A beggar was sitting at a railway station with a bowl full of pencils. A young executive passed by and dropped a dollar into the bowl, but didn’t take any pencils. He then boarded the train. Just before the doors were about to close, the executive suddenly got down from the train and went back to the beggar. He grabbed a bunch of pencils, and said, “I will take some pencils. They are priced right. After all, you are a business person and so am I,” and he dashed back on to the train.
One year later, the executive attended a party. The beggar was also there, dressed in a suit and tie. The beggar recognized the executive, went up to him, and said, “You probably don’t recognize me, but I remember you.” He then narrated the incident that had happened 1 year before. The executive said, “Now that you remind me, I do recall that you were begging. What are you doing here in a suit and tie?” The beggar replied, “You probably don’t know what you did for me that day. Instead of giving me charity, you treated me with dignity. You grabbed the bunch of pencils and said, ‘They are priced right. After all, you are a business person and so am I.’ After you left, I thought to myself-what am i doing here? Why am I begging? I decided to do something constructive with my life. I packed my bag, started working and here I am. I just want to thank you for giving me back my dignity. That incident changed my life.”
What changed in the beggar’s life? It was his self esteem which went up and so did his performance. This is the magic of self-esteem in our lives. Simply, self-esteem is how we feel about ourselves. Our opinion of ourselves critically influences everything, from our performance at work, our relationships and our role as parents, to our accomplishments in life. Self-esteem is a major component in determining success or failure. High self esteem leads to a happy, gratifying and purposeful life.
Self esteem is a feeling that comes from the awareness of what is good and having done it.
There is a story about a farmer who planted pumpkins on his land. For no reason, he put a small pumpkin, hanging by the vine, into a glass jar. At harvest time, he saw that the pumpkin had grown, equivalent only to the shape and size of the jar. Just as the pumpkin could not grow beyond the boundaries restricting it, you cannot perform beyond the boundaries of your self-concept, whatever those boundaries may be.
“You yourself, as much as anybody in the entire universe, deserve your love and affection.” “Until you value yourself, you won’t value your time. Until you value your time, you will not do anything with it. ” “A man cannot be comfortable without his own approval.”