Welcome back to the Self-Esteem Blog Series, whoop whoop!!
Okay, I'll take it down a notch :)
So far, we've been exploring self-esteem. First, I introduced you to the concept itself and then we went deeper (so many words) into the definition of self-esteem as well as some key terms such as self-respect, self-efficacy, and how self-confidence differs.
Now let's take a gander at what less-than-ideal self-esteem looks like.
The stereotypical picture we probably have of someone with poor self-esteem looks something like downcast eyes, sad looking, poor posture, trying not to stand out, quiet, and having negative thoughts about themselves. Well, sure, maybe some of those things are there, but the Face of Lower Self-Esteem can look radically different from that.
Remember those main components of self-esteem we talked about earlier? Self-respect and self-efficacy? Or rather feeling deserving of love and happiness as well as feeling like you're able to cope with life and feeling as if you have control over your life. These are important!
If self-respect and self-efficacy are not present, self-esteem isn't either.
Less-than-ideal self-esteem looks like this: You make decisions with little foundation or confidence, already expecting the outcome to go poorly because you can't control the outcome anyway. Why try?
You don't bring people into your life (or keep people in your life) who add positivity to your existence or challenge you to grow, because you don't deserve that.
You do keep people in your life who knock you down or keep you stagnant because that's what feels familiar, comfortable, deserved.
You may overachieve like it's nobody's business, looking for the approval of others or confidence through being productive or having something to show, or else you'd be worthless. You alone are not enough.
Bottom line, low self-esteem wraps it's mean little hands around every thing you do. Every relationship you enter. Every decision you make. And the end result? Feeling unfulfilled, downtrodden, depressed, helpless, and hopeless while working extremely hard trying to get validation and approval from others or from your achievements... that you won't take credit for anyway. It's a vicious and sad cycle.
Self-esteem is something that develops. It's not a set-in-stone thing. You can increase your self-esteem and learn how to feel more deserving of the space you take up as the person you are and feel more in control. Therapy is the best place to start!
Until next time,