Five ways to boost your self-esteem
"If I asked you to name all the things you love, how long would it take for you to name yourself?"
I heard this from a friend some time ago and it really made me think. So many of us have a low sense of self-worth or personal value that we wouldn’t even consider naming ourselves as something we love. Yet, self-esteem is so important because it completely influences our choices and decisions and low self-esteem can stop us from being, doing and having what we want in our life.
In this article, I'll share my thoughts about why we might have low self-esteem and some of the steps we can take to boost our overall sense of self-worth.
Where does low self-esteem come from?
Our level of self-esteem or sense of self-worth is based on the opinions and beliefs we have about ourselves. Sometimes these beliefs are empowering, however, if these beliefs are disempowering, they contribute to a low sense of self-worth. Surprisingly, it only takes two or three pieces of evidence to form beliefs that remain with us for the rest of our life.
I often hear my clients saying, “I have low self-esteem”, “I have no self-confidence”, or “I am not good enough”. These identity level beliefs affect the meaning we give to things, how we behave and therefore the results we get.
Sometimes, a low sense of self-worth can begin later in life because of ongoing periods of stress, difficult relationships, or financial difficulty. These opinions and beliefs can feel equally as difficult to change.
How can I boost my self-esteem?
When we have a low sense of self-worth or believe we are not good enough, finding ways to boost self-esteem can feel hard. Here are five ways you can begin to discover the amazing person you are.
1. Acknowledge how you are feeling.
Be aware of how you feel, take time to label the feeling and the emotions. Define what, specifically, is making you feel this way and process your thoughts properly. We often find our heads are like a tangled ball of wool, with too many thoughts, meanings and questions competing for space.
2. Focus on what you do want.
Having clear outcomes is an effective way of beginning to make changes in your life. Dare to daydream, seeing how life is once you feel great about yourself and have everything you want. My article about setting amazing outcomes shares an approach for doing this.
3. Let go of any guilt you have about things which have happened.
Forgive yourself for past mistakes and find the learning from your past experiences. Everything we experience in life is helping us to change and grow. Allowing yourself to accept the past will free you up to focus on now and the future.
4. Keep your love and belonging and significance buckets full.
Identify the things which make you feel loved and feel good about yourself. Look at how you can include them in your daily routines. Finding supportive people to connect with can be beneficial, as isolation often increases the feeling of low self-worth. Mindfulness and meditation work for many people, as it helps to turn off the unhelpful chatter in their head.
5. Remember to enjoy what you have right now.
Find gratitude in your life today. I know this can be difficult when you don’t feel great about yourself. Take time each day to make a list if that helps. Jot down whatever comes to mind, however big, or small.
What if I am still struggling?
For some, the beliefs they have about themselves are so strong that it feels impossible to overcome them and move forward. I work with clients to change these unhelpful beliefs and opinions, enabling them to have the life they really want.
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