Simply put self-esteem is how a person feels about themselves. Confidence impacts everything in a person’s life. When people improve their self-esteem their whole life changes in an amazing way! People with healthy self-esteem and confidence walk, talk and live differently. Here at Flourishing Hope Counseling we want to help you grow your self-esteem and confidence. We understand the major impact of having healthy self-esteem and confidence. We welcome the opportunity to help you transform into the person you have always wanted to be.
Where self-esteem / confidence comes from
Many experiences shape peoples self-esteem. A person’s self-esteem changes continuously throughout life. Everything from early childhood experiences to things that have happen as recent as today. Relationships of all kinds impact our self-esteem and confidence. The experiences of successes and failures also impact a person confidence. Each experience sprinkles its own mix of how a person sees themselves. It can add or subtract from a person’s self-esteem.
Life events that affect a person’s self-esteem
- Attention and care given
- Abuse: mental, physical, sexual, emotional and financial
- Appropriate affection
- Criticism (constructive or critical)
- Communication experiences (positive and negative)
- Expectation of being perfect, no room for error
- Experience of mocking, teasing and ridicule
- How much they are listened to
- Level of respect given
- Level of acknowledgement (accomplishments and mistakes)
- Treatment from others
Inner critic “Inner Voice”
The inner critic, inner voice can be overbearing. It can prevent a person from moving forward. Low self-esteem makes it difficult for a person to take chances. Decreased confidence makes it difficulty to make choices. Minimal self-esteem can stop a person from making any progress. People with low self-esteem and low confidence are judgmental. The past judgment on themselves and others . Often they lack compassion and kindness for themselves. Healthy confidence allows room for acceptance and self-love to grow. High levels of confidence increases compassion and kindness.
What happens when we don’t have healthy self-esteem?
When a person does not have healthy self-esteem many difficulties arise. It is hard for the person to be pleased with life. They struggle to find true joy. Frequently people with low self-esteem live in fear. People with low confidence settle in doubt, shame and many other unhelpful ways. When a person has low self-esteem they become trapped in a vicious cycle.
Low self-esteem consequences
- Feelings of fear
- Guilt and shame
- Poor work/academic performance
- Sleep problems (sleeping too little or too much)
- Eating problems (eating too little or too much)
- Poor work/academic performance
- Broken relationships (professional, family, romantic and friendships)
- May increase poor coping skill of substance abuse (alcohol and other drugs)
Symptoms of low self-esteem / low confidence
Talking negatively to themselves is a major symptom of low self-esteem problems. This negative self-talk becomes a natural way of thinking for some people. People that struggle with confidence issues are highly critical of themselves. They find it hard to see their accomplishments and strengths. The negatives can be magnified by 1000. It’s hard for them to receive compliments and accept the good within themselves. They tend to criticize themselves more. Low confidence prevents them from asking for help. The negative things they say to themselves are often not true. They have begun to believe the negative self-talk. The negative beliefs affect their feelings and actions.
Self-esteem warning signs
- Overly sensitivity
- Easily offended
- Unable to accept compliments
- Emotionally shut down
- Unable to handle constructive criticism
- Extreme shyness
- Negative self-talk
- Little to no eye contact
- Frequently self-doubting
- Compares self to others frequently
- Find it difficult to ask for help
- Indecisive, unable to make decisions
- Strong desire to be perfect
- Constantly checking (clothing, hair, self, situations) before leaving home or making a decision
- Avoids social interactions
- Closed body language
- Poor posture
Challenges to self esteem
The challenge of self-esteem is making positive change. It means becoming intentional in making progress in life. Taking serious actions to make healthy steps is really important. The person struggling with confidence issues will have to fight against self-doubt. They will also have to fight against negative self-talk, fears, shame and embarrassment. When these negative feelings arise look at all the good things that can come from making a healthy choice.
Making the choice to change
Benefits of healthy self-esteem
- Improved relationships
- Increased confidence
- Be more fearless
- Know your worth
- Improved confidence
- See obstacles as opportunities
- Acknowledge both strengths/weaknesses
- Healthy social interactions
- Increases self-esteem
- In tune with emotions
- Healthy boundaries
- Able to make clear decisions
- Does not see others as threats or superior
- Accepts compliments
- Clearly focused
- Less worry
There is no reason to walk away from all this goodness!
Treatment options for self-esteem/confidence
Choosing to improve self-esteem can transform a person’s life in an amazing way! Habits are sometimes hard to break. The good news is that it can be done! Just like the diagram shows, when you make the choice to make a change we can support you in breaking the cycle.
A few things to get you started are:
- Start counseling
- Explore the things that make you uniquely you
- Find healthy role models
- Recognize and practice stopping negative thoughts
If you recognize that you need help and are willing you DON’T have to go it alone. We want to help you.
Flourishing Hope Counseling PLLC is a Kingsville, TX Private Practice.