Too little self-esteem can leave people feeling defeated or depressed. It can also lead people to make bad choices, fall into destructive relationships, or fail to live up to their full potential. Too much self-esteem, can certainly be off-putting to others and can even damage personal relationships.
Self-esteem levels at the extreme high and low ends of the spectrum can be harmful, so ideally, it’s best to strike a balance somewhere in the middle. A realistic yet positive view of yourself is generally considered the ideal.
What Is Self-Esteem?
The term ‘self-esteem’ is used to describe a person’s overall sense of self-worth or personal value. In other words, how much you appreciate and like yourself.
- Self-esteem is often seen as a personality which means that it tends to be stable and enduring.
- Self-esteem can involve a variety of beliefs about yourself, such as the appraisal of your own appearance, beliefs, emotions, and behaviors.
Why Self-Esteem Is Important
Self-esteem can play a significant role in your motivation and success throughout your life. Low self-esteem may hold you back from succeeding at school or work because you don’t believe yourself to be capable of success.
By contrast, having a healthy self-esteem can help you achieve because you navigate life with a positive, assertive attitude and believe you can accomplish your goals.
Factors That Can Influence Self-Esteem
As you might imagine, there are different factors that can influence self-esteem. Genetic factors that help shape overall personality can play a role, but it is often our experiences that form the basis for overall self-esteem. Those who consistently receive overly critical or negative assessments from caregivers, family members, and friends, for example, will likely experience problems with low self-esteem.
Additionally, your inner thinking, age, any potential illnesses, disabilities, or physical limitations, and your job can affect your self-esteem.
Signs of Healthy Self-Esteem
You probably have a good sense of who you are if you exhibit the following signs:
- Ability to say no
- Positive outlook
- Ability to see overall strengths and weaknesses and accept them
- Negative experiences don’t impact overall perspective
- Ability to express your needs
Signs of Low Self-Esteem
You may need to work on how you perceive yourself if you exhibit any of these signs of poor self-esteem:
- Negative outlook
- Lack of confidence
- Inability to express your needs
- Focus on your weaknesses
- Feelings of shame, depression, or anxiety
- Belief that others are better than you
- Trouble accepting positive feedback
- Fear of failure
To help in your exploration of how your feel about yourself, you might find value in the following definitions and their sources:
Self-Image = opinion.
How you see yourself and how you think others see you.
Image = visual.
How we look, based on what we see.
Self Image = inner and Image = outer
Two separate and distinct issues which go hand-in-hand
Self-Esteem = emotions or feelings
How you feel about yourself image.
Is it really who you want to be?
Is it really who you want to be, inside?
Self -Confidence = feelings and emoting
A feeling of assurance or certainty.
Self-Ideal = intention
The person you would ultimately like to be.
Self-Ideal = self love
How you unconditionally love yourself. (With all your challenges)