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Build lasting self-esteem

Build lasting self-esteem
  • Use positive affirmations correctly and make them more believable.
  • Identify your competencies and find opportunities that accentuate them.
  • Learn to accept compliments, even if they make you uncomfortable.
  • Eliminate self-criticism and introduce self-compassion.
  • Affirm your real worth.

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3. Learn to accept compliments

Set yourself the goal to tolerate compliments when you receive them, even if they make you uncomfortable (and they will). The best way to avoid the reflexive reactions of batting away compliments is to prepare simple set responses and train yourself to use them automatically whenever you get good feedback (e.g., “Thank you” or “How kind of you to say”). In time, the impulse to deny or rebuff compliments will fade — which will also be a nice indication your self-esteem is getting stronger.

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Do the right thing.

When you do what you deep down think is the right thing to do then you raise and strengthen your self-esteem.

It is not always easy to do. Or even to know what the right thing is.

But keeping a focus on it and doing it as best you can makes big difference both in the results you get and for how you think about yourself.

  • Ignore all those "positivity" advice. To hear "You're actually awesome" or "You should be more confident" does not help. It only makes you feel more inadequate or guilty of your behaviour.
  • Focus elsewhere. There is no direct way to improve self-esteem. It is a by-product of a fulfilled life. Instead, pursue goals that really matter to you. Take care of the five levels of basic human needs, as described in Maslow's hierarchy of needs.