Twelve Steps to Raise Your Self Esteem
Stop comparing yourself with other people. There will always be some people who have more than you and some who have less. If you play the comparison game, you’ll run into too many “opponents” you can’t defeat.
Stop putting yourself down. You can’t develop high self-esteem if you repeat negative phrases about yourself and your abilities. Whether speaking about your appearances, your career, your relationships, your financial situation, or any other aspects of your life, avoid self-deprecating comments.
Accept all compliments with “thank you.” Ever received a compliment and replied,” Oh, it was nothing.” When you reject a compliment, the message you give yourself is that you are not worthy of praise. Respond to all compliments with a simple Thank You.”
Use affirmations to enhance your self-esteem. On the back of a business card or small index card, write out a statement such as “I like and accept my self.” or “I am valuable, lovable person and deserve the best in life.” Carry the card with you. Repeat the statement several times during the day, especially at night before going to bed and after getting up in the morning. Whenever you say the affirmation, allow yourself to experience positive feelings about your statement.
Take advantage of workshops, books and cassette tape programs on self-esteem. Whatever material you allow to dominate mind will eventually take root and affect your behavior. If you watch negative television programs or read newspaper reports of murders and business rip off; you will grow cynical and pessimistic. Similarly, if you read books or listen to programs, that are positive in nature, you will take on these characteristics.
Associate with positive, supportive people. When you are surrounded by negative people who constantly put you and your ideas down, your self-esteem is lowered. On the other hand, when you are accepted and encouraged, you feel better about yourself in the best possible environment to raise your self-esteem.
Make a list of your past successes. This doesn’t necessarily have to consist of monumental accomplishments. It can include your “minor victories,” like learning to skate, graduating from high school, receiving an award or promotion, reaching a business goal, etc. Read this list often. While reviewing it, close your eyes and recreate the feelings of satisfaction and joy you experienced when you first attained each success.
Make a list of your positive qualities. Are you honest? Unselfish? Helpful? Creative? Be generous with yourself and write down at least 20 positive qualities. Again, it’s important to review this list often. Most people dwell on their inadequacies and then wonder why their life isn’t working out. Start focusing on your positive traits and you’ll stand a much better chance of achieving what you wish to achieve.
Start giving more. I’m not talking about money. Rather, I mean that you must begin to give more of yourself to those around your. When you do things for others, you are making a positive contribution and you begin to feel more valuable, which, in turn, lifts your spirits and raises your own self-esteem.
Get involved in work and activities you love. It’s hard to feel good about yourself if your days are spent in work you despise. Self-esteem flourishes when you are engaged in work and activities that you enjoy and make you feel valuable. Even if you can’t explore alternative career options at the present time, you can still devote leisure time to hobbies and activities, which you find stimulating and enjoyable.
Be true to yourself. Live your own life – not the life others have decided is best for you. You’ll never gain your own respect and feel good about yourself if you aren’t leading the life you want to lead. If you’re making decisions based on getting approval from friends and relatives, you aren’t being true to yourself and your self-esteem is lowered.
Take action! You won’t develop high self-esteem if you sit on the sidelines and back away from challenges. When you take action – regardless of the ensuing result – you feel better about yourself. When you fail to move forward because of fear and anxiety, you’ll be frustrated and unhappy – and you will undoubtedly deal a damaging blow to your self-esteem.
Closing the gap
SLOW and steady wins the race; only the women are picking up pace and men are slowing down! In a major blow to the male ego, a new Oxford University study on women sprinters has found that with the passage of time women will overtake men in the 100m sprint. The study has found that if women continue to close the gap at the present rate of improvement they would soon be outrunning men within 150 years. None of us will be here for the 2156 Olympics to see that happen, but when it does, the last male bastion will have fallen. The steady rise and rise of women in virtually all fields can be seen. From housewives to secretaries, to CEOs, presidents and prime ministers, their rise up the ladder of success has been steady. Slowly but surely they have been chipping away at the once male-run world and the exclusive old boys club is taking a severe beating as more and more women take on roles that were once their exclusive preserve. But back to the study.
How did they come about this conclusion that many a man will scoff at — former British Olympic sprinter Derek Redmond has already gone on record saying, I find it difficult to believe. The study compared the winning times for the Olympic 100m since 1900 and calculated that by 2156 a woman sprinter would breast the tape in the 100m run in 8.079 seconds putting her ahead of her male colleague by 0.1 fraction of a second (men are expected to manage a best result of 8.098). Mathematics is never wrong. And this study was a mathematical calculation based on women’s run timings over the years.
At the first women’s 100m event, staged in Amsterdam in 1928, the winning time was 12.2 seconds compared with the men’s 10.8 — a difference of 1.4 seconds. By 1952, the margin had decreased to 1.1 seconds, with the men breasting the tape at 10.4 seconds and the women at 11.5. In Olympics between 1988 and 2000, the difference was under one second. But in Athens this summer, the gap widened to 1.08 seconds. But, says the study, if overall trends continued, the gap would close up again to 0.84 seconds at the 2008 Beijing Olympics — just one year away!