P2 W2 – Self-Esteem

Week 2 – Self-Esteem


Self Esteem is a fundamental human need and a key component of our self-image.

It’s more than an innate feeling of self-worth, it’s having confidence in our ability to cope with the basic challenges of life and having confidence in our basic right to be successful and happy. A feeling of being worthy and deserving.

Our Actions and Self-esteem

To trust one’s mind is the essence of self-esteem. It is more than a judgment or a feeling. It’s a motivator that inspires our behaviour. There is a continuous connection between our actions in the world and our self-esteem.

With high self-esteem we are more likely to persist in the face of difficulties. With low self-esteem we are more likely to give up or go through the motions of trying without really giving our best.

If we respect ourselves, we send out signals that we expect to be respected. If we lack self-respect, we unconsciously transmit this.

The higher our self-esteem the more honest, open, and appropriate our communications are likely to be because we believe our thoughts have value and therefore, we welcome rather than fear opinions and challenge.

The lower our self-esteem the more evasive and inappropriate our communications are likely to be because of uncertainty about our own thoughts and feelings and our anxiety about the listener’s response.

High Self-esteem Attracts

They say opposites attract, not in this case. High self-esteem individuals attract high self-esteem individuals. Low self-esteem individuals see other people as sources of approval or disapproval. This is not a conscious thing.

High self-esteem is a self-fulfilling prophecy. You can never have too much self-esteem, just like you cannot have too much good health. Boasting, showing off, or arrogance do not reflect too much self-esteem, rather a lack of it.

Persons of high self-esteem are not driven to make themselves superior to other people. Their joy is in being who they are, not in being better than someone else.

A low self-esteem does not mean you will be incapable of achieving success. Some people have the talent, energy, and drive to achieve a great deal despite feelings of inadequacy or unworthiness.

A low self-esteem does limit our effectiveness and our creativity though. Nothing you do will ever feel like it’s enough. If our aim is to prove we are enough, then the project goes on until infinity because the battle was already lost on the day we conceded that this was debatable. So, it is always “one more victory”, “one more company”, “one more possession”, “a larger house”, “a more expensive car”. Yet the void within remains unfulfilled.

The presence of self-esteem does not guarantee fulfillment, but its lack guarantees some measure of anxiety, frustration, or despair. Self-esteem is not a substitute for a roof over your head or food in your stomach, but it increases the likelihood that you will find a way to meet such needs. It’s not a substitute for the knowledge and skills you need to operate effectively but it increases the likelihood you will acquire them.

Self-esteem and the Age of Innovation

We have reached the time in history where as well as being a supremely important psychological need, self-esteem is also now a supremely important economic need. It is the attribute imperative for adaptiveness in an increasingly challenging and competitive world.

Over recent decades the economy has shifted from a manufacturing society to an information society. We now live in a global economy characterised by rapid change, accelerating scientific and technological breakthroughs and an unprecedented level of competitiveness. These developments create demands for higher levels of education and training than were required by previous generations. Everyone acquainted with business culture knows this.

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