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We Don’t Need More Likes, We Need Self-Esteem

We Don’t Need More Likes, We Need Self-Esteem

Have you noticed how posting on social media sites can be addictive?

Like any drug, it starts off seeming like something fun and harmless. You post a few images of yourself on the beach, and suddenly dozens of your friends have liked or shared them. Feels good, doesn’t it?

However, in time, we can become caught in a vicious cycle of continuously needing positive feedback on our posts. If the likes and shares are missing – a part of us feels missing too.

It can be a tragic situation.

What’s missing isn’t others’ approval, it’s self-esteem.

Becoming dependent on likes and shares for our happiness is a difficult addiction to break.

Your mobile device holds your attention – and often holds you hostage.

The first step in learning to escape is to understand that needing constant likes and shares is usually a symptom of low self-esteem. If you can learn to boost your self-esteem, you’ll be able to break the mental and emotional chains that bind you.

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I’ll be honest with you, though. Building and maintaining self-esteem is not an easy task. You’ll need to work on it daily and know and practice the most effective tips and techniques. (Luckily, I’m about to share these with you!)

Self-esteem determines how you feel and think about yourself.

Why should you care about self-esteem? This question can be answered with another question: Do you care about yourself?

If you have low self-esteem, you may feel inferior and worthless. With high self-esteem, you’ll have the opposite qualities: confidence and value.

In other words, you should definitely care about your self-esteem. It’s vitally important for your personal well-being, happiness and success in life.

With high self-esteem, you’ll find yourself living a simpler, stronger and more purposeful life.

It’s the difference between a failed actor and someone like Tom Cruise. The first guy probably lacked self-belief, while Cruise has gone on to become one of the world’s most successful actors. He’s talented for sure, but he also possesses powerful self-esteem.

The magic of boosting self-esteem lies within you.

As we’ve seen, your happiness and success in life depend on your level of self-esteem.

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Let’s take a look now at seven ways you can increase your self-esteem (without becoming an egomaniac!).

Never, ever, expect perfection.

Have you noticed that when you constantly seek perfection – life often disappoints you? While it’s certainly a good idea to aim high, don’t get caught in the ‘perfection trap’. It can prevent you from taking advantage of new opportunities, as well as blocking your ability to finish things.

As an example, think of a time when you were seeking a new job. You may have overlooked the ideal role simply because it didn’t tick all your preconceived boxes.

Contribute to society.

If you’re too busy helping others less fortunate than yourself, then you won’t have time to worry about your low self-esteem. In fact, by contributing to society, you’ll definitely boost your self-esteem. Helping others makes you feel good about yourself.

So, why not put this into practice by finding ways to contribute to society? These could take the form of voluntary work or random acts of kindness.[1]

Live healthily every day.

You’ve no doubt come across sloppy people who don’t seem to care about their appearance or their lives. Don’t be like them. If you want a happy and successful life, you need to focus on your health. Through correct diet and exercise, you can not only look good – but feel good too. It’s amazing how much you can raise your self-esteem through this method. You’ll have more energy, more confidence and will begin to attract success to you.

The key is to make small changes that you can stick to. For example, don’t go immediately from eating meat daily to a strict vegan diet.[2] Instead, gradually wean yourself of meat by reducing your weekly intake.

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Recognize triggers to low self-esteem.

Difficult events like separating from a partner or losing a job can trigger a rapid fall in your self-esteem. It’s critical at these times to make an extra effort to maintain your balance, poise and self-belief. Eliminate thoughts such as: “I always mess things up,” and replace them with positive imagery such as one door closing… and another one opening.

Focus on what you do well.

If you look around at others, you’ll instantly see that they can do many things better than you. If you allow this comparison, you’ll inevitably feel weak and inferior. However, you don’t need to think like this.

Every one of us is unique. This means that we also have unique talents. Your boss may be great at decision making, whereas you might excel at customer service. The trick is to find what you’re good at and focus on this. Don’t try to be a jack of all trades![3]

Set challenging goals.

How many times have you been told to set goals, but have chosen to ignore this advice? Lots of times no doubt. I sympathize with you, as I used to be like that too. Goal setting seemed liked a good idea, but I never got around to doing it! Fortunately, in recent years I’ve learned that goal setting really does work.

To convince yourself of the power of goal setting, start off with a few easy goals such as: walking or cycling to work a few days a week, adding a few extra dollars a month to your savings account, and giving more of your time to loved ones.

Do what you love and have fun!

Low self-esteem can be associated with lethargy, anxiety and even depression. Don’t get dragged down into these ‘joy-killers’. Instead, make an effort to have fun at all times – and lighten up your life!

There are countless ways to have fun, but here are some of the best ones: spend time with friends who know how to laugh, watch a funny movie, seek humor that’s hidden in serious situations. By learning to laugh and enjoy yourself, you’ll naturally boost your self-esteem. You’ll also have a positive influence on people you interact with.

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So, there you have it.

I’ve revealed what self-esteem is, why you should value it – and how to boost it.

Now, it’s over to you.

Focus less on how many likes and shares you’ve received today, and instead, focus on the things that really matter in life. As you raise up your self-esteem, you’ll find new energy and purpose.

Life is a journey. Just make sure you’re traveling in the right direction.

Featured photo credit: Stocksnap via stocksnap.io

Reference

[1] Random acts of kindness
[2] The Vegan Society: Definition of Vegan
[3] Wikipedia: Jack of all trades, master of none

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Craig J Todd

UK Writer who loves to use the power of words to inspire and motivate.

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Last Updated on September 18, 2020

13 Helping Points When Things Don’t Go Your Way

13 Helping Points When Things Don’t Go Your Way

For the original article by Celestine: 13 Helping Points When Things Don’t Go Your Way

“We all have problems. The way we solve them is what makes us different.” ~Unknown

“It’s not stress that kills us, it is our reaction to it.” – Hans Selye

Have you ever experienced moments when things just don’t go your way? For example, losing your keys, accidentally spilling your drink, waking up late, missing your buses/trains, forgetting to bring your things, and so on?

You’re not alone. All of us, myself included, experience times when things don’t go as we expect.

Here is my guide on how to deal with daily setbacks.

1. Take a step back and evaluate

When something bad happens, take a step back and evaluate the situation. Some questions to ask yourself:

  1. What is the problem?
  2. Are you the only person facing this problem in the world today?
  3. How does this problem look like at an individual level? A national level? On a global scale?
  4. What’s the worst possible thing that can happen to you as a result of this?
  5. How is it going to impact your life in the next 1 year? 5 years? 10 years?

Doing this exercise is not to undermine the problem or disclaiming responsibility, but to consider different perspectives, so you can adopt the best approach for it. Most problems we encounter daily may seem like huge issues when they crop up, but most, if not all, don’t have much impact in our life beyond that day.

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2. Vent if you have to, but don’t linger on the problem

If you feel very frustrated and need to let off some steam, go ahead and do that. Talk to a friend, complain, crib about it, or scream at the top of your lungs if it makes you happy.

At the same time, don’t get caught up with venting. While venting may temporarily relieve yourself, it’s not going to solve the problem ultimately. You don’t want to be an energy vampire.

Vent if there’s a need to, but do it for 15 to 20 minutes. Then move on.

3. Realize there are others out there facing this too

Even though the situation may be frustrating, you’re not alone. Remember there are almost 7 billion people in the world today, and chances are that other people have faced the same thing before too. Knowing it’s not just you helps you to get out of a self-victimizing mindset.

4. Process your thoughts/emotions

Process your thoughts/emotions with any of the four methods:

  1. Journal. Write your unhappiness in a private diary or in your blog. It doesn’t have to be formal at all – it can be a brain dump on rough paper or new word document. Delete after you are done.
  2. Audio taping. Record yourself as you talk out what’s on your mind. Tools include tape recorder, your PC (Audacity is a freeware for recording/editing audio) and your mobile (most mobiles today have audio recording functions). You can even use your voice mail for this. Just talking helps you to gain awareness of your emotions. After recording, play back and listen to what you said. You might find it quite revealing.
  3. Meditation. At its simplest form, meditation is just sitting/lying still and observing your reality as it is – including your thoughts and emotions. Some think that it involves some complex mambo-jumbo, but it doesn’t.
  4. Talking to someone. Talking about it with someone helps you work through the issue. It also gets you an alternate viewpoint and consider it from a different angle.

5. Acknowledge your thoughts

Don’t resist your thoughts, but acknowledge them. This includes both positive and negative thoughts.

By acknowledging, I mean recognizing these thoughts exist. So if say, you have a thought that says, “Wow, I’m so stupid!”, acknowledge that. If you have a thought that says, “I can’t believe this is happening to me again”, acknowledge that as well.

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Know that acknowledging the thoughts doesn’t mean you agree with them. It’s simply recognizing the existence of said thoughts so that you can stop resisting yourself and focus on the situation on hand.

6. Give yourself a break

If you’re very stressed out by the situation, and the problem is not time sensitive, then give yourself a break. Take a walk, listen to some music, watch a movie, or get some sleep. When you’re done, you should feel a lot more revitalized to deal with the situation.

7. Uncover what you’re really upset about

A lot of times, the anger we feel isn’t about the world. You may start off feeling angry at someone or something, but at the depth of it, it’s anger toward yourself.

Uncover the root of your anger. I have written a five part anger management series on how to permanently overcome anger.

After that, ask yourself: How can you improve the situation? Go to Step #9, where you define your actionable steps. Our anger comes from not having control on the situation. Sitting there and feeling infuriated is not going to change the situation. The more action we take, the more we will regain control over the situation, the better we will feel.

8. See this as an obstacle to be overcome

As Helen Keller once said,

“Character cannot be developed in ease and quiet. Only through experiences of trial and suffering can the soul be strengthened, vision cleared, ambition inspired and success achieved.”

Whatever you’re facing right now, see it as an obstacle to be overcome. In every worthy endeavor, there’ll always be countless obstacles that emerge along the way. These obstacles are what separate the people who make it, and those who don’t. If you’re able to push through and overcome them, you’ll emerge a stronger person than before. It’ll be harder for anything to get you down in the future.

9. Analyze the situation – Focus on actionable steps

In every setback, there are going to be things that can’t be reversed since they have already occurred. You want to focus on things that can still be changed (salvageable) vs. things that have already happened and can’t be changed. The only time the situation changes is when you take steps to improve it. Rather than cry over spilt milk, work through your situation:

  1. What’s the situation?
  2. What’s stressing you about this situation?
  3. What are the next steps that’ll help you resolve them?
  4. Take action on your next steps!

After you have identified your next steps, act on them. The key here is to focus on the actionable steps, not the inactionable steps. It’s about regaining control over the situation through direct action.

10. Identify how it occurred (so it won’t occur again next time)

A lot of times we react to our problems. The problem occurs, and we try to make the best out of what has happened within the context. While developing a healthy coping mechanism is important (which is what the other helping points are on), it’s also equally important, if not more, to understand how the problem arose. This way, you can work on preventing it from taking place next time, vs. dealing reactively with it.

Most of us probably think the problem is outside of our control, but reality is most of the times it’s fully preventable. It’s just a matter of how much responsibility you take over the problem.

For example, for someone who can’t get a cab for work in the morning, he/she may see the problem as a lack of cabs in the country, or bad luck. However, if you trace to the root of the problem, it’s probably more to do with (a) Having unrealistic expectations of the length of time to get a cab. He/she should budget more time for waiting for a cab next time. (b) Oversleeping, because he/she was too tired from working late the previous day. He/she should allocate enough time for rest next time. He/she should also pick up better time management skills, so as to finish work in lesser time.

11. Realize the situation can be a lot worse

No matter how bad the situation is, it can always be much worse. A plus point vs. negative point analysis will help you realize that.

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12. Do your best, but don’t kill yourself over it

No matter how bad your situation may seem, do your best, but don’t kill yourself over it. Life is too beautiful to worry so much over daily issues. Take a step back (#1), give yourself a break if you need to (#6), and do what you can within your means (#9). Everything else will unfold accordingly. Worrying too much about the outcome isn’t going to change things or make your life any better.

13. Pick out the learning points from the encounter

There’s something to learn from every encounter. What have you learned from this situation? What lessons have you taken away?

After you identify your learning points, think about how you’re going to apply them moving forward. With this, you’ve clearly gained something from this encounter. You’ve walked away a stronger, wiser, better person, with more life lessons to draw from in the future.

Get the manifesto version of this article: [Manifesto] What To Do When Things Don’t Go Your Way

Featured photo credit: Alice Donovan Rouse via unsplash.com

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