“To be loving yourself” is the most common advice we have received in our lives; from a teacher, parent, counselor, or friend. Loving yourself is all you need to be comfortable in your own skin, have faith in yourself, believe in your dreams, and enjoy your life. However, as much as we’ve all been told to love ourselves, doing so isn’t easy.
Many of us may long for a life that we still haven’t achieved. We may be angry with ourselves for the mistakes we’ve made in the past and regret the life we are currently living. All of these things make it hard for one to begin “loving yourself.”
And how does this happen? It can be difficult when we focus on only the wrong things in our lives such as failures, missed opportunities, bad decisions,… and we end up feeling disappointed. If everything seems to be going wrong, it’s pretty difficult to love yourself.
It may be that when you look in the mirror, you don’t like the way you look, or how much the scale says you weigh, and then focus on wishing you were 12 pounds lighter.
Spending too much time wishing to be something we’re not hurts self-acceptance and lowers self-esteem. How can we expect to do something like loving yourself when we’re in this frame of mind?
Self Acceptance and Building a Self-Esteem Attitude
Self-acceptance for who you are can help with building a self-esteem mindset and open your eyes to the good things in life, such as your accomplishments, your strengths and other favorable features, as well as the many blessings you have in your life.
Loving yourself in spite of all the flaws, imperfections, and mistakes can improve confidence and greatly help build self-esteem and self-acceptance. But what does this mean? “Loving yourself” means to:
- accept your reality—what’s real for you; what’s true for you
- be comfortable with who you are, not comparing yourself to someone else
- recognize that you have what it takes to change your life.
But in addition, loving yourself entails saying “yes” to what you believe in. Know what it is that you do believe in and know that that is true for you. Support your own purposes without allowing negative thoughts to creep in to control you or dictate how you should live. This is YOUR life to live.
It also means taking care of yourself. We often get busy with life’s demands without stepping back and making sure that we are fulfilling our own needs without feeling guilty of self-indulgence.
It means moving from “I hate my life” to “I can change my life” and “I have the best life” even when you don’t feel like it because you are currently unaware of those positive things in your life and the fact that you have the power to turn your life around.
Loving yourself is the key to accepting yourself and building your self-esteem.
Top 7 ways of Building a Self-Esteem Mindset and Self-Acceptance
- Acknowledge Your Reality
Acknowledging your own reality (what you believe), owning up to your mistakes without going into regret but by learning from them, and accepting outcomes will help to live a fulfilling life that isn’t centered on “I should have…” or “If only…”.
Accepting where you are, as well as who you are at this point in time will build your self-esteem and self-confidence and make it easier to be more comfortable in your own skin.
Another thing is to focus on what you have—not just what you own but what you can easily experience with your senses. A good walk will help achieve some of this or some reorganization or inspection of what you own.
What you can do is also important. Write a list of things you are able to do. This helps one realize that one can improve things for the better and build self-esteem.
So go ahead and write those lists:
- Things real to you
- Things you have (own)
- Things you enjoy having as experiences
- Things you can do
- Keep a List of Your Achievements
Keeping a list of past accomplishments keeps one focused on self-worth, reminds us that we can achieve anything we want, and gives a reason to always look forward to another day. It shifts attention from, “My life is pointless” to “I am here for a reason,” and helps us to reach the goal of loving ourselves and increasing self-acceptance.
No achievement is too small. Write them down.
- Set Aside Time for What You Love
When one fails to take care of himself, meet his basic needs, or set aside some time for what he loves, he hurts his self-esteem and his self-confidence which leads to feelings of inadequacy.
List out activities you enjoy doing and even some you think you don’t have time for. You might be surprised.
Allocate at least an hour a day to what you love.
This will give you a reason to start loving yourself and remind you that your life is worth living.
- Practice Promoting Yourself Positively
Often in the past, we have found ourselves thinking negatively about ourselves.
However, one of the most effective methods of building self-esteem is by avoiding those negative thoughts and practicing self-esteem affirmations.
This gives you a reason to begin loving yourself, accepting your reality (the way things currently are), forgiving your mistakes, and having confidence in what you can achieve.
Post a list of your best self-esteem affirmation. Include “My life matters,” “I matter,” I can reach any goal I set,” and “I can learn any skill.”
Read this list daily to build your self-acceptance, love your life, and appreciate yourself as you are while striving for greater achievement.
- Pay No Attention to What Others Think
There are people in this world who just have to say something negative or give bad advice or opinions. Worrying about what they think, say, or do stops us from living the way we know we’re supposed to and forces us to live life according to how someone else thinks we should.
Concentrating on what other people think—whether family, co-workers or close friends—lowers self-esteem, and keeps us wishing we had someone else’s life. Bottom line, it makes it difficult to start building self-esteem and self-acceptance and to finally start “loving yourself.”
So, go ahead and start loving yourself! Focus on all of the good things in your life as we have covered here, and refuse to let negative opinions control you.
- Reach Out to Raise the Self Esteem of Others
So far, we have covered what you can do to raise your own self-confidence and self-esteem. But this is not complete until we have reversed the introversion factor to one of extroversion.
Building self-confidence and self-esteem in others sets a positive environment around us.
This doesn’t mean taking over the lives of others. It just means to say or do positive things to reinforce the self-importance and capabilities of those around you.
A well-deserved validation, acknowledgment for some achievement. Letting them be who they are, what they want to do, and what they want to have are great self-esteem boosters and self-confidence raisers for them.
As they start loving themselves more, your own environment becomes easier to manage.
- Help Others Around You
This is another great way to extrovert your attention as well, but it is a bit tricky.
Not all people want to be helped. Not all will use help wisely and may just use that help to come back at you.
However, if you reach out to help with the purpose of restoring their own abilities and self-confidence, this works much better than doing things for them.
Validate their strengths. Invalidate their self-invalidation and negative thoughts. Help with doing something for them only to the point they can accept and take over for themselves.
Serving others is one of the greatest things you can do to raise your own self-confidence, self-esteem and get you “loving yourself.”
What does success mean to you? What do you love to do? Remember to do more of what you love, believe in yourself, accept your reality, have faith in your dreams, celebrate your achievements, keep working toward bringing your vision to life, be comfortable with who you are, and start loving yourself more.
This is a daily process that improves over time and becomes more habitual in a good way. Follow the advice in this article and stick to it. Most people begin to feel happier and more positive right away. Some take a little more persistence.
Take notice of your daily wins, and be willing to experience whatever gets in your way. Just remember that you’re in charge and no one can really change who you are. You are awesome. You are perfectly you. There is no other. You are rare and valuable to yourself and others.