Cognitive Tools for Self-Esteem: Boost Your Confidence Today
Self-esteem is one of the most important aspects of our mental health. When we feel good about ourselves, we are more likely to take on new challenges and be successful. However, many people struggle with low self-esteem. If this sounds like you, know there are many cognitive tools that you can use to boost your confidence, self-esteem and self-image to begin feeling like the wonderful person you truly are.
1. Recognize Your Achievements
It’s important to take stock of your accomplishments, no matter how small they may seem. When you focus on what you have achieved, it can help increase your self-esteem and give you a sense of pride. Write down your successes, big and small, and refer to them when you need a confidence boost.
Pro tip: never talk or think about your achievements like they don’t matter. They all contribute to who you are and how far you’ve come.
2. Challenge Your Negative Thoughts
We all have negative thoughts from time to time, but if you find that you’re constantly putting yourself down, it’s time to challenge those thoughts. When you catch yourself thinking something negative about yourself, stop and ask yourself if it’s really true. More often than not, you’ll find that the answer is no.
Pro tip: Write down your negative thoughts in a journal and then write out a more positive, realistic response to each one. Refer to this when you’re feeling down about yourself.
3. Focus on Your Strengths
It’s easy to focus on our weaknesses, but when we do this, it only makes us feel worse about ourselves. Instead, try to focus on your strengths. What are you good at? What do people usually compliment you on? Write these down and refer to them when you need a confidence boost.
Pro tip: Ask your friends and family to tell you what they think your strengths are. This can be a great way to get some outside perspective on the things you’re good at.
4. Be Kind to Yourself
We are often our own worst critics, but if you want to improve your self-esteem, it’s important to start being kinder to yourself. Talk to yourself the way you would talk to a friend. Would you say the things you’re saying to yourself to someone else? If not, it’s time to start changing the way you talk to yourself.
Pro tip: Write down all the negative things you say to yourself in a week. Would you say these to your little brother or sister? If not, it’s time for a change.
5. Practice Self-Compassion
Self-compassion is all about being understanding and kind to yourself, even when you make mistakes. It’s recognizing that we are all human and that we all have flaws. When you make a mistake, instead of beating yourself up, try to be understanding and forgiving.
Pro tip: The next time you make a mistake, instead of berating yourself, try to think of something kind or positive that you can say to yourself. For example: “It’s okay, everyone makes mistakes. I’ll do better next time.”
6. Repeat Positive Mantras
When you’re feeling down about yourself, it can be helpful to repeat positive mantras or affirmations. These are short, positive statements that you can say to yourself to remind you of your worth. Some examples include:
I am worthy of love and respect
I am capable of achieving my goals
I am strong and resilient
I am worthy of happiness
Pro tip: Take a look at the kind of music you listen to. Music and lyrics within them become our mantras – especially when they get stuck in our head, or we sing along to them. Is your music full of love and positivity? Or does it bring you down?
7. Focus on Your Body Language
Your body language plays a big role in how you feel about yourself. If you walk around with your head down and your shoulders hunched, it’s going to be hard to feel confident. But if you stand up straight, make eye contact, and smile, you’ll start to feel more confident in yourself.
Pro tip: The next time you’re in a situation where you’re feeling down about yourself, take a moment to focus on your body language. Are you standing up straight? Making eye contact? Smiling? If not, try to adjust your posture and see how it makes you feel.
8. Address the Root Causes of Low Self-Esteem
It’s not unusual to struggle with confidence in life. But if your self-esteem is consistently low, it might be time to address the root causes. Often, low self-esteem is caused by things like trauma, anxiety, or depression. If you think this might be the case for you, it’s important to reach out for help.
At Mile High Psychiatry, we can help you address the root causes of your low self-esteem and start to feel better about yourself. We offer a variety of mental health services, including therapy, medication management, and more. Contact us today to learn more about how we can help you address your mental health concerns and hopefully improve your self-esteem going forward.