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- Martha: Jose, do you love me?
- José: We have been seeing Marta for a few days, it is still too early to tell you anything. I have to know you more to love you.
- Martha, disappointed that she didn't get a yes for an answer, she lowers her eyes and frowns, thinks ... Do you need to know to love?
Indeed, this approach is what we have to do to ourselves when we think about our self-esteem, do we really know each other well? Or have we spent so much time in our lives seeing what we like from others, that we have not been able to To think that it is in us where the key is? Have we ever considered that perhaps our self-esteem is compromised in certain situations because we do not accept ourselves? We must ask ourselves: Don't we love each other or we do not know eachother?
Self-esteem, what does it depend on?
Self-esteem depends on the extent to which we feel valued, loved and accepted by others and to what extent we value ourselves, love and accept ourselves. We all have an inner voice that values, thinks and criticizes our ideas, opinions, emotions, our physical appearance and our qualities as a human being. A voice that tells us that there are things we are doing wrong, and that makes us proud when we do things right.
That inner voice is the key to healthy self-esteem, the way in which we talk and treat ourselves as well as the attitude we assume towards life, will benefit or harm us in this task.
A negative external criticism of someone we care about can detract from our self esteem considerably, but over time, hearing a negative internal voice can damage it even more than if it came from outside.
What can we do to improve our self-esteem?
Just as José cannot love Marta without knowing her, neither can we. Therefore, the first step to improve our self-perception is to work with self-knowledge. This occurs through what psychologists call the "integral self," which is made up of three dimensions.
Biological dimension of self-esteem
It's about your body, your physical essence. The questions we can ask ourselves are: What do I like to eat? How do I like to dress? What physical activity do I do to feel better and to strengthen my body? How attractive do I feel?
Psychological dimension of self-esteem
It covers everything you think, feel, rationalize and fantasize. The first thing we have to keep in mind is that we are NOT our thoughts. These can define our reality, however, we can choose them, because we are much more than them. The task of every human being is to analyze, evaluate and filter information with which we want to live. We can choose what thoughts are in our mind.
Social dimension: It is expressed through the roles we live with; Friend, son, Father, partner ... Here the task is that we be as authentic as possible by really showing ourselves as we are, and asking ourselves what we need. We cannot know ourselves if we do not know what we like, but above all, what we need.
Once these dimensions have been worked on, we will have greater self-knowledge about ourselves, and we will be ready to modify our thoughts, which are what prevent us from moving forward.
1. Turn the negative into positive
We must get used to observing the good characteristics we have. If you are used to focus attention on your flaws, start thinking about positive aspects that counteract them.
2. Do not generalize
Sometimes, and from the negative experiences we have in certain areas, we tend to generalize to all aspects of our lives. That boy has passed from me! , What have I done wrong ?, I will never get anyone, if I'm worthless... We must accept that we may have had failures; but this does not mean that all aspects of our life are "disastrous." Identify in what aspects you generalize and frustrate them!
3. Don't compare yourself
All the people are different; We all have positive and negative qualities. Although we look "worse" than others on some issues, we will surely be "better" on others; therefore, it makes no sense that we compare ourselves with others and that we qualify in one way or another when there are so many facets that are part of the human being. Remember that a person's skills are constantly developing, and that each one excels at different things.
4. Strive to improve
A good way to improve self-esteem is to try to improve ourselves in those aspects of ourselves with which we are not satisfied. For this it is useful that we identify what we would like to change about ourselves or what we would like to achieve, then we must set goals to achieve and strive to carry out those changes. Set realistic goals! Think about what you would like to achieve, design a plan to do so, and record your progress.
5. Try new things
Experiment with different activities that put you in touch with your skills. We live our lives "postponing", leaving dreams for tomorrow and worries for today, however we do not need much effort to do small things that lead us to change, everything depends on you. Start today!
We recommend our Self-Esteem Test