20th October 2014
Guest Writer for Wake Up World
Self esteem is based on our perceptions. So before introducing ways to boost self esteem and confidence in your life, we must first be able understand what I refer to as the ‘self-concept’.
What is the Self Concept?
Your self-concept is how you view yourself, and the identity through which you perceive the world. It is how you view your strengths, your weaknesses, your passions, the job/career you have, the spouse that you’re with, the goals that you create, your dreams, your daily habits, beliefs, perceived limitations and attitudes. And unless we consistently challenge that self-concept, it will ultimately limit the life that we live.
“The self-image is the key to personality and human behavior. Change the self-image and you change your personality and behavior.” – Maxwell Maltz (author)
In my experience, many people don’t have a clear picture of their self-concept, or a bright picture at that. But we can increase our sense of self-esteem by developing our self-concept, becoming aware and conscious of our self, gradually challenging what we know about ourselves, and learning to use both our strengths and weaknesses to our advantage.
The Power of Self Esteem
“Low self-esteem is like driving through life with your hand-break on.” – Maxwell Maltz
Since self esteem is based on our perception, it also affects our perception of what is possible, therefore developing a higher self esteem can direct your life into many directions. Once we are able to perceive that our accomplishments can be unlimited – that we are unlimited – it helps to determine the capacity at which you set your goals.
Changing the world seems next to impossible according to the general consensus. However it’s only the ones who set the bar at changing the world who are capable of such a feat.
We can take small steps toward our goals. Sometimes we may fall shy. If you have not achieved the goals that you have set, be kind to yourself, as long as you’re taking action towards those goals, and creating new ones as the need arises.
“A goal is not always meant to be reached, it often serves simply as something to aim at” – Bruce Lee.
However unless we build our self-esteem and confidence, our ultimate goals are limited by our self-concept and do not reach us toward our full potential – whatever that may be. Goals born of high confidence lead us to action, actions lead us to consistency, which in turn helps us creates confident habits, which help us create the life in which we will live.
6 Steps to Improving Self-Esteem
1. Become Conscious of Our Thoughts and Actions.
The first step is developing an accurate self-concept. Pay attention to your inner dialogue and become more conscious of your thoughts and actions.
2. Determine and Prioritize Your Values
Consider what is truly valuable in your life. Once we determine and prioritize our values, and stick by them consistently, it helps boost our confidence – for making values based decisions, and for being able to trust ourselves to stick with the program that we set for ourselves. If you can’t trust yourself, how can trust anybody else?
3. Write Down Your Goals
By writing down your goals it pushes those to the back of our subconscious helping us actually push towards achieving them. When we are thinking about accomplishing goals we are in more of a positive state of mind further increasing our confidence.
4. Create a Dream Board
Creating a dream board (or other physical representation of your goals) increases your ability to look far and beyond your current situation in life, both consciously and subconsciously, and visualize the achievement of your goals. This naturally increases your motivation and actions as you go after your dreams.
5. Substitute Negative Thoughts with Positive Ones
Our confidence is directly affected by our state of mind. When we realize that we affect our self-concept by putting limits on what we believe we are capable of, we can substitute the negative affirmations in our internal dialogue with positive affirmations, whenever we become conscious of them.
The more we look for the positives in the way we think about ourselves and others, the more our confidence will rise and positive interactions will flow our way.
6. Ditch the Preconceptions
We tend to get in our own ways when we preconceive the outcome of certain situations based on the way we feel. But as Eckhart Tolle said, our perceptions are often focused through the lens of our past. We must understand that each and every moment is a new moment and that there is a 100% of chance of a different outcome in some way shape or form, depending on how we approach the situation.
The way we view ourselves is the key to living the life that we want for ourselves. What we say to ourselves, about ourselves and about the world, is a large factor in where we go in life and the things that we manifest for ourselves.
About the author:
Motivated by the desire to learn about himself and the people of the world, Matthew Donnelly’s mission is to create a revolution through mind evolution. The founder of RevolutionalMinds.com, he believes that positivity, love, personal growth, human interaction and going for your dreams are the most important things in the world, and lives the belief that by applying faith, attitude and action to our imagination, we can go places that we can’t even fathom.
Visit RevolutionalMinds.com for more information.
This article adapted for Wake Up World by Andy Whiteley.