advertisement

Building Self Esteem

When self-esteem is low, we often think we need to work harder and get more done to be a valued person, but the truth is, your self-esteem will grow when you find the beauty of doing less, not more. When I learned this lesson, nobody suffered from me doing less and my self-esteem blossomed because I was more likely to successfully fulfill my commitments.
It's important to learn to move on after failure because we aren't going to succeed at everything, and failure can damage our self-esteem. Yet building self-esteem can require us to stretch beyond our limits, even though, sometimes, our efforts may not bring us the results we hope for. When our self-esteem is poor, it's hard to keep ourselves motivated and positive. How do we continue to move forward after failing?
Boundary-setting is an important skill set to practice when you are on a journey to build stronger self-esteem. Like any other new activity that seems challenging in the beginning, your mastery will improve every time you try it.
The journey to stronger self-esteem is easier when you make time to set yourself up for success. Even when we face tasks that we are unable to do, we can improve our success rate by thinking ahead about why we failed and what we can change this time to help us win. With proper setup, we can change the outcome and bolster our self-esteem.
Sometimes building stronger self-esteem is about letting go of things that have been with us for much of our life. In addition to adding new skills to our tool kit, it's important to look carefully at the people, things, and attitudes that we carry with us from the past and decide if they are still relevant to who we are today and who we want to be in the future.
This Yom Kippur, the Day of Atonement, I am focusing on my self-esteem. On this holiest day for the Jewish people, we ask for absolution from wrongs we have done against others, but it is granted only if we first ask those people for forgiveness. Only then can we be forgiven on a higher level. Today I will ask myself for forgiveness for the ways I have wronged myself by allowing poor self-esteem to color my days.
Having a well-crafted set of life goals helps me on my journey to build self-esteem, but it's the baby steps that lead to those goals that make me feel successful. Completing a life goal's final steps may be years away, and focusing on that can be detrimental to healthy self-esteem. Changing my focus to the baby steps I take improved my self-esteem.
Your journey to stronger self-esteem can take as little as 10 minutes each day. If you feel you have poor self-esteem but don't know what to do about it, try this simple exercise that takes five minutes in the morning and five before bed. Simply by committing to this small amount of time on yourself, you are building healthier self-esteem.
When self-esteem is poor, the risk of suicide is higher, and as a senior citizen living alone, I recognize that I am particularly at risk right now. The COVID-19 pandemic is causing older people and those with health issues to isolate, including me. Isolation can increase depression, which when untreated, can lead to thoughts of suicide. (Note: This post contains a trigger warning.)
I started doing monthly check-ins a couple of years ago when I first recognized that I had a self-esteem issue. Poor self-esteem often keeps us stuck in the past with regrets or pinned to the future with hopes and dreams. My monthly check-ins keep me grounded in the present and give me a realistic view of my accomplishments and productivity level, which keeps my self-esteem healthy. Before I started doing monthly check-ins, I lived with a never-ending to-do list which made me feel like a failure and less than enough.