Do you spend a lot of time worrying about what other people think and how to make them happy? Perhaps you replay everything you could have done differently? Or do you question whether all you're doing is even enough? Finally, can you see the value in people around you while struggling to recognize your self-worth?
Maybe you have tried self-help books or podcasts that encourage you to see the value within yourself. Perhaps you are practicing meditation in the hope that you can train your mind to be less critical and judgemental of yourself. Maybe you have been attempting to shut down negative thoughts when they become too much. Or you find yourself depending on unhelpful coping mechanisms to mask your lack of self-esteem, only making matters worse.
Self-esteem is the very nature of our being.
So many of us feel negative and critical about ourselves and our abilities. When that’s how we’re thinking, we experience low self-esteem. It affects how we feel we fit into the world around us and our relationships with family, friends and others in our lives. Self-esteem or a lack of self-worth can impact virtually every aspect of our lives. It could spring from childhood or adult experiences, school and friendship influences or our partners. We can sometimes experience feelings of inadequacy through the impact of those around us and even by social media and current socio-environmental expectations.
Understanding that we are complex beings capable of vast emotions, thoughts, and unique experiences can be helpful. But more importantly, knowing that whatever challenges you face, it's helpful to understand that you are not alone and that nothing is wrong with you.
Everyone experiences ups and downs; dealing with hardships and challenges is unavoidable. In these times, it is common for people to start to feel self-doubt and lose confidence. What's more, chronic feelings of self-doubt and low self-worth can lead to anxiety, depression, unsatisfying social and romantic relationships, distress at work, and an exhausting sense of always needing to do more or pushing ourselves to the brink of feeling like we're enough. Therapy can help you to increase your understanding of where these internal drives come from and remain connected to your value. At the same time, you reach for your ambitions and improve your ability to view yourself with acceptance and compassion to move through life with greater confidence and resilience. Moreover, it allows you space where recovery and healing can begin. With the help of a trained therapist, you can discuss your concerns, essential details of your life history, and any relevant medical history.
Positive self-esteem is crucial for our well-being. When negative self-talk is in control of our minds, it impacts how we view ourselves and everyone around us. Therapy can help you learn to quiet that voice and introduce a new sense of self. It can also enable you to practice adaptive coping skills and build a repertoire of strategies that will engender empowerment, emotional expression, and self-confidence.
A person's sense of self is initially formed in early relationships with attachment figures. It continues to be impacted positively or negatively by individuals who provide nurturing, mirroring responses or harmful ones throughout one's lifespan—low self-esteem results in challenges in every aspect of a person's life. Lack of self-worth and the inability to see value within oneself can be tied to the negative messages that have been internalized. Therapy can help you to rewrite those narratives and allow you to find awareness and learn valuable skills that will enable you to navigate these challenging and complex experiences.
Self-esteem and self-worth represent a big part of who we are. The way we see ourselves is the lens through which we engage in the world around us. Poor self-esteem and feelings of being broken or inadequate trigger sadness or anxiety. On top of that, holding a low opinion of ourselves affects our choices, often damaging close relations, whether at work or home. Therapy can assist you in raising your self-esteem and self-worth. The coping skills you learn with the help of your therapist can enable you to experience an internal peace and sense of oneness with yourself that translates into every other part of your life.
It's helpful to remember that all of us have a unique combination of things we do well and things we do not do as well. Our strengths and weaknesses are a part of who we are - accepting our flaws with kindness and compassion are equally important as celebrating our strengths.
People with low self-esteem often have a flawed understanding of themselves where they are overly critical and often lack self-compassion and kindness. The objective of psychological counselling or therapy is to help people engage in a realistic appraisal of their strengths and weaknesses and truly celebrate themselves. Many of us have endured experiences sometimes at the hands of family and at the hands of peers that have damaged our ability to achieve an objective understanding of what we do well. One of the goals of counselling is to work toward correcting this.
It may make sense to consider seeking a professional psychologist when you cannot function as well as you would like, whether at home or work, despite your best efforts. Suppose you are increasingly experiencing common symptoms of low self-esteem like exhaustion, numbness, constantly questioning your self-efficacy or feeling disconnected from loved ones. In that case, it would be beneficial to seek help. Each person's experience and struggle with low or lack of self-esteem is different. What's important is to remember that there is no right or wrong time to seek help for it.
Unsure about asking for help?
You may have some concerns or questions about counselling for self-esteem.
What to expect in self-esteem counselling?
Self-esteem counselling happens in a safe environment that allows you to share details of your experiences. The space is there for you and your therapist to set goals that could include learning relaxation techniques, such as mindfulness, deep breathing, and many others. Additionally, with the help of a trained psychologist, you will be able to explore and process your conscious and unconscious negative beliefs and narratives regarding yourself. Self-esteem counselling allows you to learn helpful coping mechanisms to recognize and adjust worst-case scenario thinking patterns. What's more, therapy can also promote ways of understanding self-care techniques where you will be able to manage life stresses better while practicing self-compassion and kindness.
Am I the only one thinking of seeking therapy for low self-esteem? Do other people struggle with low self-worth?
Let us begin with a simple statistic while we answer this question. Research shows that nearly 85 percent of the world's population suffers from low self-esteem! So, you are not alone in your experience of negative self-worth. And while the manifestation of low self-esteem might look differently from person to person, experiencing low self-esteem is much more common than we think. So, it's helpful to remember that seeking therapy can not only enable you to learn coping techniques and skills but also help you identify negative and unhelpful ways of thinking about yourself.
Good self-esteem is at the heart of self-love and satisfaction with one's life. Therapy can help people who struggle with low self-esteem by identifying the contributing factors and working through the challenges and traumas which have been internalized to contribute to the low self-esteem. With the help of a trained psychologist, you can achieve a greater sense of confidence by exploring the roots of low self-esteem and developing techniques to quieten the inner critical voice.
Self-confidence and Self-esteem start with kindness to oneself. In therapy, you will learn techniques to diminish self-deprecating thoughts so you can step into your confidence. It can help you find the negative core beliefs that keep you in the loop of low self-esteem and help you develop more balanced and reasonable core beliefs.
Living in this world can sometimes be challenging and trigger many insecurities and self-doubt. Seeking therapy for self-esteem and self-confidence can help cultivate greater self-understanding and uncover what is most meaningful and enriching to our existence.
At Ward & Associates, we understand that the experience of low self-esteem and self-worth can be challenging to navigate alone. We believe that a positive alliance is imperative for any healing to take place.
Ours is an approach based on our client's individual needs and requirements. Together, we will begin this healing journey where you will find us at every step with you, whether setting your personal goals or developing the skills that will lead to your personal growth. Our trained therapists at Ward & Associates are competent, sensitive and encouraging with a client-centric approach. The therapy sessions aim to provide a safe and supported space where your healing and well-being can precede.
It is beneficial to remind yourself that your experiences of negative self-worth or low self-esteem are not signs of weakness or failure. More importantly, it is not your fault. If you reach out for help, we promise to be there for you.
If you're looking for counselling in Sherwood Park, Ward & Associates Psychological Services is here for you. We specialize in individual counselling for adults, teens, and children and couples counselling and trauma counselling for first responders. We also offer online therapy for clients residing in Alberta. Contact us to learn more about our services or to book an appointment.