Self-es­teem can be fixed bit by bit

Winnipeg Free Press - SundayXtra - - LIFE / TECH -

DEAR MISS LONELYHEARTS: I’ve been sin­gle for 11 years (zero dates) and am start­ing to get very wor­ried. When­ever an op­por­tu­nity comes up to pick up or date a woman, I turn cold and shal­low like a statue and run for the hills at the last mo­ment. I’m start­ing to think there’s some­thing bi­o­log­i­cally wrong with my brain. I can’t af­ford to see a psy­chol­o­gist.

There are cur­rently two women in my life who I think are in­ter­ested in me, and I’m at­tracted to both of them, but I don’t want to try to pick ei­ther one up be­cause I need more time to work on my­self. I have is­sues with weight, self-es­teem and fi­nances. And I’m wor­ried I’m just do­ing what I’ve al­ways done — mak­ing ex­cuses. I’m in my early 30s and don’t want to be sin­gle for the rest of my life. — Wor­ried Guy, Win­nipeg

Dear Wor­ried: The two women at­tracted to you right now are not at­tracted to a fu­ture you — no makeover is needed, so that ex­cuse is gone. As for self-es­teem, here’s more pos­i­tive news: peo­ple aren’t stuck with the self-es­teem level they have com­ing out of their fam­i­lies of ori­gin, school­ing and work ex­pe­ri­ences. You can cre­ate higher es­teem, block by block. Make a list of chal­lenges that in­ter­est you in life. With each chal­lenge you con­quer, your self-es­teem goes up.

When you come off a big chal­lenge you’ll feel a rush of good feel­ings, much as a per­son feels when they win a medal. That’s an ex­cel­lent time to ask some­one out. Build­ing-block chal­lenges don’t have to be done in or­der of dif­fi­culty. Start with an easy one this week.

As for fi­nances, ad­mit you’re not good at han­dling money right now and get help and knowl­edge through read­ing. A fa­mous book by Napoleon Hill called Think & Grow Rich is a good at­ti­tudechanger, and an easy read for any­body. The fi­nal thing you should do, since you feel stuck, is to get coun­selling. Free walk-in ses­sions are avail­able most days of the week at Klinic at 545 Broad­way. Call 204-784- 4067 for hours.

Dear Miss Lonelyhearts: I wanted to write about Dis­ap­pointed whose wife doesn’t want to go camp­ing any­more. Your sug­ges­tion of a trailer is ex­cel­lent, but what if they can’t af­ford it? What re­ally struck me is that the wife con­tin­ued do­ing her day job on the week­end with­out any of the ameni­ties she nor­mally has. No won­der she hates camp­ing!

Her hus­band should tell her he’ll look af­ter the sick kids and do all the cook­ing when they’re camp­ing. Her job is to think of ac­tiv­i­ties and games they could do as a fam­ily. Maybe he won’t en­joy camp­ing as much un­der those con­di­tions, but as time goes on they might find a way to share chores so they both en­joy a week­end of camp­ing with the kids. — Takes Two to Tango, Win­nipeg

Dear Takes Two: Your idea is cre­ative, but it’s doubt­ful the hus­band — the camp­ing-ac­tiv­ity en­thu­si­ast — will want to do all the child care and cook­ing while Mom comes up with ac­tiv­i­ties. Ei­ther they start out with the com­pro­mise, work­ing to­gether, or that tent or trailer is go­ing to be parked for­ever. It’s al­ways dan­ger­ous by the wa­ter with kids, and both par­ents have to be on full alert even af­ter kids have had a few lev­els of swimming lessons. Boating, fish hooks and tak­ing wrig­gling fish off hooks may not be Mom’s thing, not to men­tion fil­let­ing them.

Here’s hop­ing the par­ents grad­u­ally slip into a com­fort­able camp­ing sit­u­a­tion, with short week­end trips that ex­tend to longer stays. Please send your ques­tions and com­ments to love­coach@hot­mail.com or Miss Lonelyhearts c/o the Win­nipeg Free Press, 1355 Moun­tain Ave., Win­nipeg,

MB, R2X 3B6

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