a psychologist can help build self-esteem
Psychologists frequently address issues like low self-esteem and help people to gain a stronger sense of self and techniques will be tailored to the individuals circumstances and needs. Counselling may include training to become more assertive, confident, and self-aware. Goal-directed forms of therapy are commonly used for people struggling with self-esteem issues as accomplishing goals can boost confidence and competence. There are many types of therapy that identify a specific goal or outcome for treatment, including brief, solution-focused, and cognitive-behavioral therapies. In addition, psychologists can focus on helping people develop self compassion, so they can develop more realistic and achievable goals for themselves and treat themselves with the same kindness they would offer others.
WHAT IS SELF ESTEEM
Self-esteem is the degree to which we feel confident, consider ourselves valuable and respect ourselves. Self esteem greatly affects our well-being. Self-esteem exists on a continuum, from high to low, and low self-esteem is associated with self doubt, self-criticism, social isolation, suppressed anger and shame. Low self-esteem is also a symptom of several mental health conditions, including anxiety and depression.
SIGNS OF LOW SELF ESTEEM
Negative self-talk is the most common sign. People with low self-esteem regard themselves critically and may feel a perpetual sense of failure or lack of accomplishment. These negative messages are rarely true but the thought patterns may be deeply ingrained often since childhood. Low self-esteem is also closely associated with the following conditions and experiences:
- Social anxiety
- General anxiety
- Shame and guilt
- Physical, emotional, or sexual abuse
CHALLENGES TO SELF-ESTEEM
Self-esteem is learned in childhood and certain experiences may interfere with its development, such as being subject to criticism or abuse from parents and caretakers; missing out on experiences that would foster a sense of confidence and purpose; receiving little or no positive reinforcement for accomplishments; being bullied for unusual appearance or behaviours, or for one’s race, class, or social identity; or having a learning disability or physical impairment. In adulthood, even a well-developed self-esteem can be challenged by sudden life changes or perceived failures, such as losing a job or changing jobs, ending an intimate relationship, having legal or financial troubles, struggling with addiction or substance abuse, having children with emotional troubles, physical health problems, or a host of other events that might cause us to question our worth. Therapy can help put such events in perspective and enhance strengths to increase resilience, social support and hope.
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