We've all experienced moments where we have felt insecure about ourselves. However, long periods of low self-esteem can be harmful to our mental health and daily life.
Therefore, it's critical that we understand how to deal with periods when we lack confidence and don't feel good about ourselves.
According to Dr. Tiago Reis Marques, Chief Executive Officer of biotechnology company Pasithea Therapeutics, recognising low self-esteem is the first step to improving it, and there are several things you can do to help cope with negative thoughts. Here's his advice:
Identify troubling circumstances
Consider the occasions when you were at your lowest. Do you have a specific situation in mind? Are you with someone in particular? Identify the events, people, or challenges that cause you to have negative thoughts and low self-esteem and try to remove yourself from those situations.
Surround yourself with positivity
Once you have identified the scenarios or circumstances that trigger feelings of doubt, check if there are any changes you can make to improve the issue. For example, if you're experiencing low self-esteem whilst on social media, try to restrict your time on social media channels. Alternatively, if someone in your life is always bringing you down, try to shift your time and efforts away from bad relationships and towards those who offer you more positivity.
Challenge negative thinking
The next time you think you're not good enough or wish you were different, take a moment to challenge yourself. Ask yourself, why am I not good enough? Am I thinking rationally? Be mindful that long-held views and beliefs about oneself might appear factual and normal, despite the reality that many of them are simply our own expressions of opinions or perceptions. By paying attention to your mental deliberations, you are breaking down the negative thought process and making it more manageable.
Find your strengths
Everyone is good at something, whether they can admit it or not. Recognising your strengths will help boost your feelings of self-worth and doing what you are good at will likely lift your spirits.
Be kind to your body
It's also important to keep in mind that the way you treat your body physically can have a big impact on how your body feels mentally. Regular exercise, a well-balanced diet, and adequate sleep are all important components of a happy lifestyle.
Seek professional help
If you have experienced low self-esteem for a long time and believe you need professional treatment to feel better, there are psychological therapies such as counselling and cognitive behavioural therapy that can help. Qualified therapists can help to get to the root of the cause and prescribe treatment to help. Alternatively, you can speak with your local GP, who will be able to refer you to a therapist.