Knowing how to be proud of yourself is a beautiful, wonderful thing. While our society often makes having pride in ourselves and our accomplishments seem like a bad thing, that couldn't be further from the truth. Actually, being proud of yourself as a critical element of mental health—and many mental health experts emphasize the importance of celebrating and taking pride in as many aspects of your life as you can.
Unfortunately, self-pride can be difficult for a lot of people; especially those who struggle with their confidence or have low self-esteem. That's why we put together a simple, six-step guide that will help you feel proud of yourself. So get ready to celebrate the most important person in your life: You.
How to Be Proud of Yourself
1. Do what you love
Being proud of yourself starts with having pride in the things you're doing in the first place. Doing what you love can be related to your job, but it doesn't have to be. It can also be related to your family, or even a hobby. For example, if you love to garden, you can find pride in the gorgeous flowers or flavorful fruits and vegetables you grew.
2. Tune out the negative self-talk
It's really easy to talk yourself out of self-pride. If you've ever thought to yourself "no one cares about my accomplishments" or "what I'm doing isn't really that important," you've fallen victim to negative self-talk. Tune out the noise by replacing these negative phrases with positive affirmations. Not sure where to start? Here are some great ones to add to your affirmation jar.
3. Do your best
When you do your very best, it's hard not to feel proud of yourself, even if things don't turn out the way you want them to. So trying your absolute hardest at something you love—and then doing your best to detach from the outcome, although we're the first to admit that isn't easy!—is an excellent starting point for when you're working to feel proud of yourself. And if your hard works leads to something great, that's even better (and will hopefully lead to you feeling even more proud of yourself).
4. Celebrate the small wins
If you've ever said to yourself, "this isn't a big deal" about a smaller accomplishment, we'll stop you right there. A lot of feeling proud of yourself has to do with practice, and celebrating and patting yourself on the back for every win is a great starting point. Examples of small wins might include:
- Getting a full eight hours of sleep.
- Writing the first page of the novel you've been saying you'll write for years.
- Potty training your child (every parent knows this is more than a small win!)
- Getting a raise at work, no matter how small.
- Spending less time on social media.
- Decluttering a room of your home
Celebrate the small wins. They matter.
5. Don't compare yourself to others
As the saying goes, "comparison is the thief of joy," and this is specially true when you're working hard to feel proud of yourself. It's easy to compare your accomplishment to someone else's and decide that yours isn't important or worthy of pride, but don't let yourself go down that rabbit hole. There will always be someone doing something "bigger" or "more important" than you, so comparing yourself to them just isn't worth it. The only person you should ever compare yourself to? You.
6. Celebrate and be proud of other people, too
This step also falls into the "practice" category. When we get really good at celebrating other people, and consistently use phrases like "I'm so proud of you," it's a good reminder to celebrate ourselves, too. And if it's so easy to feel proud of others, why should it be easy for you to be proud of yourself?
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