What is self-esteem?
Self-esteem is how you think about yourself. When you look in the mirror what do you see? Do you see the positives or do you (like most people) see only the negatives. Self-esteem is not something we are born with but thankfully it is something we can learn to build ourselves at any stage of life.
In order to build your self-esteem, you must establish yourself as the master of your own life. Every single minute of your life is a moment you can change for the better.
1. Start Small
Set a realistic goal for yourself to be completed within 1 week, whether it is to do with school work, fitness, nutrition, family relationships does not matter, what matters is that you set the goal, you put the work in and you achieve the goal. Every time you achieve a goal (no matter how small) it strengthens your self-esteem.
2. Do something you are good at.
We all have our own talents. Take time and really think about what you are good at and what you really enjoy doing. Now make sure you are spending enough time doing this. Doing things you are good at reinforces your self-belief in your abilities.
3. Do something outside of your comfort zone.
Our comfort zone is the place we feel comfortable. We need to continually stretch our comfort zone to enhance our lives and build our self-esteem. If you are afraid of heights, maybe plan to climb a realistic mountain – if you are nervous about joining new clubs – sign up to something new that interests you. If you are nervous about going anywhere on your own – plan a trip you know you can make on your own to start with……start small and build from there.
Every time you stretch your comfort zone, you rid yourself of one of your fears which in turn builds your self-esteem.
4. Posture & Eye Contact
Practice your posture and smile. Someone who walks with confidence and a smile on their face will portray strong self-esteem. This can be something you practice. Even when you are nervous or shy, if you walk with confidence and appear confident, others will presume you are confident. Eye contact is very important in appearing confident. If you find this hard you should practice it until it becomes the norm.
5. Helping Others
This may sound too easy but every time you help someone, you feel better. Being in a position to help someone else or make someone feel good about themselves will always help your own self-esteem too.
6. For kids – try to get kids to ask someone (older sister, parent, grandparent) what do they think they are good at. Tip off the adult the question may be coming so they can be prepared. It is so beneficial for kids to hear others compliment them. Let them see how others see them. Outside compliments mean so much to them and certainly builds their self-esteem.
7. Teach your kids and yourself how important it is NOT to compare yourself to others. Try not to compare your child to their sibling, cousin, neighbour – this has such a damaging impact on their self-esteem. Measure your expectations of them carefully, understand what what they are capable of, be realistic, listen to them – see them for who they are. Don’t make them try to be someone they are not to please you. This can happen so easily.
“Why compare yourself with others? No one in the entire world can do a better job of being you than you.” – Unknown