I'm in my late twenties and still suffering from mild/moderate acne in combination with extremely dry skin. However, I've basically come to the conclusion that I need to stop focusing on my skin so much and try to build my confidence in other ways. From reading these forums, it seems that there are a number of people who have been able to take positive steps in this regard - so I'm looking for some practical advice!
What I've done to try and build my confidence:
Recently completed a Ph.D. and have an outstanding academic record
Have published articles and been offered a book contract - I'm now going out and promoting it
Taught classes and given lectures in front of 30+ students
Public speaking in different locations across the world
Signed up to online dating and have been going on dates in person
Learnt how to cook really well!
Despite these actions, my self-esteem is as low as it's ever been...
What is holding me back/damaging my self-esteem:
I really am losing hope that my skin will ever improve - can't look at myself in mirrors
Poor body image
Keep getting ignored or rejected by women, and have been single for six years
Currently living at home with parents (but I am paying rent and helping with housework etc.)
Negative thoughts about myself won't go away and seem a lot more 'natural' than positive ones
Although I've done well so far, I still face an uncertain future career-wise
My income has recently dropped
I was turned down for a job I desperately wanted
I don't particularly want to moan about my situation - what I'm looking for is practical steps that you would recommend to lift myself. What's worked for you (if anything)? Can I do this all by myself or do I need to seek some professional support?