In the process of building your self-esteem, don’t neglect the importance of acquiring practical life skills. A person can be physically attractive, incredibly talented, materially gifted, or highly educated and intelligent yet still end up a failure due to making poor choices.

One of the greatest tragedies of any generation is the utter reliance on the externals – beauty, wealth, talent, intelligence, and a privileged upbringing – for self-esteem. We glamorize them in every way we can. But it’s very much possible to defy society’s conventional ways of enhancing self-esteem by substituting them with the following tried and tested, value-laden philosophies:

Develop a clear sense of self-image.

What we are is God’s proof of his brilliant craftsmanship. We need not compare ourselves with one another. The all-powerful media taught everyone to buy into the myth that physical appearance plays a great part in getting ahead in life. But how many of us actually look like the celebrities that populate the runways and movie and T.V. screens? The way we look may be the most obvious aspect of ourselves, but it should not be the most important.

Without bashing the movie and fashion industry, we can all nurture our unique selves and be proud of who we are, regardless of our eye or hair color, body or skin type, weight, or height.

Get emotionally healthy.

Emotional health is defined as the capacity to acknowledge both your positive and negative emotions and put them in their proper place when it comes to making important decisions that can impact the quality of your life.

Emotionally healthy people have high self-esteem because they possess the maturity to deny themselves certain harmful things in order to reap greater benefits. Immaturity means gratifying only one small aspect of yourself in expense of others. It may provide temporary happiness, but cannot fully satisfy in the long run. A common example is addictions to liquor, drugs, or porn.

Cultivate a “can-do” attitude.

In some ways, self-esteem is something you earn, so go out there and make yourself productive. Learn to cook, paint a portrait, take up a sport, etc. The only thing that stops us from trying out new things is the fear that we might fail. But to summon up enough courage to leave our comfort zones can already be the starting point for eliminating fear.

In the process of learning to do something, we acquire patience. This is not the kind of patience that most people confuse for being tolerant or condescending, but patience that is tied down to the commitment to a task until it’s finished.

Learn to communicate effectively.

A supportive family and a stable of close friends are vital to the enhancement of your self-esteem. Every individual should aspire to create harmonious, satisfying relationships that encourage personal growth, and the fortunes of such relationships strongly influence the person who is fluent in expressing his feelings, thoughts, expectations, and even frustrations.

Using words tactfully can save us from many unwanted friction with the people with whom we associate. Many marriages, friendships, and work-related affiliations could have remained strong had people chose to pepper their words with kindness, encouragement, reassurance, and firm yet gentle rebuke.

Plan to achieve your dreams.

We were created to make an important contribution that requires us to use our talents and skills. Set short-term, mid-term, and long-term goals in every aspect of your life. Never think for a moment that a phenomenal career can make up for poor health or a lousy family life. Your dreams should include reaching out and helping others, too.

The good news is that these five important life skills can be employed by anyone who is willing to turn his back to superficial, short-lived tricks and disappointing self-esteem-building techniques. Get these basic skills intact, and discover endless ways for self-improvement.

Author's Bio: 

Ronali G. Dela Cruz is a motivational writer who overcame tremendous odds in her personal life. Having gone through severe depression and two serious bouts with bipolar disorder, she turned seemingly hopeless situations around by seeking professional help and consistently choosing to use techniques like positive self-talk and mind reprogramming.