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How can I improve my self esteem?

(7 Posts)
cookielovers Tue 13-Dec-16 22:57:03

I used to be a confident person but over the years due to depression, PND and gaining shed loads of weight, I have slowly lost my confidence, in fact all of it.

I constantly worry and analyse everything that I say/have said to people, worry about what people think of me/my children/my home, worry that people don't like me/think I'm weak, I don't stand up for myself and the list goes on...

I am currently on anti depression meds and about 8 stone overweight which definitely doesn't help but would love any advice on how to heal myself. I've always been a people pleaser which doesn't bloody help either but really just want to be the kind of person that lives their life giving zero shits about what other think!

Any books, advice would be greatly appreciate thanks x

Openup41 Wed 14-Dec-16 06:38:58

I could have written this post. The only difference is I am not taking meds, struggling with weight gain and I have never ever had confidence.

People pleaser✅
Over analyses everything✅
Cares what people think of me✅
Obsessive with my home✅
See myself as weak and a coward✅

It really is an awful place to be in. Do you have someone to talk to who will not judge you?

I have prayed and read positive quotes which has truly helped. The thing is I have not been consistent and I need to be.

You say you were once confident, which means you can work on your self esteem. It may take a while but you will be in a better place than you are now.


givemegravyonemoretime Wed 14-Dec-16 06:46:57

I think of myself as being quite confident and having quite high self esteem, although there's still lots of stuff I'm 'working on' in myself.

I wonder whether not caring what others think is a realistic or helpful goal? People say that a lot, but I'm not convinced it's as healthy or viable as it's presented as being. You said you used to be confident - when that was the case did you really not care about others' opinions?

I feel like the opinions of others matter to me because my relationships and connections with others matter to me. For me, confidence and self esteem is about the difference between saying "I need X to like me, if they don't then that's awful"; and "I'd like for X to like me and I'll be disappointed if they don't, but it's OK".

Openup41 Wed 14-Dec-16 17:35:06

Give me gravy - you have made a good point about running with the opinions of others. We all care what others think. In a sense it helps to form the opinion we have of ourselves.

I care what others think - far too much as it goes. Being consistently told I was ugly, a nobody, laughed at by groups of male and female peers as well as being ignored and overlooked at school almost destroyed me. No matter how how much I am complimented on my beauty, no matter what my achievements I cannot quite shake off feeling unworthy and inferior to others. I left school nearly 25 years ago.

Your illustrations between confidence and self esteem are spot on.


changeymcchangeface Wed 14-Dec-16 18:43:44

Hi Cookie, I am having counselling at the moment for my low self-esteem and its resulting impact on my relationship with DP.

The first things we did were to look at my main relationships with my DCs, my DP, parents etc and accept that I am loved. She told me to take a moment each morning to sit down with a cup of tea, no phone, no TV etc, just sit and tell myself that I am safe and loved and to try and think of all the things in my life I am thankful for.

It seems a bit trite, but when you do it every day you realise that it does set you up for a more positive day. I imagine if you don't feel loved that must be harder to find some positives but I'm pretty sure your DCs love you no matter what.

By focussing on the good things rather than the bad you start to notice them more. I've then sat down and worked out which areas of my life are most lacking and tried to come up with ways to improve them e.g. I have no social life so I have joined a couple of clubs and made the effort to join in with them. Would have been my worst nightmare, but once I did it I realised that actually I have enjoyed myself!

By trying to fill my life with good things, I feel more confident generally.

I've also signed up to an online course called Intimacy Without Responsibility on a website called The Daily Om. I paid £10 for 40/50 lessons, just a few paragraphs each day and a 3 minute video of 'positive thinking' mind interventions. It's a great concept, that you are wholly responsible for your own happiness and not for other people's. I haven't told my DP that I'm doing it and sometimes when I choose not to get involved in his drama it can cause issues, but for my own self-preservation I know I need to put more energy into myself and less into him, so I'm sticking with it!

Itisnoteasybeingdifferent Thu 15-Dec-16 09:57:30


OK bit of tough love coming your way.. For which I offer apologies in advance. I have worn your shoes and l know how you are feeling.

In your post you have actually described everything. You over analyse, you are depressed and are putting on weight... and it is sapping your confidence. It has become a vicious circle. Overweight makes you feel physically incapable... (at eight stone you are carrying a spare woman everywhere you go all day... that is an enormous amount of effort). Physical problems lead to depression for which you over eat and sit analysing everything..

That's the easy bit. The difficult bit is how to break the feedback and start to pull yourself out of where you are now. Can I offer a simple thought..?

If a tap drips once a second, it will fill a bathtub in a week.

In other words it doesn't take much to change the outcome. I can't take you to the gym. I can't make you stop thinking about what people may or may not have said. Nor can I stop you eating just that little bit too much. Do as Changemyface says and also recognise that physical activity does actually bring reward.. Even if only because when exercising you stop mulling things over in your mind. And after being active actually helps you sleep. Then you don't feel so depressed as you won't be so exhausted.. Its another feedback loop. But this time a positive one.

Good luck

AnxiousCarer Sun 18-Dec-16 12:43:09

I highly recommend a book by Susan Jeffers called Dare to Connect. I found this really helped me build my confidence.

Also second exercise as it releases your bodys natural anti depressants. For years I was scared of joining the gym as I thought everyone would be super fit, then I joined and found that most people there are average, a lot are overweight, and very few people look good exercising (the ones who do arn't working hardvenough IMO wink) I've put on a lot of weight since starting mirtazapine despite going to the gym most days, so I figure I'd have put on a lot more without it. And theres loads of free exervise available too, eg walking, cycling.

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