This framework can be successfully applied to both personal and professional development. If your self-esteem sags, then this is a tool to give it a lift. A common cousin to low self-esteem is negativity. See prior blog post Negative Mindset for a deeper exploration.
By focusing on these five areas, you can begin feeling better, get things done and notice how your thoughts influence who you are and how you show up in life.
Changing negative self-talk
Changing your behaviors & habits
Embracing your mistakes / imperfections
Focusing on self-care
Changing Negative Self-Talk
This isn’t about flipping from this state to an artificially positive one. It looks like this: I should become I will, I am, and I choose. Say ‘no’ when you want to say no. Remove the word maybe from your vocabulary - it’s a non-answer and everybody knows it, replace it with a clear ‘yes’ or ‘no’.
Changing Your Behaviors & Habits
Having trouble staying fit and committed to your exercise regimen? Do you rely on fast food or eat in the car while on the run? Hire a personal trainer; you’d be surprised what influence it has when you have an appointment and someone waiting for you. If it is food, consider making an appointment with a nutritionist, they teach you the benefits of sitting down to eat and the types of food that better fuels you – you’ll learn a ton.
Embracing Your Mistakes / Imperfections
Made a mistake and can’t let it go? Do you catch yourself ruminating? Pause and take a literal breath and ask yourself what emotions are coming up, then stay with that emotion. Research has shown if you are willing to sit with an emotion for a focused 90-seconds it disperses, and ruminations come to a stop.
Criticism and negativity crowd out the good stuff. Our culture has made a cottage industry of pessimism. Sounds like this: you say, Hey what a beautiful sunny day! Yeah, while it lasts, comes the reply. Pick five things to express gratitude for each day from the tree outside your window to a characteristic you appreciate in an employee.
Focusing on Self-Care
Do you say ‘yes’ to everything? Find yourself over-scheduled with no time left for yourself? Self-care often involves saying ‘no’ and putting yourself first. Want quiet? Make time and go do it. Have a hobby or interest? Make a step-by-step plan to pick it back up. Imagine how you’ll feel when doing it.
Survey this list and select one that feels right or captured your attention, then experiment with a daily exercise for one full week and take notice of the change inside you. This would be an example of focusing on self-care.