“The worst loneliness is to not be comfortable with yourself.” - Mark Twain
It is often not easy to squash low self-esteem. Your self-esteem stems from things that have happened to you in your life and your own feelings about whether or not you are good enough. There are many ways to improve your self esteem, but the first thing you need to do is discover where your self esteem is low. News flash - nothing is as easy as it first may seem. Low self esteem is a like cancer, it can eat away at you and immobilize you. 1. Do you feel you are not as attractive as other people as a rule?
2. Do you see yourself as morally worse (not as “good”) than others?
3. Do you feel unlovable?
4. Do you feel less intelligent than most other people?
5. Do you deny yourself things or activities because you feel you don’t deserve them?
6. Do you value other peoples’ opinions more than your own?
7. Do you feel like an outsider most of the time?
8. Do you find yourself always saying “I’m sorry,” even when you are not sure what you are sorry for?
9. Are you unable to accept compliments or do you often say negative things about yourself?
10. Do you often feel uncomfortable talking about yourself or expressing your opinions?
11. Is what other people think of you more important than what you think of yourself?
12. Do you worry about trying out new things or taking risks?
13. Do you find yourself envious or unhappy when others succeed?
14. Do you criticize yourself or use negative nouns and verbs when talking with yourself or others?
15. Do you always try to make others happy even when it doesn’t make you happy?
16. Are you afraid of making mistakes?
17. Are you easily hurt or angered by what others say about you?
18. Are you uncomfortable in new social situations?
If you answered yes to any of these questions, you need to get to the root of why you feel that way. It helps to reverse these questions a bit and turn them into positive statements. Take whatever feelings are holding you back, find the opposite and affirm the opposite.
- Unattractive - I am attractive because :
- Unloveable - I am loveable because :
- Undeserving - I deserve things because :
- Left out or not accepted - I feel accepted when I :
- Self-critical - I am grateful for compliments and will not criticize myself for:
- Not good enough - I am a good person because :
- Not smart enough - I am intelligent because :
- Not really heard or opinions not listened to - My opinions are valuable because:
- Habitually saying “Sorry” - I do not need to apologize for :
- Feeling not as good as others - I am interesting and have something to offer others because:
The goal is to get beyond the behaviors that are reinforcing your low self-esteem, to get beyond that “less than” feeling. You need to engage yourself in a little self-talk here. The fact of the matter is, you are your own worst enemy when your self-esteem is low. Whatever the reason is that your self-esteem is low is only within your power to fix. No one else can do it for you. The tragedy of low self-esteem is that it doesn’t matter how much other people compliment you or support you if you believe in your heart of hearts that you are not worthy or that you are “less than”. You have to give yourself permission to believe in yourself, to love yourself and like yourself. You have to accept that no one, including you, is perfect. Stop beating yourself up and start loving yourself.