Monday, July 25, 2016

7 Things to Do Today to Raise Your Self-Esteem

You have a right to feel good about yourself, especially now that you’ve taken that huge leap into recovery. In fact, boosting your self-esteem is essential for your sobriety. Low self-esteem can prevent you from enjoying life, doing the things you want to do, and working toward your personal recovery goals. It can even lead to relapse if you start to feel so badly about yourself that you give up and start drinking or using again.

The better you feel about yourself, the better you’ll take care of yourself – so what are you waiting for? The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration recommends doing one of these simple things every day to boost your self-esteem.

Listen to your body, mind, and heart. For instance, if your body is telling you that you have been sitting down too long, get up and go for a walk. If your heart is lonely, make a date to meet up with a good friend. If your mind is thinking about using again, take those thoughts seriously and seek support right away.

Take very good care of yourself and start to practice daily self-care. A few ideas:
• Opt for healthy fare over junk foods high in sugar, salt, and fat
• Add exercise (walking, riding a bike, dancing to music) to your routine
• Practice good hygiene: take regular baths and showers, style your hair, trim your nails, floss and brush your teeth
• Schedule an annual physical to make sure you’re in good health

Take time to do things you enjoy. When you feel badly about yourself, it’s easy to spend little or no time doing things you enjoy. Make an ongoing list of activities/hobbies that make you happy –whether writing a poem, playing a musical instrument, or going for a hike – and choose something to do from that list daily.

Do something you’ve been putting off. Completing a nagging task – no matter how small – can boost your confidence and lead to a sense of accomplishment. So go ahead and pay that bill, clean out the pantry, write that letter, organize that closet, etc.

Spend time with people who make you feel good about yourself. Now more than ever is the time that you want to avoid people who mistreat you and surround yourself with friends and family members who respect your sobriety and value you.

Learn something new or improve your skills. Sign up for a class or attend a seminar; many education programs for adults are free or fairly inexpensive.

Do something nice for another person. Smiling at your neighbor or saying a few kind words to the cashier at your local grocery store is a simple way to make yourself and another person feel good. Some other ideas:
• Help your spouse with an unpleasant chore
• Take a meal to a sick friend
• Send a card to a long-lost pal
• Volunteer for a worthy organization 

Boosting Your Self-Esteem After a Relapse

The shame and self-loathing that occurs after a relapse can be hard to work though. The Boost Up Program at Rising Recovery aims to help by offering new healthy coping skills so you can keep your positive trajectory. To learn more, call: 866-746-1558.

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