There are many ways to improve your sense of self-worth but here are a few for you to start with.
The biggest threat to your self-worth is the way you think about and view yourself. If your thoughts are self-critical you will undermine your confidence. The quickest way is to be aware that you are doing this and to either say STOP! To yourself, or to challenge the truth of your thoughts, and if they are not true – get rid of them.Should you find that you are putting yourself down or thinking self-defeating thoughts then you need to learn to dispute or challenge them. Usually what you are thinking is not true or accurate and the thoughts will make you feel bad about yourself.
A great book to read to learn how to stop undermining yourself is “Change your Thinking” by Sarah Edelman, which I think is in its third edition, and published by ABC books. You will find chapters on checking your thinking, overcoming frustration and anger, anxiety, depression, stress and building self-esteem. I think it is the best book around on thinking and covers so much. A Bargain😊
- The next big threat to your sense of self-worth is other people. Check in on who around you may have a habit of putting you down. It may be your parents, friends, partner, boss or a neighbour or your kids. Sometimes the put downs come by way of jokes – at your expense. Make sure that you let them know that the “Joke” or the put down is not appreciated.There are cautions here though. If you are dealing with abusive people you must work out another way of making your wishes known otherwise it could backfire or not work. If you can, keep away from those sorts of people and surround yourself with positive and supportive people.Another caution is if you are not naturally assertive then you might not succeed in standing up for yourself, fail, and give up trying. Get in touch with your inner mouse and learn to be assertive, and what to say to defend your dignity. Read Change your Thinking which has a chapter on this, or other good books on assertion, or take a class if possible. Remember that you need to put yourself first – sometimes. You also need skills o be able to defend yourself.
- Focus on complaining less as complaining all the time can make you negative. Complaining takes away from your power and undermines other people’s view of you too. Keep a gratitude journal, writing daily about the things in life that you appreciate, or things that inspire you. Keep company with positive and encouraging people. Always try to use positive language with yourself and others.
- Step out of your comfort zone and be prepared to test your own boundaries. Congratulate yourself when you do this or have a small or large success. Acknowledge when you have done well and accept any uncertainty in life and learn to adapt. Dealing with the unknown or unexpected will give you a confidence boost, even if it does not quite turn out the way you expected. After a while stepping out of your comfort zone will get easier.
- Give up your need to be perfect. No one is, although some people may give that impression. Give up your demands that others be perfect too. Taking the critical focus off others gives you more energy and pays dividends with them feeling more positive and relaxed towards you. Demanding that you be perfect will make you miserable, and you will compare yourself with others even more.Accept compliments gladly and compliment others generously.
- Make a life plan with realistic goals and strategies to reach those goals. This will give you a feeling of power and control over your own life, and something good to look forward to. Be considerate towards others when you make your goals, so as not to cut across their plans. Be prepared to clearly communicate your plans and be prepared to adapt if necessary but not give up all of what you want. Know what you want and go for it.
- Make a habit of not comparing yourself with others. You are a unique human being, and worthy of living and deserving of a good life even if you are not as “clever” or “wealthy” as others. Each of us has distinct talents, and wealth does not always amount to money only. Be happy that you do your best; enjoy the process and celebrate your wins. Be generous and celebrate the wins of others too. This ability adds to your fund of worthiness of character.
- Focus on being your best self – every day. Take up any relevant opportunity that presents itself without fear. Be bold in moving towards your life goals, and grateful that they present themselves to you. Accept the things in life that bring you joy and contentment. When you wake up in the morning, visualize your perfect day filled with life-enhancing activities. Use these tips to make sure it happens.
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© Kathleen Crawford 2020