Broadcasting Your Self Esteem – Is This Rude?

wyrdling writes:

“…women don’t tend to admit being “pretty good” in our culture.”

No they don’t. Even if the believe it they don’t state it as if it is impolite to have self-esteem. So here I am with Mars conjunct Mercury (loud) in the ninth house (broadcast) in Libra (Venus) and what am I do to? Yell out that I am desirable or pervert my energy?

If you think I should pervert my energy, should I dye my hair too? What else should I do to be more palatable? And why should I do this again?

I think my overt expression of self confidence inspires and allows others to feel good about themselves. If I can get away with feeling really, really good about myself, maybe you can get away with feeling sort of good about yourself and I think this is why Capricorn / Saturn types read here.

“She’s got all kinds of audacity, I think I can stick my neck out a little bit further myself…”

Far as I am concerned, someone’s got to be Auntie Mame.

Were you taught to downplay your good qualities?

40 thoughts on “Broadcasting Your Self Esteem – Is This Rude?”

  1. I can’t answer your question, but I agree that women aren’t encouraged to be open about their traits. Modesty perpetuated as desirable, sure, but also a general societal trend that we have to share our disappointments/failures/insecurities to promote a feeling of kinship.
    I love when women are confident and open about feeling good about themselves and what they have/have done. For me that’s a positive role model. I don’t need to be told ‘that person isn’t gracious’ or something of that ilk–to me that’s something that will effect their life directly, not mine and so it isn’t important.

  2. My intelligence. People don’t like having it “rubbed in their face”.

    I think this is because intelligence is seen as a kind of wealth in our culture. Just like money, it’s not popular to go around talking about it with any kind of realism. You can’t admit to the obvious problems that come along with being intelligent, any more than you would be allowed to admit that it’s one of the easiest things on earth to have lots of money and be miserable.

    Well, fuck that shit. There are some really horrible things about being smart. I’ve experienced most of them. It’s lonely. People have ridiculous expectations of you. You’re constantly having to translate everything you ever want to say. People are automatically defensive, thinking that you assume you are better than they are, so you have to be extra inoffensive. Something that people don’t understand: truly brilliant people often having shocking lack of other things in their lives… the snottiness they show about their intelligence is pitiful, not scary.

    I’m not going to deal with all this shit and not feel happy about the few advantages my brain DOES give me. Dammit. I don’t consider myself better than anyone else, and I HATE having to walk through life with people keeping a sharp knife on hand just in case I make their brain feel small.

  3. AND ANOTHER THING… a couple of months ago, my boobs got hated on.

    W. T. F.????

    I have big boobs, was talking to another woman who had smaller ones, and she fucking WENT OFF on me because I delicately implied that having big’uns wasn’t all it was cracked up to be. Now, she was beautiful. Seriously. Guys all over the bar were totally coming on to her… right in front of me, there she was surrounded by all these men and here I was sitting next to my friend with my BOOBS and she was envying me. Envying me to the point where I wasn’t allowed to be honest. She kept shutting me up. “Oh I am SO SORRY for you, puh-lease, I don’t want to hear about it, I don’t even, no, stop talking! You don’t know what it’s like!” She said that, to ME. I don’t know what it’s like?

    No, I don’t know what it’s like to be able to go for a run without having to strap yards of fabric to my chest in order to keep it from flying off and killing passersby. I don’t know what it’s like to have shirts fit you in the chest and the arms TOO. I don’t know what it’s like to try on ten bras and have to pick the one that HURTS the least. I haven’t the faintest clue what it’s like to not know, for a fact, that at some point in my 40’s or 50’s I will have to have surgery to get these things reduced. I have no idea what these things are like. I’d sort of like to know.

    She was drunk, so I just rolled my eyes at my friends and tried to change the subject, but damn if it didn’t stick with me.

    Quit assuming that just because someone has something you wish you had, that thing is worth having. If you’ve never lived with something, you’ve never had to learn all the bad things that come along with it. It’s like wanting someone else’s husband… you only want him because you haven’t had to wake up to him every morning for ten years. And yeah, I want to appreciate and love my body. But I also want to be allowed to be honest!

  4. Ugh! ewinbee that sounds atrocious. I get that that kind of bullshit because I’m thin. It makes me really angry, actually, though I try to not be taken in by it.
    Mostly it makes me angry because it relates to the presumed attractive qualities of women. DO.NOT.LIKE.

  5. Auntie Mame (the Rosalind Russell version) is my favorite movie.

    I don’t think I was taught / socialized to downplay myself but it is just inherent LOL & something I am supposed to work on (NN in Aries opposing Sun/MC?) & I do — but I have to admit it doesn’t feel natural.

    There are far worse cultures for women than American society, and I am thankful that I am here. (Not to say things can’t be improved.) I saw this picture on the BBC day in pictures slideshow & I was like, “nuh uh.”

  6. kashmiri, oh, I do know the kind of thing you have to put up with and I am so, so sorry. 🙁 I’m a big ol’ gal myself, but I was taught a very important lesson growing up: I was stocky, my sister was naturally thin and gorgeous… and I had a higher self-esteem than she did. I know better than to think thin women don’t have as many problems as I do.

    My closest friend is rail-thin, which is actually a good body type for her, because her life’s work is in riding and training horses. But the reason she’s SO thin is because she has IBS, which makes her life a hell. She and I have an agreement. She doesn’t diss on my boobs (which aren’t good for horseback anyway), and I never envy her thinness. The poor thing tries as hard as she can to gain weight, and every time she makes the least progress, she gets sick again for a few days. I hate it that she lives with so much pain and her body type is universally aspired to.

  7. yes. on one hand. and then mom bragged up a storm on the other end (did i mention her moon’s in leo?) and i got sick of being her little doll to dress up to impress the other grownups. so it ended up being external and internal pressure.

    but, well, i do have a saturn in leo. so now i need to learn to relax a little about expressing my talents.

    and you are inspiring in that regard. definitely.
    i don’t see why anyone should hide their light.

  8. on the first hand, from the other girls my age. that leo saturn’s in the eleventh. i didn’t get why girls were supposed to pretend to be stupid. and maybe the fact that it was just the girls has something to do with that saturn/venus trine.

  9. kashmiri~

    re the thinness- women can get pretty scary about it. when my best friend was ill she got down to ~60 pounds. on a 5’6″ frame. couldn’t find clothes that fit. (she looked like she’d stepped out of one of those photos of concentration camps.) she has a story about a saleslady who envied her thinness and asked her how she did it.
    (well, first you get a chronic disease from eating tainted meat from a foreign country that none of the doctors can identify because it’s a “third world disease” then you trigger it into overdrive by working 60/80 hour weeks. is that a good diet method?)

  10. joana – you know I don’t worry about it at all because this is a big internet in a big world and it it could not possibly be simpler for someone to tune me out. If someone wants to come around here and hate on me well what the hell? Sounds like a ridiculous life to me!!

    As my friend Ben says, “There is room in this world for me!” There is room for Ben, room for me, room for you….

  11. Yes, unfortunately, it seems that in many cultures women are expected to be humble (not to mention submissive, let’s not even go there) while men are taught to boast.
    Usually my first reaction to women with noticeable self-esteem is: ‘get a grip, woman! have some humble pie and shut up!’, somehow it doesn’t seem right that she is happy with herself. And I hate it that I think like this, it goes against all of my principles. Maybe it’s my Capricorn Mercury…
    Fortunately, I don’t get the same vibe from you Elsa, so I agree with what you suggest, it can be encouraging and positive for other women.

  12. Dude, yes! Elsa, you inspire me (and others) to be ourselves. You are great at that. Must be your Venus in leo. ^_^

  13. lol, I kind of like hiding my light. If I’m happy, I’m happy. Why would this matter to anyone but me? Fastest way to lose that happiness is to start talking. Besides, I’ve found that most people really aren’t as interested in others happiness as they are in their miserableness. Funny thing, but I’ve seen it again and again.

  14. I don’t know if I was taught to play down my good qualities. I come from several generations of very crafty women. Crafty as in handcrafts. There was always a lot of praise and admiring of one another’s accomplishments including turning things inside out and over to admire fine stitching and so on.

    I think I’ve just taken the confidence I gained from that and applied it to everything else in my life. I’m shamelessly confident these days.

  15. “Besides, I’ve found that most people really aren’t as interested in others happiness as they are in their miserableness.”

    Ain’t that the truth!!

  16. I had to learn on my own to feel good about myself. Don’t even want to go into the insults I had to put up with growing up, mostly from my father. And I was smart and pretty, which I knew on some levels. I’m almost done figuring out why I picked this family this time around. (I have a whole theory about Pluto/Leo gen but won’t go into it)

    I have been envious of women who had that head start of a loving, nurturing family. But I also know that everyone carries their own crosses, which hopefully are becoming less as we evolve as a species. And everyone’s here on their own path and has their own special gifts to oontribute.

    ewinbee, it’s your boobs! ha ha I have none to speak of, and I have to agree that life is easier without them, for me anyway.

  17. wyrdlng, that is sad! I hope your friend gets well. I do get bothered by is this idea that if a woman has any overtly expressed quality (mental, physical, or otherwise) it essentially makes her PUBLIC PROPERTY that any fucking body can comment on.

    Why is it okay to say snidely “you lucky skinny bitch” or “men like women with meat on them” like that is somehow acceptable?

    For the record, I am not ultra-thin. I’m only 5’4 and have been the exact same weight for over 10 years, and it is very normal. I have curves, which I guess it what makes people so snide and horrible. No one believes genes can be unremarkably unremarkable.

    Why do people think this is somehow acceptable? It’s like being pregnant: people think if you are pregnant and in public, they can try and touch your belly.

    Personally I’m fed up with people (like my SO’s family) saying “Oh you’ve lost weight” every time I see them and then when I grit my teeth and say “actually I am the same as I’ve been for at least 10 years” they say “oh you’re just so small!”

    I ignore it, yes, but what if I told you I get that at least 25 times a week and have since I became an adult? And I’m 30 now? I hope this makes people think twice on hating someone because of the body they were BORN with. It’s cruel for one and completely anti-female for another.

  18. I can speak only for my family… I come from a family of dirt farmers, okay? We go back to the 1690s in this country, and our strains (on both my mother’s and father’s sides) broke off from the imported aristocracy to do missionary work. This brought them from New England, where the Mohawks summarily kicked their collective asses, down to the Deep South, where the “savages” were supposedly less “savage.” There was some ease into settlement there, and an absorption (if not creation) of that slavery-is-OK mindset. My family carries that mindset to this day.

    Somewhere down the line, with the migration into Texas, the breadwinning strategy evolved to farming, ranching and dairy. The men did the work-work, while the women provided the support. The church took care of the rest. Period. No matter how intelligent or “special” one was, one was supposed to sublimate all of that into whatever grunt work was necessary to survive. There were stars in my family, but they did just that.

    So, fast-forward into the late 60s, when I was born, and here’s this freak kid who is reading encyclopedias at age three and asking to check out Tolstoy and Edith Hamilton’s mythology books from the library. It’s not that they didn’t discourage me from being bright, it’s that they didn’t quite know what to do with me. I skipped a couple of grades, and that’s when it hit the fan. They disappeared.

    My extended family really hasn’t had anything to do with me since. That could be because my mother married into a lot of money around that time – or it could be because their own kids are not allllll that intellectually inclined and they’re not comfortable with the contrast. Or it could be for a jillion other reasons. Who knows?

    All I know is that my family has gone from adventurous, intellectual creme-de-la-creme to the basest of mainstream values in the course of three hundred years. I’m deeply disappointed with them, but hey, that’s their path.

    I shine, and the world shines with me. 🙂

  19. I wasnt taught to downplay it from my folks, my grandmother.. yes. My folks found my brains and outrageousness to be charming, my grandmother found it horrid. 🙂

  20. good qualities?? I was taught I didn’t have any….that is why I try so hard to overcome all that…I know I am good at a lot of things…just not great. I can paint well enought but not good enought to sell anything. I can play music well enought to listen to but not great enough to sell. I am handy around the house but I am not good enough to work construction all the time (I know I tried that for a year or more)….the list goes on….

  21. Avery, wow. What a fascinating story! I know very little about my own family history.

    I would like to thank everybody for supporting my boobs during this trying time. *hugs all around* 😉

  22. Hmm, it’s funny. Russians and my mom don’t feel comfortable giving huge complements. My mom has an infuriating dependence on understatement. “Was I good?” “Not bad.” A French girl I know who specializes in art history told me “La culture, c’est comme la confiture. Moins on en a, plus on l’©tale.” Which means Knowledge is like jam. The less you have it the more you spread it. She didn’t feel comfortable talking to me about what she knows in her subject. Apparently, in France you don’t brag about your wealth or success. Wealthy people drive shitty cars out and keep their Ferraris at home. America is perceived by Europe to be the country that nurtures a positive attitude, self-confidence, being able to “sell yourself” which requires curbing the temptation to modesty (why my mom had trouble during interviews). It’s the country of “How are you? Fine,” “Are you okay,” where you smile and say hello to people you don’t know.
    So I picture “downplaying your good qualities” to be much more of a European thing.

  23. yes most definitely and I am still struggling with allowing my self to just be. be me.
    am past the catholic upbringing, most of my family’s how-dare-you-be’s, and could not give a f#ck about what society thinks. The contradiction here is that I’d internalized this so much that I either didn’t believe, entirely trust or embody all of my good qualities’ potential– I’ve summoned my most conscious awareness to cultivate being happy – simply being! in the end, it’s a choice. 🙂

  24. You totally inspire other women to feel good about themselves when you can be honest about how beautiful, smart, fun you are…yet ALSO be grateful for it.

    I try to remind myself and others how thankful I am for the qualities I was blessed with and the qualities I WORK very hard to maintain and keep up. THe more care you take of yourself the more it shows you love yourself..your life…and how you love others. It’s a fun little cycle. The world is one big cycle. Have fun with it.

  25. What an interesting topic. I have noticed that people do seem to get upset when others have self-esteem. People really like to hate on themselves in groups. It seems to bond them.

    There are some things that I will absolutely tell people I’m great at. It’s true! (I am a Leo btw.) I can teach better than almost anyone on the planet. But here’s the thing – I am completely open to YOU also being just as great at it. Tell me about it! I want to hear it! Me being great at teaching isn’t in comparison to you or anyone else, it’s in comparison to what the students knew on the first day of class.

    The reason I’m great at anything is because I’ve decided to be. And anyone else can decide to be just as great at it or better. “Better than anyone on the planet,” is just the Leo way to say “great”. 😉

    And, yes, I have noticed that IQ has to really be downplayed or people get really upset. It’s ridiculous. Because why should I assume that the person I’m talking to has any lower IQ than I do?

    But I have to say that I have noticed in the last two weeks with all this crazy astrological stuff going on, that I am done trying to be someone who won’t upset others. I am who I am. I’ve been kicking myself in the ass my whole life by trying to be who I thought would be acceptable to others. No more!

    Thank you Elsa (and others) for being out there being your own great self!

    I love hearing people tell the great things about themselves! 🙂

  26. I definitely downplay my good qualities because I don’t believe in them, but it’s still striking to me when my family does.

    Two anecdotes:
    1st anecdote: I’m preparing for a job interview and I’m looking up information so I can have pertinent good questions to ask the interviewers. My mother starts going on about how I should just not ask questions because it makes them think that “[I’m] checking them out and evaluating them”, as if that’s an absolutely horrid thing to do. She also questions “Why are you looking up salary ranges?” because you should just take whatever ridiculous salary they offer including circus peanuts. Never mind that she keeps trying to argue me into liking her idea of a good son-in-law by pointing out that nobody is going to have my broke, old, fat ass. (She doesn’t use those words but the gist is the same.)

    2nd anecdote: I was looking through some old letters to find this thing and I come across this birthday fax from my grandfather. “I don’t know why it is presumed that this is the day of happiness and rejoicing with focus only on the child.” How dare I think my birthday is all about me? LOL.

  27. yes Elsa! and your mars mercury presence/energy on this blog is what mainly attracted me to it! I have a venus mars uranus merc stellium in 3rd house scorpio, and i have a hard time modulating the energy. I tend to either unleash it ALL or withhold it ALL. keep on keepin on-

  28. nice to see this post again! I can now say without doubt NO I was NOT taught to downplay my good traits. My parents were hard on me in some ways but they were pretty free with their compliments and makings sure to say something positive if we got too down on ourselves. Dang, families are complicated:o

  29. I do mostly feel good about myself, and I get a world of shit about it, oh well. Of course I am hard on myself too, and absolutely try at all times to do my best!

  30. omg. 1st thought after reading ewinbee’s first two posts was: “DUCK!!! somebody grab that shotgun out of her hands!” Reminds me of a lose canon…. size of a battleships’s main battery!! >:D

    *crawls under large rock…. scampers over to larger rock and hopes-n-prays ewinbee isn’t nearby* shivers.

  31. chrispito, I am there with you. I have Mars rising and confidence spewing out everywhere. I do feel a little immodest as I have Virgo/Libra. But I can’t really help it. My parents totally supported it, too.

  32. chrispisto i didn’t get it from my family either. the opposite, really (well, based upon what we tend to be good at, for sure.) though mom never told us our IQ scores, i think so we didn’t get into sparring matches over numbers. i and the oldest of my sibs were very competitive with each other.

    but severely from my peers. eleventh saturn :/

  33. i do notice that. you have to keep it on the downlow. it kind of destroys you though if you have to pretend to be miserable so as others can enjoy you as a person. i used to be very miserable, in the past and i never shared myself anywhere cause well why? i’m miserable, no one wants to be around that. but if you’re too fluffed up that’s also another thing. is there a balance? i mean if i see someone too much overblown i also think, jeezz but it depends.

  34. That’s one thing my parents did right. Basically they left me alone. I think our natural state is one of balanced self esteem and that’s where I tend to be. It has its right place.
    I remember being confused by girls in high school who were gorgeous and supposedly hated their bodies. I couldn’t find anything on myself that I hated. I was just happy to be alive:)! I’ve never felt the need to downplay or advertise my qualities either way. And I won’t play that game with other women. It’s not a competition.

    That kind confidence can have a polarizing response. Either people are inspired or they detest me because they perceive me as having something they don’t. But all I have is confidence! It has nothing to do with what I have. It’s innate. And I don’t think it’s rude to say that because anybody could feel how I feel.

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