So what exactly is self-esteem? It is defined as, “a realistic, appreciative opinion of oneself” (Schiraldi, 2016, p. 24).
Before looking outside into the world for peace and happiness, one needs to look inward. Only when we feel happy with ourselves, we can look at the world positively.
Whenever a psychologist treats a person with a mental illness, the positive self-esteem of the patient in his own eyes is the first goal. When a person gains a positive self-image, he has the strength to handle the challenges of life. It provides him with a balanced personality and emotional health.
A Few Simple Questions to find out if you are suffering from Low Self-Image
When you have low self-esteem, you are always viewing things and especially your own self negatively. To avoid this, whenever you are faced with a problem, ask yourself the following questions:
|Are my negative thoughts based on facts?|
|Can I look at the situation from a different perspective?|
|Am I jumping to conclusions?|
At a personal level, I feel that self-esteem is very relative. I think it can vary according to one’s stage of life; what we are experiencing in our personal and/or professional life. For example, today I am happy and may appear to have high self-esteem. On a day when I experience some negativity, I might feel very low in terms of my self-esteem. Thus we cannot measure it accurately. A person himself can only see how high or low his self-esteem is on a particular day or at a specific time in life.
People who have had things easy in life tend to have a high self-image and this keeps them going on smoothly, later in life also. On the other hand, those who have suffered trauma, loss of loved ones, some serious illness, etc, early in life, find it difficult to remain calm and hopeful. They easily loose trust, take small problems and rejections as major setbacks, and therefore feel quite defeated most of the time. Thus we all need some kind of therapy throughout our lives to feel good.
Practicing mindfulness, yoga, meditation, walking in the outdoors, eating and sleeping well, hanging out with friends, and doing activities that make us happy, are very crucial. Take care of all the people who mean a lot to you; be it family or people at work, but don’t forget to commit some moments for “me time”. Don’t feel guilty in doing so. Remember when you will be at peace with yourself, only then can you give complete attention to others.
Sources: Schiraldi, G. (2016). The self-esteem workbook. New Harbinger Publications.
Educationist, researcher, writer and a passionate learner from Islamabad. She has been working as a freelance writer for more than 10 years now. From academic to content writing. Finally, she is doing what she loves; writing for education. You can reach her at firstname.lastname@example.org