So you are single! Well one of the best things you can do for yourself is work on how you see yourself and your self-esteem. So often we fall into a bad relationship because we don’t think we can do better or don’t believe we are worthwhile.
So how can you improve your self-esteem? Here are some simple tips:
• Change the Way you Think
Replace your negative thoughts with positive ones. Become aware of what you say to yourself and start being positive! If you monitor your thoughts you would be surprised how negative and unkind you are to yourself. You seriously wouldn’t say some of the things you say to yourself to anyone– friend or foe! By changing your thoughts you can definitely increase your self-confidence.
• Kill Negative Thoughts
When you say things like – ‘I can’t do this, I always fail’ imagine a huge cancelled sign stamping the thought and cancelling it out. Then replace the negative one with a positive thought such as ‘I can do this, I will succeed.’ This sounds simple but it works. Recognise the way you talk to yourself and turn it around; this may take some practice but actually works.
• Know Yourself
When you start trying to change your negative self-image your number one obstacle is yourself! So get to know how you think – use a journal and record your thoughts. Look at how logical they are – often they are based on a distorted view of the world and yourself not fact! By getting to know yourself you can see how you limit yourself and that you don’t need to. By taking this step you will start to increase your self-esteem.
• Don’t take things personally
Examine how you react to things. We can all be guilty of taking things personally when it was not meant that way. A good way to test how you think is keep a journal of situations, how they make you feel and your reactions. For example you may have been ignored by an acquaintance while walking down the street – you feel rejected and that they don’t like you. But if you can look at this another way and think that the person didn’t see you and was busy. Taking the personal reaction of things definitely changes the way you feel.
• Don’t Compare yourself to others
Personally I love the song ‘Everyone is Free to Wear Sunscreen’ where he says ‘Do NOT read beauty magazines, they will only make you feel ugly.’ Spending too much time comparing ourselves with others will only make you feel inadequate and that things are not fair. But focus on the fact there will only ever be one you, you are unique and amazing – definitely one of a kind. This instantly will make you feel better. So remember be the best you can be and don’t compare yourself to anyone else!
• Look Your Best
This one sounds simple but it works. Have you ever noticed how you feel when you look your worst and go out in something you don’t feel good in? It is impossible to feel confident. But when you are wearing your favourite outfit and looking your best you feel so much better. Therefore, simply by looking your best you can instantly increase your confidence.
Stand tall – it is hard to feel confident when you are hunched over and looking at the floor. Look the world in the eye and also fake it til you make it (research suggests this works).
Did you know that if you smile, even it is not a genuine one, it tricks your self-conscious into feeling happier. So smile – you will instantly feel better.
Exercise decreases stress hormones and increase the body’s natural feel good hormones in as little as 30 minutes. So exercise instantly can make you feel better.
• Bite Size Pieces
Make bite sizes changes. Too often we start by trying to make huge changes and when we don’t achieve them we get discouraged and give up. Whereas if you start on something small and achieve it – it instantly makes you feel better and encourages you to keep going. The same principle applies to changing habits – making small changes helps you feel successful and eventually helps you tackle the big stuff. Trying to change too much too soon is a recipe for disaster but by taking on bite size pieces you increase your self-confidence and sense of achievement.
• Act Positive
This one is not just about positive thinking it is about acting on your positive thoughts. When you think positive and act on that thought you really start to change. Remember actions speak louder than thoughts!
• Do Something that Scares You!
Try a scary ride or go sky diving – anything to get you out of your comfort zone. By trying something big and scary it makes the daily scary things pale in insignificance making them easier to achieve and increasing your confidence!
• Get Better at What you Do
Challenge yourself, learn new skills, study and then practice them. Don’t get too hung up on what you want to do – study/learn, challenge yourself, and have fun. Be the best version of yourself you can be.
• Focus on Solutions
If you are continually looking at what can go wrong, looking at how bad things are or looking at the problem you need to change your focus. Look at the solution and not the problem. For example if you are saying ‘I am fat’ look at how you can change that by saying ‘I can do what I need to lose weight’. Then ask yourself how you can do that, etc.