Seeing Yourself in a Positive Light: A Guide to Improving Your Self Esteem

We all want to feel better about ourselves, but sometimes we can be our own greatest critic. Our self-esteem can be the root cause of our internal struggles.

Self-esteem is our feelings and inward thoughts about ourselves. It sums up how we value ourselves, but it can also degrade our mental health. 

Everyone views and values themselves in different ways in their own lives, but seeing ourselves in a negative light will also take a toll on our mental state. 

Improving how you view yourself is an important step to improving your mental well-being. Here are a few tips that can help you feel more positive about yourself:

1. Stop denying your strengths

What strengths do you feel the most passionate about? Building up better self-esteem starts with identifying what you find positive about yourself. 

It might seem like a small thing to consider, but you develop a higher opinion of yourself as a result. Improved self-esteem starts with affirming the tiny, positive voice in your head. It then further develops as you discover strengths you didn’t know you have had.

2. Don’t be guilty about pushing away negative influences

It’s okay to want to distance or outright cast out negative influences that affect you. It can be friends who have been taking advantage of your kindness or people who give off a “toxic” vibe.

Many of us have been in the difficult situation of wanting to keep ourselves from the things (and people) that bring us down. Oftentimes, it can be challenging or feel outright impossible to do so. 

But consider this: Your own mental health suffers as you continue to be exposed to negative influences. With that said, you should think about what relationships in your life are affecting you the most and find out how you are going to subvert them.

3. Stand up for yourself. Don’t bargain and compromise. 

Many people’s self-esteem tends to waver when they find themselves in uncomfortable situations. 

This can often happen when they are either asked to take sides or do something they don’t feel okay doing. In cases like these, it’s important to know when to stand up for yourself and get your own say in the conversation. 

Being assertive is not just about putting your foot down. It’s also about self-preservation and self-respect.  Learning how to say no to others even if you hold them in high regard can increase belief in yourself. It will also reduce stress and help bring you peace of mind. 

4. It’s okay to feel down about yourself. But don’t overdo it.

Bringing ourselves down doesn’t always have to be negative. It can serve a humorous purpose.  Self-deprecation also lightens your mood and helps you feel okay about a minor mistake. But it’s best not to overdo it. 

It’s important to learn to not be so hard on yourself with your flaws. You might not be the best at something, but do you actually have to be? If you want to further improve your self-esteem, forgiving what holds you back is a step forward. 

5. Accept those negative parts of yourself.

The last step towards improving your self-esteem is to accept your weaknesses. No one expects you to be perfect, so you shouldn’t be pushing yourself to be either. Accepting and learning to work with your flaws is what can improve your self-esteem by a great amount. 

So, take time to do your best at what you do. Don’t be held back by what other people say about your flaws. After all, everyone is working towards becoming better. Focus on your own race and you will realize just how much potential you actually have. 

It’s also important to know you can’t change how you view yourself overnight. It takes daily practice and constant self-awareness.

There are, however, cases when low self-esteem is a result of certain conditions. If you or a loved one are prone to insomnia, anxiety and panic attacks, and mood swings, consider reaching out to a licensed therapist. 

MidCities Psychiatry in Grapevine, TX can help you on your journey to improving not just your self-esteem, but also your general outlook in life. Contact us today to learn more.

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