Struggling with self-doubt or a lack of self-worth? Below I share four simple ways you can incorporate more self-love in your life so you can begin to shift your mindset and truly believe in yourself. You are amazing – here are a few ways you can remind yourself of that daily!
As humans, we will likely always experience feelings of self-doubt and will always struggle with self-worth. So firstly, if you’re doubting yourself or your worth, know that you’re far from alone. We all struggle with these feelings in one way or another, and to varying degrees at different times in our life. Things may happen to us that cause us to question our worth, like losing a job or going through a breakup. Or we may be on the edge of a breakthrough so big that our inner critic starts frantically trying remind us of how unworthy we are in attempts to protect us.
Luckily, there are some things we can do to bolster our sense of worthiness. This doesn’t mean of course that we’ll never experience self-doubt or that our inner critic will go away for good, but the steps below will definitely help remind you just how loved, worthy, and amazing you truly are. Because you are. If you are reading this, stop and close your eyes. Take a deep breath. You are worthy. You are loved. Repeat that to yourself three times, even if it feels silly. Let that sink in, and then continue reading.
The exercise you just did above was an example of an affirmation, or a positive statement you repeat to yourself to reframe your thoughts in a more positive (and truthful) way. There are a lot of ways to use affirmations, and people prefer to work with them in many different ways.
I actually prefer to write positive notes to myself on my phone when I’m feeling particularly down on myself – sometimes I end up writing entire paragraphs. I then come back to that note and reread it when I need to, and it always helps me reset my mind in those tough moments.
You could also write affirmations on sticky notes and leave them around the house. You could set them as reminders on your phone. You could write them in a journal. You could just repeat them aloud. You could buy a deck of affirmation cards and pull one when you need to. Whatever you choose, make it a regular practice and it will get easier.
If you’re not used to working with affirmations, it may feel strange at first, but if you’re struggling with a lack of self-worth, they can really make huge difference. Try just using some form of affirmations for one week and then see how you feel.
Take stock of your accomplishments and positive attributes
It’s so easy for us to not stop and celebrate our achievements or things that we did well. Our brains are trained to focus on the negative as a survival instinct passed down to us from our ancestors for thousands and thousands of years. That serves us well in many instances, but is tougher in our modern world when we tend to just block out any positive feedback we receive and zero in on the negative. This can really damage our sense of self-worth.
So, to counteract our tendency to focus on the negative, we first need to be aware of the fact that that’s just how our brains work. Just knowing this can actually free us up from believing so much in the negative stories we tend to repeat to ourselves over and over.
Then, we need to develop practices to remind ourselves of the positive. Some people will save positive reviews or emails or notes from colleagues and then return to that when they’re having a bad day. You can also write 5-10 things you love about yourself in your journal, or even write 1-2 things daily like a gratitude practice but one focused on self-love instead. List all of your accomplishments from the past year and then really take a moment to celebrate those. Remind yourself of how far you’ve come.
This a HUGE one! We all compare ourselves to others SO much, whether we even realize we’re doing it or not. Comparing ourselves to others will always defeat our sense of self-worth. EVERYONE is on their own journey and is dealing with their own internal issues, no matter if it looks like they have it more together than we do on paper (or on social media). I wrote this post on how to get out of the comparison trap, so if you’re feeling like this is your main issue then head on over to that post for my best tips on how to stop comparing yourself!
Surround yourself with supportive people
This is the toughest one and I know is not attainable for everyone, so that’s why it’s last. We can’t choose our family, so if your family isn’t helping your sense of self-worth, I know how tough that can be. Do whatever you need to mentally protect yourself when you are around unsupportive family members.
We can, however, choose our friends – even when it may not feel like we can. Make sure you’re surrounding yourself with friends and significant others who bolster your sense of self-worth and who inspire you to be the best version of yourself. This doesn’t mean that your partner and friends will only tell you good things about you, but you know that they support and love you and want the best for you. Surrounding yourself with truly loving relationships is a key part in your own self-worth.
Self-worth is a complex issue and one that can’t be solved overnight. But hopefully these tips can help you take the first steps to reminding yourself that you are worthy and you are loved. This is a lifelong process, so don’t feel down if you mess up or you slide back into feelings of self-doubt. That’s normal. What matters most is that we bounce back and remind ourselves just how amazing we truly are.