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The more you feel bad about yourself, the more you will fall out of love with who and what you are. This hurts your self-esteem, self-love and overall mental health. Consequently, it may also hurt your relationship with other people and your quality of life. This article will give you 16 tips on how to stop feeling bad about yourself.
How to stop feeling bad about yourself
Feeling bad about yourself may also be accompanied by self-pity which is the act of feeling sorry for yourself. If you are in search of true happiness and purpose in life, you might want to put self-pity behind you. Because it will hold you back from reaping the best out of life and from living to your full potential. This also means you must stop reliving the horrible or heartbreaking experiences in your past. Never catch yourself ruminating or meditating on a bad past experience. If possible, you must never catch yourself narrating your bad past experiences to anyone. Not until you have completely healed and you are sharing for the purpose of educating and helping others. Not to win sympathy or to grab attention to yourself.
So below are 16 tips on how to stop feeling bad about yourself. Note that not all may apply to you because it’s all dependent on your triggers. Each tip has been written with a particular trigger in mind.
1. Identify the triggers
It’s hard to find solutions if you are ignorant of where the problem is coming from. So the question you might want to answer is, what is it that causes you to feel bad about yourself? For others, it could be a bad memory of abuse or rejection. This can be considered a trigger.
The whole purpose of identifying triggers is to avoid them in order to break a pattern. In this case, when you identify that trigger, since its somehow part of you, you cannot necessarily avoid it. But you can avoid dwelling so much on it and focus on other aspects that boost your self-esteem and self-worth.
2. Be yourself
Being yourself is the best that you’ll ever be because there will never be any other such as you. I guess that makes you unique and special. No?
The problem with being yourself comes when you are lost or having an identity crisis. When you are stuck in the process of discovering who you are and where you are going; and nothing seems to make sense. At this point, the only sensible thing to do is to try and be like a figure that you admire. But that’s not very sensible at all because it may land you into some bigger and real problems in the future.
Read this article to help you understand what it means to know yourself. Because that way, it will be easier to be yourself. You cannot be what you do not know or understand. Knowing who you are may save you and those around you a lot of stress.
3. Avoid defining your self-worth based on appearance or possessions
Self-worth is how you define your value/worth as a person. Usually, people use external or material things to measure their self-worth. This includes their outward appearance, material possessions, social standing, and even sexual performance. Unfortunately, most of us are found lacking in one aspect or another. For some people, that aspect of lacking may cause them to place a lesser value upon themselves as a person and consider themselves unworthy. And sometimes, the way other people treat us or react to us may affect how we value ourselves.
Hard as it may sound, don’t define your value or worth based on your body, possessions, and what others say about you or do to you. Your real value is within you, and that’s what counts. If it’s your looks that are the offending factor, ask yourself; why do you want to look the way you think you should look? Will that make you happier? Are you sure the people that look that way are happy? Will looking a certain way push you towards living a purposeful life or you just want to fit in and be attractive to everyone?
It’s true, looks and possessions may have taken people places, but those places may not be where you are meant to be for you to live a purposeful, fulfilling, and happy life. Have you ever considered that what you possess inside of you and the goodness in you is what might take you places? It might do you good to remember that you are a unique entity and someone’s path and fame is not your path or destiny.
4. Stop trying so hard to fit in
Trying so hard to fit in might lead you into lying, stealing, self-harm, addictions, substance abuse, and other extreme or risky behaviours that you might indulge in just to belong. You might also pretend to be something you are not just to get people to like or accept you. And all these things might cause you to feel bad about yourself and your life.
For some, fitting in is automatic. They just draw crowds effortlessly like a moth to a flame. While for others, it’s so hard to a point where they have to go to extreme lengths to be liked and at times, it never happens even if they evolved into a mystical unicorn. This is because we have diverse personalities; different temperaments and we emit different energies. If you really want to fit in and you have tried all you can think of but it’s just not happening, perhaps it’s time to realize that fitting in sometimes is overrated.
Some people attain greater achievements in small crowds. You might be one of those people. Most people that are meant to change the course of history are often less popular. And their lives are not served on a silver platter or crowded by people. Simply because the lesser people around you, the more time you have to think and come up with extraordinary ideas.
You need people in your life but not crowds. If you have one or two people that you can count on, there’s no need to outdo yourself to win the whole community. Take time to appreciate your family or that ‘weird’ person that always sticks by you no matter what.
5. Forgive yourself
Perhaps if we all had a small screen on our foreheads showing the scenes and all the dirt of our past, it would be easier to tell you that we all have dirt. Others are even worse than you. So why be so hard on yourself? They say a saint was once a sinner who fell down but got back up. Bad people are never sorry for what they do. So if you feel remorse for the things you did in your past, that means you are a good person. And you are on the right track. All that’s left is for you to shake the dust off and get on the right track. I’ll be honest with you; you need God in your life for you to learn how to forgive yourself and to smile and never look back even when your past haunts you from time to time.
6. Don’t accept body shaming
Body shaming is the act of criticizing or mocking yourself or another person’s physical appearance. This has been going on for decades as seen on television, in magazines, and in newspapers. As if that’s not enough, social media has given body shaming a greater platform. Taking it to new and higher levels. We are given images of how a male or female body should look every day and the definition of what beauty is. This makes it hard for you or others to see you as a whole person and not merely a collection of body parts.
Most of us get criticised for our weight, height, or body structure. Body shaming can be done by family members, friends, enemies, teachers, strangers, and even yourself. For instance, a friend may frequently joke about your size, weight, height, etc. Reminding you of your imperfections or flaws.
If someone says something to you about your body that hurts your feelings, tell them politely that you don’t like it and they must stop. In an instance where they persist, try to avoid those people that make you feel bad about your body. Because now, that relationship becomes toxic for you. If you are the one in the habit of criticizing your own physical appearance, you must learn to accept yourself and get in the habit of positive thinking. Try to see yourself as a whole and not just as a collection of body parts. One or two imperfections do not brand you unworthy. If it’s an issue of weight, adopt healthy habits that will assist you to shed off some kilos at a steady pace.
7. Avoid going to places that make you feel bad about yourself
And this includes social media. You must learn to place your priorities right. So what will you go for? You stay abreast with all the social media drama and fake stories that leave you feeling not good enough, uncool, lacking and unworthy. Or you miss out on the drama and preserve your self-esteem and self-worth. If you cannot do away with toxic social media platforms, try limiting the time you spend on them in a day. And dedicate the rest of your time to self-discovery and personal/spiritual development.
And don’t believe everything you see on social media. Most pictures are photoshopped or have filters just for show, likes and popularity. And believe me, those people that are flouncing their bodies on social media are like you in every way. They too have insecurities and struggle with self-worth. They draw their worth from the likes and applause on social media but deep down, they are faced with the reality of being the person that they don’t entirely like.
8. Avoid making comparisons
Don’t compare yourself to others. You are a unique entity with your own path and destiny. The sooner you appreciate the beauty of diversity, the faster you will learn to accept and love every aspect of your life. Diversity adds colour to life and every masterpiece of creation has an intended purpose. You inclusive.
Have a vision, and work undeterred towards it. Without looking at who has what, who’s doing what or where’s who. Of cause, you may have a few people you look up to for inspiration and motivation. But that doesn’t mean you must walk in their footsteps. Because most of us rarely tell the whole story. We will show you the rose petals of our lives and hide the thorns. You do not want to experience what most people do to get to where they are so just gladly stay in your lane and live your own life.
9. Disappointing others will always leave you feeling bad about yourself
Avoid making commitments that you are not certain you will fulfil. Learn to say NO! Trust me, a negative response given in honesty is better than disappointment especially when someone has learned to trust you or eagerly expects something from you. Don’t make promises that you can’t keep.
10. Avoid Lying
Lying will always leave you feeling bad about yourself especially if you are keen on being a better person. Lies may hurt good people that really love you and push them away. If you feel you can’t drop the habit of lying alone, seek professional help.
11. Try setting realistic targets for yourself
Unfinished or pending tasks may leave you feeling like a failure especially if you have people that are watching you. Avoid doing things to impress other people because this will make you go out of your limits. Don’t bite off more than you can chew. Giving yourself breaks also helps to refresh your body systems thereby making you function and think better. Use vision boards to plan your months and years. Learn more about this here.
12. Treat people the way you would want to be treated
Don’t be too hard or harsh on people. Don’t be rude. Practice curtsey, kindness, patience; be helpful. Above all, practice unconditional love.
13. Avoid pornography
This will always leave you feeling low and dirty. It will fill you with weird fantasies that may leave you feeling stupid and worthless after trying them out. It may also prompt you to start comparing yourself with the figures in those scenes. Additionally, porn is usually accompanied by masturbation especially if you are alone. I know that the modern world tries to romanticize masturbation in movies and the like, but it’s an immoral and selfish act that will always leave you feeling useless and bad about yourself. Especially if you care about your spiritual life, its wiser to avoid porn and masturbation.
14. Make peace with your past
Most of us are what we are because of our upbringing, our home background, the prominent figures in our past, past experiences and other things concerned with our past. If these people involved or the events are what taught you how much value you must place on yourself, you might need to make peace with those memories. You have to learn how to forgive and forget; teach yourself how to move out of that bad place and move on. You need to learn how to love yourself better and how to boost your self-esteem.
15. Learn good habits
As you grow older chronologically, you must also advance in other areas of your life. Adopting good habits will help you improve your quality of life and this will help you feel good about yourself. You can do this by taking challenges that will help you improve your character. These are some of the good habits that you must adopt.
Practice gratitude. Enter your email below to receive your downloadable 30-day gratitude challenge to help you practice gratitude.
Be loyal to the people in your life.
Be faithful in all forms of relationships.
Avoid addictions and substance abuse.
Accept the reality of failure and rejection.
Always apologize when you are wrong and when someone hints to you that you have hurt them.
Watch what comes out of your mouth because your mouth is the window to your thoughts. Be in the habit of thinking good thoughts about yourself, others and life in general.
16. Know God
Last but definitely not least, knowing God is the ultimate answer to all the queries and agonies that we face as humans. Knowing and believing in God will make it easier for you to know, define, and believe in yourself. It will also be easier for you to define your purpose and to appreciate the significance of life. Without knowledge of Him, You are prone to lose hope, feel lost and lose direction. You are likely to live a meaningless life chasing after things that don’t matter and will lead you nowhere. Defining yourself by God’s nature and understanding that he does not create anything worthless will help you not to feel bad about yourself regardless of your situation. To know God, spend time in prayer and read the bible frequently. I also share some spiritual inspiration on my blog Joy. You can access Joy here.
I hope one or two of these tips work out for you. Most of them are tried and tested and I have used them myself. I would love to hear about your experiences. Do drop a comment in the comments section and remember to subscribe.