Sometimes, low self-esteem can get in the way of you pursuing your passion.
Today, I’d like to share with you 15 ways you can increase that self-esteem so you can keep surging ahead.
15 Powerful Ways You Can Increase Your Self-Esteem
1. Read old notes of support, appreciation, and praise
Whenever I’m feeling like I’m lower than a bottle in a gutter, I’ll review old notes of praise and encouragement from old teachers, guides, and mentors. I’ll read old notes of support from my blog readers, from mentees, and even from fellow bloggers. I’ll also read old notes of encouragement from family and friends.
Whenever you receive personal notes of appreciation, support, or praise, make sure to always keep them in safe place. Hold on to those notes for a rainy day when you feel crummy, or when things aren’t going so well for you.
In those moments when we feel like total failures, old notes of praise can really help boost our self-esteem right away—and get us back to churning out more work.
2. Surround yourself with your greatest advocates
Are you starting to get so down on yourself that it’s keeping you from working? Then why not surround yourself with your biggest advocates? Advocates are you greatest supporters. They believe in what you believe in and are big fans of your cause. Your advocates will remind you why you are so vital to this world.
Let your advocates point out all your attributes, and remind you of all the times you succeeded.
3. Surround yourself with your greatest allies
Allies are colleagues who are not only your biggest supporters but are also people who know exactly what you’re going through. Allies can offer you a unique point of view that your advocates cannot give you. Allies can also give you something that’s just as important as praise: validation.
To be reminded that you are not the only one on this journey is such a huge relief.
4. Choose to think the following thoughts (directed at yourself): “I love you. I’m here with you. I’ll never leave you. I forgive you for not being perfect, and remember: you are always good enough for me”
5. Look in the mirror, point to yourself and say out loud: “I love you. I’m here with you. I’ll never leave you. I forgive you for not being perfect, and remember: you are always good enough for me”
6. Write this in your journal for the next few days: “I love you. I’m here with you. I’ll never leave you. I forgive you for not being perfect, and remember: you are always good enough for me”
7. Perform an act of love for yourself
Buy yourself flowers, send yourself a note, buy yourself some chocolates, take yourself out for dinner—perform an action that proves to you that you appreciate yourself for all the hard work you do for yourself.
8. Perform an act of support for yourself
What concrete action can you take today to prove to yourself that you are by your side? For instance: if everyone around you thinks that you’re making a wrong decision, but you know it’s the best possible decision for you, move forward on this decision.
Can you act in a way that proves to you that you support—you?
9. Perform an act of commitment to yourself
What action can you take today to prove to yourself that you are committed to your happiness? Maybe you can write up a pledge, a contract, or maybe you can seal it up in a prayer.
However you do it, make sure the action displays a clear commitment to you and everything that you stand for. This action should prove to you, without a shadow of a doubt, that you will never abandon your commitment to yourself.
10. Perform an act of forgiveness for yourself
Perform a concrete act that proves to you that you forgive yourself for not being the perfect, infallible human being you imagined yourself to be.
11. Sit in meditation for a while, examining the ways in which your “shortcomings” may actually be your strengths
What if your stubbornness isn’t a defect, but something that gives you a resilience that others lack? What if your emotional sensitivity isn’t a weakness, but something that makes you able to connect with people in a way that others cannot? What if your inability to conform to the “status quo” doesn’t make you a misfit–but an innovator, a trailblazer, a visionary who will soon introduce us to a new way of seeing and being in this world?
What if all your “shortcomings” are really your greatest strengths?
12. Give yourself permission, at least for today, to “live outside of the box”
Who would be if you could “live outside the box”? What would you think? What would you do? What would you say if you didn’t have to “copy” what everyone else was saying and doing?
What if you could live this life as you, and not as the person you think everyone else wants you to be?
13. Visit nature for a while
While there, turn to a nearby tree and ponder the following:
A tree never has low self-esteem. No, a tree is perfectly content just being itself. So, how can I be more like a tree? How can I be more like me?
14. Engage in an act of “no holds barred” creativity—just for you.
Make a promise to yourself that one will ever read what you’re about to write down.
Then take out a pen and paper and write your heart out.
15. Engage in an act of courage—just for you.
A few months ago, I shared with you that I was feeling as if I was shedding an old, dead skin. I felt as if I was becoming a brand new version of me. This was all happening to me because, during the summer, I engaged in an act of courage on my behalf.
I have chosen to keep this act of courage private, but what I can tell you here is that that that act of courage was one of the hardest things I have ever had to do in my life. After I engaged in this act of courage, I was transformed. I felt as if my self-esteem automatically increased ten-fold. In fact, it was such a bold move that, for some time afterward, I didn’t even recognize myself.
I share this story with you because I know, first hand, that performing an act of courage for yourself is one of the most powerful ways you can enhance your self-esteem automatically. If you can prove to yourself that you are willing to stand up for yourself, despite what the voices of fear say, you will vanquish the lack of esteem you have for yourself.
I now know from personal experience that a great act of courage (on your behalf) will free you, transform you, and enhance your self-esteem in more ways than you can ever imagine.
How do you increase your self-esteem when you’re feeling down in the dumps? Please share your wisdom with us in the comments below!
>>> This is a tough time for some of my East Coast readers dealing with the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy, so I just want to take some time out today to let you all know that my prayers and thoughts are with you. Let us all join together today to give them our blessings and offer them our help in any way we can.