free to be me

Dear Jaime,

I'm faced with many choices at the moment. I always get confused and then procrastinate with making the decision until the last minute. Then I normally make the wrong choice. Can you give me some advice?


Dear Winnie,

Decision-making is a skill and unless someone has taught you to make good decisions, it can be difficult.

You can always learn from past bad decisions, but I find it more helpful to think carefully about the choices you have to make and not just make a quick decision. When you have a decision to make, I recommend that you write down at least three different choices.

For example, if you are thinking about which university to go to, write down three options, or more if you have others.

Then think of three positive consequences and three negative consequences for each choice. This will mean you have all the information before you jump in and make a decision. As you look at the consequences decide which option would be the best for you.

Dear Jaime,

I have a friend who has low self-esteem. She is always apologising and can't accept compliments. I have tried talking to her and told her to go see the school counsellor but she won't. I don't know what more I can do.

Bertha Dear Bertha,

It's good to see that you're so concerned about your friend. She is lucky to have someone who cares so much.

Unfortunately, there's not much you can do to make her see that she needs help in building her self-esteem.

True change only comes when someone is willing to take responsibility and work on themselves.

Most people lack self-esteem because they allow the words of others or their own negative thoughts to drain their confidence levels.

So when someone lacks self-esteem, they need the holes in their esteem covered back up again. One way to do this is continuing to speak positive words to her.

Also, you could make a rule that when she hangs out with you, she isn't allowed to speak anything but positive words about herself.

The more she starts speaking positively, the greater her self-esteem will become.

You could encourage her to write down a new thing she likes about herself every day and read it to herself in the mirror.

This is really helpful in building self-esteem.