Regardless of age, health, and financial status, your self-esteem can be fragile. In a society where people are held to certain standards, failing to meet others’ and your own expectations can crush your confidence.
It doesn’t help that COVID-19 is still out there, and most people remain stuck at home, unable to do things that help ease negative emotions. If you’re used to coping with stress by traveling, shopping, and meeting up with friends and loved ones, it would feel like you’re just stuck in a rut with no sign of hope on the horizon. Add to that the financial woes brought on by the pandemic, the pressures at work, and the chaos or uneventfulness of home life.
However, even if all these problems seem to be caused by external factors you have no control over, there’s still a way to get back on your feet or feel a little better about yourself every day. But it won’t happen overnight and without some effort on your part.
If you feel frustrated with yourself for having low self-esteem, here are simple ways you can help regain that feeling of self-assurance:
Maintain a Healthy Diet
What you eat affects your everyday life, from your mood, sleep quality, and even your ability to cope with stress. Eating food rich in nutrients, vitamins, and antioxidants can improve your blood circulation, energy levels, and cognitive function, allowing you to fulfill daily tasks and do things that make you feel good about yourself. Plus, it can help ease worries about health, the risk of getting COVID-19, and developing some kind of illness due to prolonged isolation.
A healthy diet is best paired with exercise. If you don’t like working out, yoga is a great compromise as it doesn’t require you to go out, buy expensive equipment, and sweat out too much. Plus, yoga is the perfect indoor exercise. Take introductory classes online and stretch out those tense muscles and joints. Yoga can help you improve your flexibility, combat repetitive stress injuries, and improve blood flow throughout different parts of your body.
More often than not, feelings of insecurity stem from self-induced issues with appearance. One look in a mirror and all you notice are your flabby armpits and neck, dark eyebags, crooked teeth, or side fats poking out of your shirt. If looks matter to your sense of self, you need to make some effort into improving aspects of your face or body, those that you can control, at least. Not feeling good about that smile? Use your free dental benefits and get the best teeth whitening for men. Feeling insecure about your skin? Consider having a skincare routine that will treat your specific issue. On top of that, try to not fixate on your flaws too much, as this can really take a toll on your self-esteem. Take a step back and see if you’re setting impossible standards for yourself.
Mindfulness mediation allows you to focus on your inner self instead of your outer self and gives you a new perspective on what makes you happy. Take a few minutes every day to sit down, release your mind from racing thoughts, and work to find inner peace. It won’t be easy, but it’s just like any skill that takes practice and effort.
Go for a walk
While it’s still wiser to stay indoors at all times, it wouldn’t hurt to get some fresh air and do some light cardio. Just make sure to wear a mask and bring a hand sanitizer with you. Choose a walking route where foot traffic is low so you can practice social distancing. Walking and seeing other people can help make you feel that you’re not alone.
Spruce up your home
A messy house can lead to a cluttered mind and poor self-esteem. Consider spending one of your uneventful weekends decluttering your home, upcycling old furniture, or buying new things to increase your home’s comfort and appeal. Read up on decorating philosophies aimed at improving happiness, such as the “hygge” approach and the KonMari method.
Ditch social media
Quarantine or not, spending too much time on social media is bad for your self-esteem. You will always come across a post, photo, or ad that will make you feel insecure and compare yourself to others. Channel your energy instead into reading a book, watching a good series or film, or learning a new skill. Now is the best time to rekindle past interests and hobbies and be in touch with yourself. Only use social media to stay up-to-date on important news and events or stay in touch with friends and family.
The important thing to know is that it’s OK not to be your best self now. What you and the rest of the world are going through is not easy and is not something anyone prepared for. But if you feel like you can do better, then these are proven ways to keep your self-esteem steady and even make it better than ever.