Latest posts by Chiara Mazzucco (see all)
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Life can sometimes be a big ego-slapping, self-esteem slashing joke, can’t it? Not only does the media constantly bombard your ego with the world’s idea of perfection, but you also get to endure the same beating in the safety of your own private life. Whether it be a shitty ex-lover, a shittier current lover, a competitive friend, or a condescending family member, your self-esteem seems to always be at at risk because when we care about someone or we have some sort of interest at stake in a relationship, we automatically become vulnerable and rely on them to gauge our self-worth. So, how should your self-esteem deal?
Try These Crazy 5 Things to Boost Your Self-Esteem:
1. Clean up
Call me superficial, but there’s no way you can begin a self-esteem makeover looking like a goblin. Ever heard the saying “The first step to feeling good is looking good”? Well, apply it and invest in your appearance. Ladies, check out the How to Be Sexy article. Get out of bed - early, not at noon - take a shower, groom up your nether regions (even if they’ve been vacant for a while) and put something on that makes you feel good. What may seem like a temporary illusion is actually a strong base for your self-esteem do-over.
2. Find your gem
Before dealing with the ego poisons inhabiting your life, it’s important to gather up amo. What are you good at? What do you LOVE to do? If you’re hunched over like Notre Dame, creepily whispering the word “nothing”, slap yourself in the face and pull yourself together, girl. Everyone is good at something and everyone has something they enjoy doing. When you’re down in the dumps, you might not see that something as an awesome, mood-lifting activity, but it’s still something you mindlessly don’t mind doing. Even tweeting is something to jot down if that’s what you’re into - there’s a whole career for that, didn’t you know?
Find what it is that quiets your mind, or awakens it, and do it – as often as possible.
3. Life sweep
So now that you’re looking good and feeling good, even if only temporarily, it’s time to get rid of the toxicity in your life. This is the hardest thing to do. Find what it is that is feeding your low self-esteem and get rid of it. Do you have an asshole boss? Quit. But in THIS economy? Yes, your emotional sanity is more important. Are you in an abusive relationship? Break up. But I’m in love! I’ll let my book address that issue. Condescending parents? Take a break and step away while you gather your independence.
I know it seems ridiculous because in most cases, whatever is feeding your low self-esteem is something that you may feel you need in your life, but there’s a good chance your issues with self-worth will come to a complete halt the second you remove the splinter causing them.
Some people believe we are born with our story already written. Others, like myself, believe in the theory of a blank slate. You make your own life. Once you’re looking good, doing good, and finally able to breathe, it’s time for some reinvention. Does this mean you become a completely different individual like I did? Not necessarily.
Sit in front of the mirror and stare; cry if you have to (actually… try to cry.) Now close your eyes and let your imagination fly. What do you wish you were like? Play around with different combinations and create your ideal character. This can be anything from “I wish I could be more outgoing” to “I wish I could start over” to “I wish I didn’t hate myself.” Make the list and don’t leave anything out; let your inner child loose and remember, no one has to know what these thoughts are. It’s not about bashing who you are right now, it’s acknowledging that you have the power to transform into everything and anything, and that you do have control over your life and your self-esteem.
5. Prepare for battle
Start by grabbing a pen and begin drafting a plan. Studies have shown this works to calm anxiety and actually get shit done. Make this step-by-step a realistic plan to get to where you want to be. If you’re clueless, ask a friend to help. Don’t have friends? Email me. I’ll help.
Next, be your own best friend. Every morning, be corny and tell yourself what you want to hear. After a while, your brain won’t know where the compliments are coming from and it’ll react the same way it would if you had a crowd chanting them. At first it’ll be hard, but I promise… it’ll get easier.
It’s an Epidemic
You think you’re the only one with a shitty self-esteem? You’re wrong. We all face the same issues in different disguises. But dealing with these issues is important for all of us. Being your own best friend is important in life; no one is guaranteed to be around forever. There’ll be times that no one will be around to brush your hair and call you “worth it”. You’re going to have to do it yourself. These five things are minuscule compared to the work that needs to be done; but they’re a start.
It’s not about reinventing yourself to be someone you no longer recognize. It’s about taking control of your life and making it what you’ve always dreamed it to be. In the process of exploring your dreams, you’ll come to realize there’s a lot of beauty already there, you just have to acknowledge it.
Want 15 ways to boost your self esteem? They’re all laid out for you in our special print edition.
Image Credit: Shutterstock