One of the things I have learned even at a young age is that people have varying degrees of satisfaction. And to the extent that they are satisfied is reflected in their character, habits, and surroundings.
Happiness cannot be injected into another person. A woman who is beautiful in the eyes of many may still find herself insecure. On the other hand, a man who has a physical handicap may still see himself blessed and be enthusiastic with life.
Self-preservation and self-propagation
Two things are common to animals and humans: self-preservation and self-propagation.
Self-preservation is our ability to look for ways to prolong our life such as eating food and escaping danger. It is also our ability to fight back when escape is no longer possible. We commonly see this when we watch National Geographic documentaries. We see animals adapting to their environment depending on the season for them to survive.
Some animals hibernate, some animals estivate. All these are part of the adaptation process. There are animals who spend either the entire winter or the entire summer sleeping. This is to preserve the food that they have in their stomachs. And when the turn of the season comes, they wake from their sleep and go on hunting for food again.
Self-propagation is the ability to reproduce. This is a natural activity to preserve their species. Animals have varying mating seasons. Often we see, this is also the time when males rival each other and fight for dominion just so they get to breed a female animal.
It is worthwhile to note that animals do not undergo training to do what they are doing. A spider does not have to be taught how to make a web. Birds learn to make nests on their own. Bees do not engage in a seminar to know how to get nectar and store them in their hives. Migratory birds will leave an area once winter approaches. And they are able to find the location where they will migrate without the benefit of technology that uses a global positioning system or GPS.
What we can all learn about animals is that they have built-in mechanisms to survive.
Animals are oriented to succeed. They fight to succeed.
The best gift that the Divine Creator has given humanity is his ability for self-reflection. The ability to determine his self-worth and his self-image is a gift that is available only to the human person. It is not available to animals.
Whereas to the animals, it is the survival of the fittest – the fastest, the strongest, and the smartest – which is the name of the game, the human person has at his disposal the power whether he will apply any of these in order to survive. In fact, he may choose not to survive.
While animals are oriented to succeed and are directed to maximize the fullest of their potentials, the human person enjoys the freedom to decide whether he wants to maximize the opportunities available to him depending on how he assesses himself.
The importance of self-worth
It is therefore important for the human person to determine his self-worth. Self-worth plays a huge factor in the human person’s willingness to activate his success mechanism.
A person with a high sense of self-worth will do everything that he can to be successful. He respects himself and such respect radiates to his surroundings, to the people around him. It leads him to accomplish big things that benefit him and those around him.
A person will move from a life of poverty to a life of financial freedom once he begins to gain respect for himself. It is the same kind of respect that will guide him to achieve the freedom he desires in a way that does not violate another person’s dignity. He respects himself in such a way that he will not trade his integrity for anything else. He recognizes that he is not an animal whose only sense of purpose is to survive.
A person who has the right amount of self-respect understands that he does not want that respect to be violated by somebody else. This leads him to understand that such a desire is also a desire of his fellow human being and so he also would not intentionally disrespect another human person.
Man in the mirror
In Michael Jackson’s song Man in the Mirror, the lyrics say that he is telling the man in the mirror that for him to change the world and make it a better place, he first needs to take a look at himself and make a change.
We cannot point our finger at everybody else and demand changes. Blaming is a lousy excuse for the weak. We cannot evade responsibility for the things that we see around us. The change will only come once we begin to be accountable for the things happening in our lives.
We must always look at ourselves in the mirror. It is only then that we will see the changes that we need to do. We must develop a habit of introspection: how have I been helping myself so that I may help others? How determined are we to achieve our dreams and how much are we willing to pay the price?
We are dignified beings. Let us increase the amount of respect that we have for ourselves so that we may be able to shift from a life of misery to a life of prosperity. Let us bear in mind the fact that we are blessed to have been created human and give our humanity the right amount of dignity and respect that it so deserves.
Be blessed and be a blessing!