Boost Self-Esteem to Improve Relationships: Huff Post Interview
No matter what great things we accomplish or how much confidence we build, the truth is that all of us have weaknesses and insecurities. And sometimes, unfortunately, they can get out of hand and interfere with our lives. Have you ever felt a strain on a relationship because of a nagging insecurity of yours? If so, you’re not alone. Studies have shown that the way we feel about ourselves, for good or for bad, is a critical factor in how happy we are in romantic relationships.
So if many women struggle with self-esteem, and good self-esteem is important to relationships, what can we do to fix this problem? I was able to share my insight on this topic with HuffPost. Here are a few of my suggestions on how to boost self-esteem to foster healthy relationships:
1) Make sense of your life story
You are the way you are for a reason. The relationships you witnessed when you were young set a template for your future emotional connections to others. Examine your past (especially your childhood) to understand your motivations and actions in your adult relationships.
2) Understand how to express insecurities in a relationship
Are you the type of person to confide in your partner about your unmet childhood needs and insecurities? Or are you the kind who tries to detach and avoid communicating anything about your feelings? Challenge yourself to find a way to appropriately your express your insecurities without overwhelming or shutting out your partner.
3) Show self-compassion
Be kind to yourself, especially when you are hurting, and honor your own pain. When you’ve found the courage to express your insecurities, you are probably feeling particularly vulnerable, so show extra compassion to yourself in those times.
4) Practice self-care
Devoting time and energy to yourself when you need it makes a big difference. Fulfilling your own basic needs can help you be more stable in a relationship.
5) Separate self-worth from performance
Try not to let your worth be dependent on your accomplishments. When you have a bad day or don’t quite perform at the level you’d like, don’t get down on yourself when you’re hurting most.
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Learn more about improving your self-esteem and relationships by checking out my book, “The Burnout Cure: An Emotional Survival Guide for Overwhelmed Women.”
Dynamic self & relationship expert Dr. Julie de Azevedo Hanks, LCSW loves to make a difference for women. She owns Wasatch Family Therapy and regularly contributes to KSL TV's Studio 5, and her advice has been featured nationally including Wall Street Journal, Parenting, Fox News, and others. Connect on Facebook & Twitter. Her books The Burnout Cure and The Assertiveness Guide are now available.