Improving your self esteem is an important aspect of personal development, since if your own value of yourself is low then you are going to project that self effacement to others. That will do little for your personal advancement and you are likely to spend your life in the background. Leaders have a high degree of self esteem, and that is a quality that can be improved using techniques such as cognitive behavioral therapy or by the simple advice given below.
A fundamental fact of personal development is that everybody is born with the same self esteem. We believe ourselves to be the center of the universe – any baby that knows a single cry brings them all they want can tell you that! How it develops after that is up to us, our teaching and our environment. Some develop a strong feeling of self-worth while others become self effacing and shrinking violets.
However, even if you have a bad opinion of yourself, you can still improve your belief in your abilities by focusing on personal development and your self esteem. There are many factors that can affect this aspect of your personality, such as never being praised at home, physical and sexual abuse, bullying and any of a number of physical or psychological reasons. If you do nothing and just disappear into the background, you will never attain your full potential.
Here are some things that you can do to improve your self esteem: they are simple initial steps to personal development and the beginning of your future.
1. Note Your Positives
Write down all the things you are good at. Note any achievements, no matter how small, and any aspects of your character that you feel proud of, such as honesty, compassion, fidelity or loyalty. Any one of these could put you above several famous politicians in integrity. An important aspect in the personal development of any individual is understanding their own virtues, and appreciating the fact these are positive aspects of their own personality. Be aware of your abilities and skills, take a positive attitude to your attributes and you are on the road towards developing a high level of self esteem.
2. Believe in What You are Doing
Not the capital ‘Y’ in You’ above. That is You, and self-belief can keep you there. If you believe that what you are doing each minute of your life is the right thing, then your self-belief should not be in question. Personal development is about developing yourself, improving your worth to yourself and hence being positive in all you do because you know it is right. Ignore others that laugh because you help those less fortunate than yourself. Pity those that smirk when you show compassion to others.
3. Take Responsibility for Yourself
On a less philosophical note, stop blaming others for your actions: only you are responsible for what you do. Don’t always seek approval from others – it doesn’t matter what they think, it’s what you think that matters, and if you do something of which you are later ashamed simply to receive approbation, don’t blame those that stimulated you but blame yourself. Learn to say NO and your self esteem will improve.
4. Learn from Others
Try to mix with those with a positive outlook and feel good about themselves. Others can help with your personal development without knowing they are doing so. Such people have no need to bully or dominate you to feel good, and their positive outlook can rub off on you. It’s amazing how infectious self belief and high self esteem can be! You will find it difficult to feel negative when those around you are positive, and you will also find your self esteem increase when you are away from the influences of those that have been putting you down.
5. Work Hard and Know Yourself
Work hard and do the best you can do in your job, studies or in trying to attain a specific objective. Failure will not result in self debasement because you know you have done your best. Sure, you will likely feel bad at failing, but everybody does. Know your weaknesses and your strengths and use the latter to work on the former. Personal development involves understanding your personal capabilities but also those aspects of life at which you are less capable. Not everybody can be a college professor, but everyone can have a high degree of self esteem and feel good about themselves if they accept themselves for what they are.
Self esteem has little to do with what other people think about you. It is what you think about yourself, and an important part of your personal development is developing a high self esteem by knowing who you are and having a good opinion of yourself. If you think you need some improvement, then take the steps needed to achieve that. Then you can look in a mirror and feel content.
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