Building Self EsteemWe live in a society that sets unrealistic standards for perfection and criticism on marriage, height, weight, education and so on.
The feelings we have about ourselves is described as self-esteem. When it is low, it’s a problem. Nathaniel Branden, the guru of self esteem issues, states in BOOK, The six pillars of self esteem: The level of our self esteem has profound consequences from every aspect our existence. How we operate at the work place, how we deal with people, how high we are likely to rise and how much we are likely to achieve.
Self esteem is an important part of our health and wellbeing. If we feel good about ourselveswe are more likely to take care of ourselves by making sensible choices. By knowing one’s own mind can be confident enough to make to make our own decisions even if others are trying to persuade us to do otherwise.
Self esteem plays a role in almost everything you do. People with high self esteem do better in their career life and find it easier to make friends, and handle mistakes, disappointments. In the behavouarial school Management, Abraham Maslow pyramid has self esteem as 4th most important.
After understanding self esteem let’s look at how to build it:
Most importantly discover and appreciate yourself. One has to learn to explore them and become aware of one’s feelings, thoughts, and deeds and accept them in order to build self esteem. Learn to appreciate yourself as everyone has strengths, weaknesses, habits and religion that define who you are. for example Bible says we are wonderfully and fearfully made. Spend more time focusing on qualities about yourself that you like and less on the ones you dislike boosts belief in yourself hence high self esteem. Accept yourself as you are and change only what can be changed.
There are these three girls who stay right opposite my hostel, Jowe,Sherry and Worship. Jowe talks like Sherry, Sherry talks like Worship, Worship talks like Jowe. This is a sign of low self esteem. If you are not happy with your height start to work towards loving yourself the way you are because you cannot change that After this you will realise you new best found friend who is you.. Make a list of all your life achievements. You can use pictures to your best advantage, pin up all pictures for best moments. If you have no achievement consider the fact that you are born. This will help you feel nice about yourself and gain self confidence. Do activities to gain self confidence like interacting with others. As you gain self confidence,your self esteem will also grow.
After self awareness, you move on to identify troubling situations and learn to deal with them. Think about situations that affect your self esteem, such as dress code, Peoples`negative comments about you, presentations, and gadget ownership like phones that have been used to define status. Always expecting the worst. Then choose course of action. You can choose to ignore negative comments about you and work things like on dress code.
Finally Pinpoint and Challenge negative inaccurate thinking. Your initial thoughts may not be the only possible way to view a situation. So test the accuracy of your thoughts by asking yourself if your thought is consistent with situation.
Some Thought Patterns that erode self esteem that need to be challenged are:
- Jumping to negative conclusions without evidence. For example `my friend hasn't replied to my email, so I must have done something wrong. You think your not perfect t simply because three girls have refused to date you.
- All-or-Nothing thinking. You see things as either all good or all bad.
Change your thoughts, actions and beliefs, to boost your esteem. It takes time and effort to recognise and replace distressing thoughts with accurate ones. Stop negative thoughts by trying to think positive. If you constantly tell yourself you are stupid or you will never achieve success, you will tend to act as such. So make a habit of saying positive things about yourself and you will build self esteem. Aim for accomplishments rather than perfection is a lost cause because no one is perfect in the eyes of everyone. By trying to be perfect you set yourself for disappointments which results in low your self-esteem.
Success will knock at your door if you have high self esteem,
As I conclude remember, the magic to building self esteem is, discover ourselves, identify troubling situations and act upon them, challenge inaccurate negative thinking and changethem. As Eleanor Roosevelt said ‘no one can make you inferior without your own consent.It is within our powers to build or destroy our self esteem.
We are not born with self esteem but it is something we build overtime. Remember having goals and high self esteem is free, you can take all you want and walk away free. Your greatest victory will come in knowing yourself and not believing what others think you can or cannot do.