6 Unique steps to improve your broken self-esteem
“Confront the dark parts of yourself, and work to banish them with illumination and forgiveness. Your willingness to wrestle with your demons will cause your angels to sing.” ― August Wilson
The term “Self-esteem” denotes how people feel about themselves, or what opinion they have about themselves. Building one’s self-esteem is tough. It takes a great amount of motivation, self-confidence, and mental strength to build your self-esteem.
You might notice some specific things that may affect your opinion about yourself. You might be bullied by someone, or people might ignore your opinion. You might feel lonely sometimes and desperately want to prove yourself in front of everyone. These situations could lead you to more problems, including mental health disorders such as stress, depression, or anxiety.
People with good self-esteem
- They normally feel positive about themselves
- They live life positively
- They are confident and motivated people
- They are much more resilient than normal people
- They can cope up with life’s ups and downs better than anyone.
People with poor self-esteem
- They feel worse about themselves.
- These people normally experience negativity, mostly about themselves.
- They live life with a negative mentality.
- They are more critical, hesitant, and unmotivated people.
- They find it difficult to recover from challenges and setbacks.
- They always try to avoid difficult situations.
Why do people feel low self-esteem?
There are multiple reasons why you might experience low self-esteem. However, it often starts in your childhood, and you might feel that you were unable to live up to expectations of yourself and others. Low self-esteem can be caused by the experiences you have in your adulthood, such as - relationship problems, parental issues, getting bullied at the workplace, etc.
Here are some of the symptoms of low self-esteem:
- Hesitation in every subject
- Losing trust in one's own opinion
- Eating disorders
- Social withdrawal and loneliness
- Avoiding new challenges
- Lack of motivation
- Increased addiction
If you identify all or one of these symptoms regularly, it’s the perfect time to work on this issue and modify things!
How to stop such a situation and start building your self-esteem?
It's a difficult process, and it won't be possible to get the result in a day. It may take several weeks, months, or even years to get things right in order. Sometimes people might need to consult a professional and go under critical treatment to gain their lost mental strength.
You can get it started by following a few powerful steps and improving your self-esteem quickly. To feel more confident, you may take the help of your partner or spouse too.
Powerful steps to improve your self-esteem1. Be Mindful
You can’t improve your self-esteem if you don’t identify the thing that is causing you trouble. That’s why you should identify those things that may increase negativity in yourself and lower your self-esteem. One of those activities is your negative self-talk.
Due to negative self-talk, you may start making the distance from the all-good feelings that might come into your mind. So, you should identify this habit and take the necessary steps to stop it. Be mindful and increase your awareness, so that you may avoid drowning into your own negative thoughts.
One of the famous meditation teachers Allan Lokos added - “Don’t believe everything you think. Thoughts are just that — thoughts.”
If you feel low on confidence and find yourself deep into self-criticism, you should note down the signs, and keep reminding yourself that these are just thoughts, not the truth.
2. Simplify your life
People say the face is the mirror of our mind. So, your face may reveal how depressed and down you are internally. Just as your face is a reflection of your mental state, your home may also be a reflection of you.
Just as negative thoughts and emotions may pull you down, you may possess materials or do things that don’t serve you good, they practically damage your self-esteem.
Take a weekend off and search for those things. Check to see if you can get some items that might be weighing you down. You may get clothes that you do not use anymore. You may find items that are close to your heart, but now they are not so necessary. You might have a lot of items that you bought with sentimental value but never used.
Do one thing, sell those items on a yard sale or donate those items to a neighborhood charity. This way you’ll free up a big space in your house and in your life too. You’ll make some money and use that money to buy something useful.
3. Allow yourself a break
Self-esteem may vary depending on the situation you are getting into. You might feel relaxed and positive with your family, rather than with friends and colleagues. But your best friend may feel more relaxed with friends. Others may feel uneasy and shy with colleagues but feel irritated in social gatherings.
So, you must allow yourself a break. People may feel a bit down or find it difficult to maintain self-esteem in typical situations. The thing is to be kind to yourself, and not too critical.
Do not criticize yourself in front of others. If you do that, then you’ll be giving others the chance to grow negative thoughts about you, and increase your inner negativity too. Always spread positive views about yourself.
You can boost your self-esteem by giving yourself a treat anytime you want. Whenever you do something good or help someone to fulfill things, or do something difficult, don’t forget to treat yourself with your favorite dessert or chocolate.
4. Remember that everyone makes mistakes
People make mistakes to learn new things, or to do things more perfectly. This way they may grow and become prosperous. Every good teacher, great leaders, doctors, scientists, philosophers, were students at their young age and made many mistakes to become great.
So, if you make mistakes, you shouldn’t be ashamed of yourself. Learn from your mistakes, and do not repeat that mistake. This way you’ll grow in life, and can also build your self-esteem.
5. Improve your physical and mental health
People with low self-esteem most of the time avoid themselves because they feel that they shouldn’t be cared for or looked after. But practically, they will be more confident if they feel healthy, both mentally and physically.
As per many pieces of research and studies, there's a relationship between physical workout, higher self-esteem, and improved mental health. Doing regular exercise may help you to cope up with normal stress, depression, and anxiety. But if you are experiencing severe mental disorders, for example - the higher levels of depression, you might get advanced therapy such as TMS to treat depression.
According to Debbie Mandel, author of Addicted to Stress - “Exercising creates empowerment both physically and mentally, especially weight lifting where you can calibrate your accomplishments. Exercise organizes your day around self-care.”
You may also try other methods of self-care, such as - having a balanced diet, proper and sufficient sleep, meditation, or yoga to increase mental peace and concentration, etc.
6. Do something kind for others
The sense of low self-esteem can make you depressed. You might start finding your limitations and forget about the pain others might be experiencing.
But when you do something good for others, or actively participate in programs that are helping people and the environment, such kind activities may give you immense happiness and confidence to do better.
You’ll notice that all the obsessive, negative thoughts in your mind will be stopped suddenly, and positive energy will run through your nerves.
David Simonsen, Ph.D., LMFT, added - “What I find is that the more someone does something in their life that they can be proud of, the easier it is for them to recognize their worth. Doing things that one can respect about themselves is the one key that I have found that works to raise one’s worth. It is something tangible. Helping at a homeless shelter, animal shelter, giving of time at a big brother or sister organization. These are things that mean something and give value not only to oneself but to someone else as well.”
There are so many ways you may follow to improve your self-esteem other than these above given 6. Sometimes people may start substance abuse to get back on their feet and gain confidence. However using drugs, alcohol, and tobacco can make your situation worse. You’ll lose your inner self and will become a slave to the addiction. So, if you are following this path, be alert! Stop consuming such poison right now, meet your doctor, and start taking proper medicines to recover from such addiction.
Author Bio: Ralph Macey, a professional writer since 2008 and medical health/patient care coordinator at savantcare.com since 2014, writes articles on mental health, depression, and anxiety. He holds a degree and two professional certifications in his field and continues to upgrade his knowledge with additional classes and seminars. He has provided mental health consultations and private fitness instructions for free in his local community. Find him on Facebook.