6 Ways to Boost Your Self-Esteem When It’s Taken a Hit

Quote: It's not who you are that's holding you back, it's who you think you are not.Self-esteem. It can be hard to come by. We live in a world of comparisons and falsehoods, where the beautiful photos on Facebook have become real-life and real-life has become hidden. When our self-esteem takes a hit, the negative messaging starts and we get pulled into our trigger stories that tell us we aren’t good enough, can’t do it, and don’t belong.

And then we sit in them. Like any good book, we read those stories cover to cover. And we are riveted by the drama, the pain, and the antagonist of our protagonist. When we take a closer look, we find that the antagonist in the story is us. We aren’t the heroes. We aren’t the ones who are being cheered for. We are the ones bringing on the destruction with our mental madness. We get stuck in a negative loop and can’t get out. Our minds are programmed to look for the grooves that feel comfortable, and our negativity is the perfect breeding ground for just that.

Like anything else, your mind is a muscle, and just like your body, you can get it in shape. Here are 6 tips to build your self-esteem.

  1. Do something nice for someone else. Making others happy is one of the quickest ways to feel important. Seeing someone else smile because of something you did, will not only make them feel good, but it will make you feel good about your contribution as well.
  2. Smile. Smiling at others raises your endorphins and changes your mood. Try it right now. Do you feel the difference? Your brain will feel it too. Smiling is a great way to trick yourself into a good mood. It is also a way to bring positive energy into challenging situations.
  3. Master a skill. Having something that you feel competent in not only raises your self-esteem, but also your credibility. Being excellent in an area takes dedication and practice. Truly knowing how to do something, raises your confidence level.
  4. Do esteemable acts. Holding the door open for others, letting someone over on the freeway, staying off of your phone and making eye contact with the clerk at a store, volunteering, picking up litter that you see that isn’t yours, and so much more can all be considered esteemable acts. When you get out of yourself, your negative looping pattern needs a new place to go.
  5. Participate in your own self-care. We spend so much time doing for others that we forget to do things for ourselves. It is important to schedule your doctor appointments. Go to the dentist. Exercise. Clean off your desk. Make your bed. Meditate. All of these things fall under self-care.
  6. Live in the present. Most things that you ae worrying about and obsessing on aren’t happening today. They are future or past oriented. Remember, in this exact moment, you are okay and more than enough.

When you constantly compare yourself to those around you, those on Facebook, and those fantasy people in your head, your self-esteem suffers. Give it a boost and your brain a rest from the obsession by practicing some of these tips.

If you’re interested in learning how to stop obsessing, schedule a complimentary 30-minute discovery session.

If you have a question that you would like to have answered in my monthly #AskGretchen column next week, please feel free to submit it. I will respond to questions on business, relationships, finances, careers, and love. All topics are welcome. This is a free and anonymous service.

Love insights in your inbox? Get them direct from Gretchen’s desk.