De-Stressed Woman

How Self-Esteem May Be Holding You Back

I read an interesting excerpt from the new book NurtureShock: New Thinking About Children by Po Bronson and Ashley Merryman. The book focuses on teaching and parenting styles, but I think it also provides an interesting glance into the power of self-empowerment over self-esteem. Let me try to explain how I see the difference between self-esteem and self-empowerment.

De-Stressed WomanSelf-esteem comes from the praise of others, therefore it is outside ourselves and something we can not control. Self-esteem is based on the belief in unchanging facts, “you are smart.” Self-esteem is a noun. It is a descriptor.

On the other hand self-empowerment comes from a drive to do better. Self-empowerment is based on continual growing in ability, knowledge, and skill. Self-empowerment is an active verb. It is a state of being.

When we wear a label of self-esteem and then the label is jeopardized, we lose belief in ourselves, we feel judged, and we feel like giving up. For instance, if I said I was good at chess and then played against the current world chess champion, I would feel like a failure. More importantly, this would not only affect how I felt about my chess ability but it would also affect how I see my self-worth. If I no longer believed I was good at chess it would also affect my drive, e.g., I am no good, why should I even try.

When we view life as an experience, as a constant quest for improvement, we activate self-empowerment. We accept that sometimes we lose, fail, or are not as good as the guy next to us. But the focus is not on the outcome. The focus in on how we are playing the game and how we are learning from the game. In the chess example above, someone working from self-empowerment would see the experience as an opportunity to learn from a master and therefore improve their game. The loss would not affect their self-worth. Plus an added bonus is that your brain grows as you tackle new challenges. The more we try, even if we fail, we are improving our mental capacity.

Where are you acting from self-esteem? Where do you wear the label given to you by someone else or by yourself?

Where do you operate from a state of self-empowerment? Where do you release the role or title and simply learn and grow in the experience?

How do you experience these two differently?

Looking for ways to self-empower? Check out my new book From Type-A to Type-ME: A Framework for Stress Reduction

Melissa Heisler

Empowering You to Empower Yourself – Melissa Heisler

Empowerment means the power of choice. Empowerment is about courage. It is the belief that we are in control of our experience. Empowerment is not about labeling good or bad, but about actively choosing what makes us happy in each and every moment. The journey to empowerment and great health is not linear and there is no quick fix. The journey is cyclical. There is a progression. We make a commitment, we make progress, we overcome new challenges, and we repeat. Each time, we move inch by inch to a better and better life. Our purpose is to experience the good, the bad and the ugly. Each challenge is an opportunity to go deeper.  Challenges are not setbacks but new lessons to help us expand and grow.

After years of my own physical and emotional health issues, I finally found relief through a mystical trip to Peru, but Shamanism was not the answer to a joyful healthy life. The answer is that I – You – We all have great health available to us right now. We have the power to uncover and embrace this health – mentally, physically, and emotionally. To uncover our health, we first need to accept that we are not broken. Yes, we may not be feeling our best, but we are not broken, diseased, or a victim of circumstances.

Melissa Heisler
Melissa Heisler

So much of our culture is focused on disease – having it, preventing it, suffering from it. Because of this, we see ourselves as broken, imperfect, and hopeless. In fact, we are not broken or hopeless.  We are simply out of alignment.  Beliefs, thoughts, perspectives, and actions are blocking us from our perfect health. The process of healing is to rediscover our health. Health is about making choice after choice to get us closer to alignment and what truly makes us feel good.

I am a recovering Type-A and am passionate about helping others release their stress, uncover perfect health, and embrace a more joyful life. We are all survivors in one way or another. Through our survival we are given tools to help, support, and comfort others. When we know we are not alone, it gives us the courage to make changes in our life.  We all have a powerful message. Through our stories we empower.

Learn how you can help share Melissa’s story and reduce the amount of stress in the world. 

Listen to this engaging episode to learn the impetus of The Empowerment Show and Melissa’s mission to help empower individuals to empower themselves and others. Big thanks to Jennifer Welker as she takes the guest host role so I can take the hot seat and share more of my journey and beliefs.


The Empowerment Show

Communication is Hard with Brian R. King

Communication can be difficult.  Misunderstandings, misconceptions, and assumptions abound.  We hear what we want to hear and not what is said.  We react with our past emotions and memories versus reacting to the truth of the moment.  We misinterpret and we get hurt.  We feel fearful of speaking our truth and being ridiculed or abandoned.

The Empowerment ShowTalking to one another is something we do every day.  Whether we do it in person, over the phone, online or via text, we are in constant communication with each other.  But how much of that communication is productive?  And how much of what we say or don’t say causes issues with our relationships? It does not matter if we are talking about our personal relationships or business relationships, improving our communication skills can improve our all our interpersonal relationships.  When we are communicating well, we can get more done.  When we can talk to each other better, we can learn new things.  When we can truly hear another, we are gifted with insights we would not have otherwise had.  When we learn to truly communicate with each other we can find peace, joy, happiness, and love. Over the years I have worked hard at improving my communication.  First I learned to listen.  Truly listen.  Not listen while I crafted my response.  Not listen and interrupting to defend myself.  Not pretending to listen while I created my grocery list.  But truly listening intently to who is speaking and giving them my full focused attention. My second lesson was learning how to distinguish between what was really being said and what I thought was being said.  We all have our own personal way to view the world.  Our past experiences, backgrounds, likes and dislikes, hurts and challenges have all affected how we interpret situations.  This is often what causes issues in relationships.  Our partner says one thing and our filters change the meaning before it reaches us.  Then an argument erupts over a misunderstanding.  Learning to truly hear the other and to be able to express how a comment unintentionally triggers us can save many a marriage and business partnership.

Brian R. King
Brian R. King author of Perfect Moments in Relationships: Lessons in Connection for Work, Family, Love, and Life

Learn how to communicate better in your relationships at work and home when The Empowerment Show is joined by Brian R. King best-selling author of five books, including Perfect Moments in Relationships: Lessons in Connection for Work, Family, Love, and Life. Brian says, “Relationships can be more difficult to navigate than the ocean at night during a hurricane. Now try doing it with touches of Autism, ADHD, Dyslexia and other challenges. This has been my struggle, but also my greatest gift.” Discover Brian’s proven methods to improve your communication skills and your relationships.

Listen to the full conversation about how to improve your relationships through communication: