What’s in Your Picture Frame?

Every one of us has a picture in our mind of our self, our family, our future. The question is, what does your picture look like? Do you see yourself rising higher, overcoming obstacles, and living an abundant life? Or, do you have a picture of yourself struggling, defeated, addicted, overweight, and never getting good breaks? The pictures you allow in your mind will determine what kind of life you live.

The Bible says, “Where there is no vision, the people perish.” If your vision is limited, your life will be limited. Dare to get a fresh, new vision of victory for your life and trust God to bring it to pass. You don’t have to figure out how it’s going to happen. All you have to do is believe. One touch of God’s favour can bring any dream to pass. But you have to see it on the inside before it will ever come to pass on the outside.

A Christian Counselor’s Approach to Low Self-Esteem

Self-esteem is a way of thinking, feeling, and acting that implies that you accept, respect, trust and believe in yourself.  When you accept yourself, you live comfortably with both your strengths and your weaknesses, without unreasonable self-criticism.  With a healthy self-esteem, you are able to feel good about yourself, appreciate your personal worth, and respect and acknowledge your own dignity and value as a human being.  Your behaviors and feelings are consistent enough to give you an inner sense of continuity despite challenges and even failures in your day to day circumstances.  If you have a low self-esteem, you may feel as if others won’t like or accept you; or you may believe you don’t have what it takes to do well in anything.  How you feel about yourself can influence how you live your life, how you respond in various relationships, and how well you do in school and work and business.  Having good self-esteem allows you to accept yourself and live life to the fullest.

Focus on the Positive

Even though as Christians we are taught that God created us in His image, I think it is normal for everyone to struggle with their self-esteem from time to time.  If we are not careful, however, negativity and excessive self-criticism can be habit forming.  When we consistently focus on what we view as negative in our lives, it can become difficult to see the good.  Consciously force yourself to focus on your good qualities and your positive characteristics.  Consider making a list of what you do well, the things you appreciate about yourself – and when you start being negative; you can refer to it easily.  Put Post-It notes in places where you can remind yourself of your positive qualities.

Positive affirmations are a very effective tool in building self-confidence.

Practice Self-Care

Focusing on the positive is an important step, but it is only a start.  Our self-esteem is due in part to the messages we absorb throughout our lives.  The second step to a healthier self-esteem is to begin to treat yourself as a worthwhile person.  It is important that you speak to those negative messages or experiences by caring for yourself in ways that show you are a deserving, valuable, competent, and loveable Person .  Self-care covers many areas, including:

  • Emphasize the basics.  Get enough sleep, eat a healthy diet, exercise, smile, practice good hygiene, and so on.
  • Change your posture.  Take a close look at how you hold yourself.  How do you present yourself to others?  Do you stand up straight?  Do you look people in the eyes?  Do you hold your head up?  Do you respond to people with a smile?  These are specific indicators of a confident person.
  • Smile.  Smiling shows you are a happy, confident, and successful individual.
  • Remind yourself of your strengths and accomplishments.  It is okay to compliment yourself, celebrate your achievements, and reflect on the positives of your life.
  • Give yourself a break. Don’t be so hard on yourself when you don’t do things just right.
  • Take time to relax and unwind.  Go for a walk, go to a movie, have coffee with a friend, buy a pet, take a nap, or do something else you enjoy.
  • Reward yourself.  Take time to celebrate good things and accomplishments in your life.
  • Get organized.  It is important to set goals for yourself.  Start planning your life.  What do you want your life to look like in five years?  And for that matter, what are you going to accomplish today?  A healthy self-esteem develops as you set goals and then see take steps toward them.

  • Get Started today!