What did you do today to make you feel proud? I am not talking about running a half marathon or decorating your lounge single-handed, but the apparently little things, like holding a door open for someone, or getting a stranger to return your smile.

Don’t get me wrong. Marathons and decorating are things to be very proud about, especially when they are firsts and you were making it up as you went along!  But you can’t do them every day, can you? Not like holding doors open and smiling at strangers. In fact, the list of things that you can do every day to make you pleased with yourself, and that is what I am talking about, is endless.

Being pleased with yourself is important. That kind of pride is great, not for your ego, but for your self confidence and self worth. This is for the very simple reason that you made someone else happy and appreciate you as a result. How complicated is that? And when other people appreciate you, guess what? You begin to appreciate yourself. Hey, you did good! You are ok!

Well, it is simple in theory but the snag for many people is that it does require you to make the first move and that can be a massive block to getting started. So ask yourself this simple question: why not? Or, what would happen if I just slowed down a little and waited for that person behind me to catch up so that the door won’t swing in her face and force her to catch it and open it again? You will be two or three seconds later getting where you are going, which of course is a matter of life and death, than you would have been. But, the payback for your lost seconds could be amazing. That person will almost certainly look at you in the eye, (if you look at her!) say thank you and to cap it all, smile at you. Wow! What a return on your investment.

That is what can happen and that is why you do it, especially if you are not feeling too great about yourself right now. You need to start with the little things. Like, when you call someone, they answer and before launching into what you want to say, you ask them if they are ok to talk (because they may actually be busy doing something and not sitting around waiting for you to call!). It is weird but most people never do that and yet it is one of the easiest, most courteous thing to do and both the gesture and you will be appreciated. And when you have finished, wait (sorry, another few seconds out of your life) until they hang up. Try it and see how good you feel about yourself. What else can you do? Slow down a little and look around you. Take it in and learn.

Yes, feeling proud and good about yourself is about achieving worthwhile things, but if you feel that you have not achieved much lately, start with the small worthwhile things. They are innumerable and all around you, just waiting for you make your move. Being proud of yourself in small ways will lead to being proud big-time!


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