What Affects Self-Esteem?

Low self-esteem can be caused by a combination of events, both within your life and also in the lives of others. Some events that affect self-esteem are events in your childhood that leave a lasting impression on you. Other events affect self-esteem and you might not even be aware of it. Here is what affects self-esteem in children.

Childhood experiences can have an effect on how much we feel like we deserve success and good enough. If your parents didn’t give you the best start possible, your sense of self-worth will inevitably be lower than it should be. If you grew up in a household where there were constant attacks on your ability to do something, you might feel like you deserve failure. The constant criticism of how you look or whether you’re doing your best can cause you to doubt your own abilities and this can lead to feelings of inadequacy and shame. You might not feel like you deserve any better and so you won’t, and that’s why you feel like you aren’t good enough and can’t get better.

Childhood experiences that affect self-esteem refer to things like physical abuse, neglect or rejection and other negative events. These can leave a scar on your psyche that is difficult to get over, even if your parents or other people in your life have forgiven you. It takes time for these scars to heal and you may need many years to get better. Even if you feel that your life has been turned upside down because of these events, you should still be determined to get better and overcome the trauma. You need to believe that you can move forward regardless.

New research suggests that there are three distinct domains of self-esteem, namely personal self-esteem, confidence and social support. In general, personal self-esteem relates to how much you think you are worth. This domain is typically referred to as “the self” and is the basis for the domain of “I am worth something”. However, apart from some generic sense of worthiness, there are no other underlying grounds for this particular domain of self-esteem.

The second domain of self-esteem is confidence. By this I mean the belief in your own competencies and the belief that you can handle the challenges that life throws at you. If you feel like you are competent to do things, and you have the confidence that you can do what needs to be done, then you feel like you are worthy of good things in life and this affects self-esteem. If, however, there are toxic relationships in your life and you feel like you cannot depend on anyone or anything, then you will feel like you are unworthy and so you will lack confidence.

One of the most interesting domains of self-esteem that has been studied extensively in recent years is the effect of social roles on self-esteem. Social roles can either help you or they can hinder your development. For example, if you are raised in a household where violence is regularly practiced, then you will feel less confident than a person who is raised in a home where violence is not practised. There is even new research out of America, which suggests that people who are raised in nurturing homes with stable and supportive relationships have more positive self esteem and a better understanding of what is fair in terms of social behavior and social norms than those who are raised in households where there are more conflicts and more instances of low self-esteem.

Finally, one of the biggest factors that determines your level of self-esteem is your childhood experiences. Children who are repeatedly subjected to painful and negative messages that discourage them from developing healthy social relations and good social skills are often those who, in turn, have low self-esteem. Conversely, those who are exposed to messages that promote positive social relations and good social skills early on in life are likely to be the strongest and most successful in their endeavors throughout their life. It’s important that parents encourage their children’s social interaction skills early on, but it’s also equally important for those parents to avoid early negative social experiences so that their children are exposed to as few of them as possible. If you want to boost your child’s self-esteem, try to minimize early social interaction.

Self-esteem refers to your internal belief about yourself and your capabilities. Many people place a lot of emphasis on their good self-esteem. When you are feeling low, it’s easy to mistake your own lack of self-confidence and self-esteem for signs of other issues. However, to get a handle on what really makes you feel good or bad, it’s important to take an honest look at how your self-image relates to your overall well being and your interactions with other people. A good self-image can go a long way toward building your self-esteem and helping you gain self-confidence, just as a lack of self-confidence can have dire consequences.