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Feeling bad about yourself is a vicious cycle that can really get you down. Sarah used to struggle with thinking badly about herself every day. Read how she challenged and overcame her negative thoughts and learnt how to value herself.

This can help if:

  • you often feel bad about yourself
  • you struggle to challenge your negative thought patterns
  • you want to have a more positive mindset.
2 girls listening to music

The negative thought spiral

My name is Sarah and I’m 19 years old. I had very negative thoughts and feelings about my life. I used to worry a lot about myself, and about what other people thought of me. In fact, I worried about anything and everything!

I was negative towards others and was hurting the people who wanted to help me. I was using drugs to try to stabilise myself. However, they affected me so badly that I reached the lowest point a person can reach. I knew then that I was stuck and needed to do something about my negativity.

Learning to value myself

The first step I took towards regaining positive mental health was to value myself enough to accept help from the people around me. I had to learn to trust them. Some people may not need to see a professional, but the first step is still valuing yourself and doing something you like or are good at. This can help you to feel positive.

Some of the things I do to make me feel positive are listening to music, painting, going for a walk, talking to friends or going shopping.

We all need to value ourselves and focus on what we’re good at. Controlling a roller-coaster spectrum of emotions isn’t easy; it takes time and practice. You deserve to feel positive, so try it and see if it works for you.

Aiming for positive mental health

Sometimes you just have to trust the people around you, or find someone professional that you can trust with your issues. Feeling isolated and alone is the worst feeling ever.

Life is a roller-coaster ride, with a lot of ups and downs and unexpected turns. Roller coasters were designed to be exciting, and if we have positive mental health we can view our life in a better way as an exhilarating ride.

Positive mental health is about liking who you are and feeling good about yourself. It's also about feeling good about the world around us. It's about having good self-esteem and being optimistic about life.

What can I do now?

  • If you’re struggling with negative thoughts, ask for help from a trusted friend or family member.
  • Try to identify activities you love and that make you feel good, and do them often.
  • Seek professional help if your negative thoughts are overwhelming you.