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10 Ways To Boost Your Self-Esteem in 2021

woman in a positive mood

Now, more than ever before we might feel less confident in ourselves, struggle with anxiety or depression. It’s easy to fall in the trap of self-criticism when we’re feeling down and the constant news about negative events such as Covid deaths, new variants, lookdown restrictions, etc. happening around the world is not helping. We might feel the society’s urge to be and look perfect all the time and we often compare ourselves to others, especially on social media. It’s a good idea to take a step back and try to understand why you are feeling that way and what can you do to lift your spirits and boost your self-esteem. February is the international “boost your self-esteem” month and in this article, we’re offering you 10 ways to boost your self-confidence.

What are Positive Affirmations?

“Affirmations are positive statements that can help you to challenge and overcome self-sabotaging and negative thoughts.”(Mind Tools) We’ve all heard about the power of positive affirmations, however sometimes it may feel that a strong affirmation like “I will succeed in everything I do!” seems unrealistic. That’s true especially when we’re feeling down, and we tend to be more self-critical. Instead, we recommend starting with some simpler and more believable statements such as “I can overcome this challenge!” or “I have what it takes to complete this task!”. If you’re looking for inspiration, try some motivational videos on YouTube or an app on your phone, like “I am – Positive Affirmations”.

How can Gratitude boost your self-esteem?

You might ask, what does gratitude have to do with your self-esteem? A lot, actually. Practicing gratitude means appreciating your qualities, abilities and attributes. It also makes you value more everything great about you! It lets you appreciate your contributions every day, no matter how small they might seem. Studies have also shown that gratitude naturally boosts self-esteem as it decreases envy. Instead of feeling down because of the success of others – could be money, friends, looks, etc. – be thankful for what you have and simply be happy for them. Try the app called “Gratitude” on your phone – it’s a daily gratitude journal and it will definitely teach you how to love and care for yourself.

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Why should you Be Kind to Yourself?

Unfortunately, when we feel down, and our self-esteem is low we tend to be even more self-critical than usual. We don’t see the light at the end of the tunnel, and we might even think we’ll stay this way forever. You can’t be further than the truth! You have the power to turn things around. Substitute the self-criticism with self-compassion. Here’s al little tip – try to look at the situation as if you were your friend. What advice would you give them? Sometimes looking at the picture from distance can help you overcome a difficult situation.

Another thing to avoid when trying to boost your self-esteem is to stop comparing yourself to others, you’re following your own path at your own pace and there’s nothing wrong with that. Remember, no one is perfect and it’s within our human nature to make mistakes! Focus on the lessons learned instead and think what you can do not to repeat it.

How does Sport affect my mood?

We can’t stress this enough, but one of the fastest ways to boost your self-esteem and lift yourself up is simply to get moving. Human bodies are not meant to be spending too much time staying inactive. This is valid especially now, when we spend most of our days at home, either working or watching too much Netflix. Simple things as going for a walk in the park can do miracles for your mind and body! Exercising and staying active releases the so-called mood-elevator hormones endorphins, which help you boost your self-esteem too. There’re plenty of free at home workout videos on YouTube and on the App/Play Store to choose from. Start with easy exercise routines such as the 7-Minute Workouts, try yoga and meditation or even get outside and start jogging. No matter what you choose to do, just get moving! Looking for more tips? Read our blog post about Everything You Need To Stay Fit & Healthy In 2021.

What does it mean to Celebrate All Victories?

When feeling down, celebrating even the small stuff like getting out of bed in the morning or making breakfast, is essential to build confidence and start feeling better about yourself. Try making a list of three things you did good at the end of a tough day and give yourself some credit. Did an amazing thing at work? Write it down! Cooked a complicated dish for the first time? Write it down! Helped a neighbour? Write it down! Then, treat yourself to a nice hot bath or lose yourself in a new book. It’s all about the small wins!

Why is “Me Time” important?

Find time to do the things that make you happy every day. Set at least one hour each day, which will be your “me time” and spend it doing the things that you enjoy the most. It could be reading a book, playing a game, doing a puzzle, talking to friends and family, photography, a new DIY project – the list of possibilities is endless. Research suggest if you spend some time doing activities you enjoy; it will help you think positively and ultimately boost your self-esteem.

How is Creativity related to self-esteem?

Self-esteem and self-expression, such as creativity, go hand in hand with self-acceptance and self-love. Let your mind and soul wander and create something with your bare hands. It could be a painting (try paint by numbers if you’re a beginner), a photo-wall project for your bedroom, sewing, creating a mini-garden, decorating your living room, playing a guitar and many more. Let your imagination go wild! Studies have also shown that creativity is key to effective problem-solving and in fact could help you overcome tough situations quickly and efficiently.

Does Eating Healthy make you feel better?

Having a healthy diet is good not only for your general condition, but also for boosting your self-esteem. You’ve probably noticed that when you’re feeling down you tend to crave more junk food like burgers, pizza, fried chicken, ice-cream, etc. However, you should try to resist that urge! Researchers have found a connection between eating meals rich in vitamins, minerals and good fats, and boosting your mood. Make sure to include in your diet food rich in vitamins B and D, omega-3 fatty acids and carbohydrates such as whole grains, fish, eggs, yoghurt, spinach, broccoli, nuts and more. Try to limit the intake of sugar, caffeine and alcohol which can affect negatively your efforts to boost your confidence.

How can I Learn Something New?

It’s never too late to learn something new! Always wanted to learn how to play a guitar? Now’s the perfect time to do so! Dreamed about taking professional photos? Sign up for an online photography course! Want to know more about the universe and the Big Bang? Watch a documentary or read a specialised book! There’re plenty of free online sources to learn from. If you’re looking for inspirational and motivational content try the popular TED Talks – videos from expert speakers on education, business, science, tech and creativity. Some popular apps for your phone to spark your curiosity are “Uptime” and “Curio”. It will help you broaden your horizon and boost your mood.

Why should I Challenge Myself?

When was the last time you challenged yourself or did something outside of your comfort zone? It can actually help you grown as an individual and boost your self-esteem. You don’t need to climb Mount Everest or swim the Atlantic Ocean to do so. Start with small stuff, which will help you build resilience and strength of character. It will help you discover you’re capable of things you never thought possible. Your next challenge could be to wake up at 5am every day for a week, learn a new language, have a technology detox day, save some cash every week, write in a journal every day, quit smoking or drinking for a month, etc. If you want to get rid of a bad habit, such as alcohol, have a look at our post  Dry January – Tips for Kicking the Booze for some practical and useful tips. You can do this!

Recommended shopping:

  • Waterstones – find the trendiest books in UK or discover a new passion.
  • Boots – shop UK’s favourite beauty destination and treat yourself to a relaxing spa at home day.
  • The Body Shop – immerse yourself in natural aromas and spoil your body at home!
  • Sports Direct – get moving and find the latest deals on UK’s top sports brands in one place.
  • Mindful Chef – change your diet and give a healthy boost to your mind and body.

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