Self-deprecation and self-hatred are running rampant in our society. We often take ourselves for granted; believing negative things others say about us and internalizing them, beating down our self-esteem until it’s almost non-existent.
The only way to reverse this process is to start appreciating yourself on a regular basis. This can be trickier than it sounds, especially if you’ve been beaten down a lot, but it’s not impossible. In this article, we’re going to walk you through six ways you can start appreciating yourself more today.
1) Consider the Source
If you’ve been beaten down for a long time, it can be hard to convince yourself of your value or to accept compliments. The easiest way around this is to consider the source of the negative comments. People often project their insecurities onto others; for example, if they’re struggling with their intelligence, they’ll insult you by calling you dumb. Just because they say something, doesn’t make it true. Consider where the hate is coming from before you take it too personally; this will make it easier for you to believe yourself about your good qualities.
2) Remind Yourself of Your Accomplishments
The first step in starting to appreciate yourself is reminding yourself of what all you have accomplished thus far.
Make a list of all your accomplishments and a list of all the things you do on a daily basis at work, at home, and for others.
Given the time you have, can you see that you have accomplished quite a lot and are in a good place with room to grow?
If the answer is no, formulate a step-by-step plan on how you can achieve what it is you want to achieve; actively work toward this goal.
Prove to yourself that you’re an accomplished and capable person.
3) Treat Yourself
When was the last time you rewarded yourself for your hard work and efforts? An important part of appreciating yourself is to acknowledge the work you’ve done, appreciate yourself for it, and reward yourself.
This can be purchasing one of your favorite items, taking an afternoon to yourself for a hike, taking a bubble bath, or just allowing yourself time to relax and read a book. Whatever makes you happy, let it be your reward.
4) Stop with the Comparisons
We all are guilty of comparing ourselves to those around us. It may not be constant, but we all do it at some point or another. Everyone is unique and different with their own sets of skills, experiences, and qualities; you simply can’t compare.
You don’t know what privileges the person you’re comparing yourself to may have had or lacked; you don’t know their experiences; it’s not fair to compare yourself to them when you’re so different.
5) Remind Yourself ‘It Could Be Worse’
A good way to appreciate yourself and where you are in life is reminding yourself of how good you have it. You could be homeless, starving, without health care, etc.
There’s always someone lacking the luxuries you have; don’t take them for granted, appreciate them. Stop thinking about the things you don’t have and start thinking about and appreciating the ones you do.
6) Start Accepting Compliments
We tend to deny the compliments we’re given from others. We respond by saying “oh no, not really” or “not me,” rather than just saying “thank you.” The more you accept compliments from others, especially from those that you love, the more you’ll start to believe them and internalize them.
Appreciating yourself can be a difficult habit to develop and maintain, but necessary to boosting your self-esteem. We, as people, too often believe the negative things we’re told by others, damaging our self-esteem and confidence.