Become a friend to yourself

A leadership coach recently challenged me to identify my core beliefs. The exercise proved to be revelatory for me as my values and self-identity were shaken and then affirmed in the process.

Core beliefs are those assertions we hold deeply about ourselves and the world around us. On the surface level, we may say that we like who we are or that we are proud of ourselves, but closer examination sometimes reveals that these sentiments are not deeply rooted.

Many of us are not satisfied with the person we were created to be. We dislike our appearance, the amount of intelligence we believe we have, the words that come out our mouth. We even resist our gifts in the pursuit of trying to be someone that we are not.

The terms self-esteem and self-confidence are thrown about and may be considered synonyms. They are not entirely the same, however. We may be confident about our ability to perform a task but not have healthy self-esteem in the core of who we are. We are confident people lacking a full understanding of our self-worth.

Quiet meditation allowed me to reconnect with who I am and who I want to be. My talents and ethical foundation became clear to me while drafting my core beliefs.

Facing our innermost foundation is a frightening task. Doubts play in our mind. The process of reflection, however, enables us to be honest with ourselves and clarify our hopes and expectations.

Like a friend, we lovingly point out areas of strength and areas for improvement. In writing out our core beliefs, we can act as a friend to ourselves.


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