How to Boost Self Esteem in 8 Simple Ways

- | 97 Aha! comments | Posted in category: Self Improvement

Woman shows how to boost self esteem being happy

Have you ever felt the need to boost self esteem in order to feel good and complete about yourself?

There are moments in life when people feel down and rejected. At such times, they experience a lack of confidence and self-worth.

Do you also feel that you are insufficient and lack in many areas of life? If your answer is yes, you need to check out the ways to boost self esteem as mentioned later in the post.

Boosting self esteem isn’t tough, especially if you are ready to work for it.

However, before that, let me tell you a little about what is self esteem as many people tend to confuse it with self confidence.

“You yourself, as much as anybody in the entire universe deserve your love and affection.” ~ Buddha

What is Self Esteem

Simply stated, self esteem is how you judge yourself as a person. It is your opinion about yourself, how you accept, respect, and value yourself. So, it is all about YOU.

Self esteem simply means to appreciate yourself for who you are – along with the faults and everything else.

Some people think themselves to be unattractive, ugly, unlovable, useless, losers, worthless, or they remain depressed and miserable about the way they are.

While others might have had a bad childhood, been hurt in their relationships, or lost a job, and all of this affects them negatively. Such people are said to be suffering from low self esteem.

Thinking low about yourself often leads to the development of mental health problems, and if the problem gets severe – low self esteem can even indirectly lead to death.

But you don’t have to worry if you are undergoing such conditions, as there are many ways to boost self esteem.

“To be beautiful means to be yourself. You don’t need to be accepted by others. You need to accept yourself. “ ~Thich Nhat Hanh

Difference Between Self Esteem and Self Confidence

Self esteem is more about your sense of personal worth, whereas self confidence is the confidence you have in yourself. It’s how you evaluate your ability to do certain things and be successful.

You could’ve all the confidence in yourself, but still feel incomplete and worthless. However, contrarily, a person with high self esteem may have more self confidence, or will find it easy to develop self confidence.

Self esteem is a general assessment of yourself, while self confidence is related to specific tasks, problems and challenges you face. Thus, self confidence is one part of self esteem.

Self esteem is a much broader concept than self confidence because it literally affects everything you undergo. If there is anything you want to change in your life – you have to start by boosting self esteem.

Not to mention that high self esteem doesn’t mean an inflated ego or pride. Instead, it’s an honest opinion of yourself.

Hope this helped explain the difference between both these terms. 🙂

“Whatever you are doing, love yourself for doing it. Whatever you are feeling, love yourself for feeling it.” ~ Thaddeus Golas

Now, let’s see how and what you can do to boost self esteem in yourself.

Ways to Boost Self Esteem

There are many ways to build self esteem, and am sure you can add a lot to this list. So, be sure to let me know in the comment below.

1. Focus on your positive points

How many of you walk up to the mirror in the morning and start finding flaws? Don’t do that! You need to start concentrating on things you are good at, instead of what you aren’t.

Woman looking into mirror not feeling good

Boost your self esteem by telling yourself that you have pretty eyes, or that you are beautiful and have lovely features. Or that you have achieved what you wanted to within a short period.

Simply list out what you are good at, and feel happy about it because you have achieved it. When you see yourself in the positive light, it helps to boost your self esteem.

When I feel insecure at times, I look at the root cause and try to remove or sort out the main problem. I appreciate these opportunities too as they always make me look within and find solutions.

When you believe in yourself, gather the courage and remain optimistic – you can achieve a lot. Self esteem creates a feel-good factor, which makes you like yourself and this way others like you too.

2. Keep aside all negative talks

You cannot build self esteem if you keep telling yourself that you are stupid, not good enough, worthless, or if you keep putting yourself down.

If you keep having such a low self esteem about yourself, or torture yourself mentally and verbally, you certainly wouldn’t feel good about yourself. More so, sometimes you start taking these false images to be true.

You need to tell yourself that these negative feelings aren’t the real truth, and don’t internalize such thoughts too much.

Instead, when you use positive and hopeful statements, and encourage yourself by avoiding negativities, you are more likely to build up self esteem.

Also, avoid negative self-talk that will stop you from enjoying the success you have achieved. Instead, honor and celebrate your achievements and watch how it will boost self esteem in you.

Similarly, you can improve your self esteem by being in the company of friends who cheer and uplift you.

You need to nurture relationships with those who appreciate and value you, instead to be with those who criticize you.

3. Enjoy yourself and find something special in each day

Another way to boost self esteem is to enjoy what you do, whether it’s cooking, painting, blogging, or picking up any other hobby. Simply try something you’ve never done before, or just get creative.

You could do the following –

  • Listen to your favorite song, or download the music you like.
  • Take a friend along and go for hiking, fishing, boating, or just walk on the beach.
  • Venture out and go swimming in the ocean or lake for a change.
  • Develop one good habit every week.
  • Go on a shopping spree.
  • Start penning your thoughts in a grateful journal.
  • Go back and think of all the good moments you’ve had.
  • Call an old friend and talk long or meet up for lunch – just reach out and connect.
  • Join a gym or have fun at the exercise class.
  • Make new like-minded friends, and go out having fun with them.
  • Practice to be quiet and listen to your inner-self.
  • RELAX and let go! Don’t let anxiety and stress get to you. (This one’s for me too!)

For boosting self esteem, just try and do one thing daily, and do it well. When you finish that task, don’t forget to give yourself a pat on the back for doing a good job!

Honestly speaking, it’s been quite a while since I practiced this one myself. I need to find the time to enjoy myself too once in a while. Don’t you too?

4. Give back in some way

Contributing in your own way is another great way to boost self esteem. When you give something to others, you strengthen the fact that you have something to offer to the world.

You could try helping people in your way, visit nursing care facilities if they give permission, or even try volunteering at times.

Or do things like buying coffee for a co-worker, donating, holding the door for someone, offering your seat to a senior. When you do good deeds like these, you’ll feel good about yourself.

I love to reach out and help as many people as I can through this blog, and it surely gives a huge boost to my self esteem 🙂

Remember, when you shift your focus on something or someone else, your self esteem boosts up and you gain self confidence.

5. Take risks

Another way to boost self esteem is to get out of your comfort zone and take positive risks. If you do that you feel better about yourself. You might ask – why?

man climbing cliff height with bare hands

That’s because when you overcome hurdles, you are also able to overcome your personal fears and able to see your inner strengths. This builds self esteem – doesn’t it?

I’m sure like me, most of you have taken risks to do things you wouldn’t have done otherwise. Didn’t it make you feel good when you achieved your goals? Wasn’t it a morale booster? It sure was for me!

All risks have an element and chance of failure, but you will gain self confidence if you go ahead and show that you don’t fear failure.

You need to just go ahead, take the risk and just do it. Go with your instincts, as most of the time they are right. This is one way to boost self esteem and gives a sense of achievement.

6. Never compare yourself to others

You are you – and no one else. So, don’t compare yourself to others or how much they have done or achieved. Or that why you can’t be as good as them – such comparisons never end.

You will only feel unsatisfied, never find peace, and face low self esteem if you compare yourself to your friends, family, or other acquaintances. All of this will certainly not raise your self esteem, instead sadden you further.

I know this is tough to achieve, but you need to understand that you should compare yourself to no one other than yourself.

Instead, set achievable goals for yourself. When you do that, you are more likely to get what you want. Your self esteem and belief in your abilities will grow when you reach these goals.

7. Regularly exercise, eat right, and take care of yourself

This might not sound like a tip to boost one’s self esteem, but it is! Effective exercise makes you feel positive and good about yourself.

It gives you a sense of achievement, and most importantly, it stimulates the release of happy hormones.

Try this out – lift your chin, hold your chest high, push back your shoulders, and walk across the room. How did it feel?

Didn’t a simple thing like changing your posture improve your self esteem and make you feel good about yourself?

That’s because your emotions are connected to your physical body, and it affects how you feel. Always listen to your inner voice and follow your heart.

You need to also be careful of your food choices and nourish your body well. Avoid too much of fat in your diet, and eat more of well-balanced and nourished meals.

These will boost your self esteem and give you energy, which will make you feel good about yourself, and not overstuffed or sluggish.

The simplest way to boost self esteem is to take care of yourself. You can do that by listening to your body, especially when it tells you to sleep, relax, exercise, and eat.

I’m again guilty in this one as I need more sleep than I’m getting presently – a good reminder for me!

8. Look and feel your best, and keep smiling

There’s much more to than what meets the eye – isn’t it? In the same way, there’s much more to who you actually are, than what you think.

woman dancing with umbrella feeling good

With that said, one way to boost self esteem is to make efforts to look your best. When you do that, it will lift your mood and you will like yourself more.

Try out things like improving the way you present yourself, buying a nice outfit, getting a stylish haircut, or just anything that makes you look good.

Most importantly, dress yourself up with a smile and be happy for being YOU. A smile costs nothing but gives much – isn’t it.

No one is born with good self esteem – everyone has to work at it. You can develop your self esteem from the way you think and everything you do daily to make yourself feel good.

“The strongest single factor in acquiring abundance is self-esteem: believing you can do it, believing you deserve it, believing you will get it.” ~ Jerry Gillies

Did you know that February is the National Boost Your Self Esteem month? I didn’t know that, but it’s nice to know that there is a month dedicated to boost self esteem 🙂

Sometimes you should just do things that have no goals or objectives other than just to make you feel good and see how it will boost your self esteem.

Once you work on boosting your self esteem, you will feel and look happier, healthier, and much more vibrant.

Here’s a lovely video about how to boost self esteem in simple ways, which I’m sure you will enjoy.

How to Boost Your self Esteem ~ Dominic Davies ~ YouTube Video

I know I made it sound all easy, but it’s not. Changing your self-esteem takes time, patience, and even some trials and errors.

But if you make efforts to be more fair and realistic with yourself and accomplish your goals, the inner strength that comes from within will help you reach new heights.

Setbacks and mistakes are a part of life, and they always teach us something in return. So, don’t fear failures, but learn from them.

Be compassionate and gentle with yourself as you build on your self esteem, though start now! Remember, the greatest journey begins with the first step, which YOU have to take. 🙂

“You are wonderful. Valuable. Worthwhile. Lovable. Not because others think so. Self worth comes from only one place: self.” ~ Karen Salmansohn

Over to you

How do you boost self esteem and maintain it? Are there some more ways of boosting your self esteem? Share in the comment below.

Photo Credit: FreeDigitalPhotos, 123RF Stock Photos

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97 Comments - Read and share thoughts

  1. Rachel Wolany

    2015-12-09 at 7:10 am

    Hey Harleena,

    I really appreciate how you explained the difference between self-esteem and self-confidence. I believe I have the self-esteem to work on any areas where self-confidence lacks. For that I am truly grateful.

    I have plans of looking into the mirror with no hair. I can’t wait to do it, but I am a little fearful. In the new year I face this challenge. There are many reasons for it. But one is to see myself in a totally different way, record it so that I can examine how I feel.

    I do listen to my negative self talk but only to take note. I want to be onto whatever my mind is up to. I just wont stand to linger in negativity. As I was reading this part of the post I was thinking that I am very pleased with how I go about dealing with this area. The habits I have formed really work for me.

    Harleena – your points on how to improve on our self-esteem are motivating. Self love is so important – we are with ourselves for a life time. We really do need to appreciate who we are. Thanks for a wonderful reminder.


  2. Samir

    2014-05-13 at 2:18 pm


    Just landed here after reading about you at “kabenlah” and I guess its been really long time since the last time I visited your blog.

    Seems like I’ve learned new points regarding how to boost self esteem.

    Thanks for sharing.

  3. Clarence

    2014-04-22 at 7:57 am

    I love this great article simply because its teaching you to believe in yourself rather than being affected by the fear of failure.

  4. Mukul Bansal

    2013-08-08 at 1:21 am

    Harleena Ma’am the above mentioned points are have opened my eyes,

    I think I always keep telling myself that I cannot achieve this , that etc.. I am never positive about myself. I keep comparing myself with others (How successful they are and how unsuccessful I am :/) …. Neither Do I have friends who encourage me to do things, they are always negative about me. Maybe the reason is I am myself very negative about myself. I keep looking at my negative sides instead of positive ones 😛 I fear failure and never like taking risks :/ … Where should I start Harleena Ma’am ?? Need Your Help

  5. Michael David Lawrience

    2013-08-03 at 8:30 pm

    Hello Harleena; Great post. As a teacher of self esteem to teen girls I have them learn about their positive strengths, recognize and learn to change negative self talk and rather than comparing themselves to others to begin to learn to love themselves.

  6. Jan Koch

    2013-07-26 at 9:15 pm

    Hello Harleena,

    this post is a true masterpiece.
    I find myself in doubt about my abilities from time to time, especially when I’m under pressure or when a big failure occured. There are those phases coming and going, I guess everyone knows this feeling.

    Thanks for sharing those wonderful methods with us. I’ve just copied that article into Evernote, so that I can access it everywhere when doubts are rising again 🙂

    All the best,

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How to Boost Self Esteem in 8 Simple Ways

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