Self Esteem and Self Confidence

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Building Self Esteem and Self Confidence

        Self-esteem refers to a person’s overall evaluation of his or her own worth. It encompasses beliefs such as “I am competent”, emotions such as triumph, despair, prideand shame. It can also apply to a particular dimension such as “I believe I am a goodwriter and I feel proud of myself or I believe I am a good person and I am proud of that.”Self-esteem can be equated to self worth, self regard, self respect, self love, and self-integrity. In the mid 1969, Morris Rosenberg, a social learning theorist defined self-esteem in terms of a stable sense of personal worth or worthiness. Self concept therefore,is a concept of personality and for it to grow, we need to have self worth, and this selfworth will be sought from embracing challenges that result in the showing of success.

        Self-esteem refers to a person’s overall evaluation of his or her own worth. It encompasses beliefs such as “I am competent”, emotions such as triumph, despair, prideand shame. Self esteem is your opinion of yourself. High self esteem is a good opinion of yourself and low self esteem is a bad opinion of yourself. Selfesteem is a positive or negative orientation toward oneself; an overall evaluation of one’s worth or value. … Selfesteem is only one component of the self-concept, which Rosenberg defines as “totality of the individual’s thoughts and feelings with reference to himself as an object.”

What is Low Self Esteem?

         Low self esteem comes from a poor self image. Your self image is based on how you see yourself. Do you think you are a good, reliable, hardworking, honest or friendly person? Do you like what you see when you look in the mirror or do you believe others look better and dress better than you?

          Low self esteem also depends on other factors like your job. For example, do you value the job you do? Does the job you have help you be happy with who you are?  Do the others in your office respect you?

         Low self esteem feeds your negative thinking and causes you to believe the critcism others make of you. Do you take what others say and not speak up? This can cause you to lose confidence so it is vital to end negative thoughts if you want to build your self esteem.

What is High Self Esteem?

      High self esteem is the opposite of the above! If you have a high level of self esteem you will be confident, happy, highly motivated and have the right attitude to succeed.

The Importance of Self Esteem

         Self esteem is crucial and is a cornerstone of a positive attitude towards living.

It is very important because it affects how you think, act and even how you relate to other people. It allows you to live life to your potential. Low self esteem means poor confidence and that also causes negative thoughts which means that you are likely to give up easily rather than face challenges. In addition, it has a direct bearing on your happiness and wellbeing.

Signs of Healthy Self-Esteem

You probably have a good sense of who you are if you exhibit the following signs: 

  • Confidence
  • Ability to say no
  • Positive outlook
  • Ability to see overall strengths and weaknesses and accept them
  • Negative experiences don’t impact overall perspective
  • Ability to express your needs

Signs of Low Self-Esteem

        You may need to work on how you perceive yourself if you exhibit any of these signs of poor self-esteem: 

  • Negative outlook
  • Lack of confidence
  • Inability to express your needs
  • Focus on your weaknesses
  • Feelings of shame, depression, or anxiety
  • Belief that others are better than you
  • Trouble accepting positive feedback
  • Fear of failure

      In a nutshell, self-esteem is your opinion of yourself and your abilities. It can be high, low or somewhere in-between. While everyone occasionally has doubts about themselves, low self-esteem can leave you feeling insecure and unmotivated. You might be able to identify a few things that are affecting your opinion of yourself (maybe you’re being bullied, or you might be feeling lonely), or it could be a mystery. Either way, there are heaps of things you can do to improve your self-esteem.

1.              Be nice to yourself

That little voice that tells you you’re killin’ it (or not) is way more powerful than you might think. Make an effort to be kind to yourself and, if you do slip up, try to challenge any negative thoughts. A good rule of thumb is to speak to yourself in the same way that you’d speak to your mates. This can be really hard at first, but practise makes perfect. If you want a few pointers, check out our tips for talking yourself up.

2.              You do you

Comparing yourself to other people is a sure-fire way to start feeling crummy. Try to focus on your own goals and achievements, rather than measuring them against someone else’s. Nobody needs that kind of pressure!

3.              Get movin’

Exercise is a great way to increase motivation, practise setting goals and build confidence. Breaking a sweat also cues the body to release endorphins, the feel-good hormones.

4.              Nobody’s perfect

Always strive to be the best version of yourself, but it’s also important to accept that perfection is an unrealistic goal.

5.              Remember that everyone makes mistakes

You’ve got to make mistakes in order to learn and grow, so try not to beat yourself up if you forget to hit CTRL+S on a super-important assignment. Everyone’s been there.

6.              Focus on what you can change

It’s easy to get hung up on all the things that are out of your control, but it won’t achieve much. Instead, try to focus your energy on identifying the things that are within your control and seeing what you can do about them.

7.              Do what makes you happy

If you spend time doing the things you enjoy, you’re more likely to think positively. Try to schedule in a little you-time every day. Whether that’s time spent reading, cooking or just conking out on the couch for a bit, if it makes you happy, make time for it.

8.              Celebrate the small stuff

You got up on time this morning. Tick. You poached your eggs to perfection. Winning. Celebrating the small victories is a great way to build confidence and start feeling better about yourself.

9.              Be a pal

Being helpful and considerate to other people will certainly boost their mood, but it’ll also make you feel pretty good about yourself

10.       Surround yourself with a supportive squad

Find people who make you feel good about yourself and avoid those who tend to trigger your negative thinking.

Building Self-Confidence:

“Low self-esteem is like driving through life with your hand brake on.” — Maxwell Maltz

     Nobody is born with limitless self-confidence. If someone seems to have incredible self-confidence, it’s because he or she has worked on building it for years. Self-confidence is something that you learn to build up because the challenging world of business, and life in general, can deflate it.

       As we teach at Skill Incubator, building a successful business requires a thick skin and unshakable confidence in your ability to overcome obstacles. Here are 10 things you can do to build up your self-confidence.

1. Visualize yourself as you want to be.

“What the mind can conceive and believe it can achieve.” — Napoleon Hill

Visualization is the technique of seeing an image of yourself that you are proud of, in your own mind. When we struggle with low self-confidence, we have a poor perception of ourselves that is often inaccurate. Practice visualizing a fantastic version of yourself, achieving your goals.

2. Affirm yourself.

“Affirmations are a powerful tool to deliberately install desired beliefs about yourself.” — Nikki Carnevale 

      We tend to behave in accordance with our own self-image. The trick to making lasting change is to change how you view yourself.

Affirmations are positive and uplifting statements that we say to ourselves. These are normally more effective if said out loud so that you can hear yourself say it. We tend to believe whatever we tell ourselves constantly. For example, if you hate your own physical appearance, practice saying something that you appreciate or like about yourself when you next look in the mirror.

       To get your brain to accept your positive statements more quickly, phrase your affirmations as questions such as, “Why am I so good at making deals?” instead of “I am so good at making deals.” Our brains are biologically wired to seek answers to questions, without analyzing whether the question is valid or not.

3. Do one thing that scares you every day.

If you are insecure, guess what? The rest of the world is too. Do not overestimate the competition and underestimate yourself. You are better than you think.” — T. Harv Eker

         The best way to overcome fear is to face it head-on. By doing something that scares you every day and gaining confidence from every experience, you will see your self-confidence soar. So get out of your comfort zone and face your fears!

4. Question your inner critic.

“You have been criticizing yourself for years, and it hasn’t worked. Try approving of yourself and see what happens.” — Louise L. Hay

      Some of the harshest comments that we get come from ourselves, via the “voice of the inner critic.” If you struggle with low self-confidence, there is a possibility that your inner critic has become overactive and inaccurate.

        Strategies such as cognitive behavioral therapy help you to question your inner critic, and look for evidence to support or deny the things that your inner critic is saying to you. For example, if you think that you are a failure, ask yourself, “What evidence is there to support the thought that I am a failure?” and “What evidence is there that doesn’t support the thought that I am a failure?”

         Find opportunities to congratulate, compliment and reward yourself, even for the smallest successes. As Mark Twain said, “[A] man cannot be comfortable without his own approval.”

5. Take the 100 days of rejection challenge.

“No one can make you feel inferior without your consent.” — Eleanor Roosevelt

     Jia Jiang has become famous for recording his experience of “busting fear” by purposefully making crazy requests of people in order to be rejected over 100 days. His purpose was to desensitize himself to rejection, after he became more upset than he expected over rejection from a potential investor. Busting fear isn’t easy to do, but if you want to have fun while building up your self-confidence, this is a powerful way to do it.

6. Set yourself up to win.

“To establish true self-confidence, we must concentrate on our successes and forget about the failures and the negatives in our lives.” — Denis Waitley

     Too many people are discouraged about their abilities because they set themselves goals that are too difficult to achieve. Start by setting yourself small goals that you can win easily.

      Once you have built a stream of successes that make you feel good about yourself, you can then move on to harder goals. Make sure that you also keep a list of all your achievements, both large and small, to remind yourself of the times that you have done well.

       Instead of focusing only on “to-do” lists, I like to spend time reflecting on “did-it” lists. Reflecting on the major milestones, projects and goals you’ve achieved is a great way to reinforce confidence in your skills.

7. Help someone else.

        Helping someone else often enables us to forget about ourselves and to feel grateful for what we have. It also feels good when you are able to make a difference for someone else.

Instead of focusing on your own weaknesses, volunteer to mentor, assist or teach another, and you’ll see your self-confidence grow automatically in the process.

8. Care for yourself.

Self-care is never a selfish act — it is simply good stewardship of the only gift I have, the gift I was put on earth to offer to others.” — Parker Palmer

      Self-confidence depends on a combination of good physical health, emotional health and social health. It is hard to feel good about yourself if you hate your physique or constantly have low energy.

     Make time to cultivate great exercise, eating and sleep habits. In addition, dress the way you want to feel. You have heard the saying that “clothes make the man.” Build your self-confidence by making the effort to look after your own needs.

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