Most people face challenges to their confidence and self-esteem at some points in their life. These challenges can make working harder, less satisfying and more stressful. Luckily, some simple activities can help.

Summary by The World of Work Project

Simple steps to improve confidence and self-esteem

We’re not all confident enough to hit the beach and go surfing…

Throughout the courses of our lives we face many challenges, some of which will affect our confidence and self-esteem. There are many ways to overcome these knocks, some of which are easier than others. While measuring self-esteem isn’t easy, the Harrill Self Esteem Inventory is one simple tool to help you do so.

Here are some of the easy things you can do to help improve your confidence and self-esteem. You may also want to read more about resilience and wellbeing.

The List

  • Make a list of your strengths and a list of your achievements,
  • Think positively about yourself and challenge negative thoughts,
  • Focus on your personal hygiene. Brush your teeth, have a shower,
  • Wear nice, smart, ironed clothing that makes you look good,
  • Eat food you know is healthy and make meal times special,
  • Make exercise a routine and exercise vigorously three times a week,
  • Ensure you get enough sleep. Make this a priority in your life,
  • Understand what makes you stressed and reduce your stress,
  • Ensure your living space is clean and tidy and comfortable,
  • Make more time to do the things that you enjoy,
  • Tackle some of the things that you’ve been putting off,
  • Help other people. Be kind and considerate, even to strangers,
  • Share how you’re feeling with friends and family and get support,
  • Set yourself realistic goals and work towards them,
  • Spend more time with people you value who make you feel good, and
  • Spend less time with negative people or in negative places.

Sleep is very important, many people don’t get enough of it.

Want to be a better manager?


Every year we run an open cohort of our Connected Management programme for those working in small organisations or organisations that are not able to fund personal and professional development. The 10 session programme is £1100 per person with discounts of up to 40% for self-funders and non-profits.

In 2024, we have a cohort on Wednesday 3.30pm UK time and Thursdays 9am UK time from April 17/18. It comprises 10 online live workshops with two great facilitators and access to a bank of support materials. Learn more about the programme by clicking below.

Learning More

Some of the steps we can take to improve our self Esteem involve behavior change. The Bridges model and the Transtheoretical model might be of interest.

As well as improving our self esteem, there are steps we can take to improve our wellbeing. Improving our positive thinking, resilience (with these five simple steps) and self-awareness is also important. Similarly, learning about different types of stress and how to manage stress can be helpful. The below podcast covers the concept of stress-buckets, which might of interest.

The World of Work Project View

The steps detailed in this post are all helpful for improving confidence and self-esteem. It takes time and commitment, though, to embed these behaviors in your life and to notice their long term benefits.

While these steps are all helpful, if you really need support please speak to someone who can help you.

Our Podcast

Our Podcast is a great way to learn more about hundreds of fascinating topics from around the world of work.

This post is based on our experience and on our general reading. There are no specific sources for it.

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