Self-esteem plays a major part in your daily life. Some days you feel good about yourself and some days you don’t. But it can all change so quickly depending on who you talk to, what piece of clothing you put on, what you see on your social media account and what events take place during your day.
Self-esteem seems to be this constant battle going on within yourself of what you know you “should” feel but that you can’t quite grasp. You try to do your best to be happy, to embrace your self and feel good about the way you look, but so much surrounding you is bringing you down. I hear you.
The struggle is so real, my friend.
You try to do daily affirmations, keep your body healthy and try to not compare yourself to others, but it’s hard. On the especially hard days, you are so exhausted that you would rather just crawl into bed and sleep. But I picture a better, happier and healthy life for you, and I am going help you along the way if you will let me.
I want you to feel as confident as you want to feel. That kind of confidence you have seen in someone else as they enter a room with their head held high and you know that they feel proud of who they are.
I want you to be filled with dreams and motivation for your life and to know what you can accomplish. I want you to have great self-esteem that you know how to nurture and protect throughout your life. Therefore I want to give you all the facts that you need to get there. Every piece to the puzzle that is self-confidence so that you can make the real change in your life.
I have broken down all the parts that makeup having positive self-esteem so that you can start this new journey. I have created a 5 day Blog series for you to help improve your self-esteem. This being the first of 5 posts.
I encourage you to choose to spend this time on yourself so that you can have the fulfilling life that you are working towards.
You Are Not Alone.
The best place to start is with the understanding that you are not alone with these thoughts.
85% of people suffer from low self-esteem. That means that someone who you look up to and wish you were like probably wishes that they were like someone else.
I also know what it feels like to be where you are and how you feel about yourself. I was so self-conscious that I wouldn’t dare let anyone see me without makeup on and I would constantly be feeling like I was being judged and looked down on. Somehow I never felt pretty enough, yet there I was with my best friend beside me feeling jealous of me! I didn’t know that at the time, but I am blessed to know that now because it helped me to realize how it was all in my head and not what others actually thought.
Knowing that many others share these struggles with you is an incredibly positive thing because it means that there is nothing to be ashamed of. Through this journey, you might even become brave enough to help represent all those that can’t speak up for themselves and you can help be their voice.
The Four Core Elements
In order to have truly lasting self-esteem, there are four core elements that need to be fulfilled. These elements are Being Aware, Taking The Right Steps, How To Be An Example, and The Importance Of Focusing On Your Self Esteem.
I am going to break down each one of these for you in this series of posts starting with the first one today so that you can clearly see where to work on and start moving forward to achieving better self-esteem.
Being aware is the first step and in my opinion the most important step in improving your self-esteem. It happens to also be the hardest one to work through but through it comes a truly lasting impact. I would say that what comes with being aware scares most people away.
No doubt some of the areas within being aware will make you doubt the process and feel discouraged at some points. However, once you have worked through this element it can only go up from there and it will bring great rewards.
Through becoming aware you will be starting by opening some wounds, but by the end, you will have true healing and be able to close the wounds for good.
Most people try to skip this element as it’s a tender one, but trust me, without working through it you won’t have the lasting outcome that you are looking for.
There are 4 sub-topics to being aware and I recommend working through them in this order.
1. Seeking Change
Seeking change is about being in a place mentally and emotionally to want to make a change in your life.
Have you ever known someone who has said they are going to start doing something for the better and then a week later it seems completely forgotten about? Maybe you have done this?
This sort of start and stop isn’t because the person doesn’t want a better healthier life, it’s because they aren’t truly seeking to make the change in their life. They aren’t ready to put in the work and accept the challenges that might come with it.
It is hard and that is why I recommend being completely prepared for this change by accepting where you are in your life and your self-esteem journey and being ready to move forward.
So how do you know if you are ready?
Getting to a point where you are just done with going day to day as you have been is a great sign that you are ready for a change.
You might also be at a place where you are in a vicious cycle of heartache and mental strain and therefore need this change in your life as soon as possible.
Here are some key points to help you know if you are ready for this change in your life:
- You feel heavily judged by most people
- You suffer from mental illness such as depression, anxiety, anorexia, bulimia, PTSD, etc.
- You are missing a sense of fulfilment in your life
- You do not like your outer body image
- You compare yourself to others
- You don’t plan or dream for your life
- You feel unintelligent or like you have nothing to offer
Once you have decided if you are ready to change your life and improve your self-esteem then you are ready for the next step.
2. Confronting Your Fears
Don’t run! I know you want to as this is the hardest part, but I promise you, you are in a safe place! I am here to help walk you through this in the least scary way possible.
The fears you have are the most tender spots and it was hard enough going through it at the time, why should you have to go through it emotionally again? Well, lovely, that’s because it is where true healing begins.
Understanding your fears and working through them helps you let go of them, instead of just pushing them deep down hoping they won’t come up. By pushing them down you are still keeping them inside of you, so they will continue to affect you. Letting go will give you room to breathe again!
Letting your fears go is a process. It will require planning a time and a safe place to work through them. I recommend having someone you feel safe with and trust to be there with you that you can share your fears with and that can support you in this process.
You will need to ask yourself some questions to help bring up what you are really afraid of that is effecting your life.
Here are some questions to help you get started:
- What events happened in my past that I have residual hurt with?
- What was my upbringing like and how has it affected my self-esteem?
- What hurtful words stick with me and where did they come from?
- What choices did I make that had negative consequences?
These questions are a startng place to help you start talking about what has effected you. I know that it’s not easy and right now it hurts, but together we can get to a point that it no longer hurts or affects your life anymore.
If you can confront your fears then you can learn about the false messages that have come out of those fears and you then have the power to change them.
3. Exposing Bad Habits
We all have them and so do you. You might not be aware of all of them right now but that’s okay.
Admitting where you struggle helps you know where to take the first steps in what to work on.
Exposing your bad habits gives you the opportunity to stop making them now so that you can make a lasting impact on your self-esteem.
Maybe you have gotten into the bad habit of turning down all compliments that you receive or maybe you don’t ever do anything for yourself that makes you happy but instead always do everything for everyone else completely overexausting yourself with no reward. Does this sound like you?
We tend to pick up bad habits from our past or upbringing as a way to protect ourselves, but in truth it is not doing us any good as it feeds negativity.
In my family there is a tendency to want to run at the first sign of conflict. This is a bad habit. No, conflict isn’t pleasant or easy but it is a fact of life and if we don’t have fears around conflict then dealing with it can be done in a much less hurtful way.
As everyone has faults, you should not be afraid to admit that you have them too. In fact admitting that you have faults and bad habits is the first step to healing and that should be celebrated.
What bad habits do you have that you can start to change? Write a list that you can reflect on and as you work through each one check it off to see how much you are growing.
4. Understanding The Truth
So many circumstances in your life have caused you to believe things about yourself. They have caused you to believe that you can’t do some things but you can do other things. That you’re either pretty or not. That you are worthy of love or not.
Maybe it was your upbringing or your time in school being bullied and called nasty things. Somewhere along your journey, you have allowed other people’s false messages of you to become something that you embody.
What if you had never been told that you can’t do *blank*, or that you aren’t *blank*? We all have words to fill in those blanks. But you have the choice to not live by those words. You have the choice to discover the truth about yourself and to embrace that truth.
Earlier we talked about confronting your fears. Bringing to light those things that have hurt you and created fear in your life.
Now is the opportunity to learn the truth out of those fears. Now you can learn what false messages you have believed from your unfortunate circumstances.
This part needs to come with a certain amount of being brave. Naturally, you will want to dismiss the truths at first because that is what you have been used to doing for so long. But it is time for redemption. It is time for you to say enough with the negative and the self-hate and to start healing for a happier life.
At first, it will feel unnatural, but the more you practice changing your negative thought process the easier and more natural it will become.
So how do you discover the false messages? Well, it starts with your heart. What do you believe about yourself honestly?
Usually the messages we are told that hurt us do because we didn’t think those things about ourselves in the beginning. We didn’t think that they were true. Well, your heart was right from the beginning. It hurt you because it wasn’t true.
That is the core understanding of having true self-esteem. If you knew that every hurtful thing that someone said or did to you was not true or because of you, and you knew this in your heart, then it would not affect you.
This is your starting place. Ask yourself what you know of that is true in your heart and you can start to prove that those hurtful things are not of you. And if you are not sure if something is true or not then turn to those you love and trust, as if they are truly there as a support to you then they will help you in understanding the truth.
The Beginning Of Your Journey
This is just the beginning of your journey but I am SO excited for you! You are choosing to better yourself and that takes courage.
As you move through this journey you will have a mix of emotions and at some points want to give up, but stay strong lovely because you are worth it!
You will see improvement and reward and you will start to feel more secure in your inner beauty.
Follow along in my next posts in the How To Improve Your Self Esteem blog series through the links below.
Learn the right steps you need to take in order to improve your self-esteem by knowing your worth, learning to forgive, changing your narrative, creating good habits and doing things for yourself.
Read more HERE: Taking The Right Steps | Self Esteem Blog Series Part 2
Learn how to be a positive example to others by doing unto others, sharing love and being open about who you are.
Read more HERE: How To Be An Example | Self Esteem Blog Series Part 3
Learn about the importance of self-esteem and how to keep your eyes in the right place by having a support network, learning to dream about your future, and having positive role models.
If you know someone you care about who is struggling with low self-esteem please share this series with them so that they have the opportunity for self-growth.