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ENCHANTMENT IN AN E-MAIL - MARCH 2002

"Achieving Positive States of Mind and Body Again and Again"          

Produced by Dr. Barbara Becker Holstein , Psychologist, Life Coach, and Originator of THE ENCHANTED SELF(R)        

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Welcome to the monthly publication of The Enchanted Self's e-newsletter!  The following is what you will find in this month's issue. 

Recipe for Enchantment #21

Here is a simple Recipe for Enchantment ...

It is a simple act of kindness that results in positive states of well-being.  Here it is:

The next time you walk into a room where you know some or all of the people, whether it is at your church or synagogue or the health club, make a concerted effort to say 'hello' to someone with energy and intent.

Say 'hello' and chat with a positive intensity in your voice and manner that suggests you are delighted to see her.  Let her know that she is not one more burden in your life!  It is not a bother to talk and listen to her.  It is your pleasure. She is special to you!  You really want to know how she is and what she is doing.  You really care! 

That's all there is to this recipe.  Once that intent is transmitted by the strength of you voice, the clear focus of your eyes, your ability to stay listening to her and not to glance away while she talks, the enchantment is already brewing.

I guarantee that not only will she glow and feel special but you will walk away feeling a sense of connection that will foster your sense of well-being.

This is another win-win recipe!  Go for it.

Article: THE ENCHANTED SELF responds to a New York Time's Magazine article: The Trouble With Self-Esteem by Dr. Slater

By Dr. Barbara Becker Holstein

The real problem in talking about self-esteem is that it's like the blind man touching the elephant. 

Remember how the man touching the elephant's back might say, "Oh, the elephant is made up of a giant piece of leathery material".  Another of the men, touching a tusk, might say, "An elephant is a creature composed of smooth surfaces that feel like marble."  The man that touched his tail might say, "This is very much like a snake."  Each would be speaking realistically for what they perceived and yet at the same time, the essence of 'elephant' had been missed entirely.  When we look at only the individual's sense of personal self-esteem we are in the same kind of quandary.

Why?  Because self-esteem is a self-perception, unique to one person, just as touching the elephant was personal to each man.  In my opinion, although extremely important for a personal sense of well-being, it doesn't explain the essence of a good life any more than a blind man can explain an elephant to us by touching only one part of the elephant. 

Just as a diamond in a beautiful setting can be beautiful and of value, but at the same time dangerous if swallowed, self-esteem is in its best 'setting' when it is felt as a sense of positive regard inside of someone's head.  It's the extra motivation that helps the person to be valuable citizen.

Look at it this way: if I have good self-esteem but I am a murderer, than self-esteem in and of itself is not serving me and certainly hurting others.  If I have poor self-esteem and feel terrible about myself and am chronically depressed, but have good values and ethics and still do good deeds, that is not a personally satisfying solution either.  I may serve the world in a positive fashion, but feel terrible inside.  Self-esteem can only been seen within the whole context of the human condition.

THE ENCHANTED SELF explores ways to develop self-esteem and also live a life of purpose and meaning.  Think about "AHA".  What is "AHA"?  It is the three factors essential to well being.  They are: Authenticity of Self, Hope and Positive Action.

If these three factors exist for a person then she will automatically experience a positive sense of self-esteem.  It would not be inflated nor deflated. It would be just right for her, based on a realistic, yet hopeful assessment of herself, based on her talents, strengths, coping skills and potential.  A caring community of teachers, mentors and a loving family, as well as the self-knowledge she developed over the years would enhance it. She would be doing positive actions, leading a life that is more than self-serving, and being productive in terms of the community and even the world at large.

So, I agree with Dr. Slater. Let's no longer be na´ve and speak about self-esteem as an isolated concept. Let's look at the whole elephant. We have the psychological and sociological sophistication to educate our children and ourselves to understand that feeling good on the inside and behaving as a good citizen of the world on the outside are not separate.  They are linked and when we work at being true to ourselves, while at the same time making sure we contribute in positive ways, we create a wonderful win-win situation.  It feels good and it is good!

Response to the Article "The Trouble With Self Esteem - Maybe Thinking Highly of Yourself is the Real Problem" by Lauren Slater, New York Times Magazine section dated February 3, 2002

How to Order Books, Audio Tapes and more

How about some autographed copies of 'Recipes for Enchantment' with a free copy of The Enchanted Self's paper newsletter and a bookmark?  Perhaps you would be interested my first book, 'The Enchanted Self', which is also available on audiotape?  Here are some ways to order:

Tip: When shopping online use keywords "recipes for enchantment" and "enchanted self" to locate the books.

E-group: Connect with others like you!

Find out "what's right with you--not what's wrong!"  Come chat with other "Enchanted Self-ers" at http://groups.yahoo.com/group/encself.  Membership is free and you will have access to our on-line calendar, message board, chat room, and more.  It's a great way to connect with others who are exploring, creating and sharing their own positive and satisfying lives.  See you there!

Share Your Enchantment!

Share your positive stories and questions about enchantment with us and other Enchanted Self readers around the globe!  Our mid-month e-zine focuses on YOU and reaches a subscriber list of almost 700 people from the US , Canada , Australia , the United Kingdom , and many other countries!  Please send stories, comments, and questions to encself@aol.com.

Quote of the Month

"People seldom improve when they have no other model but themselves to copy after." 

            -- G and G Realtors calendar for 2002.

Blessing of the Month

May you always have special people with kind hearts, intelligence, and wisdom to model yourself after.  And may you always have the opportunity to help someone else copy from you the gifts you have absorbed!

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Have an "enchanting" month.  I wish you all many enchanted moments!

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Forwarding & Reprinting

(C) 2001-2002 Copyright The Enchanted Self - All rights reserved.

Please feel free to pass this issue on to someone who might enjoy it.  The Enchanted Self Newsletter is copyrighted but may be quoted, reprinted, or distributed in whole or part without prior permission, provided the content is not changed and attribution is given including:

Dr. Barbara Becker Holstein

THE ENCHANTED SELF(R)

I also encourage you to include this material in other publications, such as self-healing and professional psychology newsletters. However, I do ask that you contact me beforehand for permission and send a sample issue.

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To learn more about THE ENCHANTED SELF(R) - A State of Well Being, Joy, and Happiness, please contact me or visit my web site.

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