How we allow ourselves to sabotage our self-esteem and why this matters.
When we allow ourselves to hold negative beliefs, we sabotage self esteem and as these become entrenched, the adverse impact on our lives and happiness increases.
We Can Take Steps to Change this.
Often we find that we are ignoring the positives, those qualities and things about us that are good.
For some of us, it can be a real struggle if asked to list our positive qualities to think of any. And that sadly, is low self-esteem.
Sometimes its because we don’t feel we are comfortable or we think, or have learned to think, that it is conceited to think about ourselves positively.
Sometimes we have learned from criticism and from others that we are good at nothing, and we have no good thoughts about ourselves.
We expect to fail or for things to go wrong.
Part of this is we become conditioned, our brains only take notice of things that confirm a negative view of ourselves.
It has become our ‘normal’ way of thinking to ignore our good qualities.
It may come from making sweeping statements to ourselves – ‘I am always getting this wrong’ or telling ourselves what we ‘should’ have done.
Collectively these thoughts can make us anxious, depressed, guilty – all aspects of really low self- esteem.
An exercise to help you change this.
A Positive You Diary
Here are some steps you can take to start making a difference.
Create a positive qualities list.
Write down all the positive qualities you can think of.
It doesn’t mean they are things you do absolutely 100% of the time either – none of us are perfect, so be kind to yourself.
Be aware and try to keep focussed, not letting yourself say that you don’t have any good qualities.
These questions might help:
- What do I like about who I am?
- What skills or talents do I have?
- What are things I have achieved? (raised children, made a home)
- What do other people / friends say about me?
- If someone else was like me what would I think was good about them?
All that I seek is already within me.Louise Hay
You might want to ask a friend to help you with this – a good friend or relative would see our positive qualities and could help us.
Here is a list of a few qualities you might want to use to get started:
- considerate resourceful organised strong
- adventurous appreciative funny loving
- responsible reliable well-informed good listener
- creative artistic friendly good friend
Once you have done this, step 2 is :
Start a ‘Positive You’ Diary
Use this to note down examples of when you have demonstrated any of the good qualities you have listed in Step 1.
For example a time when you were considerate or a good friend to someone.
It doesn’t matter if the examples are small or big, it matters that you notice them and then record them. Try to start noticing these on a daily basis.
Write what you did, and which positive quality it shows in you.
This may need some time but it will make you aware and noticing those positive qualities, and help to rebalance a sense of self-esteem.
I believe in myself for who I am, as I am. I am enough.
We all have days when we feel bad about ourselves. For most of us that is normal.
When it affects our lives and causes us to think poorly and negatively of ourselves, it is time to take action.
Take action for yourself and let me know how you get on.