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Self-esteem during periods of Depression

You are a great person, and you deserve to be happy!

For some people, just reading that sentence is painful, because they can’t believe it. Not out of a sense of modesty, but because their inner critic as told them exactly the opposite for so long.

People suffering from depression often fall into this trap and can find it hard to break free. Learning to mindfully evaluate and gently consider your thoughts will go a long way to strengthening your self-esteem. We have included some helpful tips & strategies to help you focus on and rediscover your self-worth.

One of the best ways to start this process is to journal your thoughts and experiences. Putting things into words on a page often gives you the opportunity to see events and reexamine thoughts from a distance, giving you a new perspective.

This new perspective can give you the time and distance you need to challenge your inner critic. Because this critic is often over critical and full of exaggerations, it’s not hard to debunk the criticism. If you made a mistake, it doesn’t mean you are useless, it’s just a mistake. If you didn’t execute a task perfectly, you didn’t fail; you are growing, learning, and maturing.

You should also use this opportunity to really look at just how you let your inner critic speak to you… It's not very nice. You would never speak to a friend that way, why be less kind to yourself? Learn to forgive yourself, gently correct your thinking and remind yourself that you are your own best friend!

Keeping a journal will also help you keep track for your successes and “wins.” It's all too easy to gloss over success and praise when you’re depressed. Keeping a written record of your accomplishments is a great way to remind yourself that you are worthy of praise, especially when you are feeling down.

As always, please remember that these tips cannot replace talking with a therapist and getting expert advice to work through your issues. Depression, even when it’s been well managed for a while, can sneak up on you and leave you struggling.

If you feel like it’s all getting too dark and you need someone to talk too, call the National Crisis Hotline at 1-800-273-8255, any day, 24/7.

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