It’s still February, one of the dreariest, wettest months of the year (even in my area of southern California). If you’re like a lot of baby boomers and seniors, you dumped your New Year’s resolutions weeks ago, you’re stuck indoors because of stormy weather, and feeling a bit blue. Days are short and grey, and the incidence of seasonal affective disorder (SAD or “winter depression”) is fairly high.
It’s no wonder February has been designated International Boost Self-Esteem Month. Whether you call it confidence or self-esteem, how you feel about yourself is critical for your well-being. Although some aspects of self-worth develop during childhood, most experts agree that self-esteem changes over the years. But one aspect that does not change: the opinion that matters most is often the most critical–your own.
Fortunately, there are self-help strategies you can adopt to improve confidence. For example, exercise is correlated with higher feelings of self-worth. Just setting a goal of walking 10 minutes a day and checking that off your list increases feelings of self-efficacy, the belief you have in your ability to be successful. Setting a regular sleep schedule can help increase the amount of shut-eye you get, and we all know how much better we feel after a good night’s sleep. Eating a diet full of fruits and vegetables, and decreasing sugar and processed foods can help support your body’s immune system.
Also, be kind to yourself! Don’t expect perfection–it’s impossible to attain and its pursuit stops many of us from even starting a new direction. Don’t dwell on mistakes. And if you didn’t cause it and you can’t control or change it, let it go.
Here are three additional tips to boost feelings of self-worth from Tiffany Baker, Founder of The Empowerment Center in Temecula, CA, and Gallup Certified Strengths Coach:
Stop comparing yourself to others
Don’t de-value yourself, your looks, your family, your life. You’ll always find somebody who’s “better” than you in some way. So look at what you have, then acknowledge and celebrate just one thing about yourself that’s good.
Adopt positive self-talk
We often take on other people’s narrative about ourselves, and it’s not always positive. As a result, we can adopt self-talk that’s filled with negativity. So become aware of critical thoughts, then begin to challenge and change them.
Have hope that something will change
One of Tiffany’s favorite quotes is, “When hope grows, miracles blossom!” She asserts that we have to look some place new to find people who celebrate and support us. Join a group with similar interests (are you good at sewing?), enroll in a class, or give-back to your community by helping others. And don’t give up! Surround yourself with healthy people until you find somebody who believes you’re “the best thing since white bread!”
To find out more about how exercise and a healthy diet can lift your mood, give me a call!
We can discuss some practical tips and discover if any of my programs or classes are a good fit for you.
If you’d like to schedule that call with me, just CLICK THIS LINK, and let me know in the message that you would like a 1-on-1 call with me right away and I will be in touch to schedule that – oh, and leave me your phone number in there too since email is not as reliable as it used to be! Thanks.