Our topic today on how to fight low self-esteem was one dear to me because i have seen this internally destructive force distract individuals on their path to success. Especially in times like this when many people doubt their abilities as providers, help-meets etc, we need to have this discussions.
“I may not be able to talk to everyone but at least my post can reach more people”.
Do things get to you easily? Is your sense of who you are always wounded by what others think about you? These are signs of a low self-esteem. On this article i included ways to identify and then fight low-esteem. Did you know little things such as pretending to be engrossed with your phone at social events with a smile on your face making it look like it’s a party in there are tell-tale signs of low self-esteem? This is something i constantly help my clients walk through because it has the capacity of destroying everything else.
This affects everyone and dips your confidence in the process. I remember a speaking function i was invited to few days to my birthday in June 2013 at a prestigious annual event in South Africa. I messed up so badly that the next year the organizers wanted me to come back again and boy, did i disappoint their expectations. Understanding that your confidence is in jeopardy does not mean you can’t fix the root esteem issues causing it.
What is Low Self-Esteem
This is simply a poor perception of one’s self. That feeling which make you feel incompetent or unlovable. Taking this further, it is important to note that people who suffer from low self-esteem are usually overtly alert and overtly vigilant to signs of rejection and disrespect even when there is none. This often opens them up to making mistakes, judging poorly,setting themselves up for embarrassment. These activities usually poke their esteem negatively.
“I know that everybody’s esteem is at the mercy of other peoples thoughts, notions and opinions but i’ve seen many people destroy themselves from within. A harsh inner critic that is generated by them that collapses everything around them.
The Harsh Inner Critic
This harsh inner critic adds to your negative perception of yourself. This is a deadly activity with far-reaching consequences for many reasons. We know that we become what we think over time and this is the problem everyone who does not fight to reverse the effect of low self-esteem in their life will have to deal with.
Imagine a student who believes that his dean does not like him. The student is likely to avoid every interaction with the dean and would react defensively, in a cynical manner or even become explosive in attitude when they interact. How we relate to people is usually a function of how we think they perceive us. This perception can be right or in most scenarios WRONG.
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SIGNS OF LOW SELF-ESTEEM & HOW TO FIGHT THEM
In 2019, 12% of the clients i had the opportunity to assist trough a phase had low self-esteem at the core of their issues. I have researched and compiled signs that point towards low self-esteem. Low self-esteem make people go the extra mile to prove points that aren’t necessary. It can make a man become excessively macho or domineering to cover up this deficit and a woman too high-maintenance to belabor the fact that her worth is out of this world. To fight low self-esteem, we must be willing to peel off the layers we have wrapped ourselves in.
Here are a few signs and pointers to the esteem scourge.
A) Genuine compliments look like masked insults to you.
You can stop this by constantly reminding yourself that “You (put your name) are worth loving and possess lots of great qualities
B) Always comparing yourself to other people.
When you are always looking at other people you believe are more successful than you are, this affects your esteem and your lifes journey. Stop this by simply telling yourself always that “I (insert name) am more than enough to achieve anything”
C) You slouch and your posture looks a bit defeated.
This tells everyone around you that you are not ready to take on anything serious neither are you proud of yourself. This has to end today, learn to straighten out your posture and soon your mind will begin telling you that greatness is coming your way.
D) You ALWAYS check your phone when you’re alone in social situations.
I know many will argue with this one but it’s a sad truth. While a few people do this to actually check on their phones, many do it when there are little or no friends around to appear more socially connected and look like whatever events happening on their mobile world is far more exciting than the one in the present.
“You can gradually stop this by practicing an exercise i recommend for my clients.. In social settings look out for 2 things that can make you laugh every five minutes without touching your phone. This is ideal for two reasons. firstly, it takes away attention from your phone and secondly, a genuine laugh is attractive and warms you up while also making people around you comfortable”.
E) Giving up on things too soon.
Once your plan takes an unplanned detour or you experience one obstacle, you give up on your idea because you lack confidence in our ability to succeed. To change this, remind yourself that you are here to succeed not to avoid failure..
F)Excessive make-up and pruning is a MUST.
When you cannot leave home without a layer of make-up or excessive pruning, then there’s an underlying issue of acceptance. Tell yourself daily “I am beautiful in the morning, noon or at night”.
G) You always back down during disagreements with other people to let peace reign.
Yes it’s a good thing but also a terrible thing if you constantly become the opinion chameleon who negotiates their views rather than defend your opinion to the end. Avoiding confrontation all your life will not only affect your negotiation skills in life but erode your chances of ever getting to positions of key influence. This is a topic i will write on soon. To stop this , always tell yourself that your opinion matters regardless of the outcome.
H) You do NOT like to receive positive criticism.
When a friend tells you about a wardrobe error you keep making or a colleague informs you your performance on the office task wasn’t all that, your emotion kicks in. Everything is not about you. To stop this, always step outside of yourself for a bit and see if their suggestion could change you for the better and count backwards from 5 to 1 before responding.
I) You do not contribute in conversations for fear of being wrong.
Do you always think about what you want to say before you say it? When you finally get into the conversation, you begin talking yourself down or become incoherent. To stop this, i always advice clients to actually approach the situation from a truth perspective. Ask the people talking to enlighten you on the topic and watch this open up things. People love to teach and won’t let go of an opportunity to shine.
J) You find it difficult making the simplest decisions.
You just arrived at a decisions but changed your mind, then you go back to the first option only to ask someone to help you make up your mind. This is a character flaw that gives off the essence of a deficit in the control of your personal life and people quickly pick up on this cue.
“Many people who have abusive friendships and relationships where they are used financially, sexually or otherwise unknowingly trigger the access the moment the other party recognizes they can’t make decisions for themselves”
How to stop this is simple. Always remind yourself that “I (insert name) are in total control of my life as mandated by (God, Allah, Buddah etc.). Say it out loud and enjoy the process of making mistakes sometimes. You will not always choose the best food at the restaurant, you will not always get the question right but one thing you can always do is get an opportunity to do it again some other time because YOU ARE ALIVE.
As always, i hope this piece helped someone somewhere. Understanding how powerful your self-esteem is will help you make conscious efforts to positively train yourself. Knowledge they say is power but i say in it’s right application lies real mastery.
Written by Obike Temple
A Counselor, psychotherapist, brand-Sage and entrepreneur who has counseled over three-hundred couples, individuals, substance abuse and grief-stricken clients.
For more information on related issues and to schedule an appointment with “Temple’s Counsel” visit our counseling page, chat us up via our website or send a whatsapp message to +2348109055475.
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