Throughout my career, I have noticed that so many of us, myself included, don’t value ourselves and we often have low self-esteem and self-confidence. This can be reflected in many of our behaviours socially and at work, for example, having the confidence to speak up when a patient needs an urgent medical review, it could be taking responsibility for actions that weren’t yours or aren’t yours to be responsible for, it might be that you are overweight, underweight, amazingly fit or unfit.
To learn more about how to increase self-esteem I have been drawing on the work of Marissa Peer, a psychologist, now working in the US. Marissa explains that as human beings we face three challenges, the first is that we don’t think we are enough, the second is that we believe that we can’t cure the things that ail us, and the third is that we believe we are different and therefore not deserving of connection. The antidote to these three things is ‘I am enough’ the deep, unrelenting belief that you have always been enough, you are enough and you will always be enough.
For those of us who don’t yet fully believe that we are enough, it might help to understand how the brain works in order to start increasing our self-confidence. According to Marissa there are three things to be understood and accepted about the mind.
1. The mind always does what it believes is in your best interest. For example, if you had a bad experience in a particular circumstance then the mind will remember this and will try to protect you from that situation in the future by inducing a certain behaviour or feeling.
2. The way you feel about anything is down to the pictures in your mind and the words that you tell yourself.
3. Our mind really likes what is familiar, so for most of us we need to start making negative self-talk unfamiliar and positive self-talk and confidence familiar.
It’s never too late to start building self-confidence and it can absolutely change your life and the way you live in your body and in your world. The change can be rapid, so let’s get started on it today! For more information on Marrisa Peer and her reflections on self-confidence and self-worth, go to her website: https://www.marisapeer.com/