Valuable Steps to Raise Your Self Esteem
As adults, we can choose the messages we accept or reject.
As Eleanor Roosevelt said, "No one can make you feel
inferior without your permission."
high self-esteem is a process, not something you can develop
overnight," says Jeffrey Keller. "Yet, I believe
every person has the capacity of high self-esteem. The
question is, are you ready to make a commitment to increase
If your answer is yes, here are 12 steps to get you started:
Stop comparing yourself with other people.
There will always be some people who have more than you
and some who have less. If you play the comparison game,
you'll run into too many "opponents" you can't
Stop putting yourself down. You can't develop
high self-esteem if you repeat negative phrases about
yourself and your abilities. Whether speaking about your
appearances, your career, your relationships, your financial
situation, or any other aspects of your life, avoid self-deprecating
Accept all compliments with
"thank you." Ever received a compliment and
replied," Oh, it was nothing." When you reject
a compliment, the message you give yourself is that you
are not worthy of praise. Respond to all compliments with
a simple Thank You."
Use affirmations to enhance your self-esteem. On the
back of a business card or small index card, write out
a statement such as "I like and accept my self."
or "I am valuable, lovable person and deserve the
best in life." Carry the card with you. Repeat the
statement several times during the day, especially at
night before going to bed and after getting up in the
morning. Whenever you say the affirmation, allow yourself
to experience positive feelings about your statement.
Take advantage of workshops, books and cassette tape
programs on self-esteem. Whatever material you allow to
dominate mind will eventually take root and affect your
behavior. If you watch negative television programs or
read newspaper reports of murders and business rip off;
you will grow cynical and pessimistic. Similarly, if you
read books or listen to programs, that are positive in
nature, you will take on these characteristics.
Associate with positive, supportive people. When you
are surrounded by negative people who constantly put you
and your ideas down, your self-esteem is lowered. On the
other hand, when you are accepted and encouraged, you
feel better about yourself in the best possible environment
to raise your self-esteem.
Make a list of your past successes. This doesn't necessarily
have to consist of monumental accomplishments. It can
include your "minor victories," like learning
to skate, graduating from high school, receiving an award
or promotion, reaching a business goal, etc. Read this
list often. While reviewing it, close your eyes and recreate
the feelings of satisfaction and joy you experienced when
you first attained each success.
Step Eight: Make a list of
your positive qualities. Are you honest? Unselfish? Helpful?
Creative? Be generous with yourself and write down at
least 20 positive qualities. Again, it's important to
review this list often. Most people dwell on their inadequacies
and then wonder why their life isn't working out. Start
focusing on your positive traits and you'll stand a much
better chance of achieving what you wish to achieve.
Start giving more. I'm not talking about money. Rather,
I mean that you must begin to give more of yourself to
those around your. When you do things for others, you
are making a positive contribution and you begin to feel
more valuable, which, in turn, lifts your spirits and
raises your own self-esteem.
involved in work and activities you love. It's hard to
feel good about yourself if your days are spent in work
you despise. Self-esteem flourishes when you are engaged
in work and activities that you enjoy and make you feel
valuable. Even if you can't explore alternative career
options at the present time, you can still devote leisure
time to hobbies and activities, which you find stimulating
Be true to yourself. Live your own life - not the
life others have decided is best for you. You'll never
gain your own respect and feel good about yourself if
you aren't leading the life you want to lead. If you're
making decisions based on getting approval from friends
and relatives, you aren't being true to yourself and your
self-esteem is lowered.
Take action! You won't develop high self-esteem if
you sit on the sidelines and back away from challenges.
When you take action - regardless of the ensuing result
- you feel better about yourself. When you fail to move
forward because of fear and anxiety, you'll be frustrated
and unhappy - and you will undoubtedly deal a damaging
blow to your self-esteem.
"real you" is a magnificent, unique being with
enormous potential and capacity for experiencing love
of yourself and extending love to others. As your self-esteem
grows, this "real you" emerges. You begin to
take more risks and not be afraid of failure; you aren't
as concerned with getting approval of others; your relationships
are much more rewarding; you pursue activities that bring
you joy and satisfaction; and you will make a positive
contribution to the world. Most importantly, high self
esteem brings you peace of mind ... when you're alone,
you truly appreciate the person you're with - yourself.