Thank you for your question!
As you suggested, finding simple, practical strategies for enhancing
one's self-concept, or self-esteem as it's more commonly referred to,
can be quite a challenge. I found several resources that manage to cut
to the heart of the subject with useful, direct, easy-to-apply tips
for improving the way you look at yourself.
Roger Elliot provides some straightforward suggestions in an article
titled "7 Ways to Boost Your Self Esteem Quickly". Among them are the
1. Think back to when you did something new for the first time.
Learning something new is often accompanied by feelings of
nervousness, lack of self belief and high stress levels, all of which
are necessary parts of the learning process. The next time you feel
under-confident, remembering this will remind you that it's perfectly
normal - you're just learning!
2) Do something you have been putting off.
Like writing or calling a friend, cleaning the house, tidying the
garden, fixing the car, organizing the bills, making a tasty and
healthy meal - anything that involved you making a decision, then
3) Do something you are good at.
Examples? How about swimming, running, dancing, cooking, gardening,
climbing, painting, writing? If possible, it should be something that
holds your attention and requires enough focus to get you into that
state of 'flow' where you forget about everything else. You will feel
more competent, accomplished and capable afterwards, great antidotes
to low self esteem!
< http://www.more-selfesteem.com/confidence.htm >
The second suggestion quoted above, accomplishing even a small task,
cropped up frequently in my research ? experts emphasize that even
ticking one item off your to-do list can help boost your self-concept.
You can also derive a sense of satisfaction from taking care of
yourself through exercise, eating well and taking time out for
yourself. An article titled "Three top tips to boost your confidence
and self esteem" suggests improving self-esteem with self-care by
getting up 20 minutes earlier than usual when possible to do one of
* walk (at least part of the way) to work
* exercise for at least 20 minutes, three times a week
* sit down and eat a healthy breakfast
* try 10 minutes of meditation to help you relax and prepare for the coming day
* pamper yourself in the bath or shower
* spend more time with your family
* do those household chores that you'd usually leave until the weekend
* prepare a healthy packed lunch
* wake up to a news radio station - some research shows that the more
active your brain is during your first waking hours, the better your
brain performs during the rest of the day
From more of a cognitive standpoint, you may want to check out "The
Self-Esteem Companion" by McKay, Fanning, Honeychurch and Sutker on
Amazon.com. It appears to offer the layman-friendly, practical advice
you're seeking. In a section titled "It's a Wonderful Life," for
example, the authors suggest making a list of people whose lives you
have touched and how, whether in ways big or small, whether now or
forty years ago, and whether they remember it or not, positing that "A
key element of self-esteem is to know you have a place in the world
and no one else could fill it in quite the same way as you." Here's a
sample reader review:
"I really enjoyed the straightforward simplicity of this little book.
I also gained many practical tips for reinforcing my own esteem. I
recommend it to anyone who has ever had a self-critical thought."
You may also find the following resource useful:
10 tips to Kick Start Your Self Esteem
< http://www.singlescafe.net/esteem.html >
"Accept all compliments graciously. Don't dismiss or ignore them. When
you do you give yourself the message that you do not deserve or are
not worthy of praise, which reflects low self esteem. It also means
that others will become more reluctant to praise or acknowledge your
abilities, if you don't."
I used the following search combinations to find your answer:
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Please let me know if I can be of further assistance ? all the best!
Clarification of Answer by
19 Dec 2004 11:52 PST
Thank you for giving me the opportunity to clarify my answer!
I've found some resources that are more in line with what you're
looking for. While many mention affirmations, they emphasize the
importance of first releasing and healing faulty beliefs before
applying affirmations in their place -- affirmations, as you implied,
act merely as band-aid solutions if the underlying beliefs aren't
properly dealt with.
Here are some recommendations for books you may find useful:
- Travelling Free: How to Recover From the Past by Mandy Evans
(available on Amazon.com)
Evans uses Bruce di Marsico's "Option Method" for identifying and
changing self-limiting beliefs. Reviewers praise the book for its
simplicity and practicality. Says one reviewer:
"It is enjoyable to read, uplifting and absolutely usable. I have had
my copy for over a decade and I re-read it from time to time just to
remind myself of the possibilities available to me. This book is
positive and practical. There's no fluff in Travelling Free - just the
helpful tools you need to fly."
- Prisoners of Belief: Exposing & Changing Beliefs That Control Your
Life by Matthew McKay and Patrick Fanning (also available at
- Transforming yourself: becoming who you want to be by Steve Andreas
< http://www.realpeoplepress.com/booklist/new.html >
These online articles also offers insights and practical tools for
Changing Core Beliefs by Marc Allen
< http://www.innerself.com/Creating_Realities/allen_marc_02014.htm >
Changing Core Beliefs by Victoria Loveland-Coen
< http://www.innerself.com/Behavior_Modification/core_beliefs.htm >
Note: takes a spiritual/religious approach
Methods for Changing our Thoughts, Attitudes, Self-Concept,
Motivation, Values and Expectations from PsychCentral.com
< http://psychcentral.com/psyhelp/chap14/ >
Our Pathway Foundation's Release and Affirm tool
< http://www.cyquest.com/pathway/tool3.html >
A four step model for changing core beliefs: Observe, set an
intention, release the old, affirm a new belief
I used the following searches to clarify your answer:
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steps change core beliefs
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Hope this gives you the direction you're seeking - all the best!