By Brahma Kumaris

awakeningwhiteonblackIn today’s times one tends to seek respect from others, from job titles, awards, and possessions such as clothes, house, car etc. Nonetheless the desire for respect remains unfulfilled because what we get from the world is never enough. Is there a way to feel content from within? Indeed! Raja Yoga helps us go within and re-build the self-esteem that had been lost.
In order to increase self-esteem, let us first understand what it really means. Real self-esteem is when, no matter what anyone says or does, we can respond positively. We do not need to get upset because we value the self and are aware of our own
specialties and weaknesses.
One of the most common instances when we lose our respect is when others criticize us. Although it may seem challenging to maintain self-respect in such situations it can become easier with practice. One could detach from the situation and be honest with the self and check whether the criticism is valid or not. If it is valid, it’s worthwhile to accept our own mistake and change it so that it does not become a habit. For example, if someone says, “you are gaining weight” then it can be challenging to hear it but it is worthwhile to be gentle with the self and start working on it. However, if we ignore it then we might have to face a similar situation again.
Sometimes we get criticism in the form of comparison with others. If you think it is valid, look at the situation in a detached way. Being detached helps one get a clearer perspective. Detachment also helps one to notice the good qualities the other person has. Seeing what qualities the other person has and acknowledgement of others’
qualities helps one to accept and
appreciate them. That helps us to imbibe such qualities as well.
While valid criticism is one we could pay attention to and progress, invalid criticism is one that is not worth spending our resources such as time or thoughts on what someone else said. Probably the one who commented on us was in pain and it is something they need to work on. One can be compassionate and send them good wishes and that will protect the self from getting into waste thoughts. For instance, if you received an award and your
colleague says, “You don’t deserve that award.” Then you can protect yourself with your virtues and understand that they are in pain and your calmness will keep you protected from getting influenced.

By Brahma Kumaris Vancouver
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