Self-esteem is the most important quality that plays a vital role in your success. It is, ‘believing in yourself and the capabilities which you posses’. Quite often you might find yourself thinking, ‘Why self-esteem is important in life?’ or ‘what is the single most common quality possessed by successful people?’  It is none other than ‘Self-esteem’ that makes a difference. It determines the relationship you have with yourself. And it is considering yourself worthy enough of love, appraisal, and happiness in life. It is accepting yourself for who you are. It is believing in yourself which is considered the first step in accomplishing your goals.


Although, only the ‘belief in yourself’ will not lead you to success in life. But, it works as a great motivational force in attaining your goals. Self-esteem is considering yourself worthy enough of a happy and prosperous life. It might be referred to as self-actualization or self-worth as well.  It is possessed by everyone but the level in which it exists varies from person to person. Too-little or too-high of self-esteem is harmful as well. Thereby, it is important to strike a balance somewhere in the middle. Numerous studies reveal the impact that self-worth has on your overall well-being. So, today we will be talking about the importance of self-esteem, types of self-esteem, its effects on your life, and how can we improve self-esteem.

Why self-esteem is important?

Self-esteem refers to your overall sense of self-worth or self-regard. It defines the relationship you have with yourself. The self-regard which you have for yourself has an important role to play in your life. In simpler words, it refers to the attitude with which you treat yourself. Whether a positive and confident attitude or negative self-loathing behaviour. It is what we think, believe, and feel about ourselves. The value which you have for yourself is considered a determining factor when considering your overall life’s journey. Therefore, having a healthy self-esteem is important to live a happy life as it makes you believe that you are worthy of it.

Why self-esteem is important for students?

Being a student, you have to go through various quizzes and exams. You are thriving in an environment where healthy competition is necessary to survive. Being a student you might fail in one quiz or might not do well in an assignment. Alternatively, you might be a high achiever and getting straight A’s in your report card. But, there will be times when you will not perform to the best of your potential. So, what is the importance of self-esteem here? If you have high self-esteem then you will understand that ups and downs are a part of life. You’ll get up and try even harder the next time.

A healthy sense of self-confidence will not only be beneficial in your student life but in your personal and professional life as well. Resilient children are better adapted to face failures and do not let anxiety overshadow their full potential. Therefore, self-esteem is important for students as much as for adults. Its importance should not be underestimated.

What are the three types of self-esteem?

Self-esteem is an important topic in psychology and numerous researches reveal the
impact it has on the quality of life you are living. It is influenced by several factors that
determine whether you have high, healthy, or low self-esteem. Some of the common
factors are;

  • Age
  • Personality
  • Past experiences
  • Thoughts
  • Social circumstances
    Self-esteem is not a fixed trait but, it changes according to the experiences you are
    going through.

Types of self-esteem;

a) Low self-esteem

People falling in this category are likely to undervalue and underestimate the potential which they hold within. Their biggest problem is indecisiveness, rather than lack of confidence. They do not trust and value themselves. The constant fear of failure hinders them in achieving anything substantial in life. They are always on the lookout for safety and comfort. Getting out of their comfort zone and taking any risk in life is a big NO-NO for them. The fear of messing up everything is the main attribute that these people possess. 

They feel they are not up to the mark. They will prefer missing out on important opportunities in life rather than facing them. Therefore, they like playing safe and avoid taking risks in life. They are often unhappy with their lives. But, self-esteem is influenced by what’s happening in your life. So, people with low self-regard experience happy moments sometimes. But, their attitude shifts completely when they face an unlikely situation. Deep down they are sensitive people and constantly undervalue themselves when new responsibilities fall on their shoulders. They prefer quitting rather than staying in the game.

b) Extremely low self-esteem

This is a very dangerous level of self-esteem to possess. People having such self-regard might on the surface seem to be oozing with self-assurance and confidence. But that is just superficial. Their underlying need for appraisal makes them do whatever they possibly can. They like being the centre of attention. Although, they might come across as charming and intelligent people at first. But, it is just a matter of time until their true identity is revealed. They talk highly of themselves and most of their accomplishments are even false or exaggerated. They believe that they can never go wrong and others should revere and idealize them. People having an extremely low sense of self-worth are horrible in keeping relationships. Their idea of a relationship just revolves around their satisfaction and happiness. Such disregard and lack of empathy for their better half make them terrible partners.

c) High self-esteem

So, what is high self-esteem?  Or, what are the signs of high self-esteem?  This is where the mid of the range lies. It refers to having a positive relationship with yourself. People having high self-esteem believe and value themselves. You trust your abilities and possibilities. It does not mean that you don’t encounter any hurdles and obstacles along the way. But, you believe that you will overcome any challenge. Having a realistic and positive outlook of yourself is also one of the signs of high self-esteem. You believe in the power of determination and perseverance and do not surrender easily.

The confidence which these people have in themselves stops them from settling for anything less than what they deserve. They have a positive, assertive, and can-do attitude towards life. Like the other categories, people with high self-esteem also might not be able to maintain a balance depending on their life’s situation. But, generally, they are seen as happy and satisfied people.

How does self-esteem affect your life?

As self-esteem is the opinion you have of yourself, it is an important factor in making your life happy or worse. The effects of self-esteem on your life are;

a) Low self-esteem and the quality of life

Low self-regard reduces your quality of life. The constant self-criticism leads to persistent feelings of sadness, anger, and frustration. The characteristic of doubting your abilities stops you from trying anything at all. Alternatively, you might work excessively to prove your self-worth. This perfectionist attitude is harmful to your mental and physical health. The fear of being judged makes you a reserved person. People might find you socially awkward as well.  You may face relationship problems and might find living in an unhealthy relationship deserving of yourself. Further, people with extremely low self-esteem might develop narcissist characteristics which makes a relationship toxic. They easily become hopeless on the sight of a mere challenge. They may indulge in self-harming behaviours as well as they don’t believe in self-care.

b) High self-esteem and the quality of life

To live a healthy and happy life it is necessary to have high self-esteem. It increases your quality of life making it worthwhile to live. People with high self-esteem usually have a positive outlook on life. You avoid dwelling on the past and move on by learning from them. You feel confident in your abilities making you resilient and passionate. You don’t shy away from expressing their feelings which makes life easier for you and the people around you. Instead of being angry, frustrated, or sad, you prefer finding the solution to the problem you are facing. Rather than indulging in self-hate because of your weaknesses, you accept and work on improving them. You believe in your
capabilities. You work towards fulfilling your desires by investing the right amount of effort. This characteristic makes people with high self-esteem generally courageous and brave people.

How to improve self-esteem?

Having discussed the effects of self-esteem on your life we are in a better position to ponder on the ways which we can use to improve it. These ways are also applicable if you are a student and are looking for the answer to, ‘How can students improve self-esteem?

1- Practice self-acceptance

You suffer from self-esteem issues when you are critical of yourself. You have to change your opinion of yourself to improve your self-esteem. Change the way you talk to yourself. Challenge negative thoughts. Talk to yourself as you would to a loved one. Stop mulling over your past mistakes. Slam your inner critic. Avoid indulging in negative self-talk. This self-hate robs your confidence. Trust me you’ll feel a lot better and confident if you stop being so hard on yourself. Self-esteem is important and it can be boasted by practising self-acceptance. Here some amazing ways to be confident.

2- Stop comparing yourself to others

Every person is different than the other even identical twins have some differentiating characteristics. So, why do you desire to be like someone else when you have everything within yourself? You just need to embrace yourself. Accept who you are. Embrace your weaknesses and your strengths alike. Stop copying others and be original. Everything you aspire to be is already within yourself. You only need to recognize it. Once you start accepting and appreciating yourself you’ll feel positivity around as well. Accept your positive attributes and know that every human is valuable in its own right. Self-awareness is the first step to self-acceptance.

3- Stop worrying

Now, this is what you need to stop doing right away. Life is a blessing but worry makes it a living hell. Worrying about the future will change nothing but will only debilitate your mental health. You can’t change what the future holds within but you can change your present if you stop wasting your time worrying about the future. Focus on the present rather than worrying about the future. Self-esteem is important if you want to truly live your life. Here are some amazing ways to stop worrying excessively. Live is meant to be lived and enjoyed, and its importance is only recognized once it’s gone. As Leo F. Buscaglia says

“Worry never robs tomorrow of its sorrow, it only saps today of its
joy.”

4- Focus on small achievements

Celebrate your accomplishments however small or large they may be. It takes time and effort to achieve a goal. Give yourself the reassurance and support you have been desiring to get from others. If you don’t cherish and value yourself no one else will. So, be proud of yourself and your accomplishments. By focusing on small achievements students can improve their self-esteem. It takes consistent efforts to achieve a bigger goal in life. You should reward yourself for what little you achieve while aiming for greater success. Cherishing your goals will give keep you positive when hit by failure.

5- Interact with positive people

Interacting with critical and judgmental people will make you no different than them. As
the saying goes, ‘A man is known by the company he keeps.’ It stays true even today for the fact that you are influenced by the people you socialize with. If you surround yourself with negative and toxic people. People who criticize what others do while their own life is a disaster, you’ll become one of them. But if you surround yourself with positive people. People who look at the brighter side of life and are never hopeless, you’ll experience positivity within yourself as well. So, change your
company if you want to improve your self-esteem. Here are some great ways to deal with toxic people.

Conclusion

So, ‘why self-esteem is important?’ I guess you are now well aware of how self-worth makes or breaks your life. A healthy sense of self-confidence is necessary to live a balanced and happy life. The importance of self-esteem has been highlighted by various psychologists and it is an important topic in psychology. Whether you are an adult or a child having a balanced view of yourself is important to rise to your full potential. Recognizing your flaws while at the same time taking pride in your abilities, gives you a sense of value and satisfaction. Therefore, self-esteem is important if you want to live a healthy life and it can be improved as well by adopting some easy ways and practising them daily.


About the Author

Syed Sarmad Ali

Syed Sarmad Ali is a hobbyist writer and a Digital Marketing Enthusiast. He aims to spread happiness and inspire people whether through writing or marketing.

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