Let’s get one thing clear: If you are not living the life you deserve to live, you are dying. I know it sounds kinda harsh.
I know it’s definitely an extreme way to put things, but sometimes, if you are numb to certain realities, you need an extreme wake up call. This is one of those. In fact, if you think about it, there’s really not much difference between human beings and sharks as far as living is concerned.
Like a shark, humans need to move forward or they start sinking. When sharks sink, they die. The same applies to you. Now, please understand that if you’re not pushing yourself to the limit or trying to live up to your fullest potential, it’s not like you’re going to die immediately.
But something inside you starts to get weak, starts to get soft, starts to waste away and yes, eventually, parts of you die. There are so many of us walking around with tombstones in our eyes because we did not live out our fullest potential. We’re not living anywhere near the level that we’re capable of performing at.
This is why so many people feel stuck, frustrated, and discouraged. There are many reasons for this. But one of the biggest causes is low self-confidence. Here are 10 of the many ways low self-confidence keeps you from living the life of victory you could otherwise be living.
#1 You run away from taking on most opportunities ( Self-esteem issues)
You may be thinking, “if an opportunity presented itself, why the world would I not take it?” it’s one thing to think about things a certain way, it’s another to actually behave a certain way.
If you’re completely honest with yourself or in any way, shape or form feeling stuck or frustrated with your life, you probably are the type of person to look a gift horse in the mouth.
In other words, you are aware that you are presented with an opportunity, but you’re doubtful. You’re skeptical. You’re trying to figure out what the catch is. You do this with one opportunity after another and soon enough, the opportunities dry up. Well, they’re still around.
The problem is you’re not allowing yourself to see them because all you can see is the downside. You have such a low view of your ability to get things done regardless of the challenges that you set a very high bar for yourself as far as opportunities go.
In other words, you’re looking for something that has absolutely no catch. I don’t mean to be the person to break this to you, but the reason why opportunities are opportunities in the first place is that there is a risk to them.
The higher the risk, the higher the reward. Unfortunately, your low self-confidence has really reduced your tolerance for risk, uncertainty, and the potential for loss that you fail to see opportunities. Even if they do present, you don’t take them.
#2 You instinctively try to coast through life ( Self-esteem issues)
Even if you are very competent in certain areas of your life, it’s very easy to give in to the temptation of coasting. I really can’t say I blame you. If you do certain things very well and you produce certain results predictably, it’s very easy to think that that’s all you need.
It’s very easy to think that the rewards that you’re getting are enough for you and your needs and you really don’t have to apply yourself any further. Believe it or not, this applies to almost everybody because the default standard, as far as the human condition is concerned, is to take the path of least resistance.
Laziness is actually a pretty shallow word for this. It’s something deeper. With everything else being equal, if given a choice, we would rather take the easy way out. This is guaranteed.
So, when you are presented with opportunities to coast, you instinctively take them. Even if you’re not given such opportunities, you try to coast anyway. After all, why beat yourself up unnecessarily, right? Here’s the problem
The reason why you give in so easily is that you have low self-confidence in your ability to keep challenging your areas of competence. The problem with coasting is you’re not learning anything new. You’re sticking to the narrow range of knowledge that you already have.
Sure, you produce results with that narrow range, but it gets smaller and smaller as the world changes. Soon enough, you would realize that what you know, as well as your capabilities, are simply not up to the job.
That is the bitter “reward” of coasting through life. Sadly, low self-confidence pushes you down that slippery slope.
#3 You think constantly challenging yourself as hassle ( Self-esteem issues)
To get good at anything, you have to not only master a certain set of actions, but you have to constantly try to break things. You’re trying to mix and match, slice and dice and try to come up with all sorts of combinations so you can step up your game.
I don’t care what you do for a living. Maybe you’re a lawyer or a doctor, an architect or an engineer, a chemist, janitor, farmer, or domestic helper. It doesn’t matter.
If you want to be at the top of your game, you can’t just focus on the things you already know. You can’t just focus on the things that you have mastered and have grown comfortable with. You have to push yourself to the limit. When you have low self-confidence, you think that challenging yourself to go to the next level is a hassle.
You have such a low opinion of your ability to discover new things. You focus on the discomfort and inconvenience involved that you lose sight of what you stand to gain. It then all seems like it’s just not worth it.
#4 People with low self-esteem are bad at saying no ( Self-esteem issues)
When they are asked for favors that they don’t actually want to do, people with low self-esteem find it extremely difficult to day no. Rather than risking that the other person would start to dislike them, they instead take on more work than they would like to do.
As a result, they often end up spending their lives working to please others rather than doing things for their own sake.
#5 You tend to let your failures and disappointments define you ( Self-esteem issues)
If you are suffering from low self-esteem, it’s going to be very hard for you to overcome failures and disappointments. I’m telling you right now as you read this, you’re already failing.
There’s already the possibility of disappointment. The problem is not whether failures and disappointments happen in our lives. Spoiler alert. They happen all the time. The issue is what are you going to do about them?
Are you going to sit back and just brood over how you worked so hard and missed the mark? Are you going to continue to be disappointed with yourself that you felt that you gave your best, but came up short? Or are you going to try again and again until you get the job done?
Which do you think is a better strategy? Now all of us could agree on the answer. In fact, it’s obvious. The problem is most people allow their failures and disappointments to define them.
They retreat to their comfort zones until these zones shrink smaller and smaller until they find themselves living in a personal prison complete with invisible walls. You can’t live your life based on whether something is convenient or comfortable. You have to push back against the walls of your comfort zone.
Unfortunately, that’s very hard to do if you allow your disappointments and failures to define you. That’s really what you’re doing. You’re letting them set firm boundaries as to what you can and can’t do as well as who you can and can’t be. A lot of this can be traced to your low self-confidence.
#6 You view only the discomfort and convenience of challenges instead of the blessing they bring ( Self-esteem issues)
I know that the word “blessing” is quite a strong word. After all, we’re talking about challenges here. We’re talking about starting a business and then running out of money.
We’re talking about getting into a new relationship and discovering that he or she is cheating on you. That’s what we’re talking about. Challenges. The curveballs of life. What are you going to do?
If you have supreme confidence in yourself, you see all these challenges and you look for the blessing. You look for the proverbial silver lining in the cloud. That’s what winners do. That’s how people who always find themselves at the top choice to handle things.
Unfortunately, if you have such a low view of your ability to get things done and get the results you expect, you look at challenges from a completely different perspective. You look at the inconvenience and the discomfort involved in overcoming them.
So, what do you do? You retreat to your safe space. You retreat to your comfort zone. As I’ve mentioned above, these zones and spaces get smaller and smaller because you don’t challenge them.
Look for the blessings because the fact that you see blessings despite the shame, humiliation, pain, and trials that challenges bring, you will be able to get the strength you’ll need to keep pushing. This is what makes your ultimate victory so much sweeter.
#7 You focus on getting the most and risking the least ( Self-esteem issues)
A lot of people think that life really boils down to ROI or ROE. These return on investment and return on effort, respectively, do have roles to play in life.
But when it comes to learning important life lessons and taking the right risks, you might be misapplying these concepts. You have to understand that your life is what you make it.
I’m sure you’ve heard that before. But a key part of this is the essence of risk. Life is unfair, chaotic, and very fragile. You could lose everything instantly.
That’s the kind of world we live in. And to think that you should just focus on maximizing your gains while risking the least amount is basically playing the game to lose.
Given the way the world is set up, the more you risk, the more you stand to be rewarded. If you have such a low view of your ability to get things done, you’d never even muster the strength to roll the dice. You don’t even get there. You just take the very least that the world has to offer.
You’re basically settling for the default rewards that life has to offer. I’m telling you, those are the crumbs. Those are not the sweetest and most expensive fruits that life and challenges bring to the table. You can only live on those for so long until they shrink and shrink some more.
#8 Life becomes a series of traps instead of a collection of adventures ( Self-esteem issues)
If you let your low Self-esteem get the better of you, don’t be surprised if it changes and ultimately poisons your view of life. Instead of seeing life as a series of choices that lead to all sorts of amazing and interesting adventures of discovery, you focus instead on what you stand to lose.
In other words, you start looking at the world as a series of traps. You hang on to whatever you have to ultimately lose that scrap of victory that you have managed for yourself.
This all turns on your mindset. If you are able to look at the world as a series of adventures, you’re able to try again and again regardless of how many times you get beaten back.
That’s how life works. The higher the risk, the higher the reward. You’re not going to gain a big victory prize if whatever it is you’re doing is easy.
Unfortunately, if you don’t have faith in your ability to get things done the right way at the right time, it’s very easy to just basically look at the world as a very hostile place.
#9 You downplay and discourage your resourcefulness by always playing at safe ( Self-esteem issues)
All of us are blessed with a certain degree of resourcefulness, imagination, and creativity. All human beings, and I know I’m going out on a limb here by offering such a general statement, are resourceful to a certain degree.
We have it in us. The fact that you are born is a testament to the adaptations of your ancestors. They had to be resourceful, otherwise, they would not have been able to pass on their genes.
Resourcefulness is baked into you assuming that you’re healthy enough. Unfortunately, this is one of the things that you degrade, diminish, and weaken by always playing it safe.
You’re so afraid of dropping the ball and you doubt your ability to make your ideas happen that you just focus on what you know. You just focus on the things that are “safe” and “guaranteed” You focus on your routine. You neglect one of your most powerful personal resources.
Believe it or not, the reason why people are able to succeed despite the odds is that they are able to tap into their personal resourcefulness to overcome challenges that come their way.
Challenges do happen. People do flake. Money does run out. Nature does play a trick on you from time to time. These are just part of life. To instinctively try to play things safe is to deny yourself the opportunity to tap into your natural resourcefulness to figure out a way to come out on top.
Maybe you can’t get through the front door so you try the back. Maybe that way is blocked for whatever reason, so you try the basement. Perhaps the basement is off-limits, so you try the roof.
Maybe there’s no way to get into that house today, so you try tomorrow and the day after that. Maybe next week. Do you see how this works? Resourcefulness is wasted when you play it safe. You do this because you have low self-confidence.
#10 You stop viewing life as a series of challenging ( Self-esteem issues)
Do you think Bill Gates and Steve Jobs would’ve revolutionized the world through their computer products if they thought computing products were perfect when they started?
People who succeed are always looking for problems. People who fail to succeed or who are mediocre or who struggle through life are always running away from problems.
Problems are opportunities. Problems filter people. Like you, most people want to run away. Who wants to deal with the headaches, inconveniences, and discomfort of confronting problems straight on, looking at it straight in the eye, slapping it around, beating is, and subjecting it to your will until it turns to its real form.
What is its real form? Opportunity. Few people want to go through that. It’s precise because of people like Bill Gates and Steve Jobs who refuse to take the status quo for an answer that we live in such interesting times. Beating back challenges, solving problems, these are all adventures.
But when you think that you don’t have what it takes to solve whatever issue life places in front of you, life is no longer a set of interesting challenges. When you were born, that’s how you looked at life. That’s why you tripped over yourself.
That’s why you had a lot of scrapes and bruises. That’s what made life fun. Every day was chalked full of discovery. But sooner or later, you changed your attitude.
You look at life now as a series of traps. Pitfalls. Potential disasters waiting to happen. Your low self-confidence is a key reason for that change in attitude.
#11 You end up believing your best days are behind you ( Self-esteem issues)
All of us are capable of greatness. All of us are capable of achievement. All of us are capable of beating back our problems and making some sort of headway.
All of us have it in us. We are problem solvers by definition. That’s what the human species is all about. After all, you have to be quite a problem solver for you to come up with fire, housing, running water, clean water, food.
Accordingly, we are able to achieve quite a bit. I mean, you may be thinking that you’re living your life far below your fullest potential, but if you’re honest with yourself, you probably have achieved certain things.
Sadly, when you let your low self-confidence get the better of you, you spend most of your time looking at the things that you’ve managed to scrape together.
You shy away from having to do what you need to do to make bigger things happen. This forces you to look at whatever mediocrities you have managed for yourself and think that these are the best you’re capable of. You end up believing your best days are behind you.
This is sad. I’m not saying this out of judgment because you are the same as me. Your potential is not the same as me. We’re all operating from the same template as human beings and it is sad that you think that way because of your low self-confidence.
How come? The best days are unlocked when we overcome one challenge after another because each challenge brings opportunities. These opportunities bring blessings and rewards.
You’re locking yourself away from that. Instead, you content yourself with whatever hollow glow or faint reflections of past glory by looking at what you’ve done in the past. You are capable of so much more. You have so much more to offer.
If any of these 10 ways low self-confidence is slowly killing you hits home, I’ve got some good news. You don’t have to wallow in self-pity. You don’t have to feel worthless.
You can do something about it. Click here for a practical framework you can start on today to take your life to a whole other level. You owe it to yourself.
People with low self-esteem have certain bad habits in common. By avoiding falling into the same habits, you can optimize your chances of keeping your self-esteem high.
#12 People who have low self-esteem are jealous ( Self-esteem issues)
Because they expect others to feel about them in the same negative way as they feel about themselves, they cannot believe that anyone can truly love them.
Consequently, they always expect to be dumped by their partners, and in order to avoid this from happening they keep their eyes open for signs that it is indeed about to happen.
As a result, they are overly suspicious whenever their partners spend time with people of the opposite sex or behave in ways that can be interpreted as that they do not love their low self-esteem partners.
#13 People with low self-esteem are anxious ( Self-esteem issues)
Low self-esteem people are worried that their colleagues and friends will one day discover who they really are. They don’t dare to be themselves, and because they are pretending to be somebody they are not, they are constantly anxious that their true nature with be found out.
#14 People with low self-esteem try to defend themselves ( Self-esteem issues)
For example, many low self-esteem individuals react in a very aggressive way whenever they receive negative feedback. Because they don’t feel good enough they try to lift themselves up by pressing others down. It may go as far as blaming others for mistakes that they are responsible for.
#15 People who have low self-esteem back-talk ( Self-esteem issues)
In an (often unconscious) attempt to make themselves look better, people with low self-esteem talk negatively about others behind their backs.
This has negative consequences, not only for the person who was spoken about but also for the listeners and the speaker.
#16 People with low self-esteem are experts at finding faults in others ( Self-esteem issues)
Low self-esteem people feel better when they can see faults in the people around them. Therefore, they are experts at finding negative qualities in others. By looking for and finding faults in others, their liking of these people decreases. People with low self-esteem like other people less than people with high self-esteem
#17 People with low self-esteem have unhealthy lifestyles ( Self-esteem issues)
In order to take good care of your health, you need to believe that you are important enough to be taken care of. People with low self-esteem don’t feel important and therefore don’t see any point in taking care of their health.
#18 People with low self-esteem listen to media with negative messages ( Self-esteem issues)
Rather than brainwashing themselves with positive messages, people who have low self-esteem watch soap operas and films that make them feel like they are not good enough, read magazines that let them know that everyone else is better-looking and lead more exciting lives and listen to sad love songs about loneliness.
#19 people with low self-esteem don’t take enough time for themselves ( Self-esteem issues)
Because they constantly want to please others, people with low self-esteem rarely take enough time on doing things that they enjoy doing or that increase their well-being. By doing this, they, unfortunately, both send themselves the message that they are not important enough, and they don’t develop their self-awareness.
#20 The Effect of Self-Esteem on Relationships ( Self-esteem issues)
Self-esteem plays a really important role in romantic relationships. People with low self-esteem experience more negative emotions, whereas people with high self-esteem experience more happiness and life satisfaction.
Level of self-esteem influences who we select as partners and the way we view them. Individuals who have negative perceptions of themselves even have more negative perceptions of their partners.
Also, because they feel inferior, they can’t see any reason to why anyone would really like them. Low self-esteem individuals therefore doubt that their partners actually love them, and consequently they take minor relationship difficulties or failures as signs that their partners’ affections are waning which they’re going to put an end to the connection .
In the face of such problems, people with low self-esteem distance themselves from their partners and devalue them even further, because the prospect of rejection becomes less threatening if the partner is seen as less desirable.
On the other hand, people with high self-esteem value their partners more highly, and even in situations of difficulties, they maintain their confidence therein their partners will still love and support them.
Consequently, low self-esteem poses a significant threat to successful relationships.
I hope you know self-esteem issues and you can overcome all of them soon.