It’s the image they hold of themselves. You know that it’s true. You’ve seen it, you know it, but you may not have been able to identify it.
My first experience with this principle was at the age of 13. As I walked under the sign designating the women’s restroom at the local high school stadium, I found myself following a group of cheerleaders who had accompanied the visiting football team. As a mere eighth grader attending a JV football game, I was not a member of such an elite group and I awkwardly moved passed them to the first available stall.
Even in the early 1960s, football was and still is, a huge sport in my home state of Florida. The junior high school teams played on Thursday evenings and the goal of most of those 12 to 15-year old boys was to develop the skills necessary to eventually play for the high school team in their Friday night games. Each team also had, of course, a convoy of cheerleaders who were also aiming for a coveted spot at the high school level.
As I exited the stall and moved toward the sink I heard two caddy girls gossiping about a cheerleader they had spotted on the other side of the field who was with the opposing team—my team. They were describing her in distorted details and were in disbelief that someone so “ugly” would be selected as a cheerleader.
Ugly?! What is wrong with these people? Withdrawing from the situation as quickly as possible, I didn’t understand at the time they were in fact reflecting their own insecurities and fears of rejection.
I casually knew the girl who was the target of their venomous insults and believed these people were either blind or crazy. Despite my lower social status, this classmate had always been kind and friendly to me. With her bubbly personality, she attracted many friends, including boyfriends, and I had never heard anyone question her attractiveness.
As I passed her in the hall at school the following day, as usual, she smiled and said “hello” and I found myself struggling to look at her in a different light. Sure, like many young, gangly teenagers her complexion was marked with acne and her boyish figure had not yet filled out; but I, like everyone else at school, wanted to be part of her circle of friends. She made us feel good.
It’s human nature to want to be around those who make us feel good, and it’s difficult to see anything other than the beauty of that which makes us feel good. No doubt you also know people who don’t meet today’s artificial standard of beauty but are like a magnet and people are drawn to them, including attractive partners.
The reverse is also true. There are men and women who at first introduction will take your breath away with their physical beauty—the perfect human specimen with the body, hair, and skin to die for. Everyone turns when they walk into a room.
But soon their lure may dissipate. Perhaps they believe they’re unworthy of such attention, have a fear of rejection, or lack basic communication skills. The doubt and fear creep in and alters their vibration to an uncomfortable or desperate aura that pushes others away.
On the other hand, good looking or not, there are also people you want to run away from as soon as they open their mouth! Whether it’s the degradation of others, the whining, the endless complaints or the use of foul language, their facade erodes right there before your eyes. The zits on their soul pop out!
We grew up hearing “it’s what’s on the inside that counts” or “beauty is only skin deep.” I’m sure you know individuals who have lived their lives following these proverbs; they are loving and giving but have become doormats to the needs of those who only want to take. They lack the confidence to stand up for themselves or feel they’re undeserving and must continue to pay penance for some imaginary transgression. Self-doubt, self-criticism, and self-judgment have formed the false foundation on which they base their self-worth.
My classmate didn’t think of herself as ugly. On the contrary, she loved life, other people, and she loved herself. Apparently, the belief that she was worthy, and she merited all that life has to offer was instilled in her at an early age and this was reflected in how she saw herself and others.
The beliefs we hold – conscious or unconscious, good or bad – are always revealed in our outer world. How you see yourself is how other people see you. When you hold yourself in high esteem it changes your appearance and vibration, and others are attracted to you.
If you have any doubt that you are worthy, deserving, intelligent, beautiful, talented, and loving, then it’s time to question those beliefs. Possessing love and respect for yourself and others leads not only to a mental and spiritual transformation, but your physical body begins to transmit a higher vibration.