Boost Your Self Esteem: Activities And Tips To Help
Updated August 27, 2020
Medically Reviewed By: Laura Angers
Does life feel like a challenge? Do you struggle with not feeling like you’re good enough and that you just don’t measure up? It could be that you’re struggling with low self-esteem. It can impact every area of your life if left unchecked. However, there are tips and self-esteem activities that can help to boost your self-esteem and transform how you feel.
What Is Self-Esteem?
Your self-esteem is what you think about yourself and how you feel about yourself. Some people have high self-esteem, and others struggle with having low self-esteem.
The Mayo Clinic shares that you build self-esteem beginning in your childhood. And, there are a lot of factors that can contribute to it, such as:
- The way you perceive and think about things
- Your interactions with others
- Your home life
- Experiences at school or work
- Physical or mental illness
- Society status
- What you hear from the media
Why Your Self-Esteem Is Important
Your self-esteem is important because it can impact the way that you live your life and make decisions. For example, someone with healthy self-esteem believes that, overall, they are a good person. This might help them to believe those other people like them and that they are good at many of the things that they do. This can give them the courage and confidence to do things like interact with new people or go after a promotion at work.
If someone struggles with their self-esteem, then they may have a hard time taking a risk to talk with new people or put themselves in the running for that job they want. And, even if someone looks outwardly like they are confident, they may be feeling like they’re struggling inside.
Low self-esteem doesn’t just impact you in situations like trying to get a new job or talking to strangers; the National Alliance on Mental Illness shares that low self-esteem can be related to:
- Poor relationships
Boost Your Self-Esteem Activities
There are plenty of self-esteem worksheets that you can find online to help you in the process of giving yours a boost. These worksheets have a variety of focuses. Below are a few examples.
Journaling sheets: These self-esteem worksheets are formatted to make it easy for you to document the positive parts of your day. It could include things that you were successful at or things that you were proud of doing. Being able to look back over the successes that you had each day can help you to start building confidence and self-esteem.
Sentence stems: These worksheets give you the first part of a sentence, and then you fill in the rest of it. For example, the sentence might start with, “It made me feel great when…” or “I like who I am because…”. When you take time to fill in these sentences, it can help you to acknowledge the positive parts of who you are.
Affirmation worksheets: Affirmations are sentences that describe how you want things to be or how you want to be. Repeating these affirmations to yourself can help you to claim what you want for your life, even if it isn’t that way just yet. Examples would be things like, “I confidently share my opinions with others” or “I make wise decisions.” You may not feel that these things are true in your life at the moment, but you want and believe that they are possible for your future.
Reframing worksheets: These self-esteem worksheets are designed to help you rethink negative situations and experiences in your life. They have sections for you to write down what the situation was and then what your negative emotions are that were connected with it. Finally, it provides you a place to write down new judgements that are fact-based instead of based on your emotions and self-esteem.
There are other types of worksheets that are available to use as you work on building your self-esteem. You can search online for ones that you can print and use. Or, if you’re working with a therapist, they may have worksheets they can provide you with.
If you struggle with low self-esteem, you may also struggle with negative self-talk. This is when you criticize yourself, even if it’s just in your thoughts. A Compliments Journal can help you begin to change the things that you think about yourself.
Every morning when you wake up, take a notebook or journal and write down three things that you like about yourself or that are positive about yourself. It could be something about the way you look or a skill that you have or something you accomplished. They have to be positive things.
Then, once you have three written down, stand in front of a mirror, and say them out loud to yourself. This may feel strange at first, but the more you do it, the better it will start to feel.
Create A Self-Esteem Collage
If you’re more of a visual person, it can help to have something to look at that for self-esteem building. Find a poster board or a bulletin board and start gathering pictures that represent who you are. It could be things that you enjoy, things that you’ve done or accomplished, and things that you aspire to do. Make sure that you’re only thinking from your perspective. Don’t include what you think other people’s expectations of you are. This is all about you.
Arrange these images on your self-esteem collage in a way that you like and put it on a wall where you can see it daily.
More Tips To Help Boost Your Self-Esteem
Aside from the above self-esteem building activities, the following tips can help you as well.
Develop A New Skill
If you struggle with having confidence in your abilities, taking the time to learn a new skill can go a long way in helping you feel better about yourself in that area. This can be a difficult thing to get started with because you may feel like you won’t be able to succeed at it. But taking the step of getting started is all you need to focus on at first.
Choose something that you’re interested in learning, whether it’s something that can help advance your career or something that you want to do for fun. As you begin to build and develop the new skill, it can help your confidence and self-esteem start to grow as you see what you are able to do and learn.
Watch Who You Spend Time With And Listen To
It can also help to pay attention to the people that you are spending the most amount of time with. If they are people who are constantly criticizing you or criticizing themselves, this can play into your self-esteem and how you feel about yourself.
It may help to limit the amount of time that you spend with negative people. Focus on building friendships with people that have a positive outlook. Their positivity can overflow onto you, and this may help you take a positive outlook on your life as well.
Look The Part
If you suffer from low self-esteem, you may not feel confident, going into some situations. This could include anything from a large board meeting at work to going into a new grocery store. However, if you take the time to look and act the part of confidence, it can help you to feel more confident over time.
Change Your Opinion Of Failure
In a society that gives out awards for everything, it can be hard to deal with failures in life. But you don’t have to look at your failures as a bad thing.
Even the most successful business people in life have failed at one time or another. But they don’t view themselves as a failure because they have failed at something. It’s simply something that they can learn from. And, many believe that failure is what leads to success.
If you struggle with feeling like you’re a failure because you failed at something, this change in perspective can make a big improvement in your life.
Spend some time thinking about the failures that are holding you back and look at what you can learn from those experiences. Then, move forward more positively with the lessons that you have learned.
Let Go Of Unrealistic Expectations
Sometimes low self-esteem can be caused by having unrealistic expectations. These could be expectations that you have of yourself or expectations that you think other people have for you. This can include parents, teachers, friends, and even a spouse.
Looking at the expectations that you have placed on yourself can help you to see areas that you need to make adjustments. Trying to achieve perfection can cause your self-esteem to suffer. It’s important to be able to set realistic expectations for your life so that you can move forward healthily.
Talk To A Therapist
Self-esteem plays a big role in your life. If you are struggling with how you feel about yourself, it doesn’t matter what other people tell you and how often they reassure you, you may still feel bad. This is why it can be very important to address low self-esteem issues instead of letting them linger.
If you’re struggling in this area, talking with a therapist can help. Therapy can help you to identify where your struggles lie but also learn important strategies that can help you move forward with more confidence.
You can find a therapist that you can meet with in-person in your local area. Or you can work with an online therapist like those at BetterHelp. The important thing is that you take the right steps and use these activities to build your self-esteem so you can feel good about yourself as you move forward in life.
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