3 ways to build self-belief and improve mental health
Mental health such as anxiety and depression can hugely affect low self-esteem and self-belief. We all have times when our inner voice and opinions become unkind, lacking confidence in our self-worth and abilities.
Self-esteem and self-belief can then feed into our mental health, sometimes causing a vicious circle and long-term stuck patterns in thoughts and behaviours.
The good news is that these thoughts and behaviours can become unstuck and you can be kind to your mind.
How is your self-belief?
Perhaps you experience self-talk with your inner critic is saying things like, "I’m not good enough, I can’t do this," or "I’m useless".
It may be that others put pressure on you, or you put too much pressure on yourself. Stress and big life events such as an illness, loss of a loved one, or life changes like a new job can have a big impact and we can start to question our own self-worth.
We also take on the beliefs of others from a young age and continue to do so throughout our life. This can be from parents or guardians, however our self-belief can be influenced by things like comparing ourselves to others on social media or unrealistic expectations projected from TV programmes.
How are you coping?
Unhealthy ways that you may be dealing or coping with low self-belief include avoiding things, hiding your self away, talking negatively to boost yourself, having a pessimistic outlook on life or starting to drink, smoke or eat more than usual.
When our thoughts and feelings become overwhelming or behaviours become unhealthy, then this is what I call ‘overdone’ as this starts to affect your day-to-day life and mental health. These are signs to make positive changes.
In coaching, you may have heard of the term ‘self-limiting beliefs’ before. We all have self-limiting beliefs that hold us back in life or beliefs that no longer serve us.
The benefit that coaching brings is that you can remove these self-limiting beliefs to build new, solid self-beliefs, that serve you well for both your mental health and life in general.
How to build your self-belief
Let's look at three ways we can build out self-belief.
1. Belief building
Turn an unkind thought into a positive statement goal and belief instead. Write down a statement with 'I believe I can/will…’ followed by how you want to feel or what you want to achieve instead.
Next, think about and write down all the evidence that you have, to support, build and strengthen your new belief.
2. Gain perspective
It can be useful to put things into perspective too, by stepping into somebody else’s shoes by choosing a person whose opinion truly matters and are important to you. What would that good friend, relative or someone you value, say are your top three qualities?
3. Flip your mind switch
By raising your awareness of when your inner critic is taking place you can start to flip your mind switch to instead recognise and pay attention to your strengths, values, and resourceful positive thoughts, feelings, and behaviours. Your brain will start to build new neural pathways and start to notice more of the good stuff.
Coaching for self-belief can create new lasting and meaningful thoughts and behaviours. Positive outcomes include an increase in self-esteem and inner confidence, it can reduce anxiety and improve mental health, create stronger resilience and coping strategies, form healthy habits, improve relationships, gain a sense of achievement, have a positive outlook on life and a deep acceptance of yourself for the unique wonderful individual that you are.