It’s very easy to lose sight of how important feeling good about ourselves can be. Especially when it comes to those days when we feel under a heavy layer of dark clouds and have completely forgotten the bright blue sky that is shining above them.

Self-esteem is something that needs to be nourished, every day, like a plant that needs water in order to keep blossoming and blooming. The people we surround ourselves with have an important role in increasing or decreasing our self-esteem, but ultimately it is down to us to make sure our self-esteem is in tip top shape.

Here are some useful tips to help you build your self-esteem:

  • Be kind to yourself – notice those inner critical voices and try avoiding negative self-talk. When a negative thought arises challenge it and find arguments that counterbalance it.

  • Connect – spend time with people who love you and that make you feel loved and appreciated.

  • Be assertive – it’s ok to say no. Establishing and maintaining healthy boundaries is key to healthy relationships and strong self-esteem.

  • Focus on the positives and practice gratitude by bringing to the forefront of your mind all the things that are positive in your life and you feel grateful for will make you feel fortunate and blessed.

  • Take care of yourself – find the things that make you feel relaxed, safe and happy and make time for them every day. Remember that as Audre Lorde said ‘self-care is not selfish, it’s self-preservation!’

  • Get support – if you notice that you are not coping well enough by yourself, don’t be afraid to seek help from your loved ones or a mental health professional.

  • Celebrate your achievements – make time to acknowledge your achievements, however small or big they may be. It doesn’t have to be something big and fancy, but make it meaningful to you. Such as buying flowers for yourself or treating yourself to a nice meal or massage.

  • Accept compliments – when people pay you a compliment don’t talk yourself down and shy away from their praise. Instead fully embrace the nice things that are being said about you and welcome the feeling of being valued.

  • Compliment yourself – there’s no better compliment than the ones we give ourselves. Remember to find nice things about you and acknowledge your own unique traits. Make this a regular commitment to yourself.

Ultimately there will be times when we feel strong and balanced and others when we feel low and vulnerable. Keeping these tips in mind can help us both maintain as well as re-establish a good sense of self-esteem.

If you feel in need of support InsideOut offers online therapy and coaching you can access wherever you are.


Author: Sarah Speziali, Chief Therapist at InsideOut