A state of low self-esteem is something that many of us will drift into at some stage in our life. While we’re in there, it can seem impossible to get out, compounded by the belief that we’re not good enough to make a change. Here are 5 great strategies to help boost your self-image and your low self-esteem:
Most people’s self-esteem will experience a significant boost after regular exercise simply because they physically look better. However, that’s not the sole reason that exercise will improve your self-esteem, as a 2014 study suggests. How you view yourself is strongly tied to how comfortable and healthy you feel. Specifically, the healthier you are, the more you’ll view yourself in a positive light. Even though exercise can be tough, you’ll feel exponentially better after every step you take on your new path. As the days go by, you’ll become happier and happier with the person looking back at you in the mirror.
Stop putting yourself down
There’s never a good reason to put yourself down, and it’s one of the most toxic things that contributes to someone having low self-esteem, an assertion that’s backed by studies. You really must be your own ideal best friend. Picture the perfect person that you’d like by your side. Chances are you’re imagining someone who’s very loving and supportive, and who knows how to constructively criticize in a positive way. Being able to self-criticize in a non-destructive manner is crucial to good self-esteem. If you’re ever disappointed with yourself, try saying something to yourself like “C’mon, we can do better than that. We’re better than that. Let’s do better next time” instead of saying “Wow, you really messed up, you’re such a failure”.
So much of people’s low self-esteem is caused by what they perceive as social failings. As the thoughts are buried in your mind, they grow and grow until you have a very negative and unrealistic image of your social status. Meeting people can cause an instantly different viewpoint. In general, most people are friendly, approachable, and aren’t going to hamper your self-esteem. A positive social interaction will make you think “Hey, they’re pretty cool and they like me, so maybe I am too!”. If you come across someone who makes you feel the opposite, you must do your utmost not to take it personally. If they’re being negative, the chances are that they’re projecting a negative self-image and it’s actually nothing to do with you.
Although it’s roots are ancient, meditation is becoming increasingly popular in modern culture. It’s also a fantastic tool for improving your self-esteem, according to research. Many self-esteem issues are caused by conflicting and confused feelings that have been mixed up in your mind. Meditation provides you with a clarity of insight into these feelings, unravelling all the negativity that’s clogging up your brain. It allows you to see everything from a reasonable and objective perspective, meaning that you can see the confusion for what it really is – and it’s usually very little!
Make a list of all the positive things about yourself
When we’re struggling with low self-esteem, it can be difficult to conceptualize what it is that we like about ourselves (and whether there’s anything at all). The best solution to this is to make a physical list of your good qualities – things you like about yourself, whether they be physical attributes or personality quirks. You’ll find yourself listing a lot more than you’d have thought, and it helps you to spread positive thoughts about yourself throughout your mind. Remember, positivity breeds positivity!
Marcus regularly blogs at psysci, a psychology, science blog that examines the latest research and explains how findings can impact and improve people’s lives.