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Pandemic Side Effect - The Rise of Low Self-Esteem


Dr. Sheila Forman


how to

Dr. Sheila Forman, a former practicing attorney, has PhD in psychology, and is a one of the first qualified Mindfulness Based Eating Awareness Training (MB EAT) Instructors in the world. Often characterized as having the mind of a lawyer and the heart of a therapist, Dr. Sheila has devoted over twenty years to helping people address weight and food issues by focusing on the emotional aspects of overeating.

The coronavirus pandemic has done a real number on people’s mental health. The number of cases of depression and anxiety are skyrocketing. People who have lost their jobs and cannot provide for themselves or their families are suffering from guilt, remorse and a drop in their self-esteem. For some this means using food, alcohol, or weed to cope. Taken to its extreme, low-self-esteem can leave a person feeling so worthless that they would do anything to feel better. Fortunately, even in a pandemic, self-esteem can be raised with the right combination of thoughts, beliefs and actions.


How to Build Self-Esteem:

  • Recognize that self-esteem is the opinion you have of yourself. The higher your self-esteem the better you feel about yourself and the more confidence you have in your opinions and choices. The more confidence you have in your opinions and choices, the more confidence you will have in your ability to handle life.
  • That’s self-esteem!
  • To build self-esteem you need to “do the tough stuff.” Challenge yourself to build your self-esteem. What are some things you can do? How about training for a marathon? Setting and meeting a goal? Raising money for charity? Starting a business?  Take an auto repair or electronics class
  • Next, give yourself permission to take care of yourself. Make it okay to meet your needs. Doing so is good self-esteem. You’d be surprised how many people, women in particular, think it is wrong to take care of their own needs. Think of the oxygen mask on an airplane. If you don’t put yours on first you will be of no use to the passenger sitting next you, right?
  • Identify three needs that if met would make your life so much better. For example, an hour a week to get a manicure/pedicure; some extra babysitting help so you can take a nap; a night off to go out with some friends. Choose one of those needs to meet first.
  • Explain to the people in your life why having that need met is important to you and how doing so will in the end benefit them. Highlight the win-win in the situation. Then, solicit their help in making it happen. For example, explain to your husband how an hour break every week to get pampered with a manicure will make you feel happier, prettier and more relaxed and how being that way will make you a better mother and wife. Then get him to agree to come home an hour early once a week so you can meet this need.
  • Then meet the need and watch your self-esteem grow!

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