Starting the day with sentence completion from The Six Pillars of Self-Esteem

Starting writing this blog post is not the first thing I do when I sit behind my computer in the morning at the start of the “working” day. I start with some sentence completion exercises. These are exercises I took from the book The Six Pillars of Self-Esteem.


No, it is not that I am a person with a very low self-esteem and that therefore I do these self-help therapy sessions. In one of the internet entrepreneurial podcasts I am listening to on a regular basis, this book from Nathaniel Branden, The Six Pillars of Self-Esteem was recommended. And when people, to who I am listening on a regular basis, by podcast or in private, recommend something that sounds interesting, I like to follow it up.


In this podcast, the guys who host it said that this book was one of the most influential books in their lives. I first thought that they spoke about The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People, which I read recently and which made a profound impression on me. But no, they spoke about the self-esteem book.


Now was self-esteem not the first thing I would think about to work on for myself. I think pretty well about myself, am successful (to a certain degree I think) and I am not shy or avoiding contact with people.


But, deep inside there might be a certain uncertainty; there is this fear of getting a “no”; there is this quiet feeling of a lack of being authentic; and there is this behavior of thinking about what others may think. These are not things that are maybe so apparent to the people I interact with on daily basis, but they are there and sometimes friends that know me very well have hinted at for example a fear of failing.


Since I am now in a period of my life that I have and take time to do things that can help and bring me forward, the recommendation of the self-esteem book felt on fertile ground. I could not find the book immediately in one of the city’s main bookshops, but they located it for me and a week later I had it in house.


It is great. I can really recommend to anybody to read this book. What it is doing is that it provides you with a framework for self-esteem. It spells out for you the different components, the pillars. My conclusion for me was that overall my self-esteem is OK but that there are also definitely components of it that could use some work.


The areas in my self-esteem that I like to improve or heighten have to do mainly with self-assertiveness, purposefully living and integrity. Nice if I can do something in these areas isn’t it? People with really big problems in their self-esteem could and probably should go into therapy. I think I can improve in the areas that I want to improve in by following the sentence completion exercises that are explained in the book.


The idea with sentence completion exercises is that you start your day with writing down six to ten endings for four or five half sentences. An example of such a sentence is: “If I take more responsibility for my choices and actions today… “. For each of these sentences you write down six to ten endings that are grammatically correct. You do that for 5 days in a row with the same four or five sentences. There is a standard program for 30 weeks or so that I have customized for myself into a 21 week program. I started last week.


Your sentence completion session each day should take about ten minutes. There is no deep thinking. Just write what comes up (kind of like writing these blog posts). But you need to write at least six endings for each sentence every day.

After five days, during the weekend or so, you read what you have written. Then you write down for yourself a few endings for the following question: “If any of what I wrote this week is true it might be helpful if I… “. The idea here is to translate what you learn from what you have written into actions that you can follow up.

OK, if you are completely turned off on this by my description here give yourself a chance and me a break and read the book yourself. I think it can do anybody a favor.