Self-esteem is defined as the confidence one has in their own worth. It’s your self-respect, and it’s based on multiple things like your genetics, your personality, your relationships, life experiences, physical health, and your accomplishments over time. If you’re reading this, chances are that you think you have low self-esteem and you’ve noticed that it can really affect you in your daily life. In fact, it can affect your ability to have positive, healthy relationships, your ability to reach your career goals, and can contribute to problems such as depression, anxiety, and addiction. Conversely, good self-esteem is related to things such as stable relationships, an increased ability to reach your life goals, and improved resiliency which will help you to overcome those hurdles that life throws at you.
So, what can be done to help raise your self-esteem? Check out my list below and get started today. Some of these tasks are harder than others, and some may require the assistance of a professional. In all of them though, I want you to remember to be kind to yourself. You are attempting to make some profound changes for yourself, and this will require effort and time. You will probably make some missteps along the way, which is fine! Just remember that this will happen when you’re trying to learn new things and be patient with yourself. I think it’s also important to notice and to give yourself some praise when you do something right! The positive reinforcement will increase the chance of you doing that thing again and it will give your confidence a boost!
Ways to Improve Your Self-Esteem
1. Honestly listen to the way that you think about and talk to yourself. Look for negative statements and beliefs. For example, are you calling yourself names like “stupid”, “Loser”, or “fat”? Do you insult yourself for making mistakes? Or perhaps you negatively compare yourself to others around you. When you catch yourself doing that, stop yourself right away and try to challenge or reframe the thought to something more positive.
2. Try to build and foster positive relationships with people around you. This one might be difficult if you don’t think of yourself in a positive light, but it’s well worth the effort! Also, try to limit yourself from spending time with negative people. We used to call these people emotional vampires because they suck the life right out of you. I’m sure you’ve known people like that. Maybe you’ve even been people like that. If you have, don’t worry, you can change. Just keep trying!
3. Try something new and challenging. Often when we feel bad about ourselves, we don’t want to try new things because we are afraid to fail. We believe this will make us feel worse. But remember, it’s ok to make mistakes and to fail. Thomas Edison famously said while trying to invent the light bulb, "I have not failed. I've just found 10,000 ways that won't work."
4. Going along with #3 above, try something creative. This can really increase your energy and your spark for life.
5. Make a list of all the positive things about yourself. If you have trouble thinking of things, ask your friends and family, and add every single thing that they say to your list. This can include things like your hair or eye color, your skill in geometry, being a loving sister/parent/child, the fact that you volunteer your time/money, your ability to build great things in Fortnight, your fabulous manicure, etc, etc, etc. Then when you’re feeling down, or when you catch yourself being particularly negative to yourself, take out the list and read it.
6. Give other people compliments. This will not only make the other people feel good about themselves but will also give you a boost.
7. Practice self-affirmations. This doesn’t work for everyone, but it’s definitely worth a try. An affirmation can be anything. Try one of these or make up one of your own.
a. “I am a beautiful person”
b. “I deserve good things to happen to me”
c. “Today will be a good day”
d. “I am a beautifully flawed human being”
e. “I get better and better”
f. “I will not be afraid to stand up for myself”
g. “I am proud of myself”
8. Take care of your physical health. Schedule that doctor’s appointment or that dental cleaning- and go! Start taking daily walks. Drink 8 glasses of water a day. Sleep 8 hours a night. Take your medications as prescribed by your doctor. Do whatever it is that you need to do to take care of yourself because when you do this, what you are saying to yourself is that you are worth taking care of. That you are worthwhile!
9. Give someone else a helping hand. It is very rewarding to be able to help someone. It says that you have something to give. That you have some worth.
10. Learn to say no. You can check out my blog on assertiveness for more tips on this.
11. Read something inspirational. Maybe a poem, a quote, a blog, or even a book. It’s easy to find this sort of material on the internet.
12. Sit down and make a list of your strengths. Again, this will be difficult for some people, so ask your friends and family for some if you get stuck. Then, try to use at least 1 of your strengths every day. This will help you to build up your areas of strengths and will help you to build some resiliency.
As you’re working your way through the list, if you find yourself having problems, don’t be afraid to reach out to a professional for help. There are some really great people out there willing to help!
If you would like more information on Self-esteem Treatment, please follow the link. To schedule an appointment or speak with me directly, please call me today! I'd love to hear from you.