Dear friend, I seem to lose count of how many times I've read and heard of celebrity marriages failing left and right. It seems strange that we often see movie and TV stars as flawless people, living the fairytale life of riches and glamour. I suppose we all have to stop sticking our heads in the clouds or sand if you prefer.

There are many ways to lose your sense of self-esteem. But whatever happens, we should all try not to lose our own sense of self.

So what does it take to be a cut above the rest? Here are some of the things you can think and improve on that should be enough for a week.

1. Know your purpose
Are you wandering through life with little direction - hoping that you'll find happiness, health and prosperity? Identify your life purpose or mission statement and you will have your own unique compass that will lead you to your true north every time.

This may seem tricky at first when you see yourself to be in a tight or even dead end. But there's always that little loophole to turn things around and you can make a big difference to yourself.

2. Know your values
What do you value most? Make a list of your top 5 values. Some examples are honesty, freedom, integrity, focus, perseverance and learning. As you set your goals each year - check your goals against your values. If the goal doesn't align with any of your top five values - you may want to reconsider it or revise it.

The number shouldn't discourage you; instead it should motivate you to do more than you can ever dream of.

3. Know your needs
Unmet needs can keep you from living authentically. Take care of yourself. Do you have a need to be acknowledged, to be right, to be in control, to be loved? There are so many people who lived their lives without realizing their dreams and most of them end up being stressed or even depressed for that matter. List your top four needs and get them met before it's too late!

4. Know your passions
You know who you are and what you truly enjoy in life. Obstacles like doubt and lack of enthusiasm will hinder you, but will not derail your chance to become the person you ought to be. Express yourself and honour the people who have inspired you to become the very person you wanted to be.

5. Live from the inside out
Increase your awareness of your inner wisdom by regularly reflecting in silence. Commune with nature. Breathe deeply to quiet your distracted mind. For most of you who live in the city it's hard to even find the peace and quiet you want even in your own home. Perhaps you may consider playing some classical music to soothe your nerves. In my case I chose to live in a quiet and I dare say friendly neighbourhood.

6. Honour your strengths
What are your positive traits? What special talents do you have? List three - if you get stuck, ask those closest to you to help identify these. Are you imaginative, witty, and good with your hands? Find ways to express your authentic self through your strengths. You can increase your self-confidence when you can share what you know with others.

7. Serve others
When you live authentically, you may find that you develop an interconnected sense of being. When you are true to who you are, living your purpose and giving of your talents to the world around you, you give back in service what you came to share with others -your spirit - your essence. Sharing your gift with those close to you is indeed rewarding, and sharing with a stranger who can appreciate what you have done for him/her can be even more rewarding.

Self-improvement is indeed one type of work that is worth it. It shouldn't always be within the confines of an office building, or maybe in the four corners of your own room. The difference lies within ourselves and how much we want to change for the better.

Stop thinking of yourself as second rate being. Forget the repetitive thought of “If only I was richer… if only I was thinner” and so on. Accepting your true self is the first step to self improvement. We need to stop comparing ourselves to others only to find out at the end that we've got 10 more reasons to envy them.

We all have our insecurities. Nobody is perfect. We always wish we had better things, better features, better body parts, etc. But life need not be perfect for people to be happy about themselves. Self improvement and loving yourself is not a matter of shouting to the whole world that you are perfect and you are the best. It’s the virtue of acceptance and contentment. When we begin to improve ourselves, we then begin to feel contented and happy.

Until next time, make this a week one in which you are living your life to the fullest.

With appreciation and gratitude
Nigel St.Hill

Author's Bio: 

Nigel St. Hill is a writer and a life and money management coach helping people who are ready discover their path to money, abundance and prosperity, so that they could live the life of their dreams. He is the founder of http://www.moneyandabundance.com and author of the book, Money Management Caribbean Style and several ebooks including The Easy Cash Flow System, How to Keep Your Doors Open in a Recession, Creative But Practical Ways to Save money, 12 Secrets to Having a Romantic Relationship, Ten Easy Ways to Empowerment, Uncover Your True Potential and The Complete Guide to Life Skills for Today’s Youth. https://www.amazon.com/author/nigelsthill .
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