Improving Your Self-Esteem

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Improving Your Self-Esteem

According to some estimates, as much as 85% of the population experiences low self-esteem. This means over three-quarters of us feel like we are not good enough and that we are not all we should be. Low self-esteem can stem from countless feelings of inadequacy. Some of us may feel we are not smart enough to get that job promotion, attractive enough to gain that person’s attentions, or entertaining enough to hold a conversation with others.

If you have low self-esteem, there is a chance you may not even be aware that you have a problem. For example, maybe you have been stuck in what you consider to be a “dead-end” job for years, and you wonder why you are trapped in this position. Could you possibly not have the confidence to enter a new position? Maybe you are worried what others will think if you leave your current job for another after all this time.

Developing skills to battle low self-esteem will help you armor yourself for the real world. You will learn to ignore the negative self-talk or subconscious feelings of not being enough. People with higher self-esteem are less likely to stay in abusive relationships, more likely to take steps to care for themselves both physically and emotionally, and are also better equipped to persevere through challenges like completing higher education.

Tips to Help Improve Your Self-Esteem

So what do you do if you recognize that your self-esteem is not where it should be? First, stop the negative talk. You may find yourself going throughout the day actually thinking thoughts like, “I wish I weren’t so dumb” or “I’m so annoying.” Pause and consider whether you would ever consider talking to a friend that way. The answer is no because you know that saying such comments are counterproductive and are hurtful.

Be kind to yourself. That is a mantra we see plastered on coffee mugs and wall hangings, but it is easy to forget what it truly means. Remember that you are human, too, and you do not deserve to be insulted (even by yourself!).

TED Talks suggests that we learn to accept compliments. How often do you try to deflect a compliment by denying what the giver is saying? Or perhaps you get awkward and simply say nothing? Make an effort to say “thank you” and leave it at that. You may be surprised at how difficult such a seemingly simple task is, after years of letting your low self-esteem turn positive moments into negative ones.

Mayo Clinic also suggests that we examine whether a specific person or situation is triggering the episodes of low self-esteem. Are we surrounded by people that constantly tell us that we are not good enough? If you have a partner that constantly critiques things about you, you may want to consider where your relationship is healthy.

While low self-esteem is prevalent, it is not static. You can build your self-worth by acknowledging certain issues and finding solutions for them.

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