What Is Self-Esteem?
U.S. Department of Health and Human Services— Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services www.samhsa.gov
|Negative Thought ||Positive Thought |
|I don’t deserve a good life ||I deserve to be happy and healthy |
|I am stupid ||I am smart |
|I am not worth anything ||I am a valuable person |
|I have never accomplished anything ||I have accomplished many things |
|I always make mistakes ||I do many things well |
|I am a jerk ||I am a great person |
How Do I Build Self-Esteem?
- Pay attention to your own needs and wants.
- Take good care of yourself.
- Participate in activities that you enjoy.
- Take the time to accomplish goals you have set, even small ones.
- Reward yourself and treat yourself well.
- Keep your living space neat and tidy. Fill it with items you love.
- Take the opportunity to learn something new and share your talents.
Why Is Building Positive Body Image Important?
|Negative body image is . . . ||Positive body image is . . . |
|A distorted perception of your shape—you perceive parts of your body unlike they really are ||A clear, true perception of your shape—you see the various parts of your body as they really are |
|You are convinced that only other people are attractive and that your body size or shape is a sign of personal failure ||You celebrate and appreciate your natural body shape and you understand that a person’s physical appearance says very little about their character and value as a person |
|You feel ashamed, self-conscious, and anxious about your body ||You feel proud and accepting of your unique body and refuse to spend an unreasonable amount of time worrying about food, weight, and calories |
|You feel uncomfortable and awkward in your body ||You feel comfortable and confident in your body |
How Do I Build a Better Body Image?
- Eating healthy foods and exercise for the benefit of feeling good.
- Listing 5–10 special qualities about yourself, such as intelligence, sensitivity, or imagination.
- Wearing clothes that are comfortable and make you feel good about yourself.
- Actively choosing to take care of yourself.
What about Mental Illness?
How Do I Know if I Am Depressed?
- Persistent sadness, emptiness, or anxiety
- Feelings of hopelessness or pessimism
- Feelings of guilt, worthlessness, helplessness
- Loss of interest in usual activities that were once pleasurable
- Irritability, restlessness
- Fatigue, decreased energy, wanting to sleep all the time
- Difficulty concentrating, making decisions, or remembering details
- Insomnia or early-morning wakefulness
- Overeating or undereating
- Persistent aches, pain, cramps, headaches, or digestive problems unresolved with treatment
- Thoughts of suicide or suicide attempts
What Do I Do if I Think I Am Depressed?
What if I or Someone I Know Is in Crisis?
- Call your doctor.
- Call 911 or go to a hospital emergency room to get immediate help or ask a friend or family member to help you do these things.
- Call the toll-free, 24-hour hotline of the National Suicide Prevention Life- line at 1-800-273-TALK (1-800-273-8255); TTY: 1-800-799-4TTY (4889) to talk to a trained counselor.
- Make sure you or the suicidal person is not left alone.