Conselis - Online Psychological Counselling (E-Counselling, E-Therapy) How do I know that someone has a low self-esteem?
How do I know that someone has a low self-esteem? How do I know that someone has a low self-esteem?

How do I know that someone has a low self-esteem?

The following list can help you identify if either you or someone you care about suffers from low self-esteem. It is highly likely that a person with a low self-esteem:

• Feels she does not know herself too well;
• Talks about herself in a neutral, moderate or unclear way;
• Has a negative opinion about herself, which usually depend on the actual circumstances (e.g. the people with whom the person interacts);
• Is troubled about the possible consequences of her actions;
• Acts only after thoroughly analyzing the situation;
• Is emotionally reactive to failure;
• Postpones decision-making;
• Feels resented when being criticized;
• Needs to justify any failure;
• Is strongly anxious about being evaluated;
• Often compromises her values to win approval from others, doing things that are unsafe or that violate her own sense of right and wrong;
• Feels overwhelmed by the pace of life;
• Feels like everyone else considers her a failure;
• Is afraid of change;
• Relies on others to look after her;
• Is putting herself down constantly;
• Is being negative - nothing is good, everything is horrible;
• Is taking things on others;
• Is losing her temper very quickly;
• Behaves timidly, is not assertive;
• Constantly doubts her ability to achieve anything of any worth;
• Tries to find ways to evade unpleasant realities.

We have just mentioned the most important characteristics of low self-esteem. Taken in isolation, such features might not represent clear indicators of low self-esteem. Well then, you might ask, are there any clear overall patterns that a low self-esteem person fits into? Experts from all over the world have declared that self-esteem may come in three different shapes:

The impostor: pretends to be happy and successful, but is always afraid that someone might "catch him in the act". He/she wears the mask of positive self-esteem, contrary to what he/she feels about him/herself. He/she may have other problems, such as: perfectionism, procrastination, competition and burnout.

The rebel: acts as if the opinions or needs of others are of no importance (especially if these opinions/needs belong to important or powerful people). His/her main aim is to feel good. He/she is angry when this doesn’t happen. He/she has a continuous need to prove that criticism or judgements do not hurt him. This may lead to problems like excessively putting the blame on others, continuously breaking rules or laws, fighting authority.

The loser: feels helpless and unable to cope with the world and waits for someone to come to the rescue. He/she shows a mask of indifference and/or self-pity. This mask protects him/her against fear of taking responsibility for changing his/her life. He/she is dependent on others, continuously looking for guidance. This may lead to further problems such as lack of assertiveness skills, under-achievement and excessive reliance on others in relationships.

Books on self-esteem

How do I know that someone has a low self-esteem?