So we’re almost halfway through this course, which is about boosting self-esteem, although it’s called boosting self-confidence instead as that sounds less negative.

I’m finding it very frustrating.

We’re following the Melanie Fennell course which works quite well at getting you to look at your anxious behaviour and predictions, your self-critical thoughts and the way you become your own self-fulfilling prophecy by having low expectations, behaving accordingly and thereby fulfilling them.

It goes on to talk about challenging your own perceptions and predictions and changing your own behaviour.

There are lots of charts for you to fill in to help analyse your behaviour and it’s all nicely written and explained.

But what really frustrates me is that this is superficial. I have already got with the programme of forcing myself to do things I don’t want to do so I can learn that I can do them really and it’s not a problem. I already look at the way I think about situations and challenge my negative beliefs. This is all coping mechanisms though. This all teaches me how to cope with low self-esteem without it overwhelming me and ruining my life.

Fair enough, that’s a good start to self-improvement.

What it doesn’t do is change the way I feel about myself. We all sat there in our circle and talked of having “bottom lines” that all come down to

I don’t like myself.

I don’t value myself.

I’m not good enough.

I’m not worth it.

Now one can hope that in taking the positive action to improve the way we act eventually changes the way we feel. But it hasn’t so far and I have been trying.

I can write positive affirmations about myself as long as I like. I may even understand that they’re true if I think about them. But won’t I don’t do, and can’t do is believe them with my heart. Until I can do that all the coping mechanisms in the world won’t really help me feel better about myself.

This is the stumbling block where I’ve been stumbling for several years now and quite frankly, I’m bored of it and would like to move on.