This article aims to help you raise self-esteem to levels that will enhance your life. To improve your self esteem it helps to have a proper action plan with specific exercises. Try these action steps to raise your self esteem and your self confidence.
Healthy self-esteem is based on our ability to assess ourselves accurately (to 'know thyself') and still be able to accept and value ourselves unconditionally. This means being able to realistically acknowledge we have strengths, but importantly, to understand that we also have limitations. We are humans after all. It is impossible to be perfect.
People with no self esteem:
– Consider themselves to be unworthy of being loved or cared for
– Are often unassertive and allow themselves to be pushovers
– Are always on the look out for happiness gurus (eg fortune tellers) and 'magic pills' (ie quick fix solutions)
– Are afraid of conflict
– Seek constant approval from others
– Have a fear of rejection
– Have all kinds of fears, many irrational
– Find it difficult to accept compliments
– Have low self confidence
– Are vulnerable to mental health problems
– May use addictive behavior and habits to mask their inner pain. This includes excessive gambling, smoking, drinking, shopping and drugs
Do you relate to any of these statements? Do not feel alone. Try these self esteem exercises to raise your self confidence and happiness. Put these into action steps into practice today.
EXERCISE 1: SAY ALOUD THESE POSITIVE AFFIRMATIONS EVERY DAY
Positive affirmations are healing, positive words that help to counter your negative inner voice. Pick at least three of these statements to stand up and say aloud to the mirror every morning. Say it like you mean it.
I am intelligent
I am beautiful
I am a good person
I am forgiving
I am energetic
I am talented
I am responsible for my own feelings, my life and how I live it
I can lose weight
I can stop smoking
I can handle my children
I can gain self-confidence
I can heal
I can let go of fear
I can be a winner
I can be strong
I will gain emotional strength each day
I will like myself better every day
I will smile more today
I will take care of me today and put myself first
I will handle my finances wisely
EXERCISE 2: THINK OF SOMETHING YOU REALLY ENJOY AND DO IT TODAY
Think of something you really enjoy doing. Something that is not bad for your body (so that rules out drinking, smoking, gambling, eating fast food … you know the stuff) It would be great to pick something you have not done in ages, maybe an activity you loved as a child. Skipping, going for a hike, ice-skating, playing Monopoly, dancing. It may be something as simple as calling up your best friend for a chat. Make sure you pick an activity that truly engages you: perhaps an exercise you have to concentrate at, such as table tennis. Do not wait. Make a plan to do it today.
EXERCISE 3: ACT CONFIDENTLY THROUGHOUT THE DAY
People will respond to your self-confidence and act positively towards you, strengthening your image and your self-esteem all at once.
EXERCISE 4: STOP THINKING ABOUT YOURSELF
Self-absorption can make you feel worse. If you find yourself focusing inwards, go and do exercise 2, or find some other (healthy) distraction.
EXERCISE 5: TIDY UP
Clearing out your physical junk helps to clear out your mental junk. Clean up your desk and home. Just start with a small section at a time such as a kitchen drawer, and as the weeks go by you will gradually find your whole environment, including your headspace has gotten a lot clearer.
EXERCISE 6: WRITE DOWN YOUR INSECURITIES, THEN BURN THEM
Write down all the negative beliefs you have about yourself (I'm fat, I'm stupid, I'm poor, I'm never good enough …). Then take that piece of paper and burn it. Turn it into a mini-ceremony. And move on.
EXERCISE 7: COUNT YOUR BLESSINGS
Consider all the things you take for granted such as shelter, enough food to eat, shoes on your feet, clothes to wear, access to a computer, ability to go out for a nice meal.
EXERCISE 8: WRITE DOWN ONE THING YOU WOULD LOVE TO HAVE THE COURAGE TO DO
Then write down the next immediate action step. Do not worry about the steps required after that..just achieve the first step today.
These self esteem exercises might feel trivial and even stupid in some cases. But in just a few days, your self confidence, happiness levels and esteem will begin to grow and you can watch them work wonders in your life. Become the happy, confident person you are fully capable of being. You deserve it.