Help My Self Esteem Is Low

"My self esteem is low and I don't know what to do about it."

Low Self-esteem. Let's talk about it as far as what it is, some of the issues with having low self-esteem and some ways to overcome it.

But, before we go any farther, we need to define just what self-esteem is and how to recognize some of the signs of having low self-esteem.

Self-esteem is defined as the degree to which we feel confident and the value we place upon our self. It exists on a high/low continuum and a person can be at several places along the continuum during one’s lifetime or even during the course of a day.

However, being on the low end of the scale is far more dangerous.

To know if you have low self-esteem or not, here are a few of the more common signs:

What are some reasons why my self esteem is low?

  • Social anxiety – Avoiding situations like interviews, parties, business meetings and public speaking that can trigger panic attacks in people with low self-esteem.
  • Inadequacy – That feeling of not being good enough that has a detrimental effect on relationships, work and everyday life.
  • Powerlessness – A feeling of not being able to change a negative situation into one more positive, so the person just lives with it. Over time, it takes its toll mentally and eventually physically.
  • Abuse – It can be any of many, but the common ones are physical, emotional or sexual. And it can come from parents, teachers, co-workers, family members or friends.
  • Perfectionism – This usually results in not finishing projects because of a fear of failing. The thought process of people exhibiting this sign is if the project is never done, it can’t fail. However, this sign can also prevent one from achieving their goals in work and life for fear of failing.
  • Codependency – This sign involves sacrificing one’s needs to meet the needs of others and is usually rooted in insecurity, low self-worth and shame.
  • Over-compensating – The two most common types of overcompensation are overeating and drinking in excess. People with low self-esteem find comfort in food and drink as those two never fail them and are always there to comfort them.
  • Self-talk – Those negative conversations with yourself. Constantly telling yourself, "my self esteem is low" is reinforcing the low self esteem. If negative self-talk is done long enough, even you begin to believe them.

Low self-esteem can also be a symptom of several mental health issues like depression and anxiety. If left unchecked or not recognized, it can lead to life-threatening conditions such as suicide.

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  • National Domestic Violence Hotline at 1-800-799-7233 (SAFE)
  • National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255


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