Reasons for Low Self-Esteem
What are the signs and causes of low self-esteem?
Each day, we receive feedback from others about our personal qualities, appearance, and behavior. Whether it’s in the form of a personality assessment throughout our lives or another person’s opinion of us, we use this information to make decisions and communicate with others. If we don’t have a strong understanding of ourselves and our positive qualities, it can negatively affect our self-confidence.
No one is good at everything. In fact, we are all very different people and we all possess our own distinctive gifts, talents, and abilities. But when we compare ourselves with other people’s potentials, we tend to think that we are not as great as they are. To avoid this tension, we suppress our own real capabilities.
We often make judgments on ourselves before we even do anything or before we even have time to think things through properly. This is very common in the workplace.
Most people do not appreciate themselves. Self-esteem is how good you feel about yourself. You can become self-confident if you believe in yourself and are positive. Being in a good mood enhances self-esteem and positivity.
There are also a number of signs of low self-esteem that are quite common, even if a person doesn’t recognize them as such.
- Confusing emotions and moods;
- Lack of confidence in your own opinions, thoughts, or desires;
- Psychological dependence on others;
- Poor physical appearance;
- Drinking or smoking too much;
- Poor health;
- Expectations of others;
- An inability to say “no” to others;
- Limited view of your own worth;
- Fear of liking what others like about you.
Below are the most common causes of low self-esteem:
1. You’re ashamed of your weaknesses
We all have them, and some of them are unique to you. We’re ashamed of them for good reason. If you were someone else, you’d feel ashamed of yours as well. Maybe you’ve not been doing what you thought was the best decision for you for a long time, you started with a particular project because of a kind of passion and have made a ton of progress, but you’re not satisfied because you believe it could have been better. Or you chose a job because it is more important than you could ever imagine and you’ve put in tons of effort, but you’re starting to feel discouraged because you just haven’t reached that position yet.
It’s natural to be honest when assessing yourself. We can even be honest when talking to others about what we can. Low self-esteem can come from negative life events: traumas, incidents, poor luck, or problems at work, etc. In these situations, a person will start making negative assumptions about oneself, and this can lead to self-defeating tendencies.
Let’s be honest: nobody wants to feel small or inferior. When we have low self-esteem, our world suddenly feels very small and every misstep or failure is a reproach.
When we find ourselves in this situation, the first thing we do is to ask, “What’s wrong with me?”
3. The choice to be affected by others
The individual will start to look outside of themselves for validation. People often set standards for others and, therefore, they can’t stand to feel like others don’t meet their expectations. In some cases, people start to doubt themselves as they see others succeed.
The fear of people’s negative reactions when we are successful causes us to assume that we are not worthy of success. So a lack of self-esteem can have devastating effects on our life and our ability to achieve and develop.
4. Neglecting by parents
Low self-esteem can be caused by neglecting your child’s needs or not providing them with the right amount of attention. Parents may have low expectations for their children’s performance in school or other endeavors. This type of parenting can lead to the child feeling that they are not good enough and make them feel discouraged.
Children who are neglected by their parents may grow up believing that they are unworthy of love. This can lead to an inability to function in social settings.
6. Getting the negative feedback
This is perhaps the most important reason why you’re having low self-esteem, which actually impacts your life in the long term. We have often been told something without being conscious of the context or giving thought to its impact. The statements usually made can easily leave a negative impact on our self-esteem, because of which we then don’t even want to start the conversation.
7. Continuous negative self-talk
It is common to find yourself focusing on your negative qualities, calling yourself dumb and stupid or bad and unsatisfied when you are thinking about them. As a result, they get reinforced in our head, especially if you repeat them over and over. This leads to low self-esteem and negative feelings.
It is you, the only one who can change your situation
While everyone wants to feel secure and appreciated by the world, low self-esteem is often accompanied by such negative emotions as anger, resentment, and the desire for revenge. Thus, it is not a question of choosing between the two extremes — either you try to compensate for the absence of self-esteem by boosting it with external resources or you run away from yourself, pretending that your whole being is worthless. You should not overlook the fact that you are the only one who can help yourself feel happy and confident. It is you, the only one who can change your situation. Remember that it is your own choice, your own life, and your own future, so you should act your own responsibility.
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