At some point in their lives, everyone struggles with a negative self-image. If you’re one of those considered “lucky,” then it’s usually not something which lasts very long and you can usually get out of it on your own. Then there are those of us who struggle with a negative self-image all of our lives and no amount of reassurance or “pep talks” can get us out of it. Regardless of which category you fall into, it does take work to find a better self-image and get away from negativity. This is why low self-esteem is so prevalent in today’s society, many simply don’t know how to get out of their negative self-image and self-talk.
If you’ve realized that you’re dealing with a negative self-image, you’re also ahead of the game- many don’t even realize that they self-sabatoge or that their self-image is so negative, which can cause repeated instances of being hurt by others, feeling “worthless”, and wondering “Why me?” when something happens in their lives that cause pain or anger. It has been proven that if you suffer from low self-esteem or have a negative self-image, then people are far more likely to treat you badly or “walk all over” you. The reason for this is quite simple, you can’t demand respect from others and expect positive relationships with others if you don’t respect yourself or have a positive self-image.
The good news is, you can talk your way to a better self-image. All you have to do is really want to make your life better and know that working on your self-image is one of the best ways to do that. You have to truly want to view yourself better and treat yourself better, because otherwise, you’ll self-sabatoge your own efforts at improving your self-image. The first step is to realize what it is about yourself that you view negatively, work to make changes, but then also accept that you are YOU- a unique, beautiful individual! What you view as shortcomings or things about yourself that you view negatively are what make you the unique and special individual that you are.
Stop negative self-talk: This is the most important thing you can do for yourself. If you find that you have a tendancy to over-react or be emotional, don’t call yourself “crazy” or “unpredictable.” If you find yourself overweight or underweight, don’t call yourself “fat” or “too skinny.” Embrace the things about yourself that make you unique. If you can’t seem to stop the negative self-talk immediately (and most of us can’t!), then try using affirmations. Find the things about yourself that are your best features, traits, etc. Work on accepting yourself as you are. Affirmations are a valuable way to talk to you way to a better self-image.
Regardless of whether it’s a bad habit, something about your body or looks that you feel are negative, or a personality trait- you can talk your way into a more positive self-image. For example, if you feel like your weight is an issue- Tell yourself something along the lines of: “I love and accept myself the way I am, I am beautiful both inside and out.” If you feel that anger is an issue- Tell yourself “I am a calm person, I love and approve of myself the way that I am- I am slow to anger.”
Repeating affirmations 15-20 times in the morning and evening each day will help you to internalize positive thoughts and will help you to have a better self-image. To remind yourself to do your affirmations, you can tape them to your bathroom mirror, a bedroom wall, somewhere in your kitchen, the dash of your vehicle, etc. It really helps to say affirmations and within a very short amount of time, you’ll find that you’ve talked yourself into a better self-image.
Journalling is also another good way to work through any issues you might have and to talk your way to a better self-image. You can actually write your affirmations in your journal, and through writing them out, you can internalize them even more. Be careful not to record negative feelings to yourself or focus only on negative feelings while journalling, the point of journalling for a better self-image is to help your self-image and focus on the positive, not the negative or percieved negative.
You can talk your way to a better self image, all you have to do is to really try and focus on making a positive change. You’ll find yourself pleasantly surprised!