What is self-esteem?
The Merriam-Webster Dictionary defines self-esteem as the feeling of having respect for yourself and your abilities and a confidence and satisfaction in oneself. Self-esteem is an essential component in a person’s happiness and ability to face the challenges and tasks of life. Without self-esteem, you can feel anxious and depressed, afraid of being judged by others and dissatisfied with yourself.
The impact of low self-esteem
Having low self-esteem has a very negative effect on a person’s functioning and quality of life. It effects your functioning by stopping you from taking risks such as asking someone out on a date or applying for a desirable job because you assume that you’re not good enough to succeed.
Low self-esteem inhibits a person’s ability to be intimate with others. Intimacy requires vulnerability. But a person with low self-esteem is afraid to be vulnerable. They keep their shields up, for fear that if they’re vulnerable and let people see who they truly are, then others will see how truly worthless they are.
Successful people can suffer from low self-esteem too. Their low self-esteem may be what drives them to succeed. But their ability to feel good about themselves is always in danger of crumbling when they experience any perceived failures or negative judgment by others. Their lives can feel like a never-ending race on a hamster wheel, always chasing their next accomplishment in order to prove their worth.
How Group Helps You Build Self-Esteem
Your interactions with the other members of the group can challenge your negative beliefs about yourself as well as helping you gain a more realistic view of yourself. For example, the other members of the group are able to acknowledge your strengths and successes, which the person with low self-esteem tends to ignore or under-value.