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Low Self-esteem

Low Self-esteem

All of us have experienced in some circumstances not to have confidence in ourselves and so not to feel well. When the low self-esteem tends to become chronic way of perceiving oneself, can have painful effect on our mental health and our lives

What is self-esteem?

Self-esteem is the respect that we have for ourselves. When we have healthy self-esteem, we feel positively about ourselves and about life in general. It makes us more able to address adequately the hardships of life.

When our self-esteem is low, we tend to see ourselves and life more negatively and critically. Thus, we feel less efficient to undertake challenges that life itself poses.

What causes low self-esteem?

Low self-esteem often begins in childhood. Teachers, friends, siblings, parents and even media are sending us messages about ourselves, both positive and negative.

For some reason the message that you are not capable enough is what tends to remain at the most in you.

You may find it difficult to satisfy others’ expectations imposed on you, or your own expectations from yourself.

Stress and pressure of life events such as illness or bereavement, can have a negative effect on self-esteem.

Personality may also play its own role. Some people are more prone to think negatively and others pose extremely high standards for themselves.

How does low self esteem affect us?
If you have low self-esteem or self-confidence you may avoid social situations, stop trying new things and withdraw from situations that you consider provocative.

In the short term, avoiding challenging and difficult situations can make you feel more secure. But in the long run this may backfire on you as it reinforces your doubts and fears.

Living with low self-esteem may damage your mental health and lead to problems such as depression or pathological anxiety. It can even lead to harmful habits such as smoking or alcohol, as ways of dealing with depression or anxiety.

How to get healthy self-esteem?
To enhance your self-esteem, you must recognize negative thoughts you have about yourself and reshape them.
You may think “I am inadequate ‘ to apply to a job, for example, or that “nobody cares for me” .Start to notice these negative thoughts and write them down on paper or a calendar.

Following, start writing the clues contradicting your negative beliefs: “I’m really good at solving crossword puzzles” or “my sister calls me to learn my news every week”.

Record positive thoughts about yourself, like “I’m prudent” or “I am fine in cooking” or “I am someone that others trust him.”

Furhermore, capture good things that other people say about you.
Aim to have at least 5 things on your list and add to the list regularly.Place the list in an easily accessed place to see it. In this way you continue to remind yourself that you are OK.

You can remind yourself of the following “you may have low self-esteem because of circumstances that you grew up, but I can always develop new ways to improve myself”.

Other ways to improve your self-esteem:
• Recognize what you’re good at
• Build positive relationships
• Be kind and gentle with yourself
• Learn to be decisive
• Learn to respect the wishes and the needs of others and claim the same for yourself
• Start to say ‘ no. ‘
• Allow yourself to participate in challenges

If the above ways do not bear fruits then it is recommended that you engage in psychotherapy primarily of psychodynamic type (psychoanalytic psychotherapy) without underestimating the value and techniques of cognitive behavioural therapy.

“Για την ψυχή που νοσεί φάρμακο είναι ο λόγος”

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Contact Psychiatrist-Psychotherapist Karanikas Evangelos

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