What makes you proud of yourself?
What are your biggest life’s problems?
What do you want to get good at?
How do you handle failure?
How to get yourself to take action?
Answer these questions. And, for god’s sake, forget about the limitation for now!
In fact, answering these 5 questions can help us develop a step-by-step plan to be in a better place emotionally 90 days from today. As well as becoming a stronger person every day.
I’ve never been a fan of the tips and the tricks. Yes, I love practical advice but I’m more about the mentalities and the motives.
And I’ve always believed that giving someone a plan is equivalent to giving them tips and tricks, which is something that I hate.
But thinking again, I can actually base my plan on some of the principles I’ve been writing about. This will make the “principles and the mentalities” more applicable and even more effective.
The answers for each of the 5 questions above are based on ideas that will actually help you develop a healthier self-esteem and feel more confident.
Let’s answer these questions one by one.
And by answering the last question, you will have your own plan ready for you to take action on.
I recommend that you grab a pen and piece of paper and start writing.
Write the answers to all the questions below.
Be as honest as possible. And bear in mind that there are no right or wrong answers. It’s just a self-discovery journey.
Note that sometimes I’ll give you an advice about things you should do or I’ll share my own answers to the question.
Let’s dive in…
1. What makes you proud of yourself?
Pride is a feeling you get when you do things that your brain considers important or noble.
For one, I feel proud of myself when I stick to my schedule and get my important tasks done.
I feel proud of myself when I become brave and do the things that scare me. I feel proud when I keep the promises that I make to myself and to other people I care about.
Ask yourself, “What are the things that make me feel proud of myself?” They are different for everyone but they are generally about leaving your comfort zone and sticking to your principles and values.
Also ask yourself the question in a reversed way, “What are the things that make me can’t stand the face I see in the mirror?”
Those are things you must stop doing. And you need to start doing the opposite of them, the things that will make your eye contact in the mirror easier.
Make your list and let’s move on.
2. What are your biggest life’s problems?
Unsolved problems can cause depression. Heck, they suck the joy out of life.
You sit there peacefully while in the back of your mind you are being eaten up by your unresolved issues and unsolved problems.
They might be related to your professional life. But more often than not, they are related to your personal and emotional life. And sometimes both.
Your biggest life’s problems are connected to the most important areas in your life.
If you consider your business of utmost importance, any financial problems will make you suffer. If you consider your relationships of utmost importance, feelings of loneliness and disconnection will make you suffer.
So it is important to know exactly which areas in your life are making you suffer. Once you do that, examine these areas to know what exactly the problem is.
Or you can ask the same question in a different way, “What, if happened, would make me happy?”
Notice the things you wish would exist in your life and the things you wish would vanish from your life. Those are the solutions to your problems.
Define your problems as clearly as possible.
Now that you’ve found your problems, you need to actually start solving them. Dealing with your own shit is one of the best ways I know to develop a healthy self-esteem.
Giving up on solving them is the worst thing you can do to yourself. Not only in terms of self-esteem but also when it comes to general happiness and fulfillment in life. Heck, you won’t even enjoy anything while the most important things to you are up in the air!
Me personally, at one point, my social skills were a major problem. Other times my career and my future suffer. And my physical health is an issue that I currently need to work on.
3. What do you want to get good at?
How do you want to grow?
Look, growth and self-esteem go hand in hand.
Growth means becoming a better person than you were. And it doesn’t necessarily mean that you were already a bad person, to begin with.
It means having more skills. Sharpening your already existing skills. Becoming a wiser person. Growing financially. Having good health. Acquiring useful knowledge that you once didn’t have. Learning from your mistakes. Having better, deeper intimate relationships.
That counts as strength. And that will definitely affect the way you perceive yourself (in a positive way). So, growth is important, let alone that it is a deeply rooted human’s need.
If you don’t grow, a few years from now you will look back at your life and feel bad about your progress and about yourself.
Think about it. People who remain with the same mentalities and skills they had as 20-years-olds, when they reach their 30s, they will not be so proud of themselves.
So, you have to decide that you must grow. And you have to decide in which ways you want to grow.
For one, reading and learning. That’s how I personally keep growing. I read and learn as much as I can in order to help myself first and then to have something to give. This site you are reading is nothing but a consequence of my growth process.
Also, skills development. I have a few skills that I consider important. Most of them are related to social connection and the delivery of the information and knowledge to other people. And I work deliberately to sharpen those skills.
Those are the ways that I invest in myself in order to grow and become a better person. Consequently, the more I invest in myself, the more I enjoy my social relationships. That is, my relationships also grow!
Lately, I’ve been considering growth in terms of my health. I stopped working out and eating healthy food and I feel that my health is deteriorating. So, this is a new area that I must grow in as well.
So, decide how you are going to grow. What kind of knowledge do you want to acquire? What kind of skills do you want to have?
Decide that and write it down.
4. How do you handle failure?
The way you handle failure can predict whether you will continue or whether you will just stop.
Let’s face it, everything you’ve written above is nice. And you may go after it with some enthusiasm. But you’re going to fail.
You are going to be disappointed at times.
It’s not that I’m pessimistic; it’s just how it works. Failure and disappointment are inevitable. Anyone who tells you otherwise is bullshitting you.
The thing that many people don’t quite understand is that you must fail and get disappointed before you eventually reach what you want.
The real failure is when the inevitable failure stops you from moving again.
The best way to handle this failure is through self-compassion. And, for your records, self-compassion is not about being too soft on yourself; it’s about forgiving yourself in order to be able to take action.
I’ll not talk a lot. I explained what is self-compassion and how to practice it in this article:
Follow the steps you find there and you will notice that you’re bouncing better from failure. It’s a practical, and a realistic, guide.
5. How to get yourself to take action?
By now, I presume that you have 3 lists:
- The things that make you proud.
- Your biggest problems.
- The things you want to get good at.
From now on, those are your goals. And you need to take action to get closer each day to these goals.
(Whenever you slip, you read the above article and do what is mentioned there).
But let’s focus now on how to actually take action and move towards these goals. How to draw your plan and follow it?
In my book The Art of Change, I said that in order to take action you first need two things. First, you need a reason to get your butt out there.
Hopefully, the reason you’ve read this far was that you do want to feel confident.
Second, you need to take action in a systematic way. You don’t just jump head first and hope things will work out (though sometimes you can and you should. Wisdom is about knowing when!).
Almost every action you must take to reach the three goals above includes one common thing: leaving your comfort zone. That is, the possibility of feeling discomfort or even getting hurt.
This possibility can keep you from taking action. So, you need to handle it well.
To handle it well, you need to start small and gradually build your way up.
That means you should start with the smallest actions you can do and get used to them first. Then move to the next level of actions and also get used to them. And so on.
It’s unwise to start reading 20 pages a day if you are not used to reading anything at all. It’s unwise to do a presentation in front of 500 people if you can’t even do it in front of 100 or 50 people.
You need consistent actions, not big actions.
I’m not going to tell you what actions to take. I’m not going to tell you how to take them. And I’m not going to tell you when to take them.
Every case is different and you know yourself and your situation more than I do.
But I’m going to tell you that you need to take action consistently in order to change anything. And to take action consistently, you need to start small and build your way up. You start small because the action is usually uncomfortable. You build your way up because you eventually must do the things you are afraid of.
The 90 days challenge
How you go about your 90 days is totally up to you.
As you can expect, I’m not going to tell you what to do each day.
But by now you know what is important to you (the things that will make the difference in your life). They are your goals. And you know the systematic way to take action and what to do when you slip.
I guess that is enough clarity on how you are going to organize your time through these 90 days (I picked the number 90 because 1) Inspired by the group NoFap who try to better their lives. 2) It’s long enough).
Consider it as a challenge in order to make things more exciting and get more emotional drive.
Before you start, write everything down: the answers to the questions above and your list of actions.
Make sure the answers to the questions remain always in your sight. They are the most important things to you now.
Then divide your actions into three categories: easy, medium, and hard.
Now it’s time to organize the days.
I recommend drawing a calendar of these 90 days and put it on the wall in your room. It will remind you of your goals and your progress.
Also, have a pen to tick days. And make sure that each day you ticked that you had worked hard and done your best that day.
With your goals in mind, start with the easiest actions and then build from there.
This is going to suck at times but you have to keep moving. It’s your plan, your life, your self-confidence, and your happiness. Don’t take that lightly. Fight like a soldier.
I can’t promise you that you will be where you want to be after 90 days. But I can promise you that if you follow this, you will be in a better place 90 days from now.
Want more power?
Knowledge is power. Educate yourself as much as possible about self-esteem and self-confidence. Luckily, WorthyInside has the kind of power that can help you change to the better:
- How to Raise My Self-esteem If I Hate Myself
- 19 Tips That Will Rapidly Help You Boost Your Self-confidence
- How to Be Assertive And Not Get Walked Over
- How to Handle People who make you feel insecure
- How Clearly Do You Think You See The World?