Life specialist Joyce Philbin-Collier shares her expert insights and answers your questions about self esteem, holiday stress and more.
The Question: My self esteem is not what it should be. I need to be more secure and not sure how to do that. Help!
The Answer from Joyce Philbin-Collier: Thoughts control outcomes. Your self esteem and success are directly related to your belief in yourself. Your belief in yourself comes from daily thoughts that recognize who you are and what you do well. Once You believe that you are a valuable person, your self esteem will follow. Do not let others define who you are or what your value is. They don’t know you as well as you do.
This means, as you see yourself in a certain way, you perpetuate that image. Change the movie of yourself playing in your head. Recognize small achievements — because they add up to larger successes. Do not diminish your own accomplishments. Be patient with what may seem to be small steps. You’ll get there.
I’ve been under a lot of stress lately with the holidays and work and family and had a panic attack the other day. Can you suggest some ways I can help control or deal with these? I don’t like being out of control and I’m looking for a better way to help control them.
The Answer from Joyce Philbin-Collier: Control is fear based. Let it go and let life flow. If you put your attention on the negative, that will become your experience. When you are feeling anxious, see if you can recognize it before it becomes a full blown, panic attack. That is the Collier practice of awareness — put fear out of your mind and invite in the positive. Soon, every time you feel the fear coming through, you will know to set the fear aside, live in the present. Break the cycle the holidays creates with demands of big spending on gifts you may not be able to always afford. You cannot be fearful and be positive at the same time. We cannot think two opposing thoughts at the same time. It’s a process of focused thinking and lays the foundation for change.
My husband and I have been married for two years and have a 10-month-old daughter. This will be her first Christmas. I am pregnant with my second child. I find I am very tired without the energy I used to have. My mother in law is trying to pressure me and my husband to travel a long distance to spend Christmas with them. When I explained I wasn’t up to it, she went to my husband and tried to pressure him into coming against my wishes. This is not the first time she has gone behind my back to get her way. What do you suggest?
The Answer from Joyce Philbin-Collier: Whenever families welcome new members into their families, the dynamics have to change and it isn’t always smooth. How this transition happens depends on how all the parties are willing to compromise. First, you and your husband have to recommit that you are each other’s first priority along with your baby daughter and your baby on the way. This is your family. Together you need to create boundaries that will maintain the stability of the new family you are creating while trying to satisfy extended family members. Once the two of you decide what is best, and boundaries are established, you will have communicated how you and yours will conduct yourselves.
At first, you may meet resistance. Mothers have a difficult time letting go of their children. You cannot control others’ behavior. You can only control yours. Once the protocol is established you and your mother-in-law will find that your mutual love for your husband and her son, in time, will make communication and plans more amicable.
Joyce Philbin-Collier is a life specialist and owner of Robert Collier Publications. Through her experiences and study of self-help authors and metaphysics, she has been able to help people with every day questions and concerns. You can contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org and visit her online atwww.robertcollierpublications.com. If your question is selected to be answered here at Ask the Expert, you will receive a free audio book!