A driver taking me to a speaking engagement met me in the baggage claim area of a major airport, holding up a sign. It read, “Dr. Stand Taller.” I’ll admit that wasn’t the biggest boost to my self-esteem, but it started me thinking about ways we can deal with low self-esteem.
Has a job obligation, personal challenge, or a prevailing attitude from childhood pushed the “Down” button on your self-esteem elevator? Here are 9 ways to “Stand Taller.”
1. INVENTORY YOUR GIFTS
We’re born with skills that make us as unique as a fingerprint. Take a timeout and inventory your giftedness via Strength Finders or Team Ministry. Skip the “Aw shucks” attitude. What are the things you actually can do as good or better than anyone else? Making your list (and checking it twice) will give you a much needed boost.
2. TAKE A NAP
I read that a nap of 10 minutes improves alertness by 10 hours. Your self-esteem may be low because you’re tired. You need a nap.
3. LOSE A FEW POUNDS
The CDC says nearly 35-percent of U.S. citizens are obese. Add the borderline folks, and it’s no wonder we’re discouraged. I can’t tell you what a difference it made in my outlook when I determined to “get a handle on the fork.” Try it. You don’t have to lose 50 pounds to feel better, start with a couple, and get in the groove.
4. TAME A HABIT
The health police also said 90-percent of us need to cut back on sodium. Some say a sandwich without chips is just a sandwich. But cutting out the salt is more than that; it’s victory over a bad routine. You’ll be surprised at how much better you’ll feel about yourself when you put the strong arm on something detrimental.
5. LOOK AT GOD’S PICTURES
If God had an Instagram account, you’d be a star subject. Picture in your mind what God thinks of you. You are handsome or beautiful in his eyes. You’re his best effort in all of creation. He sees you as you are and says, “Perfect.”
6. TAKE A WALK
When was the last time you took a walk? If you walk outdoors, take a long look at its creative beauty. Breathe deeply. Focus. Avoid the slouch. You are a walking miracle of cells and parts and wrapping. You are a major “something” in the midst of everything.
7. CREATE SOMETHING
You were born to create. Why do you think those crayons fit so well in your hand on that first day of school? Maybe they’re long gone, but the computer, camera, paint brush are still around. Use those items to create your masterpiece.
8. RECONNECT WITH A FRIEND
Would you like to increase your lifespan by 22-percent, and feel better about it? An Australian study found those with a larger network of friends outlived those who had fewer. Reconnecting with a friend out of the past could be a tonic that not only extends life, but increases the quality of the current one, and throws in a self-esteem boost in the process.
9. GIVE AN ANONYMOUS GIFT
It may be as simple as picking up the Starbucks tab for the customer behind you in line, but the benefits will be a “venti” boost. When you “do good,” you feel good.
Where’s the #10? That’s your call. Be creative. Then push the “Up” button.
— Stan Toler