The battle with self-esteem issues is not an easy one. Despite acting as a decisive factor in the nurture of a particular human being, it is an ‘Issue’ that is neither classified as a mental disorder nor has a direct physical repercussion. Even though it may be a huge trigger for many problems that may lead to the mental or physical harms, self-esteem issue in itself seems pretty harmless a ‘phase’ to many.
Self-shamming is not the same as fishing for compliments, it is when someone ‘genuinely’ believes that they are no good and will never be. It is the feeling of powerlessness and disappointment with the very body, the mind, and the life you live in. Which often leads to physical self-harm in extreme cases and isolation, loneliness and anxiety in others. Between not being a burden to anyone and not feeling vulnerable, it becomes a cyclic process that leaves the sufferer cynical.
A fascinating thing is that absolutely everyone has faced this issue, dilemma, phase or whatever you want to call it.
Therefore, I decided to share a set of 5 reoccurring sentences that I’ve heard in my head in my moments of self-loath and how I counter them. This is not to overlook that there are much more but because upon talking to my friends and family, these were things they could relate to, too. I hope to benefit you and myself by a mutual, collective recovery from this hollowing menace around self-esteem issues.
As a former psychology student and enthusiast, I’ve also tried to keep this in tandem with the Rosenberg Self-Esteem Scale. Note that this scale only works when you are honest with yourself and so will these counters.
1. “I’m so worthless, everyone around me is so much better than I will ever be.”
Processing information is the best way to enhance the self according to various psychological studies. Which is why, when in a dilemma like such, I make a list of everything good in my life in the very moment. It may be challenging to make such a list when you’re at your low. Which is why, you may have to sit down with yourself and use a pen and a paper or a cell phone in the but eventually, you can make this list mentally, as well. The idea is to take a moment and appreciate yourself and life for all the worth it has created.
2. “Why am I not good at anything! I’m always going to be mediocre.”
First off, this is not true, even you know it. Secondly, whenever you get to this, start out by saying it out loud. Sometimes, you can rub off these dilemmas just by making yourself realize how stupid they sound. If that doesn’t quite work, we need some self-reflection again and this time we need to do a SWOT analysis of the self. SWOT or a Strength, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats chart will help you enhance your self-esteem but it will also help you create a clearer roadmap towards realizing your goals. One stone for both the birds. J.K. Please don’t harm any birds.
3. “I look so bad. I don’t deserve or would get anything in life because I look like this.”
Well, well, well. This is as wrong as the earth is flat argument despite the marketing and media campaign bent upon to make you believe so. Which is why, start with engaging with better content, also filter out people who are feeding you this negativity. As an immediate measure, think about the time you felt beautiful, sexy, desirable and try to recreate it. If dressing up or makeup works for you, indulge in that. Go shop, play a sport, work out, watch your favorite program or have your favorite food. Look at yourself in the mirror and say the same thing to yourself, make yourself realize how ridiculous it is. Because it is.
And, if you do want to look in a certain way, achieve your goals using healthy measures; work towards them, don’t sulk.
Self-esteem is an issue of high concern. While some people buy things of high worth, others invest too much time to please others around them in order to achieve it. Sometimes the best way is to seek help, other times it is to work with it. A permanent solution, sometimes, lies in thyself. After all, I don’t preach you to ‘be your own desire’ for nothing.