Use Affirmations to Build Self-Esteem

May 6, 2020 Jessica Kaley

A self-esteem affirmation is a positive statement about yourself that, when practiced regularly, can improve your image of yourself. We believe what we hear repeatedly, and when we replace negative self-talk with positive affirmations we can change our belief that we are less worthy of love and happiness than others.

I was introduced to the power of practicing daily self-esteem affirmations many years ago when a new gym membership came with a handout of positive self-talk statements to hang in my home. At first, I felt a little silly looking in the mirror and telling myself, "I was beautiful," "I was strong," and "I was enough." My usual self-talk included sentences like, "I'll never finish in time," and "I don't have the discipline to create good habits."

It didn't happen overnight, but eventually, when I found myself using negative self-talk, the affirmations I was practicing began replying automatically and arguing that I was, indeed, capable.

Replace Negative Self-Talk with Positive Affirmations for Self-Esteem

One of the first memories I have of successfully using affirmations to build self-esteem was when I landed a promotion that had requirements far above my current capabilities. I convinced the interviewer that I would learn everything I needed to know because I had a history of taking classes to enhance my professional knowledge. This was a technical position and I was stressed every day for the first three months on the job as I sat in my office unable to get started on the projects I was assigned.

I knew deep inside that I could learn based on my track record with continuing education, but it didn't stop me from worrying that this time would be different. It took a conscious effort to calm myself with breathing exercises when the anxiety set in; and then, I would remind myself that I am a good student and my brain is able to learn and retain new skills. This practice did the trick of reducing my stress long enough to complete another lesson and eventually, as I began to see learning happen, I began to believe that I would succeed.

Choosing Affirmations to Build Your Self-Esteem

The affirmations for self-esteem I use change as I continue to grow. Choose your affirmations to reply to the negative self-talk you are currently practicing. When I found myself unexpectedly living alone at age 60, I began doubting that I would ever find happiness again. I saw a post on social media of affirmations that made me feel empowered and in charge of my situation, and I printed it out and hung it over my desk.

Some of the mantras I am using today are:

  • "The universe is bringing good things my way and I'm already thankful for them."
  • "Opportunities will always come my way."
  • "I have plenty of time and energy to do the things I need to do."

What are some of the negative phrases you repeat to yourself? Choose one to three that stand out right now and design an affirmation to counter each of them. Write them down and hang them somewhere you will see them each day. Some good places are on your refrigerator, next to your bathroom mirror, or, like me, over your desk. If you want a little more privacy, you can make them your computer or phone home screen background.

Replacing negative self-talk with positive affirmations will build your self-esteem. Practice them daily, change them as you evolve, and begin to believe that you are worthy of the best that life has to offer.

Do you have self-esteem affirmations that you are already using? Share them in the comments and tell us how they have worked for you.

APA Reference
Kaley, J. (2020, May 6). Use Affirmations to Build Self-Esteem, HealthyPlace. Retrieved on 2024, June 20 from

Author: Jessica Kaley

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