Five Fast and easy ways to improve your self esteem.
We all have moments when we feel bad about ourselves. Sometimes even changing our routine slightly can make a huge difference in creating a positive outlook. Of course this list is not meant to offer a quick fix for anxiety or depression but rather a way to help catch and reverse irrational negative self talk that fuels low self esteem.
1. Call a friend or supportive family member:
Even though this is stating the obvious its important to mention. Often it only takes a few kind words or just hearing a loved ones voice to lift us out of a bad mood. You don’t have to go into details about what or how you are feeling but you need to make the connection. Isolation breeds loneliness and negative self talk. Not surprisingly reaching out and connecting has the opposite effect. Many times, a mood can change dramatically just by talking to a friend.
2. Do one thing positive towards your health:
Ignoring good physical and mental health exacerbates low self-esteem. Just making a small effort towards good health can help improve your self-image. You can schedule a doctor’s appointment you have been avoiding, take a long walk, eat healthier or even take a step towards quitting smoking. Pick an activity that resonates with you and keep it small. Long term success is often easier by setting manageable goals.
3. Challenge your negative self-statements:
Sometimes I make clients identify their negative self-thoughts. Then I ask them how many time a day do they indulge those thoughts. Often the number is too high to count and typically they aren‘t even aware that they are doing it. What this means is that negative self-talk is often an unconscious act and that those negative thoughts go unchallenged. Challenge those thoughts every time you catch them coming out of your mouth or entering your consciousness. Ask yourself regardless if they are true are they helping you in anyway to feel better about yourself. Or is there good reason to have those negative thoughts. If you cannot think of a good reason then banish them!
4. Help someone in need:
One really good way to feel better about yourself is through helping others. There is a special connectedness that happens when you volunteer to help others. This does not mean let someone take advantage of you. It means that when you give of yourself you will increase your sense of purpose in the world. Some examples include volunteering with the elderly or with children, volunteering to baby sit, or bring soup to a sick friend.
5. Do something you have been avoiding:
Avoidance feeds anxiety, depression and low self-esteem. I know it can feel counter-intuitive to do something that you have been avoiding. The whole purpose that we avoid is usually all the negative feelings we perceive will surface if action is taken. However, the opposite is true. Avoidance actually creates negative feelings whereas being proactive in your life increases a sense a self-worth. Try something small and see how it feels such as taking the dog for a walk or tackling a pile of papers that need to be filed