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Alastair 11-14-2004 08:49 AM

Building Self Esteem
by Jan Sadler of PainSupport
http://www.painsupport.co.uk/

When pain enters our lives, our confidence and self esteem may gradually wear away. We may become less sure of what we can physically do, we may lose touch with other people and find work and social contact difficult and we may find others begin to treat us differently. What we need to do is build up our confidence quite deliberately in whatever ways we can.




Even the most confident person who has very high self esteem will have times when they doubt themselves and their abilities. Imagine how a top footballer feels when he misses a shot, or a tennis player who makes double fault after double fault � but they don�t let it get them down or give up. They just remind themselves that they can do it, that it�s just a passing phase and, if necessary, they revise some of their techniques in order to bring their game up to scratch again.

You see, having high self regard doesn�t mean that you never make mistakes or that you never feel uncertain about yourself. Realise that, like sportsmen, you are allowed to have �off times�. Remember that it will pass and then you will feel better and get back on course, especially if you use some of the following ideas to build your self esteem:

A Treasury of Memories Finding a special notebook to build up a treasury of memories of the good times will boost your self esteem. And it isn�t all about the �big stuff�, we can�t all win the marathon, it�s about all the smaller things that you have achieved � passing an exam or two, learning something new, passing your driving test, making something for someone. Notice that during all of these activities you may have felt slightly or even thoroughly anxious or nervous and lacking in self belief � but you still achieved your aim. These feelings are all part of the learning process and are perfectly normal, so next time you are lacking of confidence or nervous abut something tell yourself you are just learning.

You can keep photos, newspaper cuttings, and small mementoes in your book � and add to and read your notebook often.

Give
Give of yourself. Do something for other people. Research has proved that the happiest people are those involved in voluntary works. Doing something for others is one of the most rewarding activities you can find. Your self esteem will soar.

Stop putting things off!
All those little jobs you�ve been meaning to do �later� clutter your mind and your life. They can build up at the back of your mind and drag you down, they depress your confidence and stop you doing something more creative. Choose just one job and make a start, it doesn�t matter where you start, just begin it. You�ll feel good just by making the decision to start and once you�ve completed the task you will feel really good about yourself. You will have a great sense of achievement at coming to grips with that pile of work and will find there can be pleasure in the most everyday task.

Get involved
Throw yourself into an activity you thoroughly enjoy, painting, writing, cooking, cleaning, sport, gardening - anything where you can submerge yourself and forget about everything else, so get involved! Afterwards you will feel satisfied and happy.

Relax� And I mean really relax, not just watching TV or reading a book. I mean spending 15-20 minutes with a deep, deep relaxation session. Concentrate on your breath or your body or use visualisation to �day dream� scenes that are peaceful and calm and where you are moving freely and easily you will escape from the pressure of your thoughts.

If you find relaxation difficult or have never tried it, why not buy a tape or CD to help you? Or perhaps try a Tai Chi or Yoga class or video, or learn how to meditate. There are plenty of suggestions for tapes or CDs in the Useful Products section on this website (go to the Main Menu for Useful Products).

And finally�
Do take up one or two of these ideas and use them every day in your life and notice how your self esteem climbs higher and higher as you begin to feel more and more confident and lively. Most people aren�t born with high self esteem, it grows as a result of how they live out their lives and how they choose to regard themselves, giving themselves constant praise and recognition for even the smallest achievement.

Know that despite your pain, you can still be a confident person, with a healthy and well-deserved high self esteem.





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TIP: If you like any of these techniques, add them to your kit of pain control skills. If you haven't already got one, why not start a 'tool kit' of pain relief skills today? To remind yourself of them, collect the techniques into a small notebook that you can carry around with you.


You may print the above Articles and any items under FeelGood Factors or Hot News for your own private use but if you wish to use all or part of them for any other reason, please ask first. Copyright belongs to Jan Sadler.

http://www.painsupport.co.uk/

Harrison 11-14-2004 04:19 PM

Good stuff. Thank you Jan -- and Sir A for sharing.

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