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20 Affirmations to Help Build Your Self-Esteem

Would you like to increase your self-esteem in 2020? Do you want to reduce codependency and perfectionism and treat yourself with more compassion?

Even though nothing magically changes on January 1st, most of us like the idea of a fresh start. And the start of a new year is a natural time to look forward – to think about what matters most to us, identify what we want to focus on, and set goals or intentions for the new year.

But let’s face it. it’s easy to get pulled off course – to fall back into old patterns of behavior and thinking. So, I’ve written 20 reminders or affirmations for 2020 to help you keep a positive mindset and specifically to reinforce the themes of this blog:

  • Building self-esteem and a strong sense of who you are

These affirmations are meant to be quick reminders of where you want to focus your time, energy, and thoughts.

Our thoughts influence our feelings and actions, so when you find yourself struggling or getting off track, you may find it helpful to read these affirmations and refocus on your goals and your reasons for wanting to make positive changes.

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Photo by Miguel Bruna/Unsplash

20 Affirmations for Better Self-Esteem

  • I can do hard things. I can overcome obstacles, figure things out, and persevere.

  • My life isn’t perfect, but there is always something to be grateful for. Noticing what I have and what’s going right in my life helps me feel hopeful and motivated.

  • My feelings and needs are valid. I don’t have to justify them.

  • Speaking up is a form of self-respect.

  • I deserve the same love and compassion that I give to others.

  • I am setting boundaries for my own wellbeing, not to control or punish others.

  • Baby steps add up to big changes.

  • I don’t expect perfection from myself or anyone else. I accept that we all make mistakes.

  • I am not responsible for how other people feel or act.

  • It’s not selfish to take care of myself.

  • Stepping out of my comfort zone is an opportunity for growth.

  • Resting when I’m tired is not laziness; it’s restoration.

  • Play and fun are not a waste of time. Having fun can nourish my spirit, body, mind, and relationships.

  • Ending or limiting relationships with toxic people is an act of self-care. I will do so thoughtfully and without guilt.

  • I am empowered to make my own choices and do what’s right for me, even if others don’t agree or support me.

  • Criticizing or punishing myself won’t help me to be a better person. What I really need is more self-compassion.

  • I will not focus on trying to control, fix, or change others. I accept that I can only control myself.

  • I am inherently worthy of love and respect. My worth isn’t based on other people’s opinions, how much I accomplish, how much I weigh, or any other criteria suggested by popular culture.

  • I can’t control everything that happens to me, but I can control my responses.

  • I trust myself. I trust my intuition, my judgment, and my ability to care for myself.

Which affirmation resonates most with you?

Which affirmations will you use?

What other affirmations will you use to build your self-esteem and feel more confident?

Feel free to share your ideas in the comments.

If you’d like to print a copy of these affirmations, you can purchase a PDF below for a nominal fee (this helps cover the cost of operating this website and creating free content).

Wishing you a happy and growth-filled new year,


©2019 Sharon Martin, LCSW. All rights reserved.
Photos courtesy of

positive affirmations for self-esteem

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Sharon Martin is a psychotherapist, writer, speaker, and media contributor on emotional health and relationships. She specializes in helping people uncover their inherent worth and learn to accept themselves -- imperfections and all! Sharon writes a popular blog called Conquering Codependency for Psychology Today and is the author of The CBT Workbook for Perfectionism: Evidence-Based Skills to Help You Let Go of Self-Criticism, Build Self-Esteem, and Find Balance and The Better Boundaries Workbook.

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