5 Strategies To Combat Feelings Of Worthlessness

If you have been troubled by feelings of worthlessness, this can lead to a serious depression. It certainly will rob you of much of your enjoyment of life. There are five strategies to counteract these feelings that you could find helpful.

1. Turn those "To Do Lists" on their heads.

One trick you may find useful is to avoid making To Do lists at the beginning of the day. You may have some unrealistic expectations about what you can accomplish, and you aren't factoring in things and people that can interrupt your good intentions. These lists with the inevitable unchecked off items can exacerbate your negative feelings about yourself.

Instead, write a "Did List" in the evening and give yourself credit for anything slightly positive. You will be surprised at how much you can come up with, and it will undoubtedly make you feel more cheerful if you keep the habit up for several days in a row.

2. Consider making a significant job change.

If you are surrounded by people who are consistently judgmental or critical of you, or they take no notice of you at all, you would do well to consider a change. This may mean a new job or a transfer to a different department. You might find to your delight that the problem wasn't you, but it was that you were working in a toxic atmosphere.

The chance of making a fresh start can make you feel more optimistic, and you have probably learned things on your current job to make it easier for you on your next one. Also, there are probably mistakes you have made there due to inexperience that you wouldn't make again.

You might want to test the water out before you leap, however, to make sure the atmosphere in your new place isn't as bad or worse than the one before. Listen to that little voice inside your head when you scope out the new situation. The more experiences you have, the better your intuition will get, especially if you start making a practice of listening to it.

If it is not possible to change jobs, move on to the next step.

3. Pursue an interest.

If you have always wanted to learn a skill, don't let naysayers stand in your way any longer. You may believe you have no natural talent, but you will probably find that with persistence, lots of practice, and strong desire, you can accomplish a lot and feel good about it.

It's probably a wise idea to keep your new interest to yourself for a time. When you are beginning to learn new things, your confidence could be fragile and easily shattered. Eventually, as your confidence grows, you will be able to share. Trying new things and participating in events related to your interest or taking classes in it will help you to become a more interesting person, and you could find that your social circle will grow as a result of this. 

4. Try mirror work to improve your self-talk.

Make some time to talk to yourself in the mirror every day. It may seem like a Stuart Smalley (character on Saturday Night Live) thing to do, but this technique does work. It can feel very uncomfortable emotionally at first, but it will help you to recognize your underlying negative thoughts and beliefs about yourself and to confront them. You will need to talk to yourself nicely as if talking to a friend you are trying to encourage, and give yourself compliments about your appearance, body and personality.

5. Seek Counseling.

If despite all you do, if you still don't feel better, you will want to seek counseling from a professional like Carol Vinson PhD. This will help you feel supported in your efforts, and you won't feel so alone.

If the real problem is that you are living with a mate or family members that don't seem to appreciate you, or they are verbally/emotionally abusive, you may need to insist on marital or family counseling to discuss these issues in a safe atmosphere.