What is self-esteem? In my opinion, one of the most difficult questions one can ask oneself. Without a good sense of self-worth, there is no true contentment. The ability to love yourself includes valuing and respecting yourself in all areas. This, in turn, means valuing and respecting others, including your partner. In order to be both loving and self-respecting at the same time, you must work on this daily.
Self-esteem is a person’s personal evaluation of his or her worth as an individual. Self-worth encompasses a persons’ beliefs about themselves, their capabilities and how they see themselves on a day-to-day basis. A person with a positive self-image has high regard for themselves, their abilities, and their dependability. A person with a negative self-image believes that they are worthless, incompetent, and not dependable.
If you have a positive self-image, then you also possess a healthy sense of self-confidence. You tend to approach everything with a sense of positive conviction and optimism. One of the primary components of building healthy self-esteem and a positive outlook is self-compassion, which is your own internal identification with your own values and talents. A healthy sense of self-compassion also facilitates creativity and an expansive view of life, as it generates motivation to find solutions to tough problems.
The third component that comprises the foundation of healthy self-esteem and positive psychology is the ability to make and accept personal relationships with others. Healthy self-confidence helps us to become accepting of ourselves and others. It also helps us to cultivate our interpersonal skills. Self-acceptance is one of the fundamental elements of positive psychology. Self-acceptance helps us to avoid acting in a manner that others will question our ability to do, which may hamper our motivation and self-confidence.
When we are self-confident and self-respecting, we tend to value our own experiences more than other people’s experiences. We know and realize that we do not know everything, so we value other people’s experiences more than our own. When we value other people’s experiences, we are more likely to be more generous and helpful with our own experiences. This helps us to become more self-confident and self-respecting.
Our ability to change and grow is also affected by our level of self-esteem and self-compassion. Self-esteem and self-compassion are related to the emotional intelligence theory of development. Emotionally intelligent people are more capable of improving their own lives and those around them. The inner critic, which we sometimes referred to as the “I” voice, can sometimes act like an inner critic that can undermine our self-confidence and inhibit our self-growth. People who have positive self-empowerment experiences, are more likely to take steps to improve themselves and are more motivated to change, grow and expand their abilities and talents.
People with higher self-worth are more likely to feel that they are worthy of taking personal responsibility for their lives and are capable of using their skills and talents to affect change in the world and in their relationships. People with higher self-worth often have healthy self-confidence, which helps them to be aware of when they are behaving in a negative or inauthentic way. High self-esteem often influences healthy self-care behaviours, such as a person wanting to eat healthy and exercise.
Self-confidence and healthy self-esteem are important in building successful careers and achieving personal and social goals. However, they may also influence our day-to-day experiences and the way we react to stressors such as difficult situations. For this reason, incorporating activities that promote positive self-talk, like meditation and progressive muscle relaxation, may lead to improved performance in school and work and may even reduce the number and severity of bouts with depression and anxiety. These positive thoughts and emotions can have a lasting effect on our future health and well-being.