How Can I Improve My Self-Esteem?

SOME HISTORY…

Steve’s mind races nonstop as he does his homework. “I will never pass this history test,” he thinks. My father is right, I am like him — I will never do much in life. ” Distracted, he looks down and thinks about how skinny his legs are. “Ugh,” he says to himself. I’m sure the football coach won’t even let me try when he sees how little I am ”.

Julio is studying for the same history exam as Steve, and he is not a lover of that subject, either. But here the similarities end. Julio has a completely different attitude. You’re more likely to think, “Well, story again. What a stick! Luckily I’ll show off in the subject that I really like — the math. ” And when Julio thinks about how he looks, he’s also much more positive. Although shorter and thinner than Steve, Julio is much less likely to blame or criticize his body and is more likely to think, “I may be thin, but I run well. I will be a good addition to the soccer team ”.

We all have a mental image of who we are, what we look like, what we are good at, and what our weak points are. We form that image over time, beginning in our earliest childhood. The term self-image is used to refer to the mental image that a person has of themselves. Much of our self-image is based on our interactions with other people and our life experiences. This mental image (our self-image) contributes to our self-esteem .   

Self-esteem depends on the extent to which we feel valued, loved, and accepted by others – and to what extent we value, love, and accept ourselves. People with healthy self-esteem feel good about themselves, appreciate their own worth, and take pride in their abilities, skills, and accomplishments. People with low self-esteem feel that no one will like them, that no one will accept them, or that they are not good at anything.

We all have problems with our self-esteem at certain times in life — especially during adolescence, when we are discovering who we are and our place in the world. The good news is that, as the image we have of ourselves changes over time, self-esteem is not something that is immovable or fixed for life. So if you feel that your self-esteem is not as high as it should be, you can improve it.

Self esteem issues

Before a person can fix their self-esteem issues and build healthy self-esteem, it helps to know what might be causing those issues in the first place. 

Two things in particular — how others view or treat us and how we view ourselves — can have a major impact on our self-esteem.

Parents, teachers, and other authority figures influence the ideas we develop about ourselves — particularly when we are young children.

 If parents spend more time criticizing a child than praising him, it is difficult for that child to develop healthy self-esteem. 

Since teens are still forming their values ​​and beliefs, it is easy for them to build their self-image around what a parent, coach, or other people say.

It is obvious that self-esteem can go very wrong when someone whose acceptance we value very much (such as a parent or a teacher) constantly misses us. 

But criticism doesn’t always have to come from other people. Like Steve in the example above, some teens also have an “inner critic,” an inner voice that finds fault in everything they do. And, like Steve, people often unintentionally shape their inner voice after the opinion of a critical parent or anyone else whose opinion is important to them.

Over time, hearing a negative inner voice can damage a person’s self-esteem as much as if criticism came from outside.

 Some people are so used to having their inner critic still there that they don’t even realize when they are missing themselves.

Unrealistic expectations can also affect a person’s self-esteem. People have an image of what they want to become (or who they think they should be). The image of the ideal person is different for everyone. For example, some people admire sports skills and others academic skills. 

People who see themselves as having qualities they admire — such as the ability to make friends easily — tend to have high self-esteem.

People who don’t see themselves as having the qualities they admire can develop low self-esteem.

 Unfortunately, people with low self-esteem often have the qualities they admire, but cannot see it because their self-image is shaped in such a way that it prevents them from doing so.  

Why is self-esteem important?

The feelings we have towards ourselves influence how we live our lives. People who feel loved and appreciated (in other words, people with high self-esteem) have better social relationships. They are more likely to ask friends and family for help and support when they need it. People who believe they can achieve their goals and solve problems tend to do better in school. Having good self-esteem allows you to accept yourself and live life fully.

Steps to improve self-esteem

If you want to improve your self-esteem, here are some tips to get started:

                   Stop having negative thoughts about yourself. If you are used to focusing on your flaws, start thinking about positive aspects that counteract them. When you find that you’re being overly critical of yourself, counter it by saying something positive about yourself. Each day write down three things about yourself that make you happy. 

                 Aim for achievement rather than perfection. Some people end up paralyzing due to their desire for perfection. Instead of holding yourself back with thoughts like, “I’m not going to audition for the play until I’ve lost 5 kg,” think about what you’re good at and what you enjoy and go for them. 

                     See mistakes as learning opportunities. Accept that you will make mistakes because everyone does. Mistakes are part of the learning process. Remember that a person’s skills are constantly developing, and that everyone excels at different things — it’s what makes people interesting. 

                     Try new things. Experiment with different activities that put you in touch with your skills. Then be proud of the new skills you have acquired. 

                     Identify what you can change and what you can not. If you realize that there is something about you that does not make you happy and you can change it, start now. If it’s something you can’t change (like your height), start working to love yourself just the way you are. 

                     Set goals. Think about what you would like to achieve and then come up with a plan to do it. Stick to the plan and see your progress being recorded. 

                     Be proud of your opinions and ideas. Don’t be afraid to express them. 

                     Collaborate in social work. Teach a classmate who has problems, help clean up your neighborhood, participate in a charity marathon for a good cause, or volunteer for an association. Feeling that you contribute something and that your help is recognized works wonders to increase self-esteem. 

                     Make exercise! You will relieve stress and you will be healthier and happier. 

                     Have fun. Have you ever found yourself thinking things like: “I would have more friends if I were slimmer”? Enjoy spending your time with people you care about and doing things that you love. Relax and have a good time — and don’t put your life on hold. 

It is never too late to build a positive and healthy self-esteem. In some cases, when the emotional wound is very deep or long-lasting, the help of a mental health professional, such as a psychologist or therapist, may be necessary. These experts act as guides, helping people to love themselves and to realize what makes them unique and special.

We all have a mental image of who we are, what we look like, what we are good at, and what our weak points are. We form that image over time, beginning in our earliest childhood. The term self-image is used to refer to the mental image that a person has of themselves. Much of our self-image is based on our interactions with other people and our life experiences. This mental image (our self-image) contributes to our self-esteem .   

Self-esteem depends on the extent to which we feel valued, loved, and accepted by others – and to what extent we value, love, and accept ourselves. People with healthy self-esteem feel good about themselves, appreciate their own worth, and take pride in their abilities, skills, and accomplishments. People with low self-esteem feel that no one will like them, that no one will accept them, or that they are not good at anything.

Resonance Costa Rica