Having a positive self esteem is very important in one’s life and can help you achieve great success. This is particularly of importance to teenagers. As a healthy lifestyle blogger, and father of two daughters, I want to devote part of my blog to supporting the development and growth of teenagers. We will be featuring on an on going basis articles under the heading of ‘Tennager Lifestyle Guide’.
I’m fat. I’m too skinny. I want to be taller, shorter, have curly hair, straight hair, bigger breasts, smaller breasts, a smaller nose, bigger muscles, longer legs.
Are you used to putting yourself down? If so, you’re not alone. As a teenager, you’re going through so many traumatic changes in your body. And as your body changes, so does your image of yourself. Lots of people have trouble adjusting, and this can affect your self-esteem.
Most teenagers will at some time struggle with low self-esteem issues, it doesn’t matter how you look on the outside, your inner mind will find fault. Now talking about finding fault, I know that teenagers won’t keep reading if in my normal way I ramble on, so I’m going to try not to.
You need to understand what self esteem means. Self-esteem means you really like yourself, both inside and out. It refers both to how you look and what you believe in. This is also called “positive” or “high” self-esteem.
Self-esteem is all about how much you value yourself, the pride you feel in yourself, and how worthwhile you feel. Self-esteem is important because feeling good about yourself affects you act. A person who has high self-esteem will make friends easily, is more in control of his or her behavior, and will enjoy life more. So it is a vital attribute for a happy, healthy life.
Something closely linked to self esteem is Body image. This is how someone feels about his or her own physical appearance. Often teenagers care more about how others see them. The modern world glorifies the perfect body and if you’re a teenager it’s difficult to be positive if you believe you are fat, ugly, too tall etc.
Teenagers with low self esteem will display a variety of traits, including:
- Being easily influenced by advertising or others.
- Avoiding new challenges for fear of failure.
- Becoming frustrated easily by setbacks.
- Blaming others when activities are unsuccessful.
- Disbelieving that (s)he has any talents or special abilities.
- Feeling unloved.
Some people think they need to change how they look or act to feel good about themselves. But actually all you need to do is change the way you see your body and how you think about yourself.
The first thing to do is recognize that your body is your own, no matter what shape, size, or color it comes in.
If there are things about yourself that you want to change and can (such as how fit you are), do this by making goals for yourself. For example, if you want to get fit, make a plan to exercise every day and eat nutritious foods. Then keep track of your progress until you reach your goal. Meeting a challenge you set for yourself is a great way to boost self-esteem!
Let’s give you some steps that are going to help you create higher self esteem
Stop putting yourself down. Stop repeating to yourself those negative words about yourself and your abilities. Those self-deprecating comments you so often tell yourself about ‘you’ do nothing but harm to yourself.
In fact Believe in yourself. It is your responsibility to take charge of you and your life, and once you realise you’re capable of anything then you can and will be able to take massive steps forward.
Stop comparing yourself with other people. Stop competing with others. No longer allow yourself to be jealous of those around you. You are unique, and special. Focus on yourself don’t worry about others.
Remember your Successes. The more you recognize your past successes, no matter how small they were, the more confidence you can build in yourself about yourself. Include any “minor victories,” like learning to ride a bicycle. Close your eyes, look back through your life and recreate the feelings of satisfaction and joy you experienced when you achieved these successes
Keep a journal. Record your successes every day. Whenever you need a confidence boost in itself, reread what you wrote.
Keep your word. One of the ways to increase self-esteem high is to keep your word. Learn to trust yourself, always keep your integrity, and you will also see that others start recognising this trait in you. Always keep your commitments, follow through on your promises to yourself and to others.
Accept Praise. Respond to all compliments with a simple Thank You. Allow yourself to feel better about yourself when others recognise good things about you.
Use affirmations. A really powerful and positive inspirational method to boost your self esteem is to use affirmations. Say things such as “I like and accept my self.” or “I am valuable, lovable person and deserve the best in life.” Say these to yourself frequently.
Change your self talk. The good news is that you can change how you feel about yourself by changing your self-talk.
List your good points. Focus on your positive traits, on the things you’re good at, the things you like about yourself. Write down at least 20 of your positive qualities.
Follow your Passions. Self-esteem flourishes when you are doing thein work and activities that you enjoy and make you feel valuable. Don’t get stuck doing something you hate, this will just bring you down and is a recipe for disaster.
Be true to yourself. Live your own life – not the life others have decided is best for you. When your decisions are made based made on the choices given to you by others, when you try to make others happy at your own expense, then this can do you no good.
You have enormous potential and capacity. Let your self-esteem grow as the ‘real you’ develops, and allow yourself to truly appreciate the person you are.
As my final message to you for today, just let me tell you, you’re okay just as you are. You are a exceptional person, talented and loveable, with special talents and strengths, with inner wisdom and creativity, a person of value. So accept and respect yourself right now!
Get comfortable with the real you, inside and out. Let yourself be happy!