Self-esteem comes naturally and without effort as you develop the ability to see yourself clearly. When you get down to the true foundation of yourself, your essence, you are whole. At our core, we are all pure and wise people. At our essence, we know that we are good, and that things are deeply ok. This is still true even if it doesn't feel true. Bringing this to mind, especially when things are hard, builds your self-esteem.
At our deepest level, we feel our interconnection with all life and understand that we spring from the source of growth and regeneration that underlies all things. The greeting "Namaste" refers to this -- "I honor the Sacred within you."
If you don't feel very sacred at the moment, think about the fact that something within you knows how to heal up a cut on your hand. It knew how to get you to crawl and learn language when you were a baby. Your body and your mind know how to do these things.
It is amazing what we humans do all day, every day. Without even trying, you operate a delicately balanced system that takes in food and coverts it into chemicals that move all around your body to keep you alive. That very brain of yours that can drive you crazy with worries and irritability and blue moods also processes multiple levels of sensory input and issues instructions at the speed of light. How could you do anything but admire that person?
If you want to do something concrete to build your self-esteem, get out your paper and pen. Start writing about the incredible things your body and brain do: knowing how to breathe and what to do with oxygen, blinking to keep your eyes from drying out, growing new toenails. If this feels like an artificial exercise, do it anyway! And thank your body and your mind for doing each thing that you write down. Do this every day for the next three weeks, and see what happens to your self-esteem.
Please post comments about what happens when you try out these ideas!