Our self-esteem relates to how we see and value ourselves. No matter what we do in life, who we meet and what situations arise, we must evaluate what we have encountered with our own inner mechanism of interpretation. If our relationship with ourselves is critical, judgemental and harsh, we put ourselves down. It is very difficult for us to take on board and accept in the good things in life. Based on our life experiences, we can perceive threats that are not necessarily there! We can automatically perceive the situation as being not good enough or tell ourselves that we are not measuring up. Therefore the relationship we have with our self is a foundation for all other relationships and situations.
As the saying goes by Confucius, “No matter where you go, there you are.”
Low self-esteem can be the reason that we behave the way we do. We can act out from this place of insecurity, low self-worth, little self-appreciation or even self-knowledge. If we are not measuring up in our own minds, we can turn to many unhelpful coping mechanisms like denial, self-pity, criticising self and others, holding-fort in a comfort zone, disengaging from effort or goal setting.
It is important to recognise that examining our self-esteem is not about anybody else and how they see us. Self-esteem is really all about our relationship with ourselves. Of course, we will be very affected by how other’s perceive us if we do not have a solid foundation of esteem for ourselves!
Finding our self-esteem, takes us on a journey of looking inwards rather than outwards for how others see us. It is about identifying our own needs, validating them and seeing that they are in fact very important! It means taking action to meet our needs for ourselves, this is our own responsibility. Self-esteem is really about connecting with oneself in a true, honest and intimate relationship, a relationship which can encourage and drive us forward and also help soothe and allow us to rest when needed too.
Don’t you owe it to yourself and your loved ones to become your best imperfect self?
Check out our Build your self-esteem course.