A Positive Self-Image is important for mental and emotional well-being. It leads to greater self-confidence, self-esteem, and resilience. On the other hand, a negative self-image contributes to feelings of inadequacy, low self-worth, and self-doubt.
As with most changes in the way we think and feel, there is no quick fix to improving self-image. The good news is that there are things you can do!
Try the exercises below to give yourself a boost in self-image.
List 10 Things You Love About Yourself
This is a simple exercise, but one that can be very powerful.
All you need to do is list 10 things you love about yourself! This can be harder than it seems.
Actively seeking out the positive in yourself will make it much easier to see yourself in a positive light.
If you reach 10 and have more to list, keep writing them down! It won’t hurt to have extra things to love about yourself.
List 5 Achievements of Which You Are Proud
Write down at least 5 things you're proud of.
Achievement can be enormous (ie. winning a national tournament) OR little (passing a test).
Reminding yourself of your abilities and challenging yourself to overcome obstacles is more important than the achievement itself.
Write lengthy accounts of each accomplishment to build self-esteem.
List 3 Occasions Where You Overcame Adversity.
Adversity can range from institutional and structural, like gender or racial inequality, to personal, like anxiety or despair.
Record each of these 3 events to remind yourself of your power, perseverance, and potential.
Repeat if you can think of more than 3 times till you run out of things to write about.
List 50 Things You Appreciate About Your Life
This is the biggest and possibly the most time and effort intensive, but it’s worth it.
This exercise can change your self-esteem, perspective, and self-image.
Although gratitude is a great thing to work on experiencing more often, this list goes beyond gratitude to appreciation.
Appreciating how you've benefited from wonderful things in your life makes it easy and natural to feel grateful and optimistic about yourself and your life.
Sharing appreciation is vital. Feel free to share that appreciation with those on your list.
Commit to sharing your appreciation more often as you go forward.
Remember how lucky you are and how many excellent things you have in your life will help you establish and maintain a positive self-image.
If you have more than 50 ideas, keep listing until you run out of ideas.