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Last Updated on January 18, 2021

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

More by this author

Craig J Todd

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

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Last Updated on March 2, 2021

10 Negative Thoughts We All Have and What to Think Instead

10 Negative Thoughts We All Have and What to Think Instead

I’ll never forget the first time I heard that the way I was talking to myself, realizing how it directly influenced every aspect of my life. We can be our own worst enemy at times and our internal conversation and negative thoughts can be extremely limiting. Like most people, I was blind to this somewhat obvious piece of information.

Eventually, I realized that the negative thoughts I had weren’t facts at all, but instead self imposed limitations that I was putting on myself, which I also had the power to remove. Over the last decade, it has become very clear to me that most of us actually have very similar negative thoughts. Here are some of the most common negative thoughts we all have and what we should think instead.

1. I Am Not Good Enough

Have you ever thought that you weren’t good enough? When we feel that we aren’t good enough, we tend to drown in this emotion of self-doubt and pity. It can be a symptom of low self-esteem, but the truth is that every one is good enough.

You might not have the skills or tools to achieve what you want now, but you are certainly good enough and worthy of receiving what you want in life. If you have a $10 bill, and it falls on the ground into a puddle of mud, does that $10 lose its value? Of course not! So why do you feel that you lose value based on what you have done in life?

What to Think Instead

Instead of saying, “I am not good enough,” tell yourself that you are worthy of all you desire in this life, just like everyone else[1]. Focus on the things you like about yourself in this moment. You can even make a written list and post it nearby if it helps you to see it each day[2]

Practice Loving Yourself to Overcome Negative Thoughts

    2. I Can’t Do It

    “Can’t” is one of the most limiting words that you can tell yourself. Henry Ford once said,

    “Whether you think you can or you can’t, you are right.”

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    If you tell yourself that you can’t, you are sending messages to your mind and brain that you can’t, and so that will be your experience. Your mind won’t try if you have already told it that something is impossible. 

    What to Think Instead

    Instead of focusing your negative thoughts on what you think you can’t do, tell yourself, “I can do whatever I put my mind to.” While we all do have limitations, believing in your abilities in the first step to achieving your short and long term goals in life. 

    And sometimes, you may just need a little motivation boost. Get the Instant Motivation Boost Worksheet, it’s a free worksheet that will guide you to do the little things for an instant boost of motivation. Grab the free worksheet here.

    3. I’m Not as Lucky as Other People

    This thought normally comes from holding an illusion that other people’s lives are better and they are luckier, and that is what separates you from them. “Perfect” doesn’t exist, and there is often a lot of effort that goes behind that perceived “luck.”

    It is very disempowering to think that life will never offer you good things; the truth is that if you tap into some gratitude, you’ll see that you already have good things all around you. 

    What to Think Instead

    Instead of focusing on all the luck others seem to have, tell yourself, “Good things can and will happen to me.” Use a sense of gratitude to begin to notice all of the good things you would normally never notice. For example, when was the last time you felt grateful for the roof over your head, the food in your fridge, or your comfy bed?

    4. I Don’t Think I’ll Ever…

    Whatever you believe will become your reality, this is true. You shape your future every day by the choices you make and your habits. You can sabotage your opportunities by limiting yourself with negative thoughts.

    What would it be like if you believed that you could do what you really desired and have the experiences you wished instead? It is not about getting it right the first time, but trying. Don’t stop yourself before you have even given yourself a chance.

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    What to Think Instead

    Don’t limit yourself with negative thought patterns that tell you you’ll never do something. Instead, tell yourself, “I am confident I will…” Even if you don’t feel confident in this moment, feeding your brain positive thoughts will slowly build confidence over time. 

    5. I Should Be Better Than I Am

    Using the word “should” in this context makes this a truly negative thought and makes one feel less than they are. How often do you find yourself saying “I should be more clever, more disciplined, more productive, etc. than I am”? Remember how you feel immediately afterwards?

    What to Think Instead

    Tell yourself, “I am making an effort to change what I don’t like.” Everyone has parts of themselves that they hope to improve, and this is certainly possible, but it requires approaching these things with a sense of self-love and patience. 

    Set yourself goals for the things you are not happy with instead of telling yourself what you “should” be like or be doing. Take action the things you wish to change and remove limiting modals from your vocabulary.

    Here are some ways you can start to improve yourself.

    6. I Am Not Strong Enough

    It’s normal to feel that you are not strong enough at times[3]. We are all human, and I don’t know anyone who doesn’t feel weak at times. What is important though, is the conversation you have with yourself afterwards. If you keep reinforcing the fact that you don’t feel strong with negative thoughts, how can you expect to feel?

    What to Think Instead

    Instead of focusing on your weaknesses, tell yourself that you are strong enough to deal with the challenges in front of you, and support yourself in finding the strength you need in that moment.

    7. Nobody Cares

    It might feel that you are alone at times and that nobody cares, but I am convinced that there are people thinking about you that you don’t even know of. People do care; not everyone expresses their emotions in the same way. It isn’t nice feeling that nobody cares, so stop focusing on that and assuming what other people feel when you don’t actually know. Change your focus to something that makes you feel better instead.

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    What to Think Instead

    Instead of assuming that no one cares about you, remind yourself that there are people in your life who do, in fact, care very much. Do your best to cultivate those relationships and accept the love others are willing to give in order to combat your negative thoughts. 

    8. I Am Not Smart Enough

    This is a very general statement, yet many people tend to say it often and then feel bad about themselves afterwards. What are you not smart at specifically? I bet that if I asked you to identify some areas that you are smart in, you could if you really tried.

    Not everybody is clever and perfect in every area, and this is what makes us all unique. If you feel that you are lacking in a certain area of knowledge, instead of producing negative thoughts, make time to study and learn whatever it is that you want so that you don’t feel this way any more.

    What to Think Instead

    Instead of believing that you’re not intelligent, remind yourself that you are smart in a unique way and that you are capable of improving your knowledge in any area you choose. Lifelong learning can be a goal you constantly work toward.

    9. If I Don’t Do Well, I’m a Failure

    Holding high expectations for yourself and having conditions attached to your self worth on your performance isn’t fair. You need to take chances in life if you want to get different results. Don’t be scared of failing; the real failure lies in never having tried.

    What to Think Instead

    When facing a challenging situation or possible risk, tell yourself, “I am going to try; I am not scared of failing; that is not what is important.” Even if you “fail,” you will learn something about the world and yourself, and as long as that’s the case, nothing is ever a true failure. 

    10. Bad Things Will Happen

    Thinking negatively in general is thinking that whatever happens, it is most likely going to be the worst case scenario. What would it be like if you imagined the best case scenario instead? Our positive and negative thoughts are very powerful, and it’s common to use visualization as a technique to imagine the best case scenario.

    Whether you imagine the worst or the best case scenario, you are influencing your results. Stop focusing on what you don’t want to happen and rather on what you want to happen.

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    What to Think Instead

    Instead of thinking that bad things will happen when you try something, try thinking that the best will happen. This way, you’ll aim high, and even if you fall a little short, you’ll still get farther than you were before. 

    Final Thoughts

    We all have negative thoughts from time to time. However, when the majority of your thoughts are negative, you are undermining your happiness at the end of the day. Our thoughts directly affect how we feel and, therefore, what we do in life.

    If you’re feeling sad and are overwhelmed with negative thoughts, you can consider contacting a mental health professional to give your mental health a boost and get you back on track toward positivity.

    Don’t limit yourself or what is possible for you. Master your thoughts and change your results. 

    More on How to Stop Negative Thoughts

     

    Featured photo credit: arash payam via unsplash.com

    Reference

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