What is Low Self-Esteem?

Low self esteem is where you have a low opinion of yourself. It is one of the most common of Mental Health issues, though not as serious as some of the others on this website, it can still make all sorts of people feel bad. We all have times when we lack confidence and don’t feel good about ourselves

We all have times when we lack confidence and don’t feel good about ourselves but when low self-esteem becomes a long term problem it can have a harmful effect on our mental health; and our lives.

  • Self-esteem is the opinion we have of ourselves,
  • When we have healthy self-esteem, we tend to feel positive about ourselves and about life in general. It makes us able to deal with life’s ups and downs better,
  • When our self-esteem is low, we tend to see ourselves and our life in a more negative and critical light. We also feel less able to take on the challenges life throws at us.

What causes low self-esteem?

Perhaps you found it difficult to live up to other people’s expectations of you, or to your own expectations. Stress and difficult life events, such as serious illness, bereavement or social issues can have a negative effect on self-esteem. Personality can also play a part in low self-esteem. Some people are just more prone to negative thinking, while others set impossibly high standards for themselves.

“this is me” – An article about low self-esteem


Live in the moment: When you are focused on the moment, you can choose your actions consciously and wisely. Do not dwell on the past or things that could have been.

Develop awareness: When we’re aware, we can recognise how we are responding and reacting to our own fears. We can then choose to respond in a healthier way.

Write in a journal: Many of our thoughts and feelings are locked in our subconscious mind and writing can help to bring them into our awareness. Writing about the way we feel and think can help to separate negative ideas about ourselves from the truth of who we really are.

Be non-judgemental: When we approach our lives non-judgementally, we simply accept ourselves, our experiences, our failures and successes and other people just as they are, neither good or bad, without pride or shame.

Stay connected to yourself: Mindfulness can help you to develop a sense of connection to yourself and reduce your people-pleasing ways by allowing you to stop the autopilot thinking and behaviour that keeps you jumping to please others without thinking of your own needs.

Practice mindful meditation: Meditation just means letting go of the racing thoughts in your mind and accepting that those thoughts, feelings and beliefs are transient, rather than parts of yourself. Take a few moments every day to simply be bathing and watch your worries drift away like clouds.

Participate in your own life: Mindfulness encourages us to become active and assertive in creating our own lives. Awareness of your thoughts and choosing your responses to them enables you to take action and participate in your own life.

Develop a beginner’s mind: When you have a beginner’s mind, you look at things as if you are seeing them for the first time, with openness, eagerness and freedom from expectation. You can see things in a new light, rather than automatically responding with the same old patterns of behaviour.

Let go: Non-attachment, or letting go, is the goal of mindfulness. When you let go of what you think you should do or who you should be, you can trust yourself and choose what’s right for you.

Show compassion toward yourself: You deserve love as much as anyone else. Self-compassion simply means providing yourself with the love, safety and acceptance you need.