Valentine’s Day is for love. It is a day dedicated to loving friends, family, and most importantly, yourself. Flip the script this inward this year. This is the best time to give yourself the proper pampering, loving, and attention you would otherwise be giving someone else. The most important relationship you can have is with yourself. Flip the script, focus on self-love, and strengthen your confidence by turning the focus inward.
Self-love is the foundation that allows us to be assertive, set boundaries and create healthy relationships with others, practice self-care, pursue our interests and goals, and feel proud of who we are. Truth is, you cannot fully love others without it. People who love themselves in a healthy way know that they are flawed yet they accept themselves despite their imperfections. Self-love does not prevent you from caring about others; it simply means you can give yourself the same kindness that you give to others. When you fully love yourself, this gives you the opportunity to move through the world with a deeper compassion for others.
How many times have the thought that “I am not good enough or not smart enough seep through your mind? Far too often, we are overly self-critical. When we do it constantly and fail to see our positive traits, this is likely to be a self-esteem issue. Self-love is an important component of success and happiness. By navigating life’s ups and downs with optimism and a strong sense of self-worth, you gain the motivation needed to achieve your greatest goals. Building high self-esteem should be on everyone’s priority list and this is how you can do it.
Psychology defines self-esteem as a person’s overall sense of their value or worth. It is, in simple words, our attitudes towards ourselves, which can be either positive or negative. Several factors can lead a person to develop high or low self-esteem. It is believed that genetics plays a vital role. Yet, other factors such as age, health, social circumstances, and life experiences are equally important. In the 21st century, maintaining a sense of self-worth has become a huge challenge.
Unfortunately, a low sense of self-worth can manifest in many ways, impacting our emotional and mental well-being. Learning ways to improve self-esteem, beginning with self-love is crucial. But first, let us discuss why this is important and how it can influence our lives.
The Importance of Self Love
Self-love is necessary to living a healthy lifestyle, and a fundamental value that can generate inner peace and positivity. When a person presents signs of low self-esteem, they tend to avoid anxiety-provoking situations. These are situations they believe will be a source of embarrassment or failure. Naturally, these situations can involve school, work, building personal relationships; all of which are important in a person’s life.
With the influx of social media millions of people across the world struggle with their self-esteem. Young adults and teenagers are the most vulnerable demographic. According to a report, in the UK, 61 percent of girls aged 10 to 17 suffer from poor self-esteem. They avoid regular activities such as attending school or family gatherings when they feel bad about their looks. In the U.S. a shocking 96 percent of young girls and boys feel insecure about their appearance.
High self-esteem in children, teenagers, and adults is important for a significant number of reasons. When a person loves feels they are valuable, they believe they can be successful in life. As a result, they are motivated to set goals and work consistently to achieve them. Equally, people who understand their self-worth are better at handling disappointments and negative experiences. Valentine’s Day is the perfect opportunity to flip the script inward.
What Are the Benefits of High Self-esteem?
A self-esteem boost can make a positive difference in your life. Be it delivering a presentation, performing on stage, exceeding expectations at a job interview, or having the courage to pursue a loving and strong relationship. To better understand the importance of self-love or positive self-esteem, here are seven benefits.
1. A strong sense of purpose
When you believe in yourself, you can identify your strengths and skills. This way, it is easy to discover your passion and purpose. Ultimately, this will be crucial for your career.
2. Understanding your value
You are worthy — you deserve a fantastic life! For many people, this is not so obvious. If you have spent the majority of your life feeling like a failure and like there is nothing special about your existence, you will not be able to love yourself. High self-esteem will help you understand your actual value and see life from a positive perspective.
3. Clear decision-making
A person with high self-esteem is good at sticking to and trusting their own ideas. Self-judgement is not a big obstacle to achieving what they want and taking the right steps to do so.
4. Drive to succeed
With everything mentioned above, it comes as no surprise that people with high self-esteem are driven to succeed in everything they do. Clear decision-making, a good understanding of their personal value, and a strong sense of purpose will help them overcome challenges and limitations to succeed.
5. Unafraid of the unknown
Change can be scary, especially for those who do not trust themselves or their ability to adapt to whatever the future has in store. Self-esteem can help a person believe that no matter the upcoming challenges, their skills, and intelligence will help them thrive.
6. Willingness to help others
According to psychology, teenagers and young people with poor self-esteem tend to mistreat their peers and have a hard time building meaningful relationships. On the other hand, people who are in tune with themselves are the first ones to offer a helping hand to those in need. They volunteer, play active roles in their communities, and so on. If you are happy with who you are, chances are you will be spreading that feeling.
7. Balanced mental health
There is a strong connection between the way we feel about ourselves and our mental well-being. According to the WHO, mental health is “is a state of well-being in which an individual realizes his or her own abilities, can cope with the normal stresses of life, can work productively, and can make a contribution to his or her community.” Research has proven that low self-esteem may lead to anxiety, depression, and suicidal thoughts. To cultivate good mental health, changing the deep-rooted feelings you have about yourself it is necessary.
Achieving High Self-esteem With Mindfulness
Self-esteem is not fixed — it is constantly changing and developing with time. For anyone struggling and in need of support, mindfulness can be an excellent way to improve self-esteem. Mindfulness is a state in which your mind is focused on the present moment without any judgment. It is a state of heightened or complete awareness of one’s thoughts, emotions, and experiences. For thousands of years, human beings have cultivated mindfulness through practices such as meditation. It is believed that mindfulness increases positive emotions, compassion, acceptance, and general well-being.
The majority of negative feelings are the product of memories or thoughts about a distressful future. If you feel down, perhaps you are thinking about past failures, negative remarks someone made about you, or you may be imagining worst-case-scenarios. When you are having these thoughts, take a break. Rather than indulging in pessimistic mind chatter, simply acknowledge it for what it is: mind chatter or simple thoughts. This is called being mindful.
Valentine’s Day is the perfect opportunity to flip the script and improve your self-esteem for happiness and success. Everyone struggles with self-worth from time to time. Thankfully, we can improve self-esteem by working consistently on it every day. This is incredibly useful as self-esteem plays a vital role in our relationships, career choices, and overall happiness. Self-love is the foundation that allows us to be assertive, set boundaries and create healthy relationships with others, practice self-care, pursue our interests and goals, and feel proud of who we are.
By Cherese Jackson (Virginia)
Synctuition: Laura Templer
European Journal of Social Psychology: Mindfulness Meditation
Top/Featured/First Inline Images Courtesy of Gerd Altmann’s Pixabay Page – Creative Commons License
Second Inline Image Courtesy of New Direction Coaching Associates – Used With Permission
Synctuition is an Estonian born start-up offering a unique relaxation experience technology. By using the amazing power of 3D sound, Synctuition goes far beyond meditative relaxation providing an immersive mind-travel experience that cannot be compared to any other audio mediation in the world. In its first year, it has become one of the world’s leading mindfulness apps with over four million users in Europe, the U.S., and Asia. I