Self Image and Self Esteem: Key to Better Living
Self-image refers to how you see yourself. Self-image is really important because it directly affects your self-esteem and confidence. It is your own opinion of yourself and what you think look like physically.
Self-esteem is closely related to self-image but it is essentially how you feel about yourself and which in turn affects how other people see you. However, the image you have of yourself might be different from how the world sees you. Some people might seem to have it all outwardly (success, good looks) but might have a bad image of themselves. On the other hand, others might have a difficult life and suffered various hardship but yet have a positive self-image.
Improve your Self Image
Just like every other skill, improving your self-image takes a period of time and ample practice. Improving your good self-esteem entails promoting positive yet realistic thoughts towards yourself and those around you and realizing your worth while acting responsibly towards other people. Self-esteem is self-respect and not self-absorption.
Self-esteem is built by working on yourself beginning from the inside out, changing your thoughts before altering the conditions around you. The aim of this approach is to help yourself gain a positive self-concept, accept yourself and remove mental barriers that prevent you from performing optimally.
While there are numerous ways one can alter their negative thinking and self-condemnation to more rational and positive thoughts, attempting all of them might be devastating. A realistic approach is to focus on a small number at a time and remind yourself of these positive thoughts regular to improve your self-confidence.
Positive Thought Strategies
- Shun exaggerating
Challenge the voice in your head when your internal voice exaggerates negatively. Make attempts to stop thinking in worst terms, for example, I will never get that promotion; you should avoid this type of thinking.
- Stop Negative Thoughts
Always put a stop to negative thoughts as soon as they come, it is that simple. When next you are giving yourself an internal beating, you have to ask yourself to stop, just the same way you would tell someone else to stop if you saw them hauling insults at someone else.
- Emphasize on the positives
Rather than focus on your negative side, accentuate on your strengths and assets. You might have felt anxious and insecure when giving a work presentation but it is possible your superiors and colleagues applauded you for your attempt.
- Accept you are Human
We have to learn to accept our mistakes, try to address them and move on. Maybe you weren’t nervous during the presentation at work, it happens, speak with your superior about what had gone wrong, address the error and move on.
- Accept your Imperfections
People aim for perfection, while it is good; you need not start from there or end there. Rather endeavor to do your best, which is what you can realistically do. Your focus should be on what you have learned in the process or what could have been done in a different way. Forgive yourself whenever you make mistakes and laugh rather than criticize yourself.
Using a few of these strategies habitually can help greatly increase your self-image and esteem. These internal changes when made will increase your self-confidence and willingness and ability to improve your life.