Humans have the ability to form an identity and to decide whether they like that identity or not. With this comes also the ability of judgment. People with low self-esteem are judging and rejecting themselves.
Often, negative self-evaluations are a result of childhood experiences during which the child was not nurtured as a valuable person or they can be learned in responses to painful life events. Some people may achieve a number of important goals in life and still never feel good enough about themselves.
Self-esteem is the basis on which people act, react, set goals and challenges in life. It is a stimulation to cope with life challenges and the ability to enjoy happiness. It is also the basis on which people are setting life values and beliefs.
Without positive self-esteem, psychological growth becomes impossible and people become less resilient to face life.
People with low self-esteem are rejecting parts of themselves. This rejection can be very damaging to psychological well-being. Judging the self negatively can cause enormous emotional pain. It causes people to take fewer social, academic, or career decisions. People with low self-esteem will be less creative and less effective in life.
It is very common in people with low self-esteem to only seek the familiar and undemanding parts of life, which in turn reinforces weakness and results in even lower self-esteem.
Some Symptoms Of Low Self-Esteem
- Constant self-analysis
- Fear of authority
- Pessimistic thinking
- Afraid of underachieving
- Fear of success
- Preferring to be left alone
- Problems trusting others
- Lack of trust in self
- Fear for risk
- Lack of empathy
- Feelings of guilt and shame
- Lack of assertiveness
- Passive behavior
- Irrational thinking
Treatment For Self-Esteem
While low self-esteem may stem from different causes and sources, people can be helped to feel better, accept their worth, and enhance their self-confidence when taking charge of their thoughts, feelings, and behavior.
Psychotherapy helps people change the way they interpret life. Part of the therapy is uncovering and analyzing the negative self-statements and learning how to create new, objective, positive self-statements that will foster self-esteem rather than undermining it.