Is Low Self-Esteem Holding You Back?
It can be really difficult to tell if low self-esteem is holding you back. That is because being aware of low confidence and low self-esteem is tricky.
People are usually only aware that “something is wrong.” Their goals, desires, and intentions may weakly resonate as memories from a long-ago time and a happier self. It’s as if the “fire” has gone out, and they are alone to reignite it…without the skills to do so.
Does any of this sound familiar to you? Does any of this feel familiar to you? Are you tired of low self-esteem holding you back?
Here’s how to fix it.
Everyone wants to feel good about herself and to have a high self-esteem. Those who do seem to have infectious confidence, and they always seem to have a path from their goals to their accomplishments.
Maintaining a normal to high self-esteem takes constant effort, and requires that you recognize what triggers your self-esteem ups and downs.
Self-esteem is inseparable from your values and integrity. Everyone has a set of values — deeply held beliefs that act as a rule book for guiding her in making decisions of right and wrong.
Your values are unique to you and will form your own moral compass that will keep you in line with what is important in your life by helping you to prioritize, focus and have clarity. Your values will also guide you in making decisions that will ultimately define your integrity.
What does all this have to do with repairing and breaking free from a low self-esteem?
Integrity is about how you live up to your values. The more important your values, the more they will affect your self-esteem. A loss of integrity is paralleled by a decrease in self-esteem.
Know your values, keep them front and center in your awareness, and recognize internal conflicts between them. Love both your family and your career? Be mindful of when your focus on one causes undue compromise of the other, and be willing to make adjustments to achieve and maintain balance.
Live your values, and accept delayed gratification as a testament to your strength, avowed purpose, and follow-through — all boost to a suffering self-esteem.
Remember that words have power, and choose yours to be self-empowering. Instead of speaking as a victim, speak as someone in control of her life. The difference between “I can’t because ____” and “I choose to ____” can be the difference between life controlling you and you controlling life.
Quiet those voices in your head that resist change — the ones that have you feeling fearful and anxious out of a belief that you are powerless to change your life.
Find things you enjoy…and do them! Take a class, take a hike, take a chance…anything! You just might reconnect with a wonderful part of yourself that once flourished when you had a higher self-esteem.
Quiet your inner critic. As important as this is, I know it is easier said than done. After all, it’s the negative messaging that is driving your low self-esteem, and stopping it can feel like stopping a runaway train.
Your goal, remember, is to come to an honest and compassionate appraisal of yourself — to put aside assumptions, harsh judgments, and generalized thinking, and to separate fact from fiction. “I made a mistake” is a far cry from “I am a mistake,” and recognizing that difference will allow you to own your choices, make changes where necessary, and, most importantly, be forgiving toward yourself and accepting of your humanity.
Listen to people who think you are the cat’s meow, and who support and encourage you. Just as you can change the channel on your TV, you have the option to change what and whom you listen to. Placing yourself in nurturing, positively stimulating circles of influence will do wonders for your self-esteem.
One of the biggest steps toward fixing a low self-esteem is learning to say “no.” This isn’t about saying “no” without discretion, it’s about having healthy boundaries for yourself and healthy limits for others. It’s not your job to be a people pleaser; it’s your job to live your values with integrity, self-respect, and compassion.
And one more thing that is always a boost to self-esteem: help someone else. Doing this isn’t about being a people pleaser, it’s about reaching out into your sphere of influence with all the amazing gifts you have temporarily lost sight of, and watching how beautifully they impact the world around you.
It’s tough to get a bigger boost than that.
If we can help you on your journey to build your self-esteem, reach out to us. We are here to serve you.