"This life is a test. It is only a test. If this had been a real life, you would have received further instructions on what to do and how to do it."

Ever heard those words? When you first read them, it's almost a relief. "Whew! It's just a test."

But when you look deeper, you ask: "Well what, exactly, is being tested?"

Then you conclude: "Me. I am being tested."

Well, what about me is being tested?

Here's where it gets interesting. Cause when you strip away the veneer, it all boils down to:

Am I loveable?

Am I enough?

Am I worthy?

Am I deserving?

So if your loveability is being tested, then who is doing the judging? Who grades the test? If you're grading yourself, then there's no need for a test. Rather, it can be a self-assessment.

That's called self-esteem. Self-esteem is the estimate you make of yourself. And you're already assessing yourself every minute of every day.

It's the definition of self-esteem. But self-esteem is not a test.

No. If life is a test, then by definition it must be graded by another. It could be your friends, your lover, your family, your church, your job, your co-workers, your paycheck, your car, your house... any number of things or people.

Bottom line: it's an Outside Authority who's grading you.

Some would say God is doing the testing. My own conclusion is that God is doing the giving, not the testing. Either way, I see God as Supreme Authority, not Outside Authority. Huge difference.

Cause I can work WITH Supreme Authority. It brings me closer to myself. While any outside authority only separates me from myself.

If you're holding the concept of life as a test; then you're also holding the concept of an Outside Authority. Someone other than you is making the judgment or the assessment of whether or not you pass or fail. That's called victimhood.

There's an epidemic of victimhood in our world today. Seems to be getting worse. And victimhood always leads to pain.

Another problem with the 'test' concept is that it robs you of your power. You must give your power away to this Outside Authority. Since an outside authority doesn't really exist, you have to keep giving more and more power to more and more people and things.

"Will you take my power and use it for good?"

Meaning; will you validate me? Will you conclude I’m loveable?

Which is impossible. If we get caught in the trap of seeking outside validation from an outside authority - it's like a downward spiral to more victimhood and less power. It makes us more and more resentful. More bitter. More blaming. More separate from ourselves and from the world around us. Which leads to more pain.

What's the solution?

Realize it's not possible for anyone else to conclude whether you're enough or whether you're loveable. Or deserving. Or worthy.

The question itself is a lie. It's not possible to be unlovable. It's not possible to be unworthy. No matter how much we pretend otherwise.

You were created. By a Creator. You are loved. End of story. When you really, really get it - that you are loved by the One Who created you - you'll no longer wonder if you're enough. You'll no longer worry about passing a test. That's been my experience.

There's no greater feeling on this earth than to know I measure up. And that it was never a question of measuring up in the first place! I thought I had to pass some sort of unspoken test, but those thoughts were really just keeping me from feeling the love.

Otherwise, it's like hiding underground and saying the sun doesn't shine for me.

The sun shines for all. The sun is always shining. Everyone can bask in the sun.

Also - return to the foundation of self-esteem. Which is: I assess myself. I am the only one who determines my level of esteem. I decide. I assess.

I assess my honesty. My integrity. My level of conscious responsibility. My level of trust. That's the foundation of self-esteem.

The whole notion that 'life is a test' is a fraud. It's a trick designed to rob you of your power. As you fruitlessly plead with the world:

"Please, please, please, Mrs. Teacher - give me a passing grade. My parents will kill me if I don't pass this life."

You could just as easily conclude - "Life is a gift. I am already loved 100%. The fact that I’m alive proves it. Now, let me be honest enough - and responsible enough - to dismantle the lie I've bought into."

When you stand on THAT foundation, things automatically start looking up.

Do I have the courage to earn my self-esteem? Or will I hide in a lie? I get to decide.

That's the greatest gift of all.

Author's Bio: 

Mark Ivar Myhre, The Emotional Healing Wizard, offers a FREE E-Book on the secrets of emotional healing: The Emotional Healing Quick Start Guide. To download YOUR copy, go to ==> http://www.emotional-healing-guide.com No registration or obligation required!