How to Start a Self Esteem File

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Step 1: Identify 10 Strengths in Yourself

How to Start a Self Esteem File

My therapist first told me to try to identify 10 of my strengths--10 positive qualities about myself--and to write them down on a piece of paper. This first step, trying to recognize your own assets, and to begin, ever so slightly, to believe in yourself again, is the most important. And the most difficult.

Think hard about what people have told you in the past: things that you do especially well, or personality traits they admire. Think about your job. Why are you good at it? Or about your hobby. What makes you enjoy it? What is that something special about you?

You might also go through old birthday cards, or report cards, or annual reviews (excerpting ONLY the positive), think back to past conversations with friends, page through photo albums and scrapbooks--anything to recall those times when people recognized your talents and assets and expressed appreciation for them.