Overcoming Low Self-Esteem to Live with Confidence

Lisa Cartlidge Hypnotherapy, Gloucestershire
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Increase your Self Esteem and Rediscover your Confidence

Confidence is often seen as the cornerstone of a fulfilling life. It's the driving force that enables you to take risks, embrace challenges, and face the world with a sense of self-assuredness. It is impossible to have confidence if you have low self esteem.

Understanding Low Self-Esteem

Low self-esteem is a personal struggle that often goes hand in hand with diminished self-confidence. While confidence radiates belief in one's abilities and self-worth, low self-esteem is its negative counterpart, marked by self-doubt, self-criticism, and a reduced sense of self-value. It frequently originates from internalised negative self-perceptions, past experiences that have left lasting scars, or the pervasive influence of critical internal voices.

"Locked Door: Low self-esteem is akin to standing in front of a locked door. You possess the potential and opportunities on the other side, but your self-doubt acts as the key that's gone missing. You know there's a world of possibilities beyond that door, but you can't access them because your self-esteem is the barrier holding you back."

Individuals grappling with low self-esteem frequently wrestle with an incessant cycle of self-doubt, harbouring a deep-seated belief that they are not good enough or deserving of success and happiness, they can be left with Crippling Anxiety.  Life choices become challenging, as opportunities for growth are often avoided due to fear of failure or the gnawing feeling of unworthiness. 

"Low self-esteem often has deep roots in past experiences that can leave lasting imprints on an individual's sense of self-worth. Consider, for instance, a dysfunctional family environment where emotional needs went unmet. 

Growing up in such a difficult situation can foster feelings of inadequacy, as individuals may internalise the belief that they are somehow responsible for the family's dysfunction or that they are inherently unworthy of love and care. Similarly, being subjected to bullying at school can also be a source of low self-esteem. 

The hurtful words and actions of others can lead to a long-lasting negative impact on an individual's self-image, creating a lack of confidence and lingering belief that they are not deserving of respect or kindness, it can also activate your nervous system in fight or flight, leaving you feeling constantly on edge.

Overcome Low Self-Esteem and Build Confidence

Overcoming low self-esteem begins with a comprehensive exploration of one's past, delving into the origins of these emotional wounds and the negative beliefs they've generated. 

By revisiting and reframing these self-perceptions, individuals initiate a transformative process that gradually replaces doubt with a growing sense of self-worth and self-love.

Therapy, self-help techniques, and a strong support system, including the nurturing encouragement of friends and family members, serve as invaluable tools for addressing and healing low self-esteem. 

Through the practice of self-love and self-acceptance, individuals can embark on a journey to construct a healthier self-image, gradually releasing the pervasive grip of low self-esteem."

Unlocking Your Full Potential: 

Low self-esteem can be a barrier to personal growth and fulfilment, silently undermining your confidence and casting shadows on your aspirations.  But the good news is that it is possible to go on a transformative journey of self-discovery. 

With awareness, courage, and a commitment to self-improvement, you can unlock your full potential and cultivate a profound sense of self-worth.

Addressing low self-esteem begins with a comprehensive exploration of one's past, delving into the origins of these emotional wounds and the negative beliefs that have been generated over a long time.  You can revisit and reframe these self-perceptions and this can be a game changer in the transformative process that gradually replaces doubt with a growing sense of self-worth.

How to Increase your Self Esteem: 

To truly help others and make a positive impact in the world, you must prioritise your own well-being first. This concept is often compared to the safety instructions on an airplane: 

“Put your own oxygen mask on first before assisting others." 

It underscores the importance of addressing your own needs and nurturing self-worth before extending your support to others.  However, if you've struggled with low self-esteem, this step can be especially daunting. 

Overcoming low self-esteem involves you facing your fears of being criticised, showing vulnerability, or asserting your own needs, this can feel like a monumental challenge. It requires you to be brave and courageous to step out of your comfort zone and embrace self-compassion to acknowledge that you, too, deserve care and attention.

Building Self-Worth Brick by Brick

Healing low self-esteem involves recognising that self-worth isn't a fixed, unchangeable attribute. It's a dynamic quality that can be nurtured and grown. In recent years, the prevalence of social media and its constant stream of curated, seemingly "perfect" lives and images has contributed to a distorted perception of self-worth. We're bombarded with images of flawless beauty, unattainable success, and seemingly perfect lives. This can lead us to believe that we, too, have to be perfect in every way, which can be incredibly damaging to our self-esteem.

The reality is that none of us are flawless, nor do we have to be. We all have strengths and weaknesses, and that's what makes us uniquely human. Recognising the good qualities within ourselves is a crucial step in nurturing self-worth. It's about acknowledging our talents, virtues, and accomplishments, no matter how small they may seem. These are the building blocks of self-esteem, the bricks we use to construct a healthier self-image.

At the same time, it's important to accept that there will be areas where we are not so proficient, where we have room for improvement. These areas aren't weaknesses but opportunities for growth and development. We can choose to either let them go, accepting that perfection in every aspect is neither necessary nor attainable, or view them as future challenges to improve.

In essence, building self-worth brick by brick means embracing your imperfections, seeing them as part of what makes you who you are. It's about learning to appreciate your uniqueness, understanding that you don't have to meet an unrealistic standard, and realising that you are deserving of love, respect, and happiness just the way you are. Your journey to self-worth is not about achieving perfection; it's about growing, learning, and becoming the best version of yourself while accepting that you are already valuable as you are.

Bridging the Gap for a Fulfilled Life

By dedicating time to explore the depth of your mental health issues and addressing the pervasive influence of negative self talk, you can empower yourself to untangle the intricate web of self-perception that often contributes to lack of self-confidence and low self-esteem. 

This introspective journey often brings to light different things about your past, experiences, or external influences that have shaped you.

Once you've grasped these essential aspects, you can begin the transformative journey of reframing your self-perceptions and nurturing self control. This shift holds the potential to profoundly enhance your sense of self confidence, allowing your to embrace a newfound sense of self-acceptance in all areas of life, ultimately leading to a more fulfilled life.

How to Increase Your Self-Esteem and Confidence: 9 Proven Steps to Boost Your Self-Worth

From Weeds to Blooms: 

Low self-esteem is akin to tending a neglected garden filled with invasive weeds that suffocate the potential for growth and beauty. With self-discovery and self-acceptance, it's like pulling out those weeds, allowing the vibrant flowers of self-worth to bloom and flourish. The once barren garden transforms into a tapestry of colours, symbolising the realisation of your true worth.

  1. Embrace Self-Acceptance: Accept that you have strengths and weaknesses. Self-esteem grows when you acknowledge your shortcomings without judgment. This self-acceptance is the foundation upon which confidence can be built.
  2. Set Realistic Goals: When navigating the path from low self-esteem to confidence, setting realistic goals is a crucial stepping stone. The process begins by acknowledging that personal growth and progress occur over time. Like a student in high school gradually mastering a subject, your journey towards improved self-confidence starts with small victories. By setting attainable goals, you make it easier to access a sense of achievement. With each goal you reach, your self-esteem takes a turn for the better, reinforcing your self-confidence.
  3. Fully Understand the Power of Positivity: Challenge the negative self-talk, replacing self-criticism with self-compassion is a powerful tool.  Negative thoughts can be like toxic people you've unknowingly allowed into your life. As you confront these self-critical thoughts, replace them with positive affirmations. Treat yourself as you would a dear friend, and watch as your self-love and self-confidence steadily grow.
  4. Practice Self-Care: A important tool for developing self-confidence and boosting your emotional state is incorporating self-care into your daily routine. This means taking time for your physical health and emotional well-being. Think of it as nourishing your favourite features, allowing them to shine. Engage in regular exercise and eating a nutritious diet to improve your physical health, along with practicing relaxation techniques to foster emotional well-being. 
  5. Visualise Success: The power of visualisation cannot be overstated when it comes to fostering self-confidence and countering low self-esteem. In your mind's eye, picture yourself succeeding in various aspects of life, whether it's in your personal relationships or professional pursuits. This practice of positive affirmations strengthens your core beliefs and slowly unravels the false beliefs that have held you back. By regularly envisioning your success, you reinforce positive beliefs about your capabilities.
  6. Celebrate Achievements: Remember, it's not just the big wins that matter. Every small achievement, every baby step you take on your journey to self-confidence, deserves recognition. At the end of the day, it's the collection of these achievements that shapes your self-confidence and dismantles the negative effect of low self-esteem. Celebrating these milestones is akin to adding layers of flavour to a dish; each layer contributes to the overall richness and depth of the experience.
  7. Learn from Setbacks: Setbacks are part of life's tapestry, and your journey from low self-esteem to self-confidence is no exception. When life throws challenges your way, it's important to reframe these moments as opportunities for growth. 
  8. Overcome a fear of failure:   A quote of Einstein's was “failure is success in progress”.  Understand that every setback offers a chance to adapt, to learn, and to become more resilient. Think of it as the main character in your life story, overcoming adversity and growing with each chapter. 
  9. Seek Support: Sharing your struggles and working through them with support can make a significant difference.  On your quest to build self-confidence and banish negative beliefs, seeking support is one of the best thing you can do. Don't hesitate to seek professional help.  
  • Hypnotherapy for Self Esteem  is a great therapeutic approach worth considering, given its unique ability to directly engage with the subconscious mind and effectively reprogram neural pathway, letting go of past experiences and beliefs that are no longer serving you and installing a more positive, confidence mindset.

As a certified hypnotherapist, I have successfully assisted numerous individuals re-set their neural-pathway's allowing them to lead a calm and confident life. If you would like further information, please feel free to reach out to me for an informal chat.

Other professional services that you could reach out to could be the NHS, CBT (cognitive behavioral therapy) or a clinical psychologist.  Alternatively a mentor or trusted friend who have walked their own path to self-confidence and can provide guidance and encouragement. Sharing your struggles with those who support your journey makes a significant difference, just as a pinch of black pepper can transform a dish, enhancing its overall flavour.

By incorporating these strategies into your life and acknowledging your own worth, you can gradually shift the balance from low self-esteem to self-assuredness. With time and effort, you can unlock your full potential and live a fulfilling life grounded in self-worth.

Final Thoughts

While confidence and self-esteem are distinct, they are deeply interconnected and can influence the quality of your life. A balanced approach, where you harness the strength of confidence and address low self-esteem, is key to a fulfilled and meaningful existence. Recognise that self-esteem is a journey, and it's okay to seek help along the way. By fostering both self-esteem and confidence, you can unlock your full potential and lead a life that's rich in personal satisfaction and achievement.

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About The Author

Lisa Cartlidge is a qualified hypnotherapist in Stow-on-the-Wold, Gloucestershire.

With over 3,000 hours of experience, my approach differs from traditional counselling as I primarily work in a solution-focused manner.

While we can appreciate the past and its impact, we cannot change it. Instead, I help you to focus on creating the future you desire, leaving you calmer, more confident, and empowered to achieve your goals and dreams.
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