Have you ever seen a dog jump for a ball, completely miss it, take a most grace-less tumble, then get right back up n’ at ’em? What a great lesson lies in that!

Gosh, we’re all so very hard on ourselves. We take a shot, take a risk, go for whatever “it” is for us at the time; then, if we miss that target, crash n’ burn, get rejected, or reach a less-than-stellar outcome, we totally judge ourselves for it. Fall into a shame spiral and slide into a guilt bracket. We put future attempts on reserve, and our sense of adventure and enthusiasm on hold. We play a bit safer. Create a comfort zone, and stay in it. We create lines and boundaries, and rarely color outside of them. Why? So we can avoid the pain and discomfort we just experienced, and dodge getting whacked again with the shame-stick.

When we continue to measure our value and self-worth according to cultural, peer, societal, and familial standards and expectations, any external circumstance, comment or opinion will shake our foundation; preventing us from growing and becoming the incredible being each of us is (yes, I’m referring to YOU).

Self: Love. Worth. Acceptance. Respect. Trust. Faith. The very attributes we’re here to carefully, forgivingly and gently craft form the very foundation a healthy-self concept is built upon. When we’re confident and at peace with who we are, those scrapes, burns, scars, and marks become badges of honor and pride. Relics of courage. Proof we were stronger than whatever it was that tried to break us. We chose to believe and not succumb.

The healthier our self-concept, the better able we are to show up for ourselves and all who depend on us.

Take it from Dog~ if you stumble and fall, dust yourself off and keep going. Our greatest lessons lie in the very process of getting back up!

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