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Health and Wellness

Self-esteem: Is Yours Healthy?

We all want to be liked. It’s part of being human.  We are social beings who need to belong, to be accepted by others.  Our self-esteem and success are intricately woven to what others think about us.  It is rare to meet someone who is not hurt by a rude comment, a bad review, or an insult that was neither provoked nor justified.

Just look at social media –  there’s like buttons on every platform. People buy followers so they look rock star popular. I stopped following new folks because I don’t know who’s real and who’s not.

I don’t know why I did it, but I joined Instagram.  I have 7 followers and I am fine with that.  I am a minnow in an ocean of sharks, and it’s ok.  My self-esteem is not dependent on how many followers, likes, shares, retweets,  comments, or views I get.  And I’m learning to not let the mean people I encounter on my day to day adventures have a say in my self worth.

What about you? Do you find yourself feeling dejected if you don’t get likes or retweets? Are you overly critical of yourself,  fail to speak up for yourself or avoid expressing your opinion?

Self esteem is your sense of self-worth or personal value.  In Maslow’s hierarchy he put it towards the top of  the pyramid.

MaslowsHierarchyOfNeeds

If you are hungry, sleepless, homeless or your life is threatened, you aren’t concerned about belonging and self-esteem until your basic needs are secure.  Once those are taken care of we can pay more attention to and develop our self esteem.

Is your self esteem healthy?  Try the Rosenberg Self Esteem quiz for starters. Click here and take the quiz, note your score, and then bounce back here and I’ll explain more.

If you didn’t score in the healthy range, don’t put too much stock into this simple 10 question quiz. It isn’t an end-all-be-all-carved-in-stone result.  It is a tool that can be useful in determining where you’re at.

Our self-esteem can fluctuate.  Everyone has low times, high times, and in betweens.  However, if you, or someone you care about consistently voice self depreciating comments,  or exhibit other behaviors that suggest poor self worth, it is important to recognize it  and work towards improving it.

It’s nice to be liked and wonderful to be noticed. But that can’t be the basis for how you value yourself.  Being momentarily hurt by a rogue comment or a two-faced acquaintance is normal.  Have a one minute pityfest, and then let it go. Brush it off your shoulders like lint and watch it fly away.  Those people don’t matter.

You matter. Be kind, do your best work, make your corner of the world a better place and love yourself – embrace your gifts, your flaws, and enjoy who you are. That’s a healthy self-esteem.

It ain’t what they call you, it’s what you answer to.             ~W.C. Fields

By Kathy

I am a Nurse Practitioner from Rochester, NY presently working in both the inpatient and outpatient hospital psychiatric settings.

2 replies on “Self-esteem: Is Yours Healthy?”

I scored comfortably in the normal range, but it is not reflective of every day. I am almost 55. I have raised 5 children and been involved in more social change actions and ministries than most people I know. But somehow lately I feel like I haven’t quite done anything to its full potential. Middle age regret? Is that like teenage angst? Sigh.

Cynthia, you are at a different season of life, it is quieter, mellower. You aren’t used to it. Not regret, not angst – a restlessness, a time of discovery.
You have passion, zeal, wisdom, and energy that blows me away! Do what writers do and put what you are feeling into words. Maybe a book needs to be birthed???

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