By Renee Mirabito
Having a high level of self-esteem is in essence holding yourself in good regard. A person with a good level of self-esteem thinks that they have a good amount of qualities and skills. It’s not about thinking you are perfect, but knowing that you have your good points and being able to forgive yourself for the flaws you do have.
When you have high self-esteem, you believe in yourself and you are willing to give things a shot. You’re not too worried about things not working out, because you know that’s just how it goes sometimes. At the end of the day, the rewards outweigh the risks.
Not everyone has high self-esteem. However, good self-esteem can be built up and maintained with a little bit of work. Here are some of the things you can try to feel good about yourself and your abilities.
Don’t Jump to Conclusions
When something doesn’t go as planned, resist the temptation to label yourself. For example, let’s say you had a job interview but the position was offered to someone else. Negative thinking is an easy trap to fall into here. You may call yourself a failure and think you will never get a job. In reality, missing out on one job is a small setback. There will be many other opportunities, and keep in mind that your application was regarded highly enough to get you an interview in the first place. Many of us give ourselves a hard time about our failings, and see right past our many successes.
Stop Blaming Yourself
People who don’t have high self-esteem often blame themselves for things that are out of their control, or exaggerate their own mistakes way out of proportion.
Using the example of the job interview again, it’s easy to blame yourself. You may think that you answered questions badly or made a bad impression. However, the chances are that there was simply someone with more experience for the role. Instead, remind yourself that you tried your best. Next time you will have a better idea of questions that might be asked.
When you are blaming yourself for something, it’s also important to question whether it is in your control. While plenty of people that you meet in life are probably going to think you are great, there are always going to be one or two that you don’t get on with. This is just part of life. Instead of getting angry at yourself, or thinking that people don’t like you, just accept that not everyone in the world can get on with everyone else.
Throw Away Your Yard Stick
Stop comparing yourself to other people. Constantly measuring yourself against other people is a recipe for disaster and also not a good way to measure success. Comparing jobs, salaries, relationships and family life against others is not a good idea. Everyone is an individual, with different skills and goals.
Instead of trying to measure up to others, make a list of things that you would like to achieve. Set yourself some personal goals and then make a plan for achieving them. Reaching them will be far more satisfying than thinking you have simply outdone someone else.
One of the best ways to increase your self-esteem is self acceptance. We all have strengths and weaknesses. Learning to see your own strengths and forgive yourself for the weaknesses is the first step in building your confidence and self-esteem.