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The best praise you'll ever get

white knight
Community Champion
Community Champion

Imagine, you are standing in front of two lines of people and you run between them. They pat your back and sing your praises..."good on your".."congratulations"..."well done". And the line goes for about 50 metres. At the end of it you turn around and you see in their eyes how proud they all are of you. You take a deep breath. "Made it" you mumble. For this is likely the ultimate joy of praise.

Then there is the opposite- Humility. To do deeds with the full intent of NOT seeking praise.

If you have low self esteem you are likely to enjoy praise to lift your mood and endeavours. And I think those reading these posts are more likely to have low self esteem than not.

The problem with praise is, 1/ others have to notice your good deeds before you'll even look like you'll get any 2/ what if others are not around to see it 3/ some people will never praise anyone.

I like praise. I like being accepted. I seek to be accepted. In fact if I don't get a lot of good vibes from a visitor I say to my wife later "I don't think she likes me". Such is the result of very low self esteem and a BPD mother that I could never please as a child or adult. I accept that. I've moved on. But the fallout stays.

Over recent years I've come to realise my short term memory is failing. So I've resorted to the idea of talking aloud to myself. "Tea, pies, sugar and soap". If said aloud I'll have a better chance of remembering those grocery items. Then it occurred to me to say out loud the praise I would like from others- to myself. Now, this was quite amusing to my good neighbour when he heard "well done Tony, you good man you, make sure you dig that garden like that next time...what a man". I had to assure my neighbour all was well...that it was an experiment I was doing...

Sometimes in life we cant rely on other people to help us. We are born alone and we will die alone. In between we depend on others for a lot of things. With mental illness we depend a lot more. Self praise is one thing we can try to do alone. And with proper technique and consistency we will succeed in at least feeling better and growing our confidence.

Just be wary of your neighbours......

Tony WK

16 Replies 16

Trish_M
Community Member

Hi Tony WK,

 Your post really resonated with me. I am often my own worst enemy and yet if I look at myself in total, I am just as amazing, talented and flawed as everyone else. I love your idea of giving yourself positive praise and feedback, I will definitely give it a try. For most of today, I have been comfortable in my own skin, has it been the beautiful Spring weather? Have I rested and not taken on too much? Have I eaten well and taken good care of myself? Is it the gentle exercise that I partook of? Was it being able to say "No" to something I really didn't want to do even though I worried about the other person's response? Who knows. Just for now, this moment I am ok and feeling well. And guess what? The blackness and despair of 2 weeks ago really didn't last forever!

Thank you for your post.

Kindest regards,

Trish M.

Hi Trish M

Thankyou also for replying. Makes my day.

We shouldn't analyse too much as to the whys and hows. I know we do, that's why I'm a worrier.

I have a (not so close) friend. She is so bubbly and is so happy all the time, everytime I see her. I am puzzled as to how someone can be consistently happy, smiling laughing and joking....all the time. In fact I had recently started to wonder if she was deliberately being "over the top" for othe reasons eg putting on a show. But for two years now she has been the same. We are on Facebook together and I've observe this happiness in her to see if there is a flawed day, nope, not one. Then recently another person posted a very negative post to others in general. Several people replied including a person inviting this happy friend to respond. Her reply - "I just shovel all the negative stuff aside, doesn't mater who it comes from, I'm after fun, excitement and I love giggling...so sorry guys I aint gunna get into this one".

This 100% bubbly personality would only frustrate me when and if I was in a down mood in her company. Why? Because as a friend there should be times when you can have a heart to heart about issues you have. But then I thought...hang on a minute...those are my problems not hers. Just that I've grown to believe friends should share their struggles. And I'm doubtful not that we should expect that.

So, I've learned. That friends can come in many styles. Some you can share your hurdles with others you cant. And even this happy bubbly friend might need me one day if tragedy struck.

Anyway back to your last sentence. Yeh, it seems so long ago just a few days since you left your black hole. Prevention is better than cure hence my post. Praising yourself aloud, rewarding yourself is but one positive thing you can do towards that prevention to keep that black dog away. You deserve that pat on your back.

Consider it has come your way from me. Take care

Tony WK

I struggle accepting praise, I don't know why, perhaps my low self esteem.
Like after I play one of my songs live, if someone tells me that was good or they like my song, I feel it is not genuine from them.

Hi MisterM,

I understand completely the lack of trust in other people, especially those who praise you. (Coming from someone who is always pretending to believe praise}

Do you look at the people who are listening to your music?, it usually shows when someone is impressed, even a little. Our own intuition suffers when self-esteem is not as it should be but I think deep down you know if your music is good. I figure that it may help if you really think about whether  you like the song. If so, you can't possibly be the only one. 🙂

Am new here so I hope you will forgive my forwardness.

Hi Gypsy-pom,

I can't tell as I am blinded by lights on the stage as I perform live haha.
I guess if they are focused on me then it's a good sign.
I think people have ulterior motives for praising me, paranoia.
Thank you for replying.

topsy_
Blue Voices Member
Blue Voices Member

Hi Tony,

I was directed to this topic from another thread. I think this sounds like really good advice but I have one question - what did you mean by "proper technique"?

As to your neighbour overhearing you - it reminds me of a funny incident of my own. I talk to my little foxie when I'm here alone. This particular day I went shopping & after looking at some things I was interested in, I began talking to my dog as I walked away - only she was still at home!! I was so embarrassed & quickly looked around to see if there were people near. It amuses me no end now though.

I'm not sure if this thread will still be read but here's hoping.

Cheers Lyn.

white knight
Community Champion
Community Champion

Hi Lyn,

Yes its likely I will read it because when you reply this thread then goes to the top of the list of new posts. Then I'll realise it is one of my threads I've written and read your reply.

I don't know where you got the "proper technique" from. It could have been in the last thread you read that referred you to this thread because I cant see it written here.

By the way, I have a pure bred mini Foxie (Miss Rosie) and she is adorable. She is 4yo.

Tony WK

topsy_
Blue Voices Member
Blue Voices Member

Hello Tony,

Thanks for replying. "And with proper technique...."

Its the 6th sentence in the last paragraph of the first post in this topic.

I think this idea is great & I thought if there is a proper way to do it, I'd better find out. My mother always told me if there was a right & a wrong way to do something then I'd always do the wrong way first!!

I hope you have a great day Tony. Cheers, Lyn.

white knight
Community Champion
Community Champion

Hi Lyn,

Arh...saw it. "Proper technique" could have been better worded by using the word "determination" or a positive attitude. And talking aloud which, isn't what some believe (the first signs of insanity) lol.

In all of us is a fighter. Some think not but there is one, maybe buried deeper in some than others. This fighter needs to be tapped by those with low self esteem. So when we stare into the mirror and say audibly "you are a good woman Lyn, you deserve happiness and stability in your life. You will not be put down without a defense and you wont feel guilty for defending yourself"... you can clench your fists, grit your teeth and be really determined for your words to sink in. Or you could say the words and then go about your daily business and it wont have the desired effect.

Many years ago when I left the warder job in a jail I tried insurance selling. I thought I was a positive thinker until I met Bill. Bill gave us a lecture in motivation (you can google it - "Topic: 30 minutes can change your life- beyondblue" ) Prior to that address I was no where near the positive man I could be. I didn't realise my potential to change my approach to life.

So, in answer to your question, there isnt much special about "proper technique" just make sure you are maximising your potential to improve and grow your own confidence. We have to counter our previous poor influences thrusted upon us. This is one way to do so.

regards Tony WK