded arrogance, when he went out against his enemies to defeat them?
5) Have some compassion on yourself and “Begin Again with the Passion of a Child”. Don’t BE a child or act like one, just learn to see your life the way God sees it. Even at 120 years of age, you are still nothing more than a mist of dew on a brand new day — only moments old in the eyes of eternity.
Most of us don’t deserve very much that this life has to offer, but all of us deserve LOVE.
PUBLIC NOTE: The opinions expressed in this article are the author's own and do not reflect the view of the Urban Intellectuals, affiliates or partners.