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Get happy

Last Updated: 19 January 2019

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Get happy

Self-esteem is one of the core elements involved in our day to day happiness - yet despite this, many of us are suffering from low self-esteem without realising it. 

Spotting the signs of low self-esteem

It’s often those who appear more confident on the outside who are struggling with low self-esteem on the inside. While self-confidence can be described as ‘the belief you have in your abilities’, self-esteem can be defined as ‘a person’s overall evaluation of his or her self-worth’. The two don’t always go hand in hand.

 

Signs of low self-esteem include

  • Being indecisive

  • Being afraid to be your true self, hiding behind a false persona (often a loud, confident one)

  • Not being able to accept praise

  • Not being able to live in the present moment - focusing on past failures or future concerns

  • Giving up easily

  • Constantly comparing yourself to others

  • Setting low goals

  • Self-neglect and reluctance to put yourself first

  • Exaggerated concern about what others think about you and your behaviours

 

How to boost self-esteem

The good news is that there are a few small steps that you can take each day to boost your self-esteem:

  1. Write down all of the qualities that others say you excel in - keep this list somewhere where you’ll see it daily.

  2. Ditch the perfectionist thinking - lose the idea that if something isn’t 100% perfect it’s a failure. Sometimes ‘good enough’ is good enough.

  3. Ask yourself ‘would I say this to a friend?’ If not, then don’t say it to yourself!

  4. Stop negative self-talk. Try to catch yourself each time you have a negative thought and reframe it into a positive statement. For example ‘I can’t do it, it’s too hard’ can be turned into ‘this could be a really good challenge for me to overcome.’

  5. Stop comparing yourself to others - the grass rarely is greener.

  6. Take care of yourself - your health is your most important asset so look after it. Treat yourself to some time, relaxation, exercise, sleep and healthy foods.

  7. Spend more time doing things you love - whether it’s going to a favourite gallery, reading, going to the cinema or spending time with friends who make you feel good. Make these things a priority.

 

Future steps

Having low self-esteem isn’t a concept that should be taken light heartedly - it can often be a pre- cursor for serious illnesses such as depression, anxiety, eating disorders and other health concerns. If you’re worried about your own self-esteem or that of someone you know, it’s important to seek help as soon as possible. In the UK, Mind has helpful information on how to find support www.mind.org.uk or speak to your GP for advice on NHS services. 

 

 

Written by Ruth Tongue
(MSc Nutrition)

Categories:
Goals & motivation
Mental health
Stress
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