"I'm pathetic. I'm useless. I'm a loser." Whew. Those are hard words to read—imagine what saying them to yourself does. Thinking of ourselves as worthless does little to motivate us, and can even hold us back. Research shows that people who value themselves are more likely to take good care of their bodies and to engage in healthy behaviours. Not surprisingly they're less likely to behave in unhealthy ways, including overeating. [Having good self-esteem helps you have a better body image, which in turn can help you lose weight.
If your self-esteem could use a boost, the "loving eyes" exercise in your Weekly can help you appreciate and cherish all you are.
And keep the loving vibe going with these ideas:
Make a list of your positive qualities. Read your list often. It could include anything from being a good guitar player to being a loving dad. List every attribute that makes you a worthwhile, likable individual.
Pay yourself a compliment every day. Focus on a different attribute—quick hands, good fashion sense, killer poker skills—and say out loud: "I love my ___." It may sound silly at first, but it can be a useful counter to self-doubt.
Do things you know will help you feel better about yourself. This could be anything from getting a new hairstyle to rearranging your fridge for healthy eating. Tackle the easiest first, to build confidence in future efforts.
Give yourself regular [non-food treats.] Buy yourself a cool new app, take a spontaneous day trip. You'd do these things to make loved ones feel good, so why not yourself?
Spend time with those who care about you. You’ll soon share their good opinion of you! If there aren't as many supportive people in your social circle as you'd like, consider ways of expanding it to increase your chances of positive feedback. Ask yourself: "Who will help me feel good about myself?" (Like, say, your fellow members in Meetings or on Connect.)
Avoid situations that keep you in a state of self-doubt. Even long-term relationships might call for a clear-eyed reappraisal, if they leave you feeling bad. Perhaps there's a critical relative or colleague who always seems to undermine you. Are you forever seeking someone's approval but never getting it? Rather than simply taking the criticism, you could:
- Retreat from the relationship a bit.
- Stop hoping for approval.
- Respond more assertively to harsh remarks
- Try a little kindness. Instead of beating yourself up whenever you slip, give yourself the benefit of the doubt, same as you would anyone else. Focus on your achievements, not faults. Chances are, once you start looking, you'll be surprised at just how many there are.
Go beyond the greens! Try any of these satisfying meals in a bowl!