NiceDay blog: improving your self-worth. Am I good enough?

Do you struggle with anxiety in situations where you are asked to perform or feel like you’re being evaluated? Are you constantly striving to be better, or never satisfied with your own ability at work or your studies? Do you often worry if you are good enough? Maybe you avoid doing things in case of failure? If you identify with the above, it could be that you are struggling with a low sense of worth or self-esteem.

Self-worth

Our self-worth is our internal sense of being good enough. It is about seeing ourselves as worthy and valuable and being content with who we are as a person. Our self-worth is closely linked with our thoughts, feelings and behaviour. If we have low self-worth, it can easily begin to affect our daily functioning and how we feel on a regular basis. In a society that highly values productivity and performance, and one where we are constantly confronted with other people’s lives and achievements online, it becomes easy to define our own self-worth based on perceived performance or achievements and forget that our value as a person is not defined by these factors.

Selective processing

This becomes even harder when we take into the fact humans engage in ‘selective processing’. This means that you tend to take in information that already fits your beliefs and ideas about the world. So if you already have a low sense of self-worth, it becomes even harder to notice evidence and information which should tell you otherwise. For example, do you notice yourself ruminating about the one thing you could have done differently that day, instead of thinking about the things that went well? Thus as with most things in life learning our own self-worth takes practice and hard work.

What can you do to improve your own self-worth? 

Learning to accept ourselves as we are and finding a new meaning of value and self-worth is worth the investment! It can provide a great amount of relief, reduce suffering and open up opportunities for yourself. These are ways to get started:

  • Listen to uplifting music – listen to a song or artist that makes you feel good about yourself, or gives you extra self-belief. It can be a great little boost in the moments you are struggling.
  • Accept your weaknesses – making mistakes and being imperfect are all part of being a human being. 
  • Keep a positive diary! – write down 3 positive things or things you are proud of each day. It can be easy to focus on the negatives, but this exercise can help you find more balance in your thinking. 
  • Become aware of your inner critic and practise some self-compassion – our self-talk can have a bigger influence on us than we realise. 
  • Investigate how you define worth or value in others, except for their performance or achievements – think about someone you admire or appreciate and ask yourself what you value about them. What characteristics do they have that make them a worthy person in your life? Are they empathetic, funny, strong, patient or kind? Think about how these characteristics relate to yourself. Do you also possess some of these qualities to some degree? 

Professional help

Are you struggling with self-worth, or do you identify with some of the issues above? A professional can help you to increase your self-worth. You can find more information about treatment with NiceDay here.

 

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Martijn Thomas

Hi, I am Martijn, psychologist at NiceDay. In my spare time I like to produce music, exercise and hangout with friends.

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