Self esteem has been defined as a person’s own affirmations that he has what it takes to live a fruitful life. It is about having the confidence to face every challenge that come their way, as well as the belief that he has every right to be happy, and every reason to deserve success. Stanley Coopersmith, in his book entitled, “The Antecedents of Self Esteem” mentioned that with self esteem, a person can either approve or disapprove of his own abilities and skills, a personal judgment of his own self worth. Put simply, self esteem is about appreciating your own worth and value, and making yourself accountable for your own actions.
Importance of Self Esteem
Clearly, self esteem is the foundation by which individuals will develop potentials and use these to achieve their life goals. Without trust and belief in one’s own abilities, it would almost be impossible to excel in anything. A person who lacks self esteem is prone to negative perception and vibes. If presented with a task that is new to him, he would most likely back out and say he is not the “right” person to do the job.
When given the opportunity to let other people recognize his talents and skills, such as being offered to give a presentation during a business meeting, he either declines the offer, or if he does accept it, he does not really present himself in a manner which will give others a positive impression of him at all. This is because right from the very beginning, he never believed he could do it.
A person who has a low level of self esteem undervalues himself and as a result, other people will treat him the same way. If a person believes he is not good enough, this will reflect on self image, and will manifest in the way he goes about his day to day activities. Other people can see this and will, in turn, perceive him as such, too. Relationships will not flourish because a person who does not love himself enough cannot genuinely love another. He becomes needy and insecure, both of which will do nothing except destroy relationships.
On the other hand, a person who has a high level of self esteem is confident; he knows what he is capable of doing, and finds ways to improve himself in areas where he is lacking. He possesses the ingredients that will make him succeed in his career, and he also has the basic requirements that will hold together his relationships with others.
The importance of self esteem cannot be completely explained in just a few paragraphs. However, let it be known that without this attribute, a person is deemed for failure in almost all of his endeavors.
How to Build Self Esteem
The basic principle by which self esteem is grounded on is respect; respect for self and respect for others. If a person values everything about himself and others, he will not easily allow negative thoughts to control him. He will refuse to be abused by others, let alone by his own self. To build your self esteem, you should begin by learning to respect yourself and others.
Additionally, it is imperative for individuals who are lacking in self esteem to avoid any forms of negativity at all cost. This means staying away from people who have negative outlooks; people who complain all the time; and people who themselves also have very low self esteem. Their company will not do anything to improve your current situation. Instead, surround yourself with positive and happy people; those who value their own self worth. Being in their company will improve your outlook and thinking, and will therefore help you improve your own self esteem.
Activity to Help Build Self Esteem
One of the most effective activities that people can do to develop self esteem is to make affirmations everyday. Self affirmation was proposed by American psychologist Claude Steele in 1988 to help boost a person’s morale. The process is done by making positive statements pertaining to self (starts with “I”), writing it down and reading it out load. Examples of affirmation statements are:
I am enjoying my work and I get appreciated for it. I am successful at every endeavor I choose. I love myself exactly as I am.