Low self-esteem is characterized by a lack of confidence and feeling badly about oneself.

People with low self-esteem often feel unlovable, awkward, or incompetent. Often, individuals lacking self-esteem see rejection and disapproval even when there isn’t any.

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4 daily tips to help you improve your self-esteem

Use positive affirmations correctly

For positive affirmations to work when your self-esteem is lagging, make them believable. For example, change “I’m going to be a great success!” to “I’m going to persevere until I succeed!”

Identify your competencies and develop them

If you pride yourself on being a good cook, throw more dinner parties. If you’re a good runner, sign up for races and train for them. In short, figure out your core competencies and find opportunities and careers that accentuate them.

Learn to accept compliments

One of the trickiest aspects of improving self-esteem is that when we feel bad about ourselves we tend to be more resistant to compliments. The best way to avoid the bad reaction to a compliment is to prepare simple set responses and train yourself to use them automatically whenever you receive a compliment; e.g., “Thank you” or “How kind of you to say”. In time, the impulse to rebuff compliments will fade, which will also be a nice indication your self-esteem is getting stronger.

Eliminate self-criticism

When your self-critical inner self kicks in, ask yourself what you would say to a friend if they were in your situation and direct those comments to yourself. Doing so will avoid damaging your self-esteem further with critical thoughts, and help build it up instead.