Would you say you’re a prideful person? Chances are you wouldn’t because of course, ate pride with vanity and arrogance. A prideful person must always be bragging about what they have, where they’ve been, and why they’re so much better than you.
Would you say you have self-esteem or self-confidence? While pride is often equated with arrogance, self-esteem and self-confidence are typically things that we admire in others and want for ourselves. When we see a colleague gracefully making a presentation at the office or a classmate breezing through a speech, we wonder how they can do that so easily and wish we had their confidence. And when we get nervous over the smallest class participation or question asked by the boss, we realise how a lack of confidence and esteem can cost us dearly.But what really is meant by self-confidence? What is self-esteem? Why are these things good but we think of pride as being bad?
Why are these things important in one’s everyday life? How can a lack of self-esteem hurt you and how can enough of it be a real asset to you?
And of course the biggest question of all, how can you build it in your life?
Just what is self-esteem? How is it different from pride or arrogance?
To define this term, think of the word “esteem” in general. When you esteem something you hold it in high regard. You treat it well. So self- esteem means that you value yourself and hold yourself in high regard.
Self-confidence can spring from self-esteem and they usually go hand in hand. When you hold yourself in high regard and consider yourself as worthy of respect, then you have confidence in yourself. This doesn’t mean that you don’t recognise your flaws and quirks, but you know that overall you’re just as important and just as worthy as the next person.
But what about pride? How is this different and why is pride often considered a bad thing? Excessive pride means not just putting a value on yourself but putting a value that is above the value of others. When you’re too prideful you put more value on yourself than is necessary and often allow this to lead to hurtful actions. Someone that is too prideful may indulge their own wants while neglecting the needs of their family. They may brag about something they have in front of someone that doesn’t have these things without any concern for how it makes that person feel.
In many circumstances, pride has certainly lead to hurtful acts, but a measure of pride is not necessarily a bad thing. When a person takes pride in their home, they keep it well maintained and clean. When they take pride in their appearance, they mind their hygiene and arrange themselves nicely when it comes to their hair and clothing. Taking pride in one’s children can be a good thing as well, to a certain extent.
It might be said that the key here is a balance. You can esteem something without putting it on a pedestal where it doesn’t belong. You can have self- confidence and a measure of pride without letting these things hurt others. If you’re balanced in your attitude then you’re sure to have self-confidence and self-esteem without being too prideful.
VALUE OF SELF-ESTEEM
Why worry about self-esteem? Why worry about how much you have in your life and how to increase it? Isn’t being humble a good thing? Shouldn’t people put themselves in second place and put others ahead of themselves?
Of course, there are times when this is true. A child’s needs should come before a parent’s wants. Taking care of ageing parents is always the right thing to do, whatever that care may entail. Courtesy often demands that we allow someone else to be put ahead of us, such as when we allow someone to merge ahead of us in traffic or when we hold the door for someone else.
Proactively doing these things is the opposite of pride, where we expect others to always hold the door for us!
Having the right amount of self-esteem is important. This means that we feel good about ourselves, have the confidence to step up when called upon, and will keep ourselves from being hurt or abused by others or by our own thoughts. When a person has the right amount of self-esteem this means they don’t hesitate to participate, thinking that others are looking down on them. They take care of themselves, have the confidence to try new things, and don’t get overly upset or discouraged when they do things wrong or make mistakes.
Typically a person with a level of self-esteem is also happier. They do not get discouraged easily or feel that they are missing out on things since they don’t hesitate to associate with friends and family.
But when self-esteem is low, a person can be depressed, anxious, hesitant, and discouraged. They may miss out on relationships, friendships, job opportunities, and so much else. Often they assume that good things are not for them and they don’t deserve anything in life.
For some, this can also affect those around them. When someone has low self-esteem they may pass this thinking onto their children. If they are constantly comparing themselves to others and coming up short, their children may learn to do the same. If they are always saying that they’re not good enough and don’t deserve things, their children may also learn to think this way about themselves.
And those who suffer from low self-esteem may allow themselves to be mistreated by others. When you don’t esteem or value something, you don’t mind if it’s treated abusively. This is true of objects or of people. If you don’t esteem or value yourself, then you may allow others to treat you in an abusive manner. This can lead to more feelings of worthlessness and of one’s children being abused as well.
There are many reasons to consider how you can increase your self-esteem and why it’s so valuable in life. And there is no reason to be without it!
Self-esteem can be taught and it can be learned. It can also be increased as well.
Do you believe that you can increase self-esteem? It may seem that this trait is something that people have or they don’t have. And for some, having a good self-image and lots of confidence does seem to come naturally. They can just naturally make a presentation or breeze through a social situation without a second thought.
Chances are these people already do the things we’re going to cover in this book, whether or not they’re aware of what they’re doing. They may already tell themselves that they have just as much worth as the next
person and that they deserve every bit of happiness they get. They may also simply assume that they will do a good job on that presentation, that new people they meet will like them, and thinking such as this. They may not realise what they’re doing, but this is how they think.
And you can learn the same things. You can learn the thinking you have that interferes with your self-esteem and self-confidence and can then learn how to replace those thoughts with more positive ones. Teaching yourself confidence and learning your own value may be a struggle, but it can be done.
In this book we’re going to show you:
- The many reasons that people lack self-esteem, including their appearance, their family dynamics, and their own attitudes and opinions about things.
- How to tell if you have low self-esteem, to the point that it should be addressed.
- Why you need to understand that true self-esteem and confidence come from within and are not based on how others view you or treat you.
- Ways to think differently about yourself and how to project confidence to the world so that the actions of others will follow your own.
- How to learn self-confidence and self-esteem in the workplace, at home, in relationships, and wherever you are and whatever you do.
Self-esteem is a valuable commodity and one that you can grow and develop, no matter how much it may be lacking in your life currently! It can lead to more confidence and in turn better opportunities for a career, stronger personal relationships, and just a more positive outlook overall. So if you’re ready to start growing that self-esteem to reclaim your life, let’s begin!