Believe in yourself
It’s common to suffer from low self-esteem at some point in your life, but you can do things to make it better. Help boost your wellbeing by trying these seven steps.
Self-esteem is how we see and feel about ourselves. Many people will have low self-esteem at some point in their lives.
It can be caused by a number of things - comparing yourself to your friends, problems with family or at school or your health. Sometimes it passes on its own or you can take steps to help yourself feel better.
If you tackle low self-esteem early can help prevent depression or anxiety developing. You can start to build your self-esteem today with these seven steps.
Step 1: Understand why you focus on negatives
- What negative things do you think about yourself?
- When did you start thinking these things?
- What happened to make you think this way?
Step 2: Challenge the negative feelings
Ask yourself, if there is there another way of looking at things? What advice would you give to a friend who was having similar negative feelings? Remind yourself about things have happened which prove these negative thoughts aren’t true. Include things that have happened that prove they aren’t true. Maybe the thing that caused those feelings has stopped.
Try writing down a list of these things to keep and bring out next time you feel low.
Step 3: Focus on the positive
Write down your best feature, the last time you received a compliment, the last time you did something for someone that made you feel good. These might seem like small things, but it is important to recognise all the good things about you, and the reasons why people appreciate you for being who you are.
Talking to your 'inner child' can help you recognise the good things about yourself. Watch the video below to understand how this works:
Step 4: Find the right people
How do the people around you make you feel?
Spend more time with the ones who make you feel good, and less with the ones who don't make you feel confident about yourself, or spend a lot of time criticizing others.
Step 5: Get Active
Think about doing something you enjoy – or trying something new. If you already have a hobby, do it more often. But remember, you don’t have to keep plugging away at a hobby you don’t enjoy, just because you think you have to.
Step 6: Set yourself some goals
Choose something you know you can already do and challenge yourself - but keep your goals realistic. Achievements can give you a positive feeling and remind you just how much you are capable of.
Step 7: Tell someone
If you’re really struggling with negative feelings about yourself, talk to someone you trust, like a family member, teacher or school nurse.
You can also talk to your GP who will be able to tell you what sort of support might be available to you in your area.
It’s not always easy talking to someone you know, or talking face to face. Below are some Helplines and Services you might find useful.
YoungMinds Crisis Messenger
- Provides free, 24/7 crisis support across the UK if you are experiencing a mental health crisis
- If you need urgent help text YM to 85258
- All texts are answered by trained volunteers, with support from experienced clinical supervisors
- Texts are free from EE, O2, Vodafone, 3, Virgin Mobile, BT Mobile, GiffGaff, Tesco Mobile and Telecom Plus.
- If you're under 19 you can confidentially call, email or chat online about any problem big or small
- Freephone 24h helpline: 0800 1111
- Sign up for a childline account on the website to be able to message a counsellor anytime without using your email address
- Chat 1:1 with an online advisor
- If you're under 25 you can talk to The Mix for free on the phone, by email or on their webchat. You can also use their phone counselling service, or get more information on support services you might need.
- Freephone: 0808 808 4994 (13:00-23:00 daily)