By Audrey Marlene, MS
Who is a Self-reliant Person?
When we are self-reliant we can reach inside to draw strength to conquer our daily struggles. When children are taught to expect adversities and how to resolve them, they learn to develop their inner strength. A self-reliant child is a more confident and independent child. Learning how to cope with life's challenges are the survival skills we need to grow to become self-reliant.
Today's "instant gratification" society is easily fragmented when problems arise. We want the easy way out or look for quick-fixes to resolve problems. Parents readily medicate their children that begin to rely on medications to fix their vulnerabilities. We have now become a society that is less self-reliant and more extrinsically dependent.
Self-reliance allows one to battle the crises of life when they arise with a courageous heart. If he become discouraged he will find the power from within to keep fighting. Very seldom would the self-reliant person give in to substance abuse, alcoholism, or medications to cope. Instead he would assert himself, put on his survival armor, seek the help he needs and find resolve.
When we are self-reliant we can more quickly learn about who we are – our strengths and weaknesses. If we know ourselves we are in a better position to strengthen our weaknesses and capitalize on our strengths. The self-reliant person is an independent thinker and less conforming to what society dictates. The self-reliant person makes better decisions and has more self-control. They have has more potential for greatness.
Self-reliance means Independent Thinking
The self-reliant person is an independent thinker. The independent thinker is a mature thinker. Independent thinking enables more self-satisfaction and happiness. We feel more liberated when we do not have to conform to someone else's way of thinking. How would you like to be told what to do twenty four seven?
Believe it or not we do conform to other people's way of thinking. We are born into a society where social and political infrastructures are already established for us. Whether or not we want to admit it, it's a form of control. The design of our homes, the clothing we wear, the music we listen to, even the entertainment we subscribe to, and not to mention the media we are saturated with, has a tendency to do our thinking for us. We go along with what has been established for us without question.
Here is a challenge: How often do you make a decision without conforming to culture or norms? How often do you wear clothing that wasn't considered the latest fashion? How often do you buy the latest gadget to feel part of the norm? How often do you take the initiative to try something new without the suggestion of someone else?
Now thinking independently doesn't mean you are to start a radical group or become disruptive. It means becoming informed and educated and making clear, rational decisions on your own. It means being self-reliant and trusting in your own authority to make decisions.
Self reliance for Children
Children who are not taught self-reliance, who are not expected to be self-reliant and not encouraged in that direction can miss out on certain skills necessary to achieve a higher level of success in life. These children can grow up to be predisposed to codependent relationships, have less self-confidence with a lesser chance of becoming a high achiever.
It is up to us as parents to examine the way we raise our children. Are you working extra hours to provide them with all the luxuries of life? In doing so, could you be denying them of quality time to teach them how to become more self-reliant.
I witness this quite often in my work. Children from affluent homes, with every possible opportunity to achieve big but instead they lack the drive and motivation. In its place, the time that could be spent doing quality, productive tasks is spent in front of the television or hanging around indulging in destructive practices such as drugs and alcohol.
Many parents rationalize that as long as they are self-reliant, their children will automatically become self-reliant. This may be true to a small degree but many parents today who are self-reliant became that way because they were raised with less and needed to reach inside to find the strength to accomplish what they have. They were raised to be self-reliant and needed to be in order to survive. Because these parents know the long road they traveled, they, out love and good intentions don't want their children to struggle like they did and instead place cushions under their children to make things easier for them. This mind-set spawns dependency and less self-reliance.
Stop for a moment to thinking about the way you raise your children. Are you hurting or helping your child?
How to be more Self-Reliant
According to answers.com "self-reliance is the capacity to manage one's own affairs, make one's own judgments, and provide for oneself." So how can we make adjustments in our lives in order to become more self-reliant? Becoming self-reliant can be a big change for someone who hasn't been before. Therefore it is important to strengthen yourself spiritually to get the courage and faith you need to face your fears. Become an independent thinker. Pay less attention to what others think and more attention to what is truly important. Get to know your core values or redefine them and trust your instincts more. Learn to make your own decisions. If you have been known for making "not so good" decisions, get some outside input. Do the research and get all the information necessary then make your decision. Trust your instincts. Improve your self-confidence. Lack of self-confidence breeds dependency on others. If you feel unsure of your abilities in a particular area, take a course, do the research, get the help of an expert. Once you feel more confident you are more likely to rely on yourself and be less dependent on others. Become emotionally strong. Emotional fortitude breeds self-reliance. When you are emotionally unsure of yourself, you tend to shy away from taking responsibility for yourself. When you have emotional stamina you have a more take charge attitude. Then you can fight off the emotional challenges that come your way. Learn money management skills. Knowing how to handle money or how to work within a budget gives one more confidence with handling their own financial affairs. Learn to be more organized. Staying organized allows more clarity to think about what needs to get done, when to get it done, or how to get things done. Clarity of mind breeds self-reliance.
Taking charge of your life and building the stamina you need to function with self-reliance can bring a feeling of peace and contentment within. Parents make it a point to give your children the tools they need to grow up to be independent, self-reliant children. Please click
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Quotes on Self Reliance "Depend not on another, but lean instead on thyself. True happiness is born of self reliance." — The Laws of Manu "Self reliance is the only road to true freedom, and being one's own person is its ultimate reward." — Patricia Sampson "The best lightning rod for your protection is your own spine." —Ralph Waldo Emerson "No one can be great, or good, or happy except through the inward efforts of themselves."— Frederick W.Robertson "Self reliance, the height and perfection of man, is reliance on God." —Ralph Waldo Emerson "The strongest man in the world is he who stands alone." — Henrik Ibsen "You can't get spoiled if you do your own ironing."— Meryl Streep "Self reliance is the capacity to manage one's own affairs, make one's own judgments, and provide for oneself" —Answers.com "The best place to find a helping hand is at the end of your own arm." — Unknown "The highest manifestation of life consists in this: that a being governs its own actions. A thing which is always subject to the direction of another is somewhat of a dead thing." — St. Thomas Aquinas
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