Strength is a desirable quality – it’s defined as: The quality or state of being strong. When it comes to developing a healthy image of yourself and learning to love who and what you see in the mirror every single day, you need strength to hold onto that healthy image and that love for yourself.
Occasionally difficult circumstances in our lives will challenge that healthy image of ourselves. You’ve heard me mention before some of the unrealistic images that the media would have us believe describe us – as women most especially.
Other groups of people will have similar challenges with the “societal” view of themselves as defined by popular media – including people of other ethnicities, age groups, relationship preference and many other qualities. If you believe that anything outside the “norm” is undesirable, you’ll suffer from lower self-esteem.
Self-esteem is a critical part of human development, and it’s one of the most important things that can dictate the course your entire life will take is your own view of yourself. There is something about how we see ourselves that can be like a self-fulfilling prophecy.
For example, if you see yourself as undeserving of something good or positive in your life, there is only a small chance that you will end up attaining or achieving it. You can literally talk yourself OUT of success!
Furthermore, how you view yourself can affect your relationships with others, and you may find yourself continually dealing with unsatisfying relationships that are either abusive or lacking in some fundamental way.
Feelings of nervousness, anxiety and a pervasive sense of your own inadequacy are all negative effects that can come along with having low self-esteem.
Just as having low self-esteem can lend itself to all of the issues mentioned above, working to strengthen your self esteem will lead you toward the positive outcomes you desire.
How can you strengthen your self esteem to put unhappy feelings behind you and start living the life you were meant to live?
- Turn those negative beliefs upside down. Those negative beliefs that you’re not good enough have got to go!
Start by writing down clearly the things that you can do well and examples of things that you’ve been successful at in the past. You may not feel a difference right away, however, writing down these facts helps to challenge the assumptions that your negative beliefs are currently based upon.
Over time, you may notice that you’re feeling more confident and that your self esteem is slowly being strengthened.
- Put your needs first. This doesn’t mean that you have to be selfish. It’s more about not putting your own needs aside to make others happy before you can make yourself happy.
Ask yourself this: Why should everyone else be happy but you? That doesn’t seem very fair now does it?
There’s nothing wrong with wanting to make others happy. In fact, this is a very nice thing, yet doing this at the expense of your own happiness is a recipe for dissatisfaction and resentment in the long run.
When you practice making yourself and others happy, everyone around you will thank you for it, as you’ll be much more pleasant company when you’re happy too.
- Find friends who support your self esteem. Maybe the current group of people that you hang out with continually cuts you down and finds fault in what you do. Perhaps you in a better place and already have friends that are there to pick you up when you fall down.
If the people you surround yourself with are the positive, pick-you-up kind of people, then that’s great! If not, then why waste time hanging out with people that make you feel bad, when there are many people out there who will support you and make you feel better about yourself?
These are called true friends. And finding them is not always easy. Rather, allow that true friends may not occur in your life overnight, but that’s okay. Remember what you deserve and keep working to find people that see you in a positive light and who will keep encouraging you to get there.
By taking these steps, you’ll be going a long way towards strengthening your self-esteem and will be well on the road towards feeling happy and confident in yourself – and toward loving who and what you see in the mirror every single day.