Self-esteem is our overall sense of worth, value, and how much we appreciate ourselves. Our self-esteem impacts our self-confidence, feeling of security, sense of identity and belonging, and our feeling of competence.
A low self-esteem can keep us from reaching our full potential. A whole lot of things can cause feelings of inadequacy, like poor childhood experiences with parents, failing grades, financial or relationship issues, or ongoing mental or physical health issues.
However, there are certainly ways to raise your self-esteem even when you're struggling.
Redditor Notsofastboe asked:
"How did you achieve higher self-esteem?"
Hopefully, we can take a few pointers from those who were able to achieve high self-esteem.
Everyone has their own thing going on.
"A few things."
"Being asked at a CBT class if anyone had gone to a restaurant or fast food outlet. Some of us put our hands up. We were then asked to describe who else was there. Of course we couldn't."
"Giving up smoking. At work a fellow smoker wished me the best of luck. Next day offered me a smoke."
"Going to my local shop for years and always buying the same thing. Then one day I asked for "the usual' and the lady on the till, who had served for years, had no idea what I meant."
"Which all took away the feeling that people are talking about me or judging me. Everybody has their own thing going on. So stop worrying and enjoy your life."
"I like the realization of 'The usual, please' means a lot less to them than it does to you. Good to have learned from those experiences! I know I did."
"Like my father always told me: everything YOU think people think of you, is stuff YOU made up yourself."
"Absolutely true. Part of CBT is about 'mind reading.' The exercise being looking at a bit of film with no sound and guessing what was going on. We all got it completely wrong of course."
"You just don't know."
Get out of that toxic relationship.
- "Getting out of that toxic relationship I was in for eight months"
- "Finding new hobbies and growing my hair out"
- "Realizing that I can be myself without worrying about anyone disapproving of me, celebrating being single"
- "Listening to my own music, appreciating my own art, realizing that even if I hate some things about myself, I have so much to look forward to"
"Also 4 is the best way, Is such a great feeling to be happy with your own work."
It's a process.
"It's like an iterative design process."
"You start by one day deciding on a project, in this case caring about yourself."
"So you start on a rough draft. This can be little things like making sure to brush your teeth, eat well, or get some exercise. Small things, not huge changes. These are taking care of yourself in little ways, setting the groundwork."
"Eventually you start to feel a bit more confident, and you add more to the design. You might realize you don't like exercise routines, so you find a hobby you do like. You slowly take better care of yourself and find more things you like about yourself. You find a passion, something you like and are confident in, and embrace it."
"Eventually, you learn that loving yourself matters more than what others think. You may drop some of the attempted ideas along the way, but the goal never changed. You made yourself better and learned to love yourself."
Tricking your mind into believing it's true.
"I think the whole fake it till you make it thing is what worked for me. I still struggle a lot with self esteem but after trying to act more confidently and putting myself outside of my comfort zone I kind of saw that heaps of people are doing the same thing."
"I've opened up about my insecurities to people and have been surprised about the amount of people who have related and shared similar stories, many people who I had assumed had everything figured out."
"A large amount of people in society find it hard and weird navigating this weird world we live in, even the most confident people that you run into have probably got their own sh*t they feel awkward and self conscious about."
Don't believe what toxic masculinity will tell you.
"I use to think I was ugly all my life, seriously low confidence. It wasn't until I saw a girl on Omegle around my age who told me I looked cute did I achieve an extreme higher self-esteem in myself."
"A little tip for people, don't listen to toxic masculinity, the truth is most men are so insecure about themselves that one little positive comment about basically any attributes to them could hold a special memory and boost their self-esteem."
Seek approval from yourself, not others.
"One thing I took time to focus on was rather than trying to please others, I tried pleasing myself first."
"When cooking a meal for my family, I'd cook once beforehand to see if I liked it. Adjusted it to my tastes and then I cooked for everyone (eventually, it was a hard step) and I knew that because I liked it, it must be decent. Lo and behold they all loved it!"
"Once you stop seeking affirmation from other people, and look to yourself, you realise you're worth a LOT more than you give yourself credit for."
"Other people have also commented some good points, but the long and short is you just need to please yourself. Pleasing others comes as a by-product of being good to yourself and kind in general."
Just being yourself.
"By not giving a sh*t and being me."
Though it may seem like a difficult thing to achieve, higher self-esteem comes with time and dedication to yourself.
You're worth that time and energy.
Want to "know" more? Never miss another big, odd, funny, or heartbreaking moment again. Sign up for the Knowable newsletter here.
Advancements in science happen every day in every way.
But often it feels like we are still so far behind.
How have we not cured so many diseases?
Shouldn't we know more about space?
What is Jello really made of?
So much to ponder and understand.
Maybe one day.
We all have a bucket list of what we'd like to see cured or invented before our last breaths.
Redditor yoda2060wanted to discuss all the science that needs to be devoured before the sand runs out of the hourglass. They asked:
"What scientific achievement you would like to see before you die?"
Life is infinite and we'll never know everything that is possible. But let's dream of what could be...
MiraclesMood Grandma GIFGiphy
"Cure for Alzheimer's. It sucks."
"I want to see us grow hearts, kidneys, livers, etc... In labs and end the need for donations and waiting lists for transplants."
"I waited for a heart/bilateral lung transplant for over a year and I spent 8 months living in the hospital waiting for it. You’re basically waiting for someone to die."
"Which feels all kinds of wrong… but my therapist (all transplant patients sees a transplant therapist) kept reminding me that me needing a heart and lungs doesn’t cause someone to die…"
"And what made even harder was that my mom died of Covid about 5 weeks before my transplant happened. So while I was praying and hoping so hard my mom wouldn’t die… I was also praying for my transplant to happen. I had a lot of mixed and confusing feelings. My transplant happened last November."
"Idiot Bottom Line"
"To build an environment friendly world."
"That depends entirely on how far you want to go with 'environmentally friendly.' Some amateurish pseudo-intellectuals will say that humanity itself is devastating the planet by it's very existence so we'll call that the 'Idiot Bottom Line."'
"So you have to find an acceptable level above that to declare environmentally friendly. For example can we still have hear exchangers? Space debris? Artificial Electromagnetic radiation? There has to be a level before you can declare such and so far no one agrees."
“20 years, tops”
"Viable nuclear fusion."
"Nuclear Astrophysicist here. I know the joke is that we been saying '20 years, tops' for 50 years now - who do you think came up with that joke? But seriously, we are really close."
"We need a reaction that is self-sustaining and puts out more energy than we put in. We can easily do a reaction that’s one or the other, just getting one that’s both is hard. And with recent updates to the Greenwald limit we found some relatively minor tweaks that doubles previous theoretical max output."
Deep Withinblack hole animation GIF by rotomanglerGiphy
"Figuring out what Dark Matter is, solving the mysteries of black holes. Proper thorough investigation of our own oceans."
So far, so interesting. We have so much to learn.
let me dream...news tech GIFGiphy
"Prosthetic limbs and organs that can work just as well as real ones. Affordably too. A cure for total nerve damage. Carbon neutral liquid fuel. FTL travel (let me dream)."
"Making contact with another intelligent species in another solar system."
"That's probably not going to happen. I'd be overjoyed though if we discovered even just microbial life in the oceans of Europa or Enceladus. They'd be the first true extra-terrestrials ever encountered."
"If we had teleports then we might also have other technologies integrated with it like instant dental work, instant food, instant surgery, things just unthinkable without the technology but before the steam engine travel was by horse so they could not imagine traveling cross country in any other way besides ships. Maybe with teleports we wouldn't need energy, just an infinite loop of the first spark."
Sickness be gone...
"Cure for all cancer forms."
"I approached a nursing assistant with the question. They could describe it as trying to go after the stick of a lollipop. The treatments are mostly concerned with favors, not sticks. If they can discover a way to deal with the stick, then you may be able to treat cancer from there."
"I think it is important to add that there won’t be ONE cure to all cancers. Cancer is such a broad spectrum of diseases that sometimes have next to nothing in common. But hopefully we will keep getting the survival rates up with different medications for different cancer types."
SimplicityGet Ready Pain GIF by Rodney DangerfieldGiphy
"Solve back pain please. We can do crazy sh*t like nuclear bombs, new fancy vaccines and space exploration, yet we don't have a solution to one of the biggest and most common ailments that existed though all of humanity."
I want to see all of this happen! Fingers crossed.
Want to "know" more?
Sign up for the Knowable newsletter here.
Never miss another big, odd, funny or heartbreaking moment again.
Fast fashion is terrible for the environment, one of the largest polluters of clean water globally because of its all too common use of cheap, toxic textile dyes.
It also places producers under more and more pressure to manufacture more and more clothes on masse–the people working in the factories that make this stuff are being paid a pittance, contributing to much of the wealth inequality in less developed nations.
Additionally, it's estimated that the textiles industry produces 1.2 billion tonnes of CO2 per year and that just two percent of all fast fashion emissions can be reduced through recycling. Ouch. Time to change habits, right?
People shared their thoughts on this and other topics after Redditor urmomsucked asked the online community,
"What should people seriously stop buying?"
"Pets they can’t take care of."
I have known several people who got puppies, decided they couldn't handle them, and dumped them. It's rage-inducing.
"Nestle products. Literally the most evil company currently in business. Unfortunately it's really hard to tell what brands they own."
Nestle is responsible for the deaths of babies in undeveloped nations. It's sick.
"Designer clothes and accessories with logos slapped all over them. It wastes your money and makes you look idiotic."
The funny thing is, the designer clothes/accessories with logos slapped all over them are typically the cheapest options from said designer.
"Simple syrup. It’s sugar water with an $8 price tag."
It's easy enough to make your own. Your iced tea will never be the same again.
"Cheap belts. A quality leather belt will last you decades."
I have a few (quality leather belts, that is) and they've lasted for years and years. Can confirm.
"Cigarettes. To anyone reading this, please just don't start even if it's out of curiosity. I'm 20 years deep into this and it's hell."
Smoking is a brutal addiction to break. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) recently proposed rules prohibiting menthol cigarettes and flavored cigars to stop young people from picking up the habit.
"Fast fashion. Garment workers get paid s*it, the environment suffers and you look like everybody else on the street with no personality or sense of individualism."
This should be up at the top. The environmental impact is terrible.
"Unnecessarily large vehicles..."
"Unnecessarily large vehicles, which they'll then inevitably complain cost too much to fill the gas tank."
Gas guzzlers need to go. It's far past time that they be phased out.
"Anything advertised on Instagram. It’s a scam and those influencers are just making it look cheap AF."
Or just avoid Instagram in general. That would solve a lot.
"New phones when their current is just as good."
You've got that right. People buy a new one for the hell of it without even thinking about it.
It's pretty clear that many of us need to change our habits now. Our wallets will thank us later.
Have some suggestions of your own? Feel free to tell us more in the comments below!
If you make too many funny faces, your face will stay that way permanently.
Watch too much tv and your eyes will fall out.
Break a mirror and it's seven years of bad luck.
These are among the many myths and superstitions we heard as children, more often than not from our parents and teachers as a way of scaring us into behaving.
But while there is not one ounce of truth to any of these tall tales, there are many who still believe them, and many more.
Redditor RedditPersonIf was curious to learn what superstitions people continue to believe are true, leading them to ask:
"What myths are obviously false, yet most people still believe they are true?"
When they fly the coop...
"If you take care of a baby bird, the mother won’t want it anymore because it’ll smell like a human."- GreatXs
No amount of fiber can help you
"If you swallow gum, it'll stay in your digestive tract for 7 years."- stinky_cheese33
It was every other subjects he had trouble with
"Albert Einstein failed math in school."- Nothingreallyendalbert einstein GIFGiphy
Though it does make shampooing easier
"Shaving your hair will make the hair grow back thicker.'- RunWithScissorsss
Sleep with your mouth closed
"The amount of spiders you eat while being asleep."- pantsofafatman
"That you are supposed to pee on a jellyfish sting to ease the pain."- Actuarybajellyfish burn GIF by Monterey Bay AquariumGiphy
"Bulls not liking the color red."
"Bulls are partially color blind and can only see yellow, green, blue, and violet."- Rogurzz
Call a Lyft instead
"Coffee, speed, and uppers sober you up."
"Too drunk to drive?"
"Now you're drunk AND on drugs, you just don't feel the effects of the booze but your motor skills, reaction time and decision making are all still drunk AF."- kirkrjordan
Best let nature run its course
"The damn alpha wolf."
"It was one study under captivity, the poor researcher made it his life's work to try and set it right."
"If you want a brutal hierarchy where everyone pecks down, what you're looking for is chickens."- raxeira-etterathdog lol GIF by Regal CinemasGiphy
Give this one some thought
"We can only use 10% of our brain."- UnbearableHuman
A little bit of research will clear up any doubt you have on these old superstitions and beliefs.
And for anyone who helped out a friend who got stung by a jellyfish, no need to be embarrassed.
Who hasn't looked at a scarf someone knitted for a loved one, a flawless homemade birthday cake, or an immaculately planted garden and thought, "I wish I could do that"?
But you'd never dare try to attempt it yourself, knowing that it's well beyond your personal skill set.
But is it?
Intimidating as they may seem, some skills might be deceptively easier than they appear to be, or might come more naturally to you than to many others.
Redditor halfmoon599 was curious to hear what skills people believed to be much easier than they seem, leading them to ask:
"What skill is actually easier to learn than what other people think?"
Everyone can be ambidextrous!
"I'm left handed and and I wanted to learn to write with my right hand."
"it was much easier than I thought and now I can write with it making it look somewhat decent."- JE3V4N_
"Using your off hand skillfully."
"I worked on this when I owned a woodworking business and it has helped so many times over the years."- karg_the_fergus
Should you ever forget your keys...
"Picking a lock."
"It only takes about 1 or 2 hours to learn, contrary to popular belief." - DifficultAd5113frustrated frustration GIFGiphy
Can't get to the genius stand? No problem!
"It's just a lot of googling and YouTubing."- theassassintherapist
"Basic IT troubleshooting."- usmarine7041
You'll have a blanket done in no time!
"It looked really difficult to me but I was really pleased how easy it was to pick up."
"Especially with YouTube tutorials."- geeltulpenCrochet GIF by Twin_MadeGiphy
But do get a license first...
"Flying a small airplane is actually very simple."
"It's everything else like weather and flight planning, emergency mindfulness, airspace and traffic, and confidence in yourself that gets tricky, but any person with eyeballs and a pulse could fly a plane."- Clyde-MacTavish
With practice, of course
"Parallel parking."- Feels2old
Give your arms a rest!
"It takes just 10-20 minutes a day for 3-10 days.'
"Find a railing you can lean on to start."
"At some point, you'll be able to let go and ride!'- Vegan_BTW_VRJuggling Unicycle GIF by Derek TeeGiphy
... Is it though?...
"Driving a stick shift."- fantazja1
Next time you think, "aw, I wish I could do that," rather than keep wishing, why not just give it a try?