The best way to feel better about yourself is to learn where your sense of self-worth comes from and how to increase it. Here’s a quick self-worth test to help you get specific about how you see yourself, plus three tips on how to feel better about who you are.
First, I have to tell you about a Thomas the Tank Engine cartoon that is stuck in my mind. It shows Thomas on his side, having fallen off the train tracks. He is shouting, “I’m free! I’m free at last. I’ve fallen off the rails and I’m free!” Of course, the truth is that Thomas is far more “free” when his wheels were on the rails and he is functioning the way he was created to be.
What about you – are you functioning the way you were created to function? Are you doing what you were meant to do? If not, you’re in luck! Here, you’ll learn how to feel better about yourself by identifying where your sense of low-self worth is coming from. The “self-worth test” is a great place to start…
A Self-Worth Test
Grab a piece of scrap paper and a pen, and jot down the number that fits each statement below.
0 = Never
1 = Rarely
2 = Occasionally
3 = Sometimes
4 = Often
5 = Most of the time
For each of the items below, ask How often do I feel or think this way, or act like this?
- I’m really hard on myself about mistakes or oversights
- I don’t like who I am, who I have become
- I have thoughts of self-destructive actions
- I despair over my feelings of powerlessness
- I felt unloved/unwanted by my parents in ways that have not been healed
- I can allow others grace in ways that I will not allow for myself
- I think I have an inner saboteur who tries to run my life
- I feel shame or fear when receiving gifts, help, compliments, comfort
- I believe negative feedback more than positive
- I think that if you knew me better, you wouldn’t like me
- I have been cheated out of having the spouse or income or love I needed to have
- I compare myself to others and feel inferior in important aspects
- I have very little self-worth
- I feel like I can’t do anything right
- I assume people will reject me
- I am a perfectionist
- I hide being a rather strong facade
- I think God disapproves of me
- I reject compliments
Did you give yourself mostly 0’s, 1’s, 2’s, 3’s, 4’s, or 5’s? The purpose of this Self-Worth Test is for you to get a sense of how you feel about yourself.
This “Self-Worth Test” is from David Takle’s Forming: Change by Grace workbook.
This test can give you a good sense of how to feel better about yourself. For instance, if you strongly feel that you feel powerless in your life, you might consider finding ways to increase the power you have. If you believe you’ve been cheated out of a relationship or job you needed, you might explore ways to find the love or the work you believe you should have.
There is a path for you! You are like Thomas the Tank: you have a purpose, and God created you for a reason. Right now, your focus is getting back on track.
3 Ways to Feel Better About Yourself
Here on SheBlossoms, I focus on the four most important parts of your self that help you reach upwards and inwards: Creative You, Healthy You, Connected You, and Daring You. As you grow stronger and healthier in those four areas, you will find it easier to navigate rocky relationships and make good decisions for you and the people in your life.
Today, our focus is Daring You.
1. Think about who what you’ve built you’re identity around
On 7 Healthy Ways to Let Go of Someone You Love, Sandra commented that her husband cheated on her and she needs help moving on. She is understandably hurt and angry, but what struck me was that she said her husband was all she had. They’d been married for a year and a half, and she had built her whole life around him.
Building your identity on a relationship, job, possession, or your appearance is the surest way to lose your self-esteem. When something happens to that thing you treasure, your whole world will come crashing down. Maybe you already know this – and that’s why you’re here, searching for tips on how to feel better about yourself!
Where does your self-worth come from? In other words, who or what do you treasure more than anything? If you lost that person or possession, would you lose yourself?
2. Renew your sense of self-worth
Your self-worth should not be tied to any relationship, person, or possession. A relationship – whether it’s with your boyfriend, husband, parent, child, or family member – is one part of who you are. A relationship is not your identity, and it should not be the source of your self-worth. Your appearance – those beautiful eyes, that lovely smile, that trim figure – should not be why you feel good about yourself. It’s awesome to have beautiful physical characteristics (I love my curly brown hair!), but those qualities are not the essence of you.
The more you get your self-worth and identity from things outside of your true essence, the more difficult it will be to figure out how to feel better about yourself. If your self-worth is tied up in your relationship or possessions or appearance, then their failure will be a direct reflection of you.
This is one of the most important tips for feeling better about yourself: rebuild your identity and self-image. Renew your sense of self-worth. Restore your self-esteem. If you believe that your husband is all you have and you lose him, then you will never get over his infidelity. If you believe your appearance or job or car is your source of self-worth and self-esteem, then you’re feeling “good” about yourself for the wrong reasons.
Do you need a complete life overhaul? Read 10 Ways to Figure Out What to Do With Your Life.
3. Look upwards and inwards
I grew up hating myself. My mom was single and schizophrenic, and I was in and out of foster homes. I moved at least three times a year. At school, I was always on the outside, looking in – and dreading the days my mom would come to the school and embarrass me.
It wasn’t until I was about 43 years old that I figured out the true secret to feeling better (and even great!) about myself. It was when I joined a home group through my church, and studied David Takle’s Forming: Change by Grace workbook.
The key was when we were asked, “How does God see you? What does He think of you?” We were given 15 minutes to write down our thoughts. As soon as I took time to think of how God sees me – really SEE who He created me to be – I started crying. I saw this cute, bouncy, pig-tailed, ribboned, frilly-dressed joyful little girl who was thrilled to be alive! She is happy and peaceful, innocent and safe in God’s hands.
That’s what I needed. That’s how I learned how to feel better about myself. I saw myself the way God sees me. I didn’t need to try to build my self-esteem (which hadn’t worked in the past) or find ways to increase my self-worth (which I thought would happen after I got my three university degrees, a husband, and a million dollar house on a cliff on the ocean – but it didn’t).
“I’m thankful for my struggle, because without it I wouldn’t have stumbled across my strength.” ~ Alex Elle.
What to Do Next
Stop searching for tips on how to feel better about yourself! Honestly, you won’t find the answer on the internet, my friend. You’ll just feel worse and worse about yourself – especially if you spend alot of time on Facebook. I know, believe me.
Listen to the still small voice. How does God see you? What does He think of you? Take 15 minutes and write down what you hear. Step away from the computer, take out a piece of paper and a pen, and write everything down.
Remember that feeling better about yourself is a process. I learned today that salvation is what happens when you accept Jesus Christ into your heart. Sanctification is the process of becoming more Christ-like, of drawing near to God, and of filling your spirit with the joy, peace, and love that surpasses all understanding.
Tell me something you LOVE about you! Come on – I know you can think of at least one thing that’s great about you. You might also tell me why you’re searching for tips on how to feel better about yourself. What brought you here, where in the world are you, and who do you want to be?
Share your thoughts below. While I can’t offer advice, I do read every comment. Writing is a great way to figure out how you feel, and can give you insight into what you’re really struggling with.
Your thoughts are welcome below! I don't give advice, but you can get free relationship help from marriage coach Mort Fertel.