31 Jan How to master self-worth and combat your teen pressures
You may be in a place in your life right now where you don’t feel super confident about the future or maybe you’re a little unsure about the pressures of being a teen and how the decisions you make now will impact your adult self.
A big lesson to share with you that most successful adults will understand is that it’s OK to feel uncertain. But you know what’s even better? The decisions you make now can always be changed and it’s never too late to take a step in a different direction. Life is a learning experience that never stops and your journey will have ups and downs, exactly as it will have left turns, right turns and even a few turns that point backwards for a period. But it’s more than OK.
What is important is the concept of self-worth and giving yourself the respect you deserve. Respect how you feel, take pride in your decisions and chase those dreams so that you have every possible chance to make them reality. You may be young but you are your own person. Grasp with both hands and build your self-worth.
“Dream the impossible. Seek the unknown. Achieve greatness.”
Self-worth and how teen pressures can knock you down
It’s important to explore, discover and learn more about self-worth because if you truly value yourself it will feel like you’ve found a cloak of confidence. This extra layer of protection shrouds you with a coolness, certainty and satisfaction in the decisions you make. Self-worth will allow you to strip away the ‘am I good enough?’ questions that bring self-doubt and cause you to compare yourself to others. YOU ARE good enough. You always have been and always will be. Yes, there are teen pressures that will test your resilience such as exam stresses, parent demands and peer pressures, and some will challenge your thoughts and opinions but learn to trust your gut instinct. If others gnaw away at your ideas or scoff at your beliefs, just maybe they aren’t the type of person to be your friend – had you thought about that?
What is self-worth and where can you get it?
Self-worth is all about how you value yourself. Never for one minute think you are worthless because you are worth just as much as any other person on this planet. Anyone who tells you different is looking for their own power trip and they are worth nothing to you!
If you feel a lack of confidence in your abilities or insecurities about body image you may have listened to other people’s negative opinions or been subject to bullying or some form of humiliation. Such situations can lead to depression and anxiety. If you believe in hurtful comments they will knock your confidence and you may feel judged by others as inadequate. What tends to happen is that you repeat a situation or comment over and over until you start to believe it. In some cases, coping mechanisms may develop such as self-harm, substance abuse or becoming withdrawn from friends and family.
Please, please understand that this is not your behaviour or belief system but someone else’s and they are the ones in the wrong. You are worth so much more so never let the opinions of others or spiteful comments weigh you down in a negative way. It can spiral out of control.
The great news is that self-worth will enable you to grow strong and rise above it all, so go you! Have faith in yourself, acknowledge and nurture your strengths and abilities. Picture yourself rising above it and being the achiever, despite the sceptics. Let go of doubt, release any feelings of humiliation and never hold onto anger.
“Overthinking leads to negative thoughts.”
You are unique and you are different but that’s OK
What may seem natural to your friends … characteristics such as an outgoing personality, looking fashionable, being the centre of attention and performing brilliantly in exams without even trying, might not come naturally to you, but that doesn’t mean you’re any less confident, skilled or special.
If you are shy or enjoy your own company, or are attracted to science instead of movies and entertainment, that doesn’t mean you are any less creative or logical or amazing to be around. You are just as beautiful, just as special and just as clever, but in different ways – you are amazing.
Imagine this. Discard any negative feelings you have about yourself. Think of it a bit like when you grow out of your school uniform, casual clothes or shoes. You need fresh clothing because the previous shirts, trousers or skirts are no longer fit for purpose. Well, these negative feelings are not fit for purpose. In fact, they never were!
You have a clean canvas to start over and you can make your own future. Don’t live a lie. Think about what is true to you. Make a list. Empower yourself. If you need a little help, refer back to the ten tips to becoming more resilient.
This won’t come overnight. It’ll take a little effort, a little repetition, and a few baby steps but you will gain a new lease of life. You will look forward to the future with anticipation instead of dread. Feeling good about yourself will come naturally and you’ll wake up yearning for a new day. Are you ready to begin?
Gain a new sense of life with self-worth
I’m going to talk you through three simple steps to gain a newfound self-worth. You own this!
1. Speak about what you admire
For the next seven days (or longer) tell three people (or more) – friends, family, teachers, work colleagues – something that you admire or appreciate about them. What is it that you like about them and why do you enjoy spending time with them? Be honest and open.
An example could be, ‘I just want to let you know that I really appreciate you helping me with my maths homework today. I was really struggling with it and you were kind to help me.’ Or ‘thanks ever so much for hanging out tonight, I really enjoyed it, thanks for being a great friend, I love your sense of humour, you make me chuckle out loud so much and I really love that about you thank you!’
But why would you do this?
Because when you see something in someone that you admire, it’s like looking in a mirror, it’s a reflection of what is within you. Soon you will come to realise this.
You might be feeling the rise of dread as you read this but I promise you it gets easier and you will feel great as soon as the words leave your mouth.
This will come across as humbling and it will make the other person feel tremendous inside, even if they don’t show it. You are adding value to their world and given their self-worth gets a top up. Plus, what goes around comes around right?
2. Notice the compliments you receive
Let’s get one thing straight, you will have received many compliments before but if your self-worth isn’t brimming you will more than likely have shrugged them off with ‘it’s nothing’ or ‘thanks it wasn’t that good’ or even a ‘yeah but XYZ was so much better’. Boom you’ve chosen to compare again or undervalue your true worth.
From today, notice the positives people say to you and accept compliments as true of your skills and personality. I want you to say two words in response ‘thank you’. Don’t get big headed, instead, store the compliment and reflect on it later. Agree with the compliment and let them fill up your self-esteem. I also want you to smile. It takes fewer muscles to smile and it’s also infectious, try it!
Practice, practice, practice. After seven days it’ll start to become natural and you’ll want to praise people and smile, even at strangers!
3. Five things that are great about you
A third and final step to begin with. Easy steps, nothing too taxing to start your journey.
Take a piece of paper and a pen or open a fresh note on your phone and write down five things about yourself that you like. Start each thing with a similar phrase to ‘I love being me because…’ Think about the compliments you’ve received because this is a good place to start. These qualities must be about you as a person and not achievements such as Head Boy or Girl at school, or the latest swimming certificate. You must also have some evidence as to why it’s a good quality.
Some examples might be ‘I love being me because I’m caring, I took care of my little sister when she fell and grazed her knee this morning’ or ‘I like being me because I’m thoughtful, this afternoon I made my mum a cup of tea and she didn’t even ask for one’ and so on.
Do this for the next ten days. Honestly, you will be amazed at how many great attributes you come up with and at the end of the ten days you’ll have fifty reasons as to why you’re such a wonderful person.
See, I said you were amazing! You’ll be glowing inside and your self-worth will be overflowing.
Practice these three steps over the next thirty days. Start now. Keep a journal about how you feel so you can reflect back over it and see the positive changes being made.
“Don’t change so people will like you. Be yourself and the right people will love the real you.”
Choose the life you want to lead
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If I get the opportunity to work with you, coach you or train you personally then we will definitely have fun exploring additional ways to build the most amazing you. I have fun games and exercises as learning resources plus a huge bank of podcasts, informative blogs, and PDF documents.
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