I am suffering from a lack of confidence. I compare myself with others too much and I never measure up. I am very intimidated by other people and often don’t stand up for myself. I am starting to see the same tendencies in my children and I don’t want to pass this on. How can I help myself and my kids to feel good about ourselves — is there a cure for low self-esteem?
If you want to change the way you feel about yourself and help your children to do the same, you must change the way you think about yourself. Here are some things to work on.
1. Increase your responsibility
Figure out what your responsibilities are. Ask yourself, “Am I doing these things?” If you are letting things go undone, procrastinating doing them or breaking commitments you make to yourself, that must change.
For example, if you commit to go to the gym three times this week. do it. You will feel empowered when you do. When you take consistent action to be responsible for your life and do the things you need to do, you will immediately feel better about yourself. Get help from an expert if needed.
2. Increase your ability to respond to life
Read books, attend personal development seminars and choose to be around positive people. Read books about speaking your truth, trusting yourself or increasing self-esteem.
Look for information on how to be a better spouse or parent. There is an unlimited supply of material out there that can help you to learn and grow. When you are in a process of learning, growing and becoming a better you, you will automatically have increased feelings of self worth.
3. Increase trust
Trust that your value is infinite and absolute. Nothing you do can diminish who you are. You are a divine, irreplaceable, one of a kind amazing soul. You have value because you are a child of God. You are exactly who you are supposed to be and where you are supposed to be in your journey. Choose to trust this fact.
Trust is a choice. You decide how you will experience each moment. You can choose to fear you aren’t good enough or you can choose to feel safe, important and good. Practice choosing trust. Your value isn't on the line, you are here to learn and grow. There is nothing to be afraid of.
4. Increase love
Focus on loving, edifying and listening to people everywhere you go. Make the decision before you walk into a room you are not going to worry about yourself and dwell in fear about your value. Instead you are going to be laser focused on making other people feel valued and important. Can you imagine how you will feel on the way home if this is how you show up?
When you are laser focused on love, fear cannot exist. Fear and insecurity are selfish emotions because they keep you focused on you. When you choose to be a force for love, your insecurities melt away. Be the love everywhere you go and you will discover who you are. Go get them with your love.
5. Listen to your children
The best way to increase self-esteem in a child is to listen to them. When you ask questions about what they think and feel about things and really listen, they feel valued at the deepest level.
Instead of explaining things, ask questions that guide them to discover the truth for themselves. Instead of lecturing, ask questions that help them understand their choices and the consequences on their own. Be a question-asking parent. Be a loving listener. This will also make you feel good about the kind of parent you are becoming.
Help your children understand they are not their looks, their abilities or their performance. Focus more attention on their love for family and friends, their kindness and compassion. Don't give so much validation for looks, abiltites or performance. Focus on the qualities of their character — that is where they will discover their worth.
I am not saying to discount their talents and good looks but to make sure they see "who they are" is the source of their true value — not what they do.
Remember you are the one who determines your value each day. You can choose to listen to the voice of fear that says you aren’t good enough and that compares your extrinsic qualities to others. Or you can tell the voice of fear to be quiet and go away.
You can choose to value yourself intrinsically for the irreplaceable amazing soul you are. You can choose to appreciate your love and goodness because it is really who you are.
You can do this.
“The tragedy is that so many people look for self-confidence and self-respect everywhere except within themselves and so they fail in their search.” — Nathaniel Branden
Kimberly Giles is the founder and president of LDS Life Coaching and www.claritypointcoaching.com. She is a speaker and life coach who has a radio show at www.lifeadviceradio.com.
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These articles were originally published on KSL.COM
Kimberly Giles is the president and founder of Claritypoint Life Coaching and 12 SHAPES INC. She is an author and professional speaker. She was named one of the top 20 advice gurus in the country by Good Morning America in 2010. She appears regularly on local and national TV and Radio.