Confidence is key, as they say, though it’s not the same as self-esteem, it is linked. Psychologists have conducted quite a lot of studies about self-esteem for quite some time. And for good reason!
Having a low self-esteem can lead to all sorts of problems such as: poor relationships and job performance, and increased anxiety, stress and depression. As well, it can make a person more vulnerable to drug and alcohol use (CMHC).
If you believe your self-esteem is truly impacting your life, you should consult with a doctor or psychologist to help you overcome major obstacles.
For today though, here are some things that you can do to boost your self-esteem today, so that you can start finding more happiness and success.
1. Understand You Need A Shift In Perception
Why do you not believe you are already unique and capable? I mean deep down, I know your mum probably says you’re special, but why don’t you believe it? The key to self-esteem is a shift in mindset. Truly accepting that the only thing wrong in you is your perception of yourself is foundational.
2. Supportive Friends, Family and Groups
Are the people around you bringing you down? Who do you gravitate towards? Surround yourself with positive people who have decent self-esteem and it will rub off. You can try support groups or forums too if you are shy or struggling to find anything in your area.
The more supportive people you have in your life, the higher your resilience.
3. Celebrate Small Achievements
Did you just park your car straight? I can’t do that! I can joke about it, but I’m certain there are lots you can do really well that others struggle with. Congratulate yourself for small successes. This might include: being on time, finishing a project, cooking an awesome dinner, actually getting to the gym when you don’t want to, figuring out a sum without a calculator. You get the idea.
4. Positive Self Talk
If you wouldn’t say it to someone else, don’t say it to yourself. Would you call your best friends the things you call yourself in your head? Louise Hay is excellent for positive affirmations. I have some in my bathroom and I look in the mirror and say them (hey, we all have things to work on).
5. Adjust Your Expectations/Standards
So you didn’t get into the Olympics, well, most of us don’t. Don’t be disappointed you didn’t make a world record, or dated the hottest guy in school or was the top of your 300 person class. High standards are good, but they have to be achievable. Have a think about yours.
6. Focus On Your Strengths
If you put a beauty queen in a maths competition, how do you think she’d fare? Okay, so maybe she might be good at maths, I’m not stereotyping here, but you get the point right? Work out what your strengths are and play them up! You don’t see fish trying to climb trees! They’d be miserable and get splinters! Put yourself in the best place where your light will shine the brightest!
7. Try New Things
Taking small risks is good for your confidence. And by small risks, I mean trying a new place for dinner maybe. Get out of your comfort zone a little bit sometimes. It proves to you how capable you really are.
8. Focus On Small Habit Building
Let me tell you a secret. You know all those people you think are disciplined? They were disciplined for a while, but now they just have good habits. Something shouldn’t be hard forever. Yes, if you are trying to do something tricky like getting up earlier and exercising, that might be harder. Start small. Do you drink enough water every day? By making small changes over a longer period, they will become more sustainable and you will feel proud. Don’t be impatient. You only have so much willpower! Slowly become your ideal self (whilst remembering point 5).
9. Start A Gratitude Diary
Every day think of 3 new things you can be grateful for. They’ve done studies, that if you do this for 90 days, it will increase your happiness. You have lots to be grateful for, and knowing that will help boost your self-esteem.
10. Understand No One Is Perfect
You are allowed to make mistakes. Actually, I think it’s a mandatory part of being human. How you respond to those mistakes is what really defines you. Learning to let things go is a skill. Be the best you – there is only one!
11. Help Others
Knowing that you are contributing to the world makes you feel valued. Helping others helps you become aware of how important you are. When I feel down, I get onto forums and help answer questions where I can about Digital Marketing and Online Businesses (as I’ve learnt a lot through my mentors). It feel really good to help others with their problems, and it again reminds you of your strengths.
12. Understand The Word “Fail” Is Naughty
Failure is just a lesson learnt. It’s not linked to who you are as a person, it is not a reflection of you. Failure is just a sign that you didn’t get something quite right. You learn, make adjustments and then move forward again. That’s how the successful do it. It’s not you.
13. Don’t Compare Yourself To Others
Everyone is on their own journey. Let them walk theirs and you walk yours. You might see a woman who still has a bit of weight left to lose, who says she hasn’t already lost 40kgs and you didn’t see that? You don’t know other people’s stories, they don’t know yours. So don’t compare.
The trick is to start small and look at your perception. Don’t spread yourself too thin by trying to change everything about yourself in a day. Understand you are wonderful as you are right now and life is growing and learning. If you can look back at things in your past and cringe then that’s great, because it means you’ve learnt and grown!