Self-esteem is a complicated concept that influences all the spheres of one’s life and affects what individuals achieve, how they view problems, how they build relationships with others, and even how they structure the days. People with low self-esteem perform differently throughout their careers, and often, instead of striving for progress and growth, their primary concentration is on not making mistakes. It is crucial to have healthy self-esteem, which implies “a broadly positive sense of one’s worth, reflected in a balanced view of oneself” (Fennell, 2016, p. 3). Hence, possessing healthy self-esteem does not mean being overconfident, narcissistic, or self-centered, but rather objectively understanding your self-worth and not downplaying capabilities. This paper aims to describe and analyze the steps that lead to increased self-esteem and how one should implement them in life.
Numerous people struggle with low self-worth, which can prevent them from achieving their goals and dreams. The work toward healthy self-esteem and respect starts with analyzing personal strengths and integrating positive affirmations. It is possible to say that the beginning of a new day sets out the direction for how one will feel and perform. The first step is designing the affirmations in a way that will bring confidence and self-worth. Those statements should reflect the points, about which an individual is worrying most and which worsen the mood. It is critical to design those assertions from a positive perspective, and by continuous repetition, one’s brain will receive the signals and gradually start believing in them. Conducting an inner dialogue and repeating those affirmations can become a fundamental stage in a journey toward healthy self-esteem and real self-love. Hence, focusing on optimistic thoughts about oneself and dealing with self-critical thoughts is significant.
The next step can be giving oneself credit for previous achievements and what an individual is competent to attain, thus, planning for the future. After analyzing personal strengths, positive behaviors, and even minor accomplishments, one can design an action plan to become a person they want to be, a person with healthy self-esteem. One of the suggestions is to follow SMART criteria while creating this plan. It is critical to understand that setting extensive limitations throughout the steps might make one feel that they are not achieving real progress, which will only bring them down (Fennell, 2016). Consequently, establishing realistic and straightforward goals at the beginning of the process is a practical solution. Planning for the future and contemplating the progress can help one realize that they are moving toward their dream, which encourages them to keep up and believe in themselves.
Another vital phase is looking at how one lives their life and what rules turn out to be unreasonable or prevent a person from doing what makes them happy. The analysis of the elements that slow down or limit a person from having healthy self-esteem can disclose surprising factors. Evaluating those factors and eliminating them from one’s life can bring useful insights and open up new possibilities. This step also concerns unresolved issues or drama that had a substantial impact on self-perception. Healing one’s past and puzzling out the events that become the departure point of low self-esteem is necessary, which might require professional help from a counselor and extensive support of close people. Thus, figuring out negative factors and biases about one’s life and earlier unsettled situations can let an individual be free from prejudices and make room for positive feelings, relationships, achievements, and emotions.
The next step toward increased self-esteem is going out of the comfort zone, which implies mastering new skills, meeting people, and expanding the edges of one’s possibilities and desires. The paragraphs above mentioned the action plan, which can become the inception of one’s way out of the comfort zone. Clear goals might require something new and unusual for a person, making them feel like a fish out of water. Nevertheless, learning how to feel comfortable with discomfort, and being honest with oneself is essential. It does not mean that a person should radically change the beliefs and usual activities. It rather implies taking small steps, analyzing the progress, and identifying the final goal. This way, every tiny accomplishment will represent a small victory, which will positively contribute to self-worth. For instance, obtaining knowledge or grasping new skills can significantly add to personal competencies, which is also connected to self-esteem. Stepping out of the comfort zone is full of challenges, but the results will justify the means.
It is also crucial to remember that failures are not always losses. Instead, one should view breakdowns as elements of growth and self-development. Every fall teaches people something, and it is essential to learn the lessons. However, when something does not go the way it was planned, one should stand up, reflect on the experience, and move forward. Considering the obstacles on the road toward increasing self-esteem can be viewed as an additional incentive to continue the work. It is crucial not to be hard on oneself and understand that life is full of ups and downs, but it should not prevent one from going further. In conclusion, the issue of self-esteem is a crucial concept, and it is essential to perform the steps described above to reach a better feeling of self-worth. It will open new horizons and fill life with unique moments and experiences.
Fennell, M. (2016). Overcoming low self-esteem: A self-help guide using cognitive behavioral techniques. Hachette.