Self-Esteem Exercise: Appreciate What You Have

Self-Esteem Exercise: Appreciate What You Have


This thought-provoking exercise helps delegates appreciate what they already have. Most people, in their quest to achieve more experience more and possess more forget what they have already achieved. The quest and the focus on future is indeed a good thing and must be safeguarded. However, appreciation helps to increase self-esteem and make a person feel that he is experiencing a fulfilling life. The boost in energy can in turn help people carry on better with their quests, achieve more and ultimately become happier.


Think of what you have achieved in life so far and list them.

What You Need

  • Papers
  • Blue and red pens


  • This exercise has two parts.

Part 1:

  • Ask delegates to consider their achievements, possessions and accomplishments. Ask them to write a list or capture them in a mind map. If delegates are not familiar with mind maps, consider teaching them about this useful technique before this exercise.
  • Ask delegates to write as fast as they can as soon as ideas come to their minds. The aim is for them to capture whatever they have already in mind rather than thinking hard to find them.
  • For this part, instruct delegates to write with blue pens.
  • Explain that they don’t have to share anything they don’t want to with other. They should be honest with themselves as they go through the exercise.
  • Allocate 3 minutes for this part.

Part 2:

  • Ask delegates to share what they have captured with others and explain what they appreciate. Again, they are free to share what they like. The purpose here is to inspire others on ideas.
  • Allocate 5 minutes for this part.
  • Now, ask delegates to refer back to their lists or mind maps and add more ideas on what they appreciate or have achieved. This is their second chance to record what they might have missed in part 1.
  • Ask delegates to write these additional items with red pens.
  • Allocate 3 minutes for this part.
  • Now, ask delegates to look at their lists and focus on those in red which have just been added. Why did they miss them in the first round? Does this suggest that they might not be as appreciative for these areas as they should be? Why have they considered certain areas first (blue) instead of areas they considered later (red)?
  • Encourage a discussion on what this suggests.


Explaining the Exercise: 2 minutes

Activity: 3 min part 1 + 5 min sharing in part 2 + 3 min adding more ideas = 11 minutes

Group Feedback: 10 minutes


How do you feel having gone through this exercise? Has it made you think about areas that you have not considered for a while? Has the appreciation of your past achievements, accomplishments and luck made you more confident? What do you think about those areas that you missed? Did others help reminding you that you also have these possessions and achievements? What do you plan to do in the future so that you don’t forget to appreciate what you already have?

“Luck is believing you’re lucky.”

Tennessee Williams

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