Many people are gearing up for the holidays, and along with that comes thinking about what they want to do this coming year to improve the current state of their well-being. During the hustle and bustle of holidays, often comes the feeling of anxiety and being overwhelmed. Many times the root cause of this worry about family gatherings is how you measure up compared to others. While there is this idyllic image in our minds of what the holidays are supposed to look and be like, the fact of the matter is that they can be stressful for people with low self-esteem. So why not start out this coming year with some simple changes that you can make to boost your self-esteem. By the time the holidays roll around next year, you can find yourself feeling more confident and loving yourself more in general
1. Stop fearing failure -- embrace it. We are all going to fail at things, but the successful people are the ones who learn from their mistakes, and who always pick themselves up. What a great story to share, how you turned a failure into a great success.
2. Groom yourself and dress nicely each day. While this might seem obvious, or confusing why is can change our self-esteem, there is truth is that if we look good, we feel good. What we are really doing is helping to improve our self-image. Getting up each day and fixing ourselves up, makes us feel better about how we look. When we feel better about this foundation, we feel more capable of tackling the day.
3. Be positive, no matter what gets thrown at you. While this might feel impossible, if we learn to stay positive, and to remove negative thinking from our lives, the way we see ourselves can be dramatically changed. This is one of the harder tasks on the list, but probably the most powerful as well. If we practice and work at replacing negative thoughts with positive ones, we will develop a new way of thinking that makes us feel good about ourselves, as well as boosts our success.
4. Take the time to get to know yourself. This might sound strange, but there are many people who do not know who they are without a partner, without their job, or have not looked at the fact that they have changed a great deal over the years. This step is so important, and one we should all be doing. We want to figure who we are as an individual, ways we have grown and changed, and who we are working towards becoming. This helps us feel strong as an individual, and that we have a secure sense of self.
5. Act in a positive manner. This goes well with number three on this list. In order for us to be a positive person, we have to be sure that our behaviors and actions are positive. Our thoughts, emotions, and behaviors work off each other, so if we make a point of acting positive, we are going to feel positive. There is also the added benefit that you will feel better about yourself, and the things you are doing when you approach them in a positive manner. Going into situations with a positive attitude, and choosing to act in a positive manner, has the result of boosting self-esteem.
6. Be kind and giving to others. There is truth in the fact that we feel better when we do better. When we tell someone something nice, volunteer our time, or do a random act of kindness, we are indeed helping someone else. At the same time, we are helping ourselves, as we have the advantage of feeling good about what we have done, and ourselves. Being kind and giving becomes compelling, as we are in control of feeling good about our actions and ourselves any time we want.
7. Increase your capability in something, anything! Nothing makes us feel as great a sense of self-esteem as improving at something, or learning something completely new. Make a promise to yourself this year that you will take a continuing education course to expand your skill base, or that you will take a class in something new that you have always wanted to try. It could be pottery, painting, or a class in designing webpages. The one guarantee is that you will be better at whatever you took the course in, than if you did nothing at all. You may even find that you have a natural skill for it, and that is a huge boost to your self-esteem.
8. Set small and manageable goals for yourself. We are all guilty of feeling anxious and overwhelmed when we think of some big goal or project in its entirety. If we break our goals down into small and manageable tasks, they do not feel as daunting, and we feel as if we are achieving our goals all the time. Feeling like we are making progress, and that we are being effective, is an incredible self-esteem booster. A good way to break things down is to think of goals or projects like a ladder. Put the ultimate goal or project at the top. Make the small and manageable steps rungs on the ladder. You have the mental image of climbing the ladder towards your goal each time you complete a task.
9. Learn to be solution- vs. problem-focused. Instead of pointing out what is wrong in situations, think about how the problem can be solved. As you change this way of thinking, and as you learn to come up with solutions to your problems, you will start to feel better about yourself and your abilities to handle any problem that comes your way. Feeling you can solve anything that happens, makes you feel confident and capable.
10. Start each day with a clean slate at work. While it may be a little more work on the front end, once you get organizational systems in place, you will be able to get through tasks far faster than you could before. Make it a personal rule that you will answer every email and return every call before you leave for the day. This will give you a sense of accomplishment, as well as let you start and end the day with a clean slate. This will make you feel capable and confident at your job.
As you can see, these are simple changes that you can incorporate into your daily life. They take little effort or time. Once they have become habit and routine, you will see tremendous benefits to your self-esteem. The idea that such little changes can have such a positive and profound impact on how you think about and view yourself makes trying them seem well worth it.