Training Manual on Theeranaipunya - Equipping Fisherwomen Youth for Future 75
Self-Image and Self-Esteem for a Positive Outlook
Rekha J. Nair
Senior Scientist, Demersal Fisheries Division, CMFRI
Teach me to feel another's woe, to hide the fault I see, that mercy I to
others show, that mercy show to me. - Alexander Pope
Respect is earned, not given. And regardless of your age, gender, race, or ethnicity,
anyone can earn respect by conducting themselves with integrity. Gaining the respect
of others will not happen overnight, but remember that once respect is earned, you
will have people listening to what you say. How do you get it?
There are three best ways –improve your self-image, self-esteem, self-respect and
thus your confidence.
Self-Image is how you see yourself. This may be how you see yourself physically or
your opinion of who and what you are which is normally called self-concept. It
is important as it affects your self-esteem and confidence.
What you think you look like
How you see your personality
What kind of person you think you are
What you believe others think of you
How much you like yourself or you think others like you
The status you feel you have
How you see yourself is vital because this will affect your behavior, you’re thinking
and how you relate to others. People respond to you either positively or negatively
according to how confident you are. Your confidence in relationships depends on the
image you have of yourself.
How you see yourself is often different from how others view you. Your view of
yourself is shaped by your unique thoughts and beliefs and you will have a distorted
view. You will see yourself in a positive or negative way according to your level of
self-esteem. You may have a negative view of yourself and if so you are probably
highly critical of yourself.
What can you do to improve your Self-Image?
List things you like about yourself – include appearance, personality and skills
Change negative thoughts to positive ones by focusing on the positive and
forgetting the negative things that happen to you
Remember compliments and note them down
Try the powerful method of self-hypnosis: Building your self-esteem – hypnosis
It will really help you!
Rekha J. Nair
No one can make you inferior without your consent
Question whether your view of yourself is accurate and why you see yourself like
Make changes that will help you ;for example, clothes, appearance, hair style and
Accept things about yourself that are true and learn to think about them in a
Get exercise – you will look and feel better! more about psychological benefits of
Take yourself less seriously and lighten up!
Accept criticism constructively so you can move forward and improve yourself
Don’t be limited by your internal image, step outside of it and break free, it
doesn’t have to control you or keep you down. Acting differently will change how
others respond towards you and will help change your attitude towards yourself
and your abilities
Take on challenges positively and surprise yourself!
Read inspiring books about esteem – here’s a selection of my favorites, they will
help you so check them out now!
Remember, you are only limited by your efforts and confidence! Believe in yourself!
What is self-esteem??
Self-esteem is your overall opinion of yourself — how you feel about your abilities
and limitations. When you have healthy self-esteem, you feel good about yourself
and see yourself as deserving the respect of others. When you have low self-esteem,
you put little value on your opinions and ideas. In sociology and psychology, self-
esteem reflects a person's overall subjective emotional evaluation of his or her own
worth. It is a judgment of oneself as well as an attitude toward the self. Infact, self-
esteem stems from a positive self-image.
Following are some outward signs of positive self-esteem:
• Non-blaming behavior
• An awareness of personal strengths
• An ability to make mistakes and learn from them
• An ability to accept mistakes from others
• An ability to solve problems
• An independent and cooperative attitude
• Feeling comfortable with a wide range of emotions
• An ability to trust others
• A good sense of personal limitations
• Good self-care
• The ability to say no
Self Image and Self Esteem for a Positive Outlook
Training Manual on Theeranaipunya - Equipping Fisherwomen Youth for Future
What is low self-esteem?
Low self-esteem is a debilitating condition that keeps individuals from realizing their
full potential. A person with low self-esteem feels unworthy, incapable, and
incompetent. In fact, because the person with low self-esteem feels so poorly about
him or herself, these feelings may actually cause the person’s continued low self-
Here are some signs of low self-esteem:
• Negative view of life
• Perfectionist attitude
• Mistrusting others – even those who show signs of affection
• Blaming behaviour
• Fear of taking risks
• Feelings of being unloved and unlovable
• Dependence – letting others make decisions
• Fear of being ridiculed
How can you raise low self-esteem?
Feelings of low self-esteem often build up over a lifetime, and letting go of ingrained
feelings and behaviors is not an easy task. It may take time, hard work, and it may
require professional counseling. But there are some simple, positive thinking
techniques that can be used to help improve self-esteem. These are called
affirmations. Using affirmations to stop negative self-talk is a simple, positive way to
help increase self-esteem. Affirmations are encouraging messages we can give
ourselves every day until they become part of our feelings and beliefs. Affirmations
work best when a person is relaxed. But since people are often upset when they are
giving themselves negative self-messages, they may need to counter negative
messages with positive ones.
For example, replace the message “I made a stupid mistake, and I am no good at this
job,” with “Yes, I made a mistake but I have learned from it, and now I can a better
job.” Begin each day by looking in the mirror and giving you a positive message.
The following affirmations can help you to work toward a positive self-image:
• I respect myself and others
• I am lovable and likable
• I am confident, and it shows
• I care about myself
• I accept myself just as I am
• I look great
• Life is good, and I like being a part of it
Respect others: Because respect is a two-way street, by respecting others, you
will find yourself respected. This is also known as the "Golden Rule" or the
"Yellow Rule" of treating others as you wishes to be treated.
Rekha J. Nair
No one can make you inferior without your consent
Don't "bad-mouth" other people. That means that if there is a problem, try
addressing it directly with the person instead of talking behind their back.
See the opposing viewpoint. Trying to understand the other human's views, even
if it's different from your own- it doesn't mean you are agreeing with them, but it
shows respect for their opinion.
Respect yourself: If you do not respect yourself, others will sense this and treat
Take care of your appearance by being hygienic. Being poorly groomed usually
sends a negative message to others about your self-worth.
Stand up for your beliefs. Expressing your true feelings- even when they run
contrary to the social norm- shows a sense of confidence in yourself. This is
difficult to do, but a human with the courage to stand apart from the crowd and
think independently is often regarded with respect.
Do your best at every task. Even the difficult or menial ones. Establishing your
competency or even mastery of a field will help others realize the value of your
Keep your word. A human who honors their promises is considered trustworthy. If
you cannot keep your word, gracefully communicate why you can't.
Be a role model. Conduct yourself professionally, and hold yourself to high
standards. After all, actions speak louder than words. And sometimes, actions can
even inspire others.
Be the change you want to see in the world-consider volunteering. Most
people wait until their retirement to consider what legacy they will build. Start
making yours now.
So look up and keep smiling, the world is all yours!!!