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Having aired for many series in the U.K. (not to mention countless runs abroad), The X Factor certainly seems to pull in huge television audiences keen to watch the ups and downs, the highs and lows of those trying to reach the final stages and wow the judges with their singing skills.  Whether you are a fan or not, for many the phrase ‘x factor’ has entered their everyday language and needs no explanation.  Part of the appeal is that the contestants are hopeful men and women who lead quite ordinary lives – indeed, you may even know someone yourself who has tried their luck in front of Simon Cowell and the others at the judging table.

While most of us would concede that super stardom is probably out of our reach, we could all perhaps imagine that one day our hidden talent could be showcased for the world to see.  But, we may then ask ourselves, would we be found to be ‘good enough’?  Would we have that elusive x factor that would have others marvelling over our skill and praising us for our ability?

Harmless weekend entertainment is, most of the time, just that: a popular spectacle to share with family, friends or a mug of tea to unwind from the day and lose ourselves in.  I would argue, however, that sometimes we are all tempted to fear that we don’t ‘make the grade’, and think that there is absolutely nothing out of the ordinary or special about us.  It may be tempting to compare ourselves with the glamorous performers on screen and judge ourselves to be found wanting.

A healthy level of self-esteem and the ability to see ourselves in a positive light is essential for our mental wellbeing.  I have been surprised many times at the difficult daily routines some of my clients have to go through each and every day, whether that be living with a chronic health condition, caring for a friend or relative, or having to drive for one hour before they even begin their day at work, all the while mindful of the hour drive back home that awaits them before they can let go and relax.

Oftentimes clients are very swift in knowing what to criticize themselves about, yet when it comes to self-praise they can be embarrassed and stuck for words.  I would argue that to recognize our challenges and successes, no matter how small, helps us to realise that although our achievements may never be broadcast on television, they are no less important or worthwhile than those singing on the stage.

Do you feel you’ve got the X Factor?  What would it take for you to give yourself a loud judges’ ‘yes’ and a definite thumbs up?

Rob Oglesby MBACP (Accred) B.A. (Hons) BSc | Ashwood Therapy

Ashwood Therapy provides a discreet, confidential and professional online counselling service by encrypted video call, live instant messaging and secure email.  More details, including tips on wellbeing and information on current counselling session pricing, can be found at www.ashwoodtherapy.com

Have You Got The X Factor?

Have You Got The X Factor? | Ashwood Therapy Wellbeing Blog