The whats and whys of self-esteem

9th July 2019

Self-esteem - it’s a phrase that is thrown around willy nilly, we’ve all heard of it, and all know we should have it, but what is it and why do we need it?

The dictionary defines self-esteem as ‘belief and confidence in your own ability and value’. So let’s break that down a bit.

1) Belief - do you believe, truly, honestly?

2) Confidence - do you trust that you abilities will have your back?

3) Ability - your strengths and capabilities, your skills and competencies.

4) Value - your worth.

So do you? Do you have a true, utter belief in your skills and capabilities? Do you trust that they can stand the test of time? What about your self worth? That’s a tough question! One many struggle with.

To have a good self esteem is to have just that. A complete and utter belief, and confidence in your strengths and skills, and your self worth. Obviously this is on a scale. Some people out there (in fact a lot of people) are low on the scale, with very little to no self belief. Others are overshooting the scale, reaching levels of narcissism. So there is a sweet spot, a spot where you know your worth, and believe in yourself, without the arrogance of narcissism. How to reach that though is a story for another day!

Why is it important to work on our self esteem? Well, because without it, we are incredibly harsh on ourselves. We put ourselves down, avoid trying new things, sure we’ll fail anyway. We doubt ourselves and our abilities and we expect others to do the same. This is no way to live. I’d know - I’ve been there! It is tiring, and lonely to constantly live in a place where you don’t feel like you’re ever good enough at what you do, or at being you! Having good self esteem gives you the exact opposite!

What I love about the above definition is that it brings in the concept of worth. Quite often when you ask people about what they think self esteem is, it is largely about their strengths and skills. Yes, this is part of it, but it can’t be all. If we only ever focus on our strengths and abilities and build ourselves up on our successes, then we can fall into the trap of fearing failure. Where as if we also build up our sense of self, and our own worth, then we can stay confident in ourselves despite failures, we become more resilient. We can recognise that the thing we tried failed, and that doesn’t inherently mean that WE are a failure. And this is an incredibly strong, and empowering place to stand!

If you want to know more about how to build this sense of self, then do look into the 12 week Re:Mind program. Throughout it there will be lots of tips and tools to help you create, and nurture you self-esteem. In the meantime, I will also be sharing more information on the topic on social media throughout July, so do follow @remindrewire on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

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