Perception is Everything
Some people say that perception is everything, but is it really? Just the other day, a friend of mine commented about how someone we had both recently met gave a compliment regarding a part of my appearance. She must need glasses, I thought to myself. I could not believe what I heard. Her saying I was thin was certainly not how I viewed myself, Now before you start thinking that I am going to be negative about the way I look, let me explain. You see, although I may not be "thin", and admittedly more often than not, trying to lose a few pounds, I understand and appreciate the body type and genetics given to me and strive to take care of myself in the best way possible.
On another recent occasion, during a conversation with a complete stranger, I received what I deemed to be a negative comment about my appearance. I immediately thought, wow, they must think I look pretty bad to say something like that. Mind you, it may not even have been intended to come across as negative, but that's how it was perceived by me.
In both of these instances, perception was a key player.
In hindsight, I realize that neither of these impressions was right or wrong, but simply someone else's opinion of me.
As humans, we are programmed to feel better individually when we receive a compliment and tend to focus more on something negative we've heard regarding ourselves, perhaps even making a vow to try to change that part of us which we deem to be bad.
Through the media, we are constantly bombarded by images and articles that can influence our thinking and how we should measure up. Social media posts are full of other peoples' opinions. We can get so caught up in believing that one viewpoint is superior over another one.
Of all the viewpoints from others we will encounter, there is only one that is important to remember. God's opinion of you matters most. He created you in His image.
Whether it's a thought regarding an event or circumstance, or a viewpoint about yourself, keep in mind that God wants you to have a balanced impression of both people and things. More importantly, he wants you to have a healthy perspective about yourself. We should never think lowly of ourselves, however, we should also never place ourselves above others.
Maintaining a healthy, realistic view of yourself is crucial to maintaining positive self-esteem.
It's all about learning to accept and love yourself. When you value yourself, as God does, a favorable self-esteem stays intact.
Genesis 1:27 God created humankind in his own image, in the image of God he created them, male and female he created them. New English Translation (NET Bible)