Our self-esteem can sometimes take a beating. We have three signs that will let you know.
That’s the thing about self-worth: it can’t be bought and it’s hard to wish for. Confidence is something that needs to be built and nurtured. It can help, for example, to keep reminding yourself of your own abilities and successes. But how do you know that your self-esteem is currently suffering a lot?
Psychologist and author Dr. Michaela Dunbar gives three clues on her Instagram account that could indicate this. Because the first – and one of the most important – step is to recognize the signs so that you can take active countermeasures.
1. Your inner voice puts you down
“You can’t do that”, “You’re doing it wrong again anyway”, “You’re so embarrassing” – the biggest critic in many people’s lives is the inner voice that keeps telling us how bad we actually are. And the worst thing about it: At some point you will believe her too.
This voice is nothing more than that: one voice among many. We may not even notice it anymore, but there are often other, quieter voices within us that have just as much a right to be heard. There’s that one reserved, shy voice that whispers, “I’d like to try.” And the other who says: “What could possibly go wrong?” And that one, very special voice that whispers: “You’re wonderful.”
If you find that you’ve been paying far too much attention to a nasty inner voice lately, it may be necessary to bring the other voices back onto the inner stage and give them time in the spotlight.
2. You downplay your strengths – and only focus on your weaknesses
“Oh, anyone can do that!”, “I could have given the presentation better, I was too quiet once again” – belittling your own strengths can also be a sure sign that your self-esteem is not in top form. Instead of giving them the space they deserve, some prefer to focus on traits that they can see with a much clearer perspective: their (perceived) weaknesses.
Humans are creatures of habit and those who are used to seeing only the “bad” in themselves find it almost instinctively easier to discover supposed faults and weaknesses in themselves and their behavior. After all, what can a strength for these people be but a trifle compared to the mountain of inadequacies? This mountain is self-made and its importance is only as great as you have given it yourself.
3. Compliments bounce off you
Building on the second sign, people with low self-esteem often find it difficult to accept a compliment—and they rarely have to look far to find a good reason why a compliment is pretty pointless in their direction. If it comes from a colleague, the first thought can be “Oh, the person just doesn’t really know me and doesn’t even know that it just happened to be going so well.” With good friends and family, the inner voice may then like to say: “Well, the person is your friend/relative. Of course they say something like that because they want/have to be nice.”
That a compliment can be serious and appreciative is often a completely unrealistic possibility for people with low self-esteem, which is hardly given a second thought.
Low self-esteem is not set in stone
Good for last: Just because you may have low self-esteem now — and maybe have had it for a long time — doesn’t mean you will have it forever. The important thing is that you are (or are becoming) aware that you have control over these feelings and thoughts.
For example, you can tell yourself three things that you appreciate about yourself every day. This may seem strange and difficult at first, but like so many things, in the end it’s just a matter of habit. You may be thinking, “Why should I pretend how great I am?” But maybe look at it from the other perspective: Up to now you have also pretended that you are not. So why not try the opposite?
The truth is, whether you see it now or need time, you are very special, wonderful. You just have to recognize that for yourself.
Source used: instagram.com