Healthy lives for young people
Wellbeing

5 steps to improving your self esteem

Liking who you are as a person (sometimes called self-esteem) is important for sex, relationships and life in general. Liking who you are can help you to have better relationships and just feel more confident in general.

People who really don’t like themselves can be more at risk of having unhappy or even abusive relationships as they don’t feel like they deserve to be loved.

There can be lots of reasons for not feeling confident, including having had a hard time growing up, bad experiences in relationships, and comparing yourself to other people too much.

Here are our 5 steps to feeling better about yourself:

  1. Spend time with people who make you feel good. If you’re having a bad time, spend more time with people who make you feel good about yourself
  2. Do fun and enjoyable things. Having fun things planned into your life can help you to feel better and enjoy life more
  3. Keep a diary of nice things people say about you or do for you. It’s easy to only look at the bad and forget the good. If you’re feeling down on yourself make a record of good things people say about you or do for you. You might discover that there’s a lot more good in your life than you thought
  4. Think about what’s good about you. Making a list of what is good about you can help you feel better. Maybe also ask your friends and people you trust what they like about you
  5. Look after yourself. Getting regular exercise and eating well helps you keep fit and will help you feel better about yourself too. Drinking alcohol or taking drugs may make you forget about your problems while you’re drunk or high. But they’re more likely to make you feel worse about yourself in the long run.

You might also wish to explore our advice on how to be happy which recommends five proven ways to make yourself feel happier.

If you feel very low in confidence, depressed or worthless, it might be time to talk someone about the way you feel. You will be taken seriously and there’s lots that can be done to help.

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