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I’ve been answering a lot of questions on various subjects based around low self esteem, anxiety, depression, and just general feelings of not feeling good enough. Before I go into 10 ways to change low self esteem I’d like to address how this happens.
Were we born with low level feelings towards ourselves? I think not. These thoughts are created from our surrounding’s when we are growing. This will be mum and dad, friend’s, media, anything and everything we absorb mentally. This is not just consciously this is on a subconscious level too. (no offence here to parents and friends you weren’t to know either).
The subconscious level is the driving seat, this is where all our functions are taking place on auto pilot. So, we have had conditioning from a young age some to our benefit and some maybe not. Only because we were taught not to speak with strangers as a child does not mean this will serve us in adult life. We don’t tend to revisit these thoughts again later in life. At this point we are running on auto pilot so our habits and behaviours are determined by previous programming.
Our mind is very much like a computer its input and output that’s the most basic way to explain our minds. So therefore, the term programming is used by me and many other experts because we are downloading information into our minds at all times. This information would be likened to a software package.
No parent would intentionally want to programme their child with harmful software. However, the basics of the human mind and how it works are not taught in our schooling. Further to this unless we choose a career that works with the mechanics of the mind and psychology we then have a limited understanding of how the mind works. This could be to our detriment.
Illustration graphic of a low self esteem cycle
This is a very basic model of how we process our thoughts, this then produces behaviour. When we carry out tasks based on our habitual way of thinking this then further reinforces things in our minds telling us whatever we think and feel is fact.
Note the part of the illustration that says input this is very important. In fact, it’s the most important factor in the cognition of the mind. As sad as it may seem we live in world full of negative stories that do not serve us or our lives. If we want to try our hand at something new how many people cheer for you? What if you were to tell your closest friends and family of your dreams would they laugh and mock? Or would they blindly support you?
With all this going on around us, is there any wonder the statistics for low self esteem is so high. We are our own worst enemies, our self-talk is so very poor who are we comparing ourselves too? Why do we think we are unable to do better?
Let’s have a look at how we can change these thoughts and maintain them so to reinvent our self esteem and reinvent ourselves.
# NO 1 Change your Facebook feeds
It is shown that on average a person will spend about 40 mins a day scrolling through their feeds. Mix things up a bit and start liking some positive information feeds. How about adding success quote feeds and general positive uplifting pages. Remember repetition is a vital part of the process, this is something we can repeat without even trying we just add some feeds!
# NO 2 Monitor your TV time
Just like your children have to so do the adults! Why are children monitored in what they are and aren’t allowed to watch? Generally, because they are too young to watch certain things and this would teach them and show them things that they retain in their minds. This could be negative or positive. These TV shows and movies generally are watched on repeat you are literally programming your mind.
Adults don’t stop taking TV in, even if it runs in the background it all gets picked up and retained. This directly effects your thoughts and behaviour, more so if you link strong feelings and associate this with certain scenes. This then further and more powerfully records information in us. How much of the soaps, TV drama, or movies do you watch which invigorate you and move you into positive motivation?
# NO 3 What do you read? If you don’t start
As with visual and imagery reading also effects our minds. For example, we study a particular area for our careers and education we then retain this information. Our minds are saturated with this input. What if you were not reading magazines and fiction? Instead you start reading self-development and confidence building books. One book will not be enough you must read repeatedly until you can bring these thoughts to your mind with having to try. This way of thinking will soon become second nature.
# NO 4 Who do you spend most of your time with?
Which person do you spend a lot of time with? Who are your friends? It has been known that we are an average of the 5 people we spend our time with. This could be in the form of many things. Your favourite author could be this person. Are they giving you sound advice and how do they treat you? Do they mock you often even if it’s in jest or do they raise your confidence?
# NO 5 Looking in the mirror
I appreciate someone with extreme forms of low self esteem will find this exercise challenging. With this in mind maybe leave this until last. Looking in the mirror and monitoring what you think of yourself and how you feel can be one of the most powerful things. It is real and tangible it’s not the version of you in your imagination. If you are unable to speak positively about yourself and in the highest regard whilst looking at yourself, try adding this to the sentence. “I am becoming . . ..” leaner, muscular, better looking, wealthy.
If you look in the mirror and lie, this evokes feelings of further low self esteem. Your mind rejects it straight away. However, if you are working on yourself through all these exercises then it is true that you are becoming that which you want to be. After a period of 4 – 6 weeks of all these behaviours you will indeed start seeing changes.
# NO 6 Grooming yourself lady’s & gents
Ever purchased a brand-new item of clothing and felt really good? Yes. We all buy clothing so that we look good that’s a given. How good do you feel after a haircut? Keeping up that particular style and look of yours. What about perfume and aftershave. This is not to say you must wear the best and branded clothing, it’s a personal thing, it’s about how you feel. If it makes you feel good, then it’s worth pursuing. Making sure its regular and kept up.
# NO 7 Keeping progress quiet
Through best practice myself I have learnt and seen that people are not your cheerleaders. You need to be your own and do it quietly. You will make this progress and its HUGE yes, it IS a big deal but you must not tell people unless you are absolute they will rejoice in your wins. This is imperative as it is a direct recording taken into your mind, with powerful feelings. If they don’t think it’s that great of a deal, then surely there’s nothing to be pleased about? WRONG. Do yourself a favour look in the mirror and have a one on one party with yourself.
# NO 8 Take a walk with music or without
This will not be an advocation for exercise nope. This is about brain chemicals, once we start walking about 20 minutes or so we start to release brain chemicals which help with making us feel better and happier. Add your favourite tune to the mix and I promise you will think your invincible. For those of you that may not want to face the world, start at home with the music then go for the walk. Its like punching low self esteem in the face.
# NO 9 Make a list
I complete one most days, feelings of amazingness do swamp my brain ?. Rather than just trying to recall what you have to do for the day make a list. Even if you’re at work make a list then cross each item off. This is the same as feeding your reward centre in your mind only not with a gift or chocolate. This is with a psychical act of doing, by doing a sense of completion and worth is achieved. This in turn will build confidence in yourself.
# NO 10 It’s obvious, isn’t it? STOP giving yourself a hard time!
I get you think you’re not the hottest guy or girl, I understand that you may not be keeping up with your friends. It may be hard to face your parents because they wish you had done better in life. Look at all the reasons you think you’re not good enough then ask yourself this “is everyone rich, good looking and happy” NO. Even if on the outside it may look like they are trust me that there will be an element in their lives they wish they never had. Id go as far as saying they may have some low self esteem too!
You must not go through life comparing yourself to others, you only compare to your former self. That’s it NO competition, with no competition shouldn’t the win be easier? Practice every day all the about and if this is done diligently I can promise results.
In the meantime, keep your head high your shoulders back, walk like you own the place (without arrogance please) and rock your world.
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Until next time
All my love Z xxx