Man with two strong muscular arms painted on chalkboard showing he has good self-esteem

Your self-talk can lift your self-esteem, or it can bring it down. In our consultations, we will work on addressing the areas you think are your weaknesses, and work on identifying your strengths – with the aim of changing your internal dialogue to lift you up. Positivity breeds positivity.

What Is Self-Esteem?

In psychology, the term self-esteem is used to describe a person’s overall subjective sense of personal worth or value. In other words, self-esteem may be defined as how much you appreciate and like yourself regardless of the circumstances. Your self-esteem is defined by many factors including:

Self-confidence
Feeling of security
Identity
Sense of belonging
Feeling of competence

Other terms that are often used interchangeably with self-esteem include self-worth, self-regard, and self-respect.

How does therapy for low self-confidence and self-esteem work?

When you start seeing a therapist about your low self-confidence and low self-esteem, and take time, in the safe space of therapy, to open these issues up, often it becomes clear that low self-confidence isn’t only something you ‘have’ but something you ‘do’. It is not so much that you ‘have’ low self-esteem or self-value, but that you are not esteeming or valuing yourself at the right level.

While this is being grasped, it begins to be possible to explore, understand and make plans for effective change.

In therapy we explore how your habitual patterns of behaviour reinforce a certain, negative self-image, and then what steps could start to improve the self-image. Therapy will entail detailed practical work on how to take those necessary steps in a way which is sufficiently gradual and incremental so as not to evoke resistance.

That term ‘resistance’ is really a reference to the internalised critic in your ‘head’, the nasty, critical ‘voice’ in your mind that runs you down and says you are ‘not good enough’. It’s often quite a mean bully that people carry around on their shoulder or at their back, finding fault with everything they do and all that they are, knocking their confidence and self-worth at every opportunity.

That critical voice is particularly keen on making comparisons, and is always able to find negative comparisons for you to ruminate on and take to heart, diverting your energies away from meeting your own needs.

How does it feel to have low self-esteem?

If you have low self-esteem you may feel that you’re worthless and not good enough at anything that you do. You may tend to blame yourself for things that aren’t your fault, which can lead to you being bullied or taken advantage of by others.

Having low self-esteem can stop you from forming meaningful relationships, and doing the things that you like to do. You may feel lonely, and useless, and that no one likes you or wants to spend time with you.

Feelings of low self-esteem can also trigger symptoms of anxiety and depression. You may feel frightened to make decisions for yourself, but then get angry with yourself for not sticking up for what you want or believe, leaving you feeling that you’re unworthy of happiness.

How can I increase my self-esteem?

How does therapy for low self-confidence and self-esteem work?

When you start seeing a therapist about your low self-confidence and low self-esteem, and take time, in the safe space of therapy, to open these issues up, often it becomes clear that low self-confidence isn’t only something you ‘have’ but something you ‘do’. It is not so much that you ‘have’ low self-esteem or self-value, but that you are not esteeming or valuing yourself at the right level.

While this is being grasped, it begins to be possible to explore, understand and make plans for effective change.

In therapy we explore how your habitual patterns of behaviour reinforce a certain, negative self-image, and then what steps could start to improve the self-image. Therapy will entail detailed practical work on how to take those necessary steps in a way which is sufficiently gradual and incremental so as not to evoke resistance.

That term ‘resistance’ is really a reference to the internalised critic in your ‘head’, the nasty, critical ‘voice’ in your mind that runs you down and says you are ‘not good enough’. It’s often quite a mean bully that people carry around on their shoulder or at their back, finding fault with everything they do and all that they are, knocking their confidence and self-worth at every opportunity.

That critical voice is particularly keen on making comparisons, and is always able to find negative comparisons for you to ruminate on and take to heart, diverting your energies away from meeting your own needs.
How does it feel to have low self-esteem?
If you have low self-esteem you may feel that you’re worthless and not good enough at anything that you do. You may tend to blame yourself for things that aren’t your fault, which can lead to you being bullied or taken advantage of by others.

Having low self-esteem can stop you from forming meaningful relationships, and doing the things that you like to do. You may feel lonely, and useless, and that no one likes you or wants to spend time with you.

Feelings of low self-esteem can also trigger symptoms of anxiety and depression. You may feel frightened to make decisions for yourself, but then get angry with yourself for not sticking up for what you want or believe, leaving you feeling that you’re unworthy of happiness.

How can I increase my self-esteem?

Mind UK do a self help booklet that can be viewed here