If you’ve had a bad day and need to boost your mood and self-esteem, here are five things you can do to preserve and protect yourself.

Practice Self Compassion
Be careful of the words that you speak to yourself. Once you own something, your mind then seeks out the evidence for that to be true. For example, if you say, “I am always forgetful”, then your mind will seek out examples to validate your statement. You will keep thinking about the instances where you have been forgetful, and it will eventually become your reality. So be careful what you feed into your brain. Focus on self-compassion. Think “What would my best friend say to me in this situation? What advice would they give me?”. Also, think about what advice you would give to a friend who is going through the same situation as you are now. That is the simplest way that you can practise self-compassion and boost your self-esteem.

Use empowering Affirmations
Use affirmations that empower you rather than defeat you. Sometimes, people use goals as affirmations but don’t set themselves up for deflation or defeat. Don’t set yourself highly ambitious goals that could deflate your morale if you don’t achieve them. Set goals that will boost your self-esteem rather than ones that can bring it down. For example, don’t set a goal like “I am going to be a great success”, because if you are not reaching that, then you are going to constantly deflate yourself for not hitting that goal. A better affirmation is things like “I will persist until I win”.

Learn to say Thank You
If you feel bad about yourself it is very easy to refuse compliments. What you need to do is retrain your brain to simply say “thank you” when someone compliments you. Whether it’s clothing or the way you do something, just acknowledge them and say thank you; rather than making excuses, refusing or deflecting. This will help to boost your self-esteem rather than deflate it. Don’t apologise for what you’re being complimented for.

Focus on your Growth areas
When you start to realize the things you are good at really celebrate those things. Applaud them and bring those into your world more often – pursue them. Give time and space for them. Do this, rather than persisting with things that really don’t float your boat or ignite joy in you. When you can’t get enough of something and find something you are really passionate about, bring them into your world. These things will uplift you and fill you with happy hormones such as dopamine, serotonin, endorphins. This is much better than stress-induced cortisol. Finding your niche and prioritising it can boost your self-esteem.

Build yourself up after a blow
After a blow, negative feelings often follow. At times like these it can be really hard to make an effort to boost your self-esteem. But this is where you have to make a focused effort to give yourself a pep talk. Journalling is a good way of doing that. Writing down your experiences can actually help the hard wire the synapses in your brain. For example, if you don’t get the job that you want, write down the reasons why you are a great employee and a value to any organization. Whenever you are rejected in a particular area, come up with as many key points as to why you are still strong, worthy, valued and validated in that area.