Signs of low self-esteem?
If I have low self-esteem you may already be aware of the issue, but for others, it may be difficult to distinguish between it and other mental and emotional concerns.
Having a bad day can make you feel bad about yourself or receiving criticism can sting for days, but this may not necessarily mean you suffer from chronic low self-esteem.
And of course, this issue can be intertwined with other issues, such as depression, anxiety, post-traumatic stress disorder, and stressors that mimic the symptoms of having low self-esteem and a lack of self-confidence.
But there are some ways you can tell if you suffer from a lack of self-esteem. Consider some of the following symptoms and see if they don’t apply in your case.
ADDICTIONS AND DISORDERS
( Signs of low self-esteem)
Since a lack of self-esteem can lead to depression and anxiety this can mean that a person “drowns” their feelings in addictions and behaviors such as eating disorders.
When you use narcotics or drink too much, you release endorphins, those feel-good chemicals in the brain that relax and calm you. It’s not unusual for someone with a lack of self-esteem to fall prey to many addictions.
You may not think you have an actual addiction and may assume that you use drugs or alcohol only for recreation. But there are some things to consider this regard. One is that narcotics are illegal!
If you’re using these, why are you risking jail time and huge fines just to feel good?
And when it comes to drinking, do you often get drunk? Do you always drink when you want to enjoy yourself? Do you ever drink too much and then drive home?
These things may signal, if not an addiction, a sure problem with alcohol.
EATING DISORDERS AND OVEREATING
( Signs of low self-esteem)
Eating disorders and overeating are quite similar to other addictions. Eating releases those same endorphins and makes a person feel good. If you’re prone to constant overeating, eating in secret, or gorging yourself regularly then you may have a food addiction just like someone else has an alcohol or drug addiction.
And many eating disorders are about control. Often an anorexic person becomes overly controlling as to their eating and this leads to the disorder.
Only a doctor can truly diagnose addiction or disorder of any type, but this information should give you something to think about as to symptoms of low self-esteem.
If you constantly seek out narcotics or alcohol or eat to feel good, you may be trying to mask some feelings inside of yourself that are related to low self-esteem.
SELF HARM ( Signs of low self-esteem)
Closely related to addictions and disorders would be behaviors that are harmful to yourself. This can mean cutting, hitting, and other such habits. Those with low self-esteem feel a need to punish themselves, may feel more in control when they harm themselves, or need to feel the pain to feel anything at all.
Causing harm to oneself is a very serious matter and one for which a person should get help. There are support groups and doctors that specialize in this type of behavior and its treatment. Letting this behavior go unchecked can result in severe physical problems, including infections, scarring, and things such as these.
DEPRESSION ( Signs of low self-esteem)
There are many reasons as to why someone would suffer from clinical depression. It can be genetic, it can be the result of circumstances they’re experiencing (prolonged job loss, divorce, death of someone close, relocation, aging, “empty nest” syndrome, just to name a few), or it can be the result of learned thinking patterns.
But depression can also result from a lack of self-esteem. When you put little value on yourself, this can lead to negative thinking and the “what’s the point?” thinking that is common with depression.
When a person has depression, they have little interest in things that they once enjoyed. This would include hobbies, friends, family, career, and recreation. They often don’t want to go anywhere or do anything or be around anyone. You can see how a lack of self-esteem would cause these problems.
When you lack self-esteem, you may feel as if you’re not worthy of being around others. You might feel nervous about everything you do and how you do it. You may also assume you’re doing things wrong or that people are laughing at you behind your back.
So it’s no wonder that someone lacking self-esteem and self-confidence would then suffer from depression. How can you have an interest in things or enjoy the company of others when you assume everything you do is wrong? How can you enjoy these things when you assume people are looking down on you?
Very often a lack of self-esteem leads to depression and having depression can make a person feel even worse about themselves. This vicious cycle can continue endlessly if a person does not address it directly.
PHYSICAL SYMPTOMS ( Signs of low self-esteem)
There are many physical symptoms tied in with low self-esteem and depression, and the many other emotional disorders that come with these. The body and the mind are connected; any stressful situation will cause a person to react physically.
SLEEP DISTURBANCES ( Signs of low self-esteem)
When you suffer from low self-esteem, your sleep may be interrupted in many different ways. You may have insomnia or may sleep too much. Insomnia can be caused by bad feelings about yourself; you toss and turn in bed as you think about all the things you’ve done wrong and how terrible you are. You may sleep too much as you dread getting out of bed and facing another day.
Sleep disturbances can lead to other physical problems as well. When you sleep too much your metabolism goes down and this causes grogginess and lack of energy throughout the day. It can also lead to weight gain.
Not sleeping enough can mean the body not getting adequate rest. Blood circulation can be compromised which can mean tissue damage in all areas of the body. Not getting enough sleep can mean mood disorders as the brain to suffers these consequences.
A person can be irritable, short-tempered, frustrated, angry, easily upset, and startled. And of course, these problems can just contribute to the problem of low self-esteem! You won’t feel very good about yourself if you’re constantly snapping at others and are angry and upset all the time.
DIGESTIVE DISORDERS ( Signs of low self-esteem)
Mental and emotional disturbances often cause stomach and digestive disorders. Usually, the stomach secretes extra acid when the body is under duress, to digest food and empty the stomach so a person can be physically ready for conflict. But when you’re not digesting food and you have that extra acid in the stomach, this can mean many digestive disorders. This can mean acid reflux, indigestion, stomach cramps, and many other concerns.
SKIN PROBLEMS ( Signs of low self-esteem)
A person suffering from low self-esteem can have their stress show itself on their skin. This might mean shingles and other rashes, acne, dry skin, oily skin, and blotchy skin. The connection between skin problems and emotional disturbances is not entirely clear but they can be connected to feelings of low self-esteem. And of course, having unattractive skin can mean additional problems with low self-esteem!
AVOIDANCE ( Signs of low self-esteem)
When you don’t feel good about yourself, you typically don’t enjoy being with others. You may assume that others are looking down on you, laughing at you behind your back, or criticizing you to other people.
You may also assume that you’re doing things wrongs and that you don’t fit or don’t belong with others anyway.
assume that you’re doing things wrongs and that you don’t fit or don’t belong with others anyway. This can lead to avoiding social situations altogether. You may avoid as many situations at work that bring you into contact with others and things such as family dinners, and just going out with friends.
Many who have low self-esteem also avoid intimate relationships and even just dating. Avoidance can lead to even more lack of self-esteem as loneliness and depression both set in.
As a person becomes more and more isolated they can become more and more convinced that they don’t deserve friends and socializing, and the never-ending circle of low self-esteem continues.
This isn’t to say that someone needs to be a social butterfly or should accept every social offer extended to them or otherwise they have low self-esteem. Some people are natural homebodies, meaning they enjoy staying in.
Others are just more comfortable in smaller groups and may not know many people with whom they have things in common. Some families are not naturally close and social.
And a person can go through a temporary set of circumstances that make them uncomfortable around others. But when avoidance becomes a habit then it may be tied into a lack of self-esteem.
When you would always rather be at home, alone, than out with others this may be a signal of something serious.
Other signs of low self-esteem
There are many, many indicators that a person has low self-esteem. Consider this list.
People with low self-esteem:
• Consider themselves lost, undeserving being cared for.
• Are poor risk-takers.
• Operate out of a fear of rejection.
• Are typically unassertive in their behavior with others.
• Are fearful of conflict with others.
• Are hungry for the approval of others.
• Are poor problem solvers.
• Are fraught with irrational beliefs and have a tendency to think
• Are susceptible to all kinds of fears.
• Have a tendency to become emotionally stuck and immobilized.
• Have a poor “track record” in school or on the job; conversely, they sometimes overcompensate and become over-achievers.
• Are unable to affirm or to reinforce themselves positively.
• Are unable to form an honest assessment of their strengths, qualities, and good points; they find it difficult to simply accept compliments or recognition from others.
• Have poorly defined self-identities with a tendency to be chameleons in order to fit in with others.
• Are insecure, anxious, and nervous once they are with others.
• Often become overcome with anger about their status in life and are likely to have chronic hostility or chronic depression.
• Are easily overcome with despair and depression when they experience a setback or loss in their lives.
• Have a tendency to overreact and become de-energized by resentment, anger, and the desire for revenge against those whom they believe have not fully accepted them.
• Fulfill roles in their families of origin that are counter-productive and maladaptive. These roles carry over into their adult lives.
• Are vulnerable to mental health problems and have a propensity to use addictive behavior to medicate their hurt and pain. Such addictive behavior can include alcohol, drugs, food, gambling, sex, shopping, smoking, working too much, or the search for excitement, truth, wisdom, and a guru with an easy guide to the achievement of happiness.