Everyone struggles with their self esteem at some point in their lives, especially when you’re young. Living in the age of social media doesn’t help because we are constantly exposed to content that can make us feel bad about ourselves.
From worrying about our appearance and body type to feeling like we aren’t achieving enough or enjoying ourselves as much as others. Self esteem is something I’ve struggled with on and off since I was a child.
It is still a work in progress for me but I’ve come a long way since I was a teenager. I constantly compare myself to others, doubted myself and felt like I was never good enough in any aspect of my life.
Here are five tips I wanted to share that have helped me improve my self esteem and value my own self worth.
🐶 Fake it til you make it – it might not be easy convincing yourself that you are worthy but you can try to fake it. Replacing your negative self thoughts with positive ones.
I found that if I told myself enough times that I’m good enough and worthy enough, I started to believe it. I would just simply tell myself that I am good enough, my achievements were enough, that I was good enough for other people, that I was smart enough, pretty enough.
Lastly, when people compliment me I should accept the compliment and believe it. After a while you might start to see it yourself and believe the things that you’ve been telling yourself.
🐨 Stop comparing yourself to others – One thing that I have always been terrible for is comparing myself to other people. Both in real life and online.
I would look at myself and think “I’m not as pretty or as thin as that girl” or “I’m not as smart or haven’t achieved as much as that person” . You are on your own path and what you achieve on that path is your own and it is valid.
Remember, what you see online isn’t true to life. People post the best parts of themselves on social media and you only see what they want you to see. You don’t see their own insecurities or struggles or them at their worst. Wealthy influencers and celebrities set a totally unrealistic standard that 99% of the population will never reach. Not because of some sort of failing but because what you’re seeing of them is just not realistic.
You’ll feel a lot better about yourself when you stop comparing your life to others. Consuming positive media can help with this. There are many beautiful movements that you can find on social media such as the body positivity movement.
Remember, life is about the journey, not the destination, and we are all on different journeys.
🐵 Focus on the things you like about yourself – some people like to do the whole “write down five things that you like about yourself” but I always found this difficult. It’s hard to make a list of things you like about yourself and my “dislike list” was always longer.
So instead, I would focus on remembering the things I liked about myself when they came to me. It might just be something I liked about myself at that moment. For example, “I like the way I did my eye make up today” or something I like about myself in general “I like how thoughtful I am towards other people”.
Trying to remember the positives about yourself and your life in general is helpful and when you think of something then you can write it in a notebook or on a sticky note to remind yourself when you’re feeling down.
🐷 Surround yourself with the right people – it’s easy to say “stop caring about what other people think” but it’s a hard thing to do. Especially if there are toxic people in your life that will keep putting you down.
If people in your life are critical of you or keep putting you down, even if it isn’t intentional, cut them out of your life if it’s possible. It’s better to have less people in your life than people who make you feel bad about yourself.
Surround yourself with people that actually make you feel good about yourself, people who are supportive and encouraging and don’t judge you. It might take time to find your people. However, the people who have a positive impact on your self worth but you will find them eventually and your self esteem will improve because of it.
🐯 Remember that you’re human and don’t have to be perfect all time – I’ve always been a perfectionist and I always tied my self worth to my achievements.
I always felt like I had to be the best at everything. I felt I needed to achieve a certain amount of things by a certain age. I still have to keep telling myself that it’s okay to fail, it’s okay to just be average at something and it’s okay if I haven’t completed my goals by a certain age or achieved the same successes as my peers.
Sometimes we just need to let ourselves take a step back and focus on our wellbeing not being perfect. We are all human and setbacks are part of being human. Struggling with your self worth is part of being human. No one looks or acts perfect all the time. We all have good days and bad days.
We are all on different paths in life which means our achievements may look different to other people’s achievements. There is no right or wrong way to live. We don’t have to look perfect all the time, you don’t need to spend hours on your appearance or go on diets because of pressure to look a certain way.
Our bodies are all different and every body is beautiful and unique. Don’t let society’s unrealistic eurocentric beauty standards and fashion only shown on slim toned bodies make you think your body type or your features are ugly or not good enough. You are not too big or too small or too dark etc. You are beautiful the way you are.
Overall, improving your self esteem improves every aspect of your life because you are more yourself and you become more confident. I still compare myself to others and worry about what they think. However, I also love parts of myself, even the parts that aren’t the norm or the kinds of things that get a lot of praise.
I’m more at ease around other people and find myself enjoying my life more without constantly feeling anxious. It takes time to get to that point and you will probably still struggle with your self esteem and self image at times but it’ll get better.