Uncertainty and low self-esteem are not directly related. Many people live on some kind of line, walk cautiously, are afraid of making a mistake, fail and get laughed at. When you feel like a failure, it is impossible to achieve joy.
Nathaniel Branden, a Canadian psychologist and author of The Six Pillars of Self-Esteem, once said that it is impossible to deal with the most basic challenges of your life if you lack the inner security that gives you confidence and helps you in truth to love yourself.
Social relationships, work, the ability to achieve your goals, personal development and even love become impossible.
All of these aspects of your life become insecure when you lack the solid foundation of self-confidence and self-worth. There is, moreover, another undeniable fact to consider: the world is not good or kind to people who have it that way.
An insecure child is often the victim of bullying at school or abuse. Adults who do not defend themselves run the risk of ending up in co-dependent relationships that affect them much more than their self-esteem.
Are you struggling with low self-esteem? Here are some coping strategies.
Insecurity and low self-esteem: Living on a line
Low self-esteem always has a price. Your emotional balance depends on the psychological muscle, which is one of the most important variables for your well-being. The psychiatrist, Luis Rojas-Marcos, says in his book, Self-Esteem, that one of the factors that explains this is the way people talk to each other.
In addition to the factors that tend to be behind the link between insecurity and low self-esteem, it’s easy to forget how relevant your inner dialogue is. Your inner monologue should always be kind, loving and focused on the positive. Otherwise, it will slowly eat away at your mental health.
In fact, low self-esteem can lead to many mental disorders, such as anxiety and depression.
What causes insecurity and low self-esteem?
You know that the way you talk to yourself can affect your self-esteem, so why do you do it? Why are we often our own worst enemy, questioning our own values and abilities? The first thing that is important to note is that self-esteem is not static. It fluctuates and is affected by our experiences.
- The root cause of low self-esteem often lies in your childhood and the way you were brought up. If you have had insecure attachments, insufficient emotional support, extremely demanding parents or a little under abuse, you are probably developing into an insecure adult.
- Traumatic events can also affect your self-esteem. For example, the death of a loved one, an accident or bullying can have a huge impact on the way you look at yourself.
- Toxic relationships can also be blamed. A relationship based on criticism, humiliation, emotional blackmail and jealousy can ruin your self-esteem and self-confidence.
Attract people with low self-esteem
Most people think that individuals with low self-esteem are indecisive, humble and shy. While this is sometimes true, low self-esteem can also lead to aggressive and even narcissistic personalities.
When individuals are aware of their own faults and weaknesses, they sometimes develop defense mechanisms to protect themselves and try to fill these gaps.
- Someone who does not want to experience mental frustration or anxiety and instead expresses themselves in an aggressive way.
- The opposite can also happen. Instead of being the attacking party, you end up being on the other end of this behavior. You are the victim who does not know how to defend yourself.
- Low self-esteem can affect your potential, your opportunities and your life. Lack of confidence makes you stay in your comfort zone where nothing ever happens.
- Last but not least, insecurity and low self-esteem are related to several mental and physical health problems.
For example, studies show that there is a close link between low self-esteem and eating disorders. Infanta Leonor University Hospital in Madrid, Spain conducted an interesting study that showed that low self-esteem is a risk factor for developing one of these serious diseases.
How can I stop being my own worst enemy?
You can not “fix” your self-esteem overnight. This is especially true if you are carrying around the burden of a traumatic childhood, years as a victim of workplace bullying, or the consequences of a co-dependent relationship. However, do not lose hope as you can take some steps to get better with yourself.
- Psychological therapy is the best resource for working with the root causes of these uncertainties. The best strategy to improve your inner dialogue is to confront these triggers and acquire tools.
- Writing a journal can also be a helpful tool. Writing down your thoughts and feelings can make it easier for you to identify unhealthy thought patterns, negativity, and irrational thoughts. It can also make you more aware of the way you talk to yourself. It can make you focus on being more encouraging instead of downplaying yourself all the time.
- Setting small, simple goals for the day can also be an interesting strategy. These small victories can make you feel better about yourself.
Experts also recommend starting new projects as it can help you discover new aspects of yourself that you may not have known existed. It’s time to acknowledge the person inside you who is passionate about life and believes in himself. It is the essential element of joy and well-being.