Where Does Your Self Esteem Come From?
Self-esteem. What is it? What does it mean? It’s a word that we tend to throw around a lot in our lives without ever diving into where it actually comes from. I would say that many of us spend the majority of our life trying to grow our self-esteem with the goal of never passing that fine line into arrogance or conceitedness. I mean, it comes down to the smallest things, right? How we receive feedback, how we take compliments, or even our humility despite all of the successes we have had. But maybe it’s more complicated than that. As leaders, it is crucial to be aware of our self-esteem. It is what gives us the motivation and courage to lead after all.
I will use myself as a case study for this. If someone asked me to describe my self-esteem, without too much thought, I would say that it isn’t terrible. But it definitely isn’t on solid ground. I’m the type of person who will feel completely fine and confident until someone points out that I did something wrong, made a mistake, or my general character is brought into question. If that happens then my self-esteem is shot for at least the rest of the day, and then I have to rebuild. I realized that I view it almost like a point system. Something good happens or I get commended for my actions? Great. There’s a point for self-esteem. I get criticized by someone? Gotta take that point immediately back out. Why is my self–esteem based off of other people’s opinions?
Although it would be great if you could, you can’t place your self worth in your successes. Because if you do, then by the same logic, your failures will eat away at your self-esteem. Now, I wish I could offer some sage advice or some quick fix to magically improve your self-esteem, but only you can do that! I can offer some tips that help, though. Becoming more aware of the factors that affect your self-esteem can help you gain more control. Check-out the questions below!
Nobody, and I mean nobody, knows yourself and your brain better than you do. All it might take is a little bit of self-discovery and digging to find out where your self-esteem comes from. And if you don’t like where it comes from, how are you going to change it? Ask yourself these questions:
- When do I feel most comfortable in my own skin?
- What makes me doubt myself?
- What are 3 things you love about yourself?
- In what ways is self-esteem based off of other people’s opinions?
- What are some positive habits I want to develop to help improve my self-esteem?
- What is the first thought you have after being criticized?
- What is your greatest strength?
*Meet the Author*
Kylie is entering her second year with Leadership Inspirations! She is currently a student at Chapman University, working towards her B.A. in Integrated Educational Studies with a double minor in Psychology and Leadership.
Favorite Quote: “Take your time, don’t move too fast, troubles come and they will pass” – Lynyrd Skynyrd
Fun Facts: 1) I grew up overseas in 7 different countries 2) I love music and love to sing 3) I can play 5 instruments!