All too often people confuse self-esteem with confidence. While you may often use them interchangeably, in reality they are really nothing alike. With such confusion, you may get caught up trying to do better in life to build your self-esteem. But this will not work as you are building confidence.
Self-esteem — What is it?
Self-esteem is how you see yourself. It is what you think of yourself as a person and how worthy you think you are. Your self-esteem develops from childhood and changes depending on the experiences you have in life and how you interact with others. It is internal. No one can see your self-esteem from the outside. It has nothing to do with how well you do things or your skills. Self-esteem is the result of how you feel about who you are.
For better self-esteem you need to learn to better like, love and accept who you are. Think about how you feel about your spouse, children, family and friends. Do you feel love for them? Try applying this love to how you feel about yourself.
Self-confidence — What is it?
Self-confidence is what you have in different areas of your life. You may be confident of your cooking skills because everyone enjoys the meals you make. Or you may have confidence in your work skills because you achieve good results. Confidence is the belief you have in your abilities and yourself. But this can vary. It is normal to have different levels of confidence depending on the situation.
Even though you may be confident in your skills, you may still have low self-confidence. People may tell you how good you are but you can still lack confidence in some of your skills. You may not have confidence in some areas, but you can practice the required skills to build your self-confidence. Confidence is something you feel and that other people can see in you.
Where Self-esteem Comes From
Have you ever wondered where self-esteem comes from? You start developing it as a child. When you have loving parents who support and praise you for your efforts, this builds your sense of the world as being a good place. Self-esteem comes from your interaction with the world — family, friends, teachers and the people you encounter. When you do not experience support and love as a child, you will develop feelings of not being worthy and lack a sense of inner value for yourself.
As you grow through childhood you are likely to experience pain and hurt which can decrease your self-esteem. You can lose your feelings of being worthy. Self-esteem is at the core of who you are and can influence what you achieve through life.
So when someone tells you that you are stupid or useless, your thoughts can tell you the same thing. Instead of accepting others putting you down, you need to learn to counteract how this makes you feel by telling yourself that you do not deserve that type of criticism.
How Low Self-confidence or Self-esteem May affect You
You are not alone if you experience low self-confidence or self-esteem. It affects many people. Sometimes it is only around certain situations and for others it can restrict their lives to the point of being debilitating.
Disappointing or negative experiences can affect how you feel about yourself. When this occurs, it can lead to a cycle of self-perpetuating negative thinking where you only have negative expectations so you give up trying. This will only ever leave you feeling disappointed in yourself.
For example, if you have a lack of self-confidence and fail your driving test, you could think, “Well that proves what I thought. I knew I could never pass. I might as well give up.”
Where if you have healthy self-confidence and you fail the test, you may think, “What do I need to improve to pass next time?” Although you will feel disappointed for failing the driving test, it does not diminish who you are as a person. You look to learn a lesson.
Low self-confidence can cause:
- Social anxiety
- Difficulty communicating with others
- A lack of assertiveness
When you have low self-esteem your inner voice may become overly critical of everything you do. It can make itself heard loudly when you feel criticised, distressed, judged or overwhelmed by others. Your negative inner voice can make things worse and contribute to your anxiety, sadness, anger and lack of self-esteem.
When you believe you negative inner critic, you can:
- End up always believing or expecting the worst.
- Believe the negative inner voice.
- Think you do not deserve to be successful or happy.
- Go out of your way to avoid situations or challenges where you feel others will judge you.
- Forget what your strengths and abilities are.
- Always think about yourself in a negative light.
- Focus on your failures and mistakes, instead of seeing them as lessons.
Tips for Improving your Self-esteem and Self-confidence
The following are tips to help improve your self-esteem and self-confidence.
Change the Way you Think
Take notice of the way you talk to yourself and about yourself to others. Are you kinder to others than you are to yourself?
To build self-esteem, recognise and challenge the inner voice that incessantly criticises you. Instead of taking negative self-talk to heart, acknowledge it and counteract it with positives about yourself. Reject the messages that make you feel negative about who you are. Change your perspective using affirmations and positive self-talk.
Be proactive. Make changes to your life that will build our self-esteem and confidence. What can you change that will help you feel better about yourself? You may want to learn new skills, improve the skills you have or improve your relationships, for example.
Set out a plan to help you make the changes. In your plan:
- Set goals that push you out of your comfort zone.
- Break each one down into achievable steps.
- Build your success on each step as you achieve each one.
Before you can accept yourself, you need to be more understanding of other people’s mistakes and of who you are no matter what happens. It is normal to make mistakes and everyone makes them. Practice self-acceptance by:
- Criticising the way you behaved and making an effort to change it but avoid criticising yourself.
- Look for lessons in the mistakes you make.
- Find new ways to solve problems or make changes to get different outcomes.
Understand Who You Are
To understand who you are, notice what thoughts or experiences decrease and increase your self-esteem and confidence.
Take an honest look at yourself. Recognise your achievements, abilities and strengths. Identify what makes you proud no matter how small. Then consider why they matter to you. Now think about what you want to improve or change, and how you can achieve them.
Accept Others’ Compliments
How often have you received a compliment and said (or thought) you do not deserve it? Do you think people are only giving you a compliment to be nice or polite? Do you think they are lying to you? Do you laugh them off or respond saying that it was nothing really? Yes? Instead, practice saying thank you (even if you do not believe it yet). It may make you feel uncomfortable at first. Make saying thank you a habit instead of being negative. Eventually you will start to believe the nice things people say to you.
Identify What you do Well
Improve your self-esteem by identifying what you do well. Maybe you write well. Start writing poetry, a blog or stories. You may be a keen gardener and love growing your own food. Plant a vegetable garden. Or you could have a love for a certain breed of dog. Get one and take it to shows or learn tricks and compete with it.
It does not matter what it is. What is important is to identify your talents and skills, and either find or make opportunities to make them a priority in your life.
Give yourself Rewards
Make it a habit to give yourself a reward for every achievement. Emphasise their importance by celebrating them. It does not matter what you do as long as it is something you enjoy — a pampering session, a round of golf, a picnic at the beach with someone you love. When you make this a habit, it increases your self-esteem and confidence.
Blissiree Pty Ltd
Self-esteem and self-confidence are important for a happy, healthy life. When you lack them, it can make you anxious and you may develop other mental health issues. It can affect all parts of your life and your relationships if you do not have healthy self-esteem and self-confidence. Sometimes all it takes is to change your perspective and practicing the skills you are not confident in. This is not always easy without help.
You may wish you had better self-esteem and confidence to improve your life. But if you feel everything is out of control, you may need to seek help. Until you do something to help change the way you see yourself, low self-esteem and confidence will continue to negatively impact your life.
The Blissiree Pty Ltd is pioneering a new technique. A natural treatment that may help you build your self-esteem and confidence. It only requires for you to relax. Highly trained facilitators help you learn to recognise the triggers and turn them around so you have a new perspective. This may help you take back control of your life. And you may notice an improvement after the first session. With some simple changes to your life, a new perspective and with practice, you may learn to build your self-esteem and confidence.
If you have anxiety caused by low self-esteem and confidence, it is time to turn it around. Time to do something positive. Seek help. Take back control. You do not have to go through it alone. The sooner you get help, the sooner you can start taking good care of your mental health. And get back to enjoying life.
If you need help, reach out to our professionals. When you are not coping, contact us. We can talk to you about how to get your life back on track. But if you reach a crisis point, call us immediately. We are here to support you.
We can work with you over the phone, via Skype or in our Spas. Book in today for my special introductory offer for just $49 (private health rebates apply) so you learn to control what worries you. We aim to help you cope with any mental health challenges and the anxiety that affects your life. Our facilitators may alleviate the effects of anxiety so you see yourself in a better light and start enjoying life again.
Let me Help Alleviate the Effects of Low Self-esteem
My Emotional Empowerment Program has helped many people for more than a decade. My aim is to help manage and cope with the anxiety that stems from low self-esteem and confidence so you may start to feel better. This may give you a new hope for the future. A future filled with happiness, peace and contentment in weeks not years so you can start living life to the fullest.
Book a free 25-minute telehealth consultation with Blissiree Pty Ltd founder, Terri Bowman. Or discover a seamless way that may help you manage your emotional and mental health by becoming a member. It will give you access to more than 75 audio programs that may help you to live an inspired life.
What are you waiting for? Try us now. You have nothing to lose.