“I have a friend who is always putting herself down. How can I help her feel better about herself?” Liahona, September 2014
How you approach your friend’s problem depends on its severity. For instance, she may be criticizing herself simply to appear humble or to get compliments or reassurances from others. If so, go ahead and reassure her but also gently try to get her to focus less on herself and more on others. That’s how she’ll find greater satisfaction and self-worth, as well as true humility.
President Dieter F. Uchtdorf, Second Counselor in the First Presidency, has said: “We don’t discover humility by thinking less of ourselves; we discover humility by thinking less about ourselves” (“Pride and the Priesthood,” Liahona, Nov. 2010, 58).
If the problem seems more severe—if you suspect she’s suffering from major depression—encourage her to talk to her parents, a school counselor, or her bishop. Or go to them yourself and explain the situation. They can make sure she gets the help she needs, including professional help if necessary.