Do you always have a low opinion of yourself? Or consistently think that you’re an underachiever and not worthy of compliments or praise? If so, then you could be suffering from low self esteem. Put simply, self esteem is how you think about yourself or your overall opinion of yourself. It can also be how you feel about your strengths and weaknesses. Your self esteem can be high, low, or somewhere in the middle. In this article, we’ll be focusing on low self esteem and talk about some of the ways to overcome it.
What is low self esteem?
Low self esteem can be defined as a lack of self-confidence or seeing yourself as unworthy, inadequate, incompetent, unacceptable, or unlovable. Having negative, self-critical thoughts can affect your behavior, your life choices and leave you trapped in a lonely vicious circle.
Low self esteem can also affect one’s mental health, leading to stress, depression, and eating disorders. As such, it’s important to take quick actions when you realize that you or someone you love is suffering from this debilitating problem.
11 ways to overcome low self esteem
If you are suffering from low self esteem, you may be wondering if it’s possible to overcome it and regain self-confidence. Well, the good news is that yes, it’s possible.
In most cases, low self esteem is usually learned behavior. This implies that those inadequate feelings of self-worth you’re experiencing were taught to you by someone else or started because of you focusing on your negatives. So in order to change this bad learned behavior, you have to start adopting new beliefs and understanding that nobody is perfect. Here are some tips on how to overcome your low self esteem and start living a happier life.
1. Make some improvements
Many things can lead to low self esteem. Some of them are not in your control, while others are fully within your power to change. For example, being overweight or having a bad body shape are some of the things you can change and improve your self esteem.
If you are overweight, for instance, you can start taking up an exercise routine and eating better. When you exercise and eat right, there’ll be numerous positive changes in your body both to how you feel and how you look. For some people, this can be a great first step in improving their low self esteem.
If feeling tired all of the time is one of the things that lower your self esteem, then you can overcome this by turning off the computer and television a few hours earlier and try to get at least 8 hours of good sleep every night. Create an evening routine that makes it easier for you to unwind at night. Getting adequate sleep will help keep your body and mind healthy. You’ll also wake up feeling refreshed and full of energy, which will help you accomplish more throughout the day.
2. Accept some flaws
I know that this is easier said than done, but it’s a must if you want to overcome low self esteem. There will always be things about yourself that you don’t like. Try to understand that this is true for every other person on earth, no matter how flawless they may seem.
One of the tips for overcoming low self esteem is to learn to concentrate on your strengths, not your limitations.
3. Try something new
One common characteristic of people suffering from low self esteem is the feeling that they are incompetent or under performers. They think that they’re incapable of accomplishing certain things. Sadly, this is many times a self-fulfilling prophecy. In order to overcome low self-respect, you must understand that you can do more than you think.
You can start by trying something new, like taking a photography or pottery class. You can also try to do something daring like parasailing or skydiving. If you’ve never meditated before, learn to meditate.
With each new adventure or skill you learn, you will add another notch to your confidence level. With time, you will learn that there is literally nothing you can’t do when you believe in yourself.
4. Talk to your low self esteem
I know this might sound a little weird, but it can be effective in overcoming low self esteem. For example, when you’re in a meeting, your low self esteem may tell you “shut your mouth, you have nothing worth to say in this meeting.” If this happens, silently “respond” to your low self esteem by saying, “Yes, I have an idea, and I’m going to speak it out!” And then do it. Even if others don’t receive your idea very well, that does not mean that it wasn’t worth sharing.
In beating low self esteem, don’t allow your negative feelings to command you. Stand up to them and overcome them by doing what you think is right for you. And before you even know it, you will have increased your confidence, and on the road to achieving all of your dreams.
5. Try to relax
One of the things that contribute to low self esteem is a constant feeling of stress. When you’re stressed, your negative thoughts will take charge, making you focus on your weaknesses instead of your strengths. This will even aggravate your stress and lead to more low self esteem.
Take time to do something you find relaxing. Practice self care. Try doing things such as taking a bath, gaming, meditation, singing, indoor dancing, etc. This will reduce your stress and make yourself feel better.
6. Live in the now
Another way to overcome low self esteem is to learn to live in the present and not let the hurts of your past or worries about the future affect your actions. You can achieve this by engaging all your five senses – stop and listen for melodious sounds of birds, feel the breeze of air on your skin, smell the freshness of the air, enjoy the beautiful color of the sky. All these will draw your consciousness into the present and help you have the right frame of mind when making day-to-day decisions.
7. Be kind to yourself
Why would you be kind to others, but be hard on yourself? One of the tricks for overcoming low self esteem is to treat yourself just the way you’d treat your best pal: be caring, gentle, and forgiving.
Loving-kindness meditation is one way to sit and take time practicing some love and kindness to yourself.
Sometimes, we may be kind to our friends and family but forget to extend that kindness to ourselves! Accept yourself, love yourself, and feel your self esteem soar.
8. Appreciate yourself and know where you shine in
Self-appreciation and self-acceptance are two different things but are connected. You can’t appreciate yourself if you don’t accept yourself.
Sit down, examine your life, highlight the areas where you do better, and try to work on those areas. Too many times, we choose things we know we can’t accomplish, and we spend all our time and effort on them. Instead, know your niche and where you’re good at, and then focus your hard work, persistence, and dedication, and persistence on that. We all have areas we don’t excel at, so stop criticizing when you fail at something.
9. Stop comparing yourself with others
I know society has put expectations on you, but you don’t have to meet all of them. If you truly want to overcome low self esteem, you need to start learning to live your life and not trying to please others. Never compare your achievements with those of others. Instead, set your own goals and boundaries and follow your dreams. Remember that we are all different, and each one of us has something unique to deliver. Once you can learn to stop comparing yourself to others, you can be much happier with yourself.
10. Avoid self-bashing
As you try to overcome your low self esteem, remember that we are all human. Everyone, at some point in their life, will make a mistake. In fact, some people make way more than others.
One trick to overcoming low self esteem is to learn not to beat yourself up when you make mistakes. Instead, learn from that mistake. Store in your memory and be using it to prevent you from repeating the same mistake in the future. Always keep in mind that we all learn from trial and error.
11. Surround yourself with people with positive mind
What we see and hear about ourselves significantly affects our self esteem. And sometimes, those things may have a permanent effect. Believe it or not, the people you surround yourself or interacted with in the past have contributed to the person you are today.
If you are trying to feel good about yourself, why surround yourself with people who hate themselves? Why befriend someone who looks down upon himself or herself or has no dreams, goals, or purpose in life?
Spend time with positive people. Start attending conferences with people who want you to be better and who will push to do the impossible.
Start overcoming your low self esteem
Overcoming low self esteem is a process that takes a lot of time and patience. Of course, there’ll be times where you feel like there’s no change or you’re wasting your time. There will also be moments when you’ll give up and want to associate with those same people with no purpose in life. Don’t let these moments stop you from your journey. Stand up and persevere your bumps, and in the end, you’ll achieve your goals and live a happy, successful life.