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Low Self-Esteem

Self-esteem is the opinion we have of ourselves, our evaluation of our own worth and the value we consider ourselves to have as people. This includes the thoughts and feelings we have about ourselves and our abilities, the kind of person we believe ourselves to be and our expectations.

Low self-esteem therefore refers to having a negative overall opinion of oneself, judging or evaluating oneself negatively, and placing a negative value on oneself as a person.

In essence, people with low self-esteem usually have deep-seated, rigid, negative beliefs about themselves and the kind of person they are. These beliefs, about personal inadequacy, being unwanted or unloved and feeling useless or like a failure, are often taken as facts or truths about their identity, rather than being recognised as opinions they hold about themselves.

Beliefs about ourselves are conclusions we arrive at based on what has happened in our lives. Most of the time, the roots of low self-esteem can be found in the experiences people have had in their childhood or adolescence. However, people with healthy self-esteem can also find their self-confidence being dented and chipped away at if they encounter negative experiences later in life.

Since each individual experiences low self-esteem differently, symptoms vary from person to person. But some of the common symptoms of low self-esteem include those that are listed below.
  • being self-critical, self-blaming or self-loathing
  • avoiding challenges and opportunities 
  • trying to please everyone
  • feeling anxious or depressed 
  • ignoring or discounting praise, successes and strengths 
  • focusing on criticisms, weaknesses and mistakes
  • feeling isolated or lonely
  • having trouble being assertive and speaking out
  • feeling overly upset by any criticisms or disapproval 
  • constantly apologising 
  • perfectionism and working too hard

Therapy for Low Self-Esteem

There are many different ways to improve self-esteem and cultivate a more positive self-image, and all treatment is personalised to meet your unique needs and preferences in order to produce sustainable, positive outcomes.
Therapy for low self-esteem is a collaborative process exploring the underlying causes of your low self-esteem and address any psychological barriers that may be hindering your self-confidence. 
Therapy equips you with techniques and skills to challenge negative beliefs and self-critical thoughts, replacing them with more realistic and compassionate views on yourself. By fostering greater self-awareness and self-acceptance, your resilience is cultivated as you learn to recognise your strengths and accomplishments, leading to a more positive self-image. 
Through guided exploration and reflection, you develop a deeper understanding of yourself and your worthiness, enabling you to pursue your goals and aspirations with greater clarity and determination. 
Ultimately, the goal of therapy for low self-esteem is to empower you to recognise your inherent value, embrace your authentic self and live a fulfilling life grounded in self-confidence and self-love.
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