Have you ever felt down about yourself? You’re not alone. Research suggests that 85% of Americans suffer from low self-esteem.
But don’t worry, there is hope. Improving self-esteem begins with taking small, manageable steps and that is something anyone can do.
Improving your self-esteem can be life-changing. It can help you feel happier and more confident in yourself.
You may struggle with how to change your thoughts about yourself after years of low self esteem. Continue reading to get moving in the right direction.
Know the Signs of Low Self-Esteem
The importance of self-esteem can not be understated. It’s essential for your mental wellbeing and happiness. So how can you tell if you have low self-esteem? Here are some common signs:
- You compare yourself to others a lot
- You’re never satisfied with your appearance
- You often put yourself down.
- You find it hard to accept compliments.
- You’re constantly comparing yourself to others.
- You’re overly critical of yourself.
- You’re always trying to please others.
- You never feel good enough.
Sound familiar? Then it’s possible that you have low self-esteem. But don’t worry, there are things you can do to improve how you feel about yourself.
Understand Why You Have Low Self-Esteem
The first step to improving your self-esteem is understanding why you have low self-esteem in the first place.
There are many reasons why someone might feel down about themselves. It could be because of how you were raised, negative past experiences, or even something as simple as how you believe you look.
Once you understand the root cause of your low self-esteem, you can start to work on making some changes.
Separate Yourself From Your Thoughts
A lot of people with low self-esteem believe that their thoughts are facts. But this isn’t always the case. Just because you have a thought doesn’t mean it’s true.
Start by becoming aware of your thoughts. When you notice that you’re having negative thoughts about yourself, try to question them. Ask yourself if there is any evidence to support the idea. If there isn’t, then it’s likely that the thought isn’t true.
One of the best things you can do for your self-esteem is to practice self-compassion and show yourself grace. This involves being kind and understanding towards yourself, even when you make mistakes.
Think about how you would treat a friend if they were in a similar situation. Would you be critical and unforgiving? Or would you be understanding and supportive?
Chances are, you would go for the latter. So why not treat yourself with the same compassion?
Mindfulness is all about being present in the moment and accepting things as they are. This can be tricky if you’re used to worrying about the future or dwelling on the past, but with practice it can be a powerful tool for improving your self-esteem. When you’re mindful, you’re less likely to get caught up in negative thoughts about yourself connected to past experiences. Instead, you can focus on the here and now.
Identify Your Strengths and Weaknesses
One of the best ways to improve your self-esteem is to know your strengths and weaknesses. This way, you can focus on improving the areas where you have challenges and continue to build on your strengths.
It’s easy to dwell on the negative when you have low self-esteem. But it’s important to remember that you also have good qualities.
Start by making a list of your positive qualities. If you need some help, ideas like ‘I am kind,’ ‘I am helpful,’ or ‘I am a good friend.’ are a great place to start!
Are you a good listener? A creative thinker? A natural leader? Once you know your strengths, you can use them to your advantage.
As for your challenges, try not to view them as bad, but as normal. Everyone has flaws, and that’s okay! Just focus on improving them one step at a time. And don’t be too hard on yourself.
Set Realistic Goals for Yourself and Work Towards Them
Another great way to improve your self-esteem is by setting and achieving goals. This could be anything from learning a new skill to getting a promotion.
The key is to make sure your goals are realistic. When you set attainable goals, you experience a sense of accomplishment and this increases your self esteem.
Accept Compliments From Others
Learning to accept compliments is a vital part of improving your self-esteem, but many people struggle with this. The next time someone pays you a compliment, try not to brush it off. Simply say, “Thank you! I appreciate your kind words!” and take a moment to sit with what the person has said about you. Notice what you are feeling and embrace it.
Join a Support Group
If you’re struggling to improve your self-esteem, consider joining a support group. You can connect with others both in person or online.
Groups can be ideal in giving you the tools and support you need to work on your self-esteem. And knowing that you are not alone in your struggles can be very helpful.
Spend Time With People Who Will Build You Up
Last but not least, one of the best things you can do for your self-esteem is surround yourself with people who speak kindness into your life.
These are the people who will build you up instead of tearing you down. They’re the ones who will believe in you even when you don’t believe in yourself.
Being intentional in spending more time with people like them can be instrumental in growing your self esteem.
Seek Professional Help if It’s Impacting Your Daily Life
If low self-esteem impacts your day-to-day life, it might be time to seek professional help. Don’t be afraid to reach out for help if you’re struggling. There are people who can and will help you through this. Getting counseling for self-esteem is a common and effective way to get better.
If you’re struggling to improve your self-esteem, please don’t hesitate to reach out to us.