Self Esteem – Why it’s Important and How to Improve Yours Easily in 10 Days

Self Esteem – Why it’s Important and How to Improve Yours Easily in 10 Days

A healthy level of self esteem is major factor in determining how you do, how you feel, how and even who you are.  It really is essential to keep your self esteem as high as possible and there are some really simple ways to do that.

How to improve your self esteemWhat is Self Esteem?

First of all, let’s look very briefly at what self esteem actually is.  I think the easiest way to explain it is to start by thinking about who your ideal you is.  You might do this by thinking about someone you really admire, someone you think is beautiful, someone who has achieved things that you would love to achieve, or someone you consider to be a good or clever person.  Or, you may prefer to do this in a more abstract way, by considering the qualities you would like to have, or the things you would like to accomplish.  Or, you may like to think about the things about yourself that you would change and in what way.  However you choose to do it is just fine, as long as you can get a clear idea or picture, of what the ideal you is like.

The next thing to do is to compare where you are right now, with the person you would like to become.  Where are the differences?  Are they physical or intellectual? Are they mainly things constrained by values and beliefs you hold or emotional issues?  Again, however you measure and compare them is just fine.  This isn’t a black and white issue, so whatever answer you give yourself, as long as it is honest, is the right one.

Now that you have two markers, the ideal you and the you as you currently see yourself, you can measure your self esteem.  It’s basically the gap between the two! It’s worth remembering that this is only how you see yourself, pick one of the things you dislike about yourself and ask your kids about it, for a different point of view!

Now, it doesn’t need me to point out, that if your image of you as you currently are is very poor, then the gap between that and your ideal you is going to be huge; and the bigger the gap, the lower your self esteem.

It’s a vicious circle.  If your self esteem is low, you will have all sorts of unhelpful beliefs about yourself and are less likely to move quickly towards your goal.  So, what can you do?

Think about your best friend.  They’re no more perfect than you are and yet you love them just the same.  Imagine them making a mistake or an error of judgement. Would you get angry with them? and if you did, would you hold it against them forever?

Would you remind them at every possible opportunity how stupid they are? Would you punish them by making them overeat, even though they want to lose weight? Or deny them things they enjoy, to teach them a lesson?  Chances are, if you did they wouldn’t be your best friend for long!  It sounds silly and yet this is exactly the kind of thing we do to ourselves all the time!  Trouble is, that unlike a friend who can distance themselves from you, you’re stuck with yourself!

What has this got to do with anything you ask?  Well, I’ll tell you, it’s very simple.

Your unconscious mind, the part of you that runs your body for you, stores all your memories, protects you, heals you and controls your emotions, is like a young child.  It’s listening in all the time to what goes on around you and inside you; and it takes everything very personally.  Every time you put yourself down, or beat yourself up, your unconscious mind is listening in and taking offence.

How to Improve Self Esteem – Fast!

So, here’s a challenge for you.  For the next 10 days:

  • Speak to yourself – and that means inside your head too – as though you were your best friend.  When things go wrong, learn how to get it right next time and move on.  You wouldn’t shout at a toddler for falling over would you?  Of course not.  So, don’t dwell on the mistake, focus on a successful outcome next time.
  • When you look at yourself, look for the positive things instead of noticing every little flaw, and if you see something that isn’t as good as it could be, think about it as you would say it to a friend.  Be kind to yourself.
  • Find things you like about yourself and notice them out loud (you can do it when you’re on your own so you won’t feel silly!)
  • Praise yourself when you do something well. If you really want to make this super effective, combine a verbal congratulation with a physical gesture, like patting yourself on the back or squeezing your thumb and first finger together.  This creates a neurological link between the great feelings you associate with praise and the physical thing you do – then when you feel less great, repeat the physical gesture and you’ll find the great feelings come back too!

It shouldn’t be too much of a stretch for anyone to fit these simple steps into their daily routine. I guarantee however, that if you do all of the above for 10 days, you will have installed a set of really beneficial habits in yourself and you will feel better.

Once you have mastered these easy steps, you can begin to add to them and really build your self esteem.  Then you can concentrate on your goals and the steps that you can take to move towards them and becoming that ideal you; developing your focus and recognising the opportunities that will occur with increasing frequency, as you attune your mind to be open and seek them.

Treat yourself as though you were your own best friend, because ultimately you are the only person you can count on 100% and the only one who will be with you 24 hours a day, every day of your life.  The only thing you have to lose is low self esteem.

PS …….. For more ideas on how to understand and improve self esteem, why not take a look at a copy of my book About Self Esteem and How to Be Confident. You can see more about it and take part in a fun quiz on my Facebook page.

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