Low self-esteem can often be traced back to childhood. For those who had a difficult upbringing or suffered through a traumatic event, low self-esteem is fairly common. However, it’s possible to develop self-esteem issues in adulthood as well.
When you go through a difficult time, it can affect the way you see yourself. For example, if you are unemployed, go through a divorce, or file bankruptcy, you may internalize these negative experiences and believe that it’s your fault and that you caused these bad things to happen.
Learn about the steps you can take to overcome low self-esteem:
1. Surround yourself with positive people and remove the negative ones from your life. Spending time with those who are negative will only reinforce your low opinion of yourself. It’s better to surround yourself with individuals who are supportive and encouraging.
- If you’re fortunate enough to have positive influences in your life, listen to them when they say you’ve done a good job.
- Avoid ignoring compliments because you feel unworthy. If you were undeserving of the praise, you wouldn’t be getting it.
2. Avoid telling yourself you “should have,” “could have,” or “would have.” If you’re constantly telling yourself “I could have done this,” or “I should have done that,” you’re focusing on things that have already happened and that you’re unable to change.
- It’s better to look to the future and say, “Next time I’ll do this,” or “I’m going to do that.”
3. Set reasonable expectations. Accept that human beings make mistakes. If you’re unwilling to accept anything less than perfection from yourself, you’ll feel completely discouraged when you inevitably make a mistake.
- Avoid letting mistakes get you down. Remember that every mistake you make is a chance to learn and grow.
4. Recognize and celebrate your accomplishments. If your self-esteem is lacking, you might spend a lot of time focusing on the negative. Acknowledge your accomplishments and allow yourself to be happy. It’s okay to be proud of yourself.
5. Volunteer for a charitable organization. Working to help others will make you feel good about yourself and help boost your self-esteem.
- It’s difficult to have a poor opinion of yourself when you’re supporting a good cause.
6. Make a list of all your best qualities. Get a pen and paper and write down your strengths, skills, talents, and positive personality traits.
- When people have low self-esteem, they often focus on all of the things they dislike about themselves. Taking some time to focus on your good qualities can have a very positive effect.
7. Consider seeking professional help. In more extreme cases, low self-esteem can have a negative impact on a person’s life and mental health.
- A person with very low self-esteem may have issues in their relationships, trouble in their careers, or a number of other challenges. Sometimes esteem issues can lead to anxiety, social withdrawal, depression, or even suicide.
- If low self-esteem is causing chaos in your work and personal life, you may want to consider seeing a therapist for additional help. They can provide you with additional strategies for increasing your self-esteem. A therapist may even be able to help you deal with the underlying issues that caused your low self-esteem in the first place.
There are many factors which can cause or contribute to low self-esteem. The key is to figure out how to overcome your low self-esteem and start feeling good about yourself again.