How to Turn Stress Into a Strength: A Guide To Building Self Esteem And Getting More Done By John McPartland
The best way to get things done is to just do them. That’s what I tell myself every day when I wake up and go through my routine.
But sometimes it feels like there are so many things going on in your life right now that you don’t have time or energy for anything else! You’re overwhelmed with work, family obligations, bills…you name it. If only there was some simple trick or technique that could help you out here and now. Well, if there is then I’m sure you’ve come across them all before.
But what if there wasn’t? What if something like this existed? Something that would allow us to harness our inner strength and put everything else aside while still getting things done?
Well, I think you’ll agree that such a tool does exist. And it’s called “self esteem.”
What Is Self Esteem?
Self-esteem is defined as one’s sense of personal worth and self-worth. It refers to one’s feelings of confidence and self-respect in oneself. People with low levels of self-esteem tend to feel inferior to others and may even view themselves negatively (see: narcissism).
But what does all this have to do with stress-busting techniques?
A lot, as you’re about to find out.
Let’s say you’ve had a very bad day and there’s just too much to do and not enough time to do it. Maybe there was an emergency at work, your kids are sick, and your car broke down.
All these things are stressing you out and you feel like you can’t get a break. This is when you need to employ one of the best stress-busting techniques there is: self-esteem.
Why is that?
There are a few reasons why this works so well. The first one is pretty obvious, and it’s because you’re focusing on yourself! When you’re worrying about all the things you have to do and all the problems you’re having, you’re not actually doing anything about them. But when you turn that around and start thinking good things about yourself and your abilities, this puts your mind in a better place.
The more you do this, the more likely you are to actually complete whatever task you set out to do. This is why it’s so important to focus on positive affirmations.
But what are these exactly and how do you use them?
Let’s take a look!
Why Are Positive Affirmations So Effective?
Affirmations can take many different forms. They can be as simple as writing down a few sentences about what it is that you want to accomplish or they can be detailed lists of why you feel the way you do. They can be written, verbal, or visualized. The key is that whatever you’re writing or saying needs to reinforce your desired thoughts and feelings.
Here are a few examples of positive affirmations:
I am happy.
I am successful in everything that I do.
I like who I am.
I have friends who support me in everything that I do.
I trust people and they trust me.
I can relax easily.
I am a confident person.
Other people like and respect me.
These are just a few examples of positive affirmations that you can use to help boost your self-esteem.
But how do you use these? How do you actually incorporate them into your life so you can reap the benefits?
Let’s go over a few tips on how to apply these techniques to your everyday life.
How to Use Positive Affirmations
The first thing you want to do is choose a positive affirmation that resonates with you. Maybe one of the statements above resonates more with you than the others.
That’s great! Go ahead and use that one. If not, no worries, there are plenty of other affirmations out there. Once you’ve found one that works for you, you’ll need to actually write it down or say it to yourself several times throughout the day.
This is a great time to utilize those scraps of paper that you’ve been collecting! Write down your affirmation on each piece of paper and then place them in various places where you’re likely to see them throughout the day.
These can be places like your bathroom mirror, the refrigerator, your computer at work, or even your car dashboard. The more you see the affirmation, the more it’ll sink into your brain and afterward become a part of your overall belief system.
Now that you’ve written out all your positive affirmations, the next step is to actually say them out loud to yourself. As silly as this might feel at first, it’s important that you do this because saying things out loud has a much more powerful impact on your brain than if you were to simply read them.
When you say something out loud, your brain registers it twice as much as if you were to only read it, meaning you’re much more likely to believe it after saying it aloud.
In conjunction with writing down or displaying your positive affirmations, saying them out loud will help to reinforce the idea that you’re capable and worthy of achieving your goals and getting what you want out of life.
As time goes on and you continue to read and say your affirmations aloud, you’ll start to believe them. Your self-esteem will improve and eventually you’ll become confident in yourself and your abilities.
This newfound motivation will help you to accomplish more in your life, as well as live a happier life because the main reason people don’t reach their goals is not for lack of ability or opportunity, but rather because they don’t truly believe in themselves.
How to Improve Your Self Esteem in 4 Easy Steps
Now that you have a better understanding of self-esteem and the benefits it can have on your everyday life, here are four steps you can take to help you improve your own levels of self-esteem.
Step 1: Recognize and Acknowledge Your Accomplishments
Sometimes we’re our own worst enemies when it comes to feeling good about ourselves and our accomplishments. While it’s important to maintain a healthy level of humility, you also shouldn’t sell yourself short and fail to recognize your own talents, skills, and accomplishments.
If you did a good job at work, acknowledge that you did a good job at work. If you achieved a personal goal, acknowledge that you did so.
This sort of internal acknowledgment will help to improve your self-esteem. It’s perfectly fine to also share these accomplishments with other people as well.
Share the news and your success with friends and family. While doing so, you’ll feel an even greater sense of accomplishment knowing that others are happy for you as well.
Step 2: Be Willing to Make Changes
Your self-esteem can’t improve if you don’t willing to do anything different in order to achieve a higher level of self-esteem. There are many causes of low self-esteem, but the main reason is because people fail to do anything different than they’re currently doing.
If you don’t make an effort to change your situation, then nothing will ever get better.
It’s important that you don’t sabotage yourself by engaging in any more harmful behavior such as excessive drinking or drug use. Not only can this hurt your physical health, but it can also hurt your mental and emotional health as well.
Low self-esteem can become even worse if you continue to do things that hurt yourself.
However, one change that might not immediately come to mind is improving your mindset. If you improve the way you think about yourself and life in general, then your self-esteem can improve drastically because it will cause you to start seeing yourself in a more positive light.
Step 3: Know That You’re Capable of Greatness
So many people that suffer from low self-esteem believe that they’re not capable of accomplishing great things in life. This couldn’t be further from the truth.
Everyone is capable of greatness; everyone has the ability to achieve whatever they want to in life. The only thing that’s required is a little hard work and determination to achieve your goals.
There will be people who are going to tell you that you can’t achieve greatness. There will be people who will try to hold you back from achieving your goals and aspirations in life.
However, it’s important that you block all of that out and focus on your own aspirations in life.
Focusing on other people’s opinions is a quick way to have your own self-esteem plummet. You need to be true to yourself and your own heart.
Step 4: Build Your Confidence
Confidence is a must if you want to achieve high self-esteem. You can’t achieve anything in life if you don’t believe in yourself or your abilities.
There are many ways to build confidence, and it all starts with believing in yourself. This doesn’t mean that you’re “above” everyone else; it simply means that you truly believe in your own abilities to achieve whatever it is that you want to achieve.
In order to build your confidence, you’ll have to start small. You can’t just tell yourself “I’m the best!” and instantly become more confident.
This is a gradual process that requires patience and hard work. But once you get through it, you’ll be more confident than you ever were before.
There are many ways to build your confidence. For some people, it means participating in activities that they’re good at or activities that they simply enjoy doing.
For others, it’s about socializing and meeting people face to face on an interpersonal level. Find what works for you and go from there.
Step 5: Keep Your Eyes on the Prize
Sometimes, we can all get a little distracted.
Sources & references used in this article:
Unified strength criterion for soils, gravels, rocks, and concretes by P Nuernberger – 1996 – Putnam Adult
Permeability creation and damage due to massive fluid injections into granite at 3.5 km at Soultz: 2. Critical stress and fracture strength by Y Yao, J Hu, A Zhou, T Luo, N Wang – Acta Geotechnica, 2015 – Springer
Models for the rheology and statistical strength of uniformly stressed vegetative tissue by RH Schuller – 1979 – Fawcett Books
Stress–strain relationship of normal, high-strength and lightweight concrete by J Orloff – 2005 – Harmony