Have you messed up at work lately? Hey, don’t stress – everybody makes mistakes.
Failure can strike deep at our feelings of self-worth, and after a significant failure, people often tend to engage in self-destructive behaviour such as drinking, binge eating or reckless spending, according to research. Although carrying out this behaviour can effectively block out the negative feelings associated with failure, it will merely yield short-term benefits and consequently, result in greater harm in the long-run, such as physical, financial and psychology harm.
The research makes a distinction between self-acceptance, self-esteem and self-affirmation and, after a series of ingenious experiments, suggests that self-acceptance is the strategy most likely to help us — both personally and professionally. The full paper is available here.
Harvard Medical School defines self-acceptance as: “an individual’s acceptance of all of his/her attributes, positive or negative.” This includes body acceptance and believing in one’s capacities. In the workplace, having self-acceptance can positively improve performance, through gaining confidence in one’s abilities and being more responsive when faced with adversity.
Havard also touches on ways you can enhance your self-acceptance, like through self-regulation (suppressing the negative thoughts about your-self and focusing only on the positives) or self-transcendence (relying less on external factors to determine your self-worth). Click here to read more on the importance of self-acceptance and well-being.