How to improve self-esteem – Proven tips

by Veikko Arvonen // May 14 // 3 Comments

How to improve self-esteem

“How to improve my self-esteem?” I feel like this is a pretty common question nowadays. Especially along young people in their teens and early 20s. In my opinion, too many people (including me) have suffered from low self-esteem and to be honest, it sucks.

Luckily there’s definitely something you can do about it. I can say that from my own experience. In this article I’ll share techniques and tips that I used to overcome low self-esteem, so you can follow my footprints.

I’m not going to share anything generic like “focus on the positive” or “you’re perfect just like you are”. It’s easy for someone who never has encountered this problem to say those, but it’s not that simple. Although they’re useful tips, they probably won’t solve the core problem.

Now I’m not a therapist, I’m just an ambitious guy who loves self-development and who used these tricks to improve self-esteem. However, I believe these tips will provide you a lot of value since they had a huge effect on my life.

So, if you want to increase your self-esteem, take a nice position and read on.

Table of Contents

Self-esteem definition

Ok just real quick before the actual topic, let’s take a look at what self-esteem really means. Self-esteem is your ability to value, like, and believe in yourself regardless of your flaws and external factors like other peoples’ opinions. 

A person with good self-esteem sees themselves as valuable and has the guts to stand up for themselves, knowing that he or she has rights and nobody’s better than them. A person with low self-esteem sees themselves as meaningless and is easily affected by others’ opinions and other external factors.

An intense mindset shift to increase your self-esteem

improve self-esteem by improving your menatily
Mindset is your greatest asset

A quick question. Have you seen those guys who seem to have it all figured out and everything so perfect in their life? Or those who always brag about their achievements and abilities? I certainly have. You may be thinking that they got it so good, and I’m here to tell you that it’s bullshit. 

See, one crucial epiphany that raised my self-esteem was to realize that everybody feels bad about themselves sometimes. People just don’t like to show it. Ask yourself, how many from your social circle know about your problems? 1 out of 5? 10? Then do the math. Changes are that people you know have way more problems than you think.

Of course, it’s sad, but realizing this helped me to raise my self-esteem. See, we all have flaws, insecurities, and anything like that because we’re humans. Take a look at the people around you. Everyone there has something they’re unsatisfied with themselves. Yes, even the most handsome millionaires and beautiful models. You’re not alone.

Sure, it’s easy to get stuck inside your head when girls are bombarding their Instagram stories with fancy dinners and guys are trying to act some kind of alpha males.

Don’t buy into that bullshit. That’s just the best 5% of their life. They have flaws and weaknesses just like everyone else. And ironically, those who brag most about their achievements have the most internal problems. Insecurity is loud, confidence is silent, period.

This is a crucial mindset shift to improve your self-esteem. You, me, and everybody have our own problems. Not because we’re lousy people, but because we’re people. Let that sink in.

Building confidence and rising self-esteem

Usually, people with low self-esteem care what other people are thinking about them, and that affects their mood. However, people with high self-esteem don’t give a shit what other people think, and this actually makes them more respected. Here’s how you can use this to your advantage:

The world sees you as you see yourself. 

Let that paragraph sink in, tattoo it to your forehead, read it 100 times. Anything that you’ll remember it. 

For example, you commit a mistake in front of people. What do you do? If you try to cover it, blame it on someone else, or slither out of it, people will see you as weak and pathetic. This lowers your self-esteem even more, so the next mistake will be even worse.

But, if you carry out yourself with dignity, admit your mistake, knowing that everybody does them (as we learned in the previous chapter), people will respect you and sense your confidence.

You can apply this principle to pretty much anything in life. Next time you’ll commit a mistake or end up in a negative situation, remember what you’ve learned in this and the previous chapter.

Realize that you can start to change how other people see you by treating yourself with respect. It’s not about trying to impress others. NEVER do that. That’s for losers and you’re not a loser. It’s about carrying out yourself well. It starts from you, not the others.

Rising self-esteem with firm boundaries

A yelling military instructor
If you decide to do something, you do it.

Every confident person on this planet has certain boundaries and principles that they always follow. This means standing up for themselves if necessary, knowing their own worth, and putting themselves first. Not in a narcissistic way, but in a healthy way.

Having firm boundaries means that you stick to your own principles and plans, regardless of other people. You should never change your behavior to seek approval.

An example

Let’s say you’ve decided to make your day productive. You have a plan to study, make your chores, and work out. You’re storming through your activities and you’re heading to the gym when your friend calls you. 

He asks you to come over for beer and watch a movie. You say that you’re heading to the gym and promise to call after that, and you’re friend starts to nag and tell you to skip the gym. 

What do you do? The answer is obvious. You go to the gym and stick to your boundaries, knowing that your own goals are more important. Never sacrifice your health, backbone, or anything to seek approval.

I want you to start holding on to your principles and putting your own vision and goals first. This both teaches you self-respect and discipline and makes others respect you more in the long run. Win-win situation for you and your rising self-esteem. 

If you fail to do this, some people will start taking an advantage of you, and that’s something you don’t want to happen. Sure, it may be intimidating when you’re offering resistance to someone trying to use you or manipulate you, but I promise, you’ll thank yourself later.

Never seek anyone’s approval by changing your actions and sacrificing your own convenience! Whatever you do, do it because you WANT to do it. Not because someone tries to manipulate you or blame you for not doing it.

However, don’t turn into an asshole. If you obviously have to do something for someone like cleaning up your own mess or apologizing for a severe mistake, do it and remember what you learned in the previous chapter. 

Improve self-esteem by improving yourself

Improve every area of your life

If you ask someone with low self-esteem why are they having those issues, you’ll probably end up with answers like “I’m too skinny” or “I’m not popular or respected”. Although the most important thing is to focus on your mindset, it doesn’t hurt to improve your own capability too.

If you want to gain some muscle, go to the gym and commit to working out regularly. Are shy and bad with the opposite gender? Start to practice social skills! Are you worried about your finances? Get a job and or start learning skills to build a business!

Many people (including a teenage me) have this completely moronic belief that if your life is what it is, you should accept it, and trying to improve yourself is desperate.

That’s the biggest rubbish I’ve ever heard. There’s nothing pathetic about being ambitious and wanting more! Sadly, many people don’t realize this and they settle for whatever situation they’re in.

You, however, deserve to know the truth. If you commit to improving every area of your life constantly, you’ll not only improve your self-esteem but get a life that many people only dream about. Here are four basic areas of life that everyone should be improving constantly.

  • Fitness
  • Finances
  • Social life/Dating
  • Mindset/Inner game

In a nutshell, improving yourself will improve your self-esteem, because you’re becoming more and more capable and start to feel good about yourself.

Improve self-esteem naturally

improve self-esteem by treating yourself better

They say that the mind and the body are connected and that’s true. This means that whatever situation you’re in with your mind and self-esteem, it’s always better if you take care of your physical health. This means eating clean, exercising regularly, and getting enough sleep.

I’m not a nutrition expert, but this is not rocket science. Just avoid eating fast food and consuming too much sugar or alcohol. Sure, feel free to use them sometimes to reward yourself, but most of the time you should be eating healthy. It’s hard to feel good about yourself if your body is getting abused by all the bad fat from burgers and booze.

Secondly, working out and sleeping properly (7-9 hours every night) is important for your well-being. When your body is feeling great, your mind follows naturally. This includes increasing self-esteem. On top of that, it’s way easier to feel good about yourself when you know you’re implementing good habits into your life.

Improve self-esteem with your “purpose”

Improving self-esteem by following your purpose
Follow your own vision and let other people follow you

Although the western culture includes a lot of welfare states, depression is more common than ever. One of the major reasons for this is that people are lacking their purpose. 

Let’s say you’re a Viking living centuries ago. Although the quality of life was way worse back then, you had a clear purpose. It was conquering new lands and defending your own kingdom.

Today’s people are different. They don’t feel meaningful and important because they could just be replaced by another worker if they happened to die. Too many of us are just deciding to go wherever life takes them. They don’t have a clear vision.

Choose to be different and stand up from the crowd. You don’t have to have it all figured out yet, especially if you’re in your 20s like me! However, you should have a goal that you’re pursuing on daily basis. 

For me, it’s building this website and my first online business. It can be anything that puts fire in your belly and excites you. Your career, fitness, social skills, anything!

If you have no idea what could it be and your reading this due to your low self-esteem, decide the following purpose for the next few months of your life. Becoming more confident, respected, and attractive than ever before. 

That’s how I did it back in time and I have to say, having that one goal that out-ranked everything else was such a phenomenal feeling. My self-esteem raised instantly when I applied this principle.


As we all probably know, suffering from low self-esteem sucks. This is why I provided you this article containing tips and tricks to improve your self-esteem. These tips are proven since I’ve used them personally, and I hope you’ll find them useful in your life. 

Implementing them one after another starts a positive spiral. This means that once you master one, the next one is easier and more effective. I’d say the most important ones are the first and the last, so start with those, and take action!

Believe me, the path of improving yourself (and your self-esteem) is an exciting journey, so have fun! And of course, thanks for reading!

Veikko Arvonen is a blogger with a burning passion for self-development. In his blog, he shares battle-tested tips to become more confident, charismatic, attractive, and happier. Back in time, he got tired of being at the lower end of the pecking order and decided to change. Now, you can learn his lessons from this blog.