Reality television is a graveyard of people with low self esteem.
This type of evaluation usually occurs when some circumstance we encounter in our life touches on our sensitivities.
We personalize the incident and experience physical, emotional, and cognitive arousal. This is so alarming and confusing that we respond by acting in a self-defeating or self-destructive manner. When that happens, our actions tend to be automatic and impulse-driven; we feel upset or emotionally blocked; our thinking narrows; our self-care deteriorates; we lose our sense of self; we focus on being in control and become self-absorbed.
Start here and now:
- Practice self-care. Make new lifestyle choices by joining self-help groups and practicing positive health care.
- Identify triggers to low self-esteem. We personalize stressful events (e.g., criticism) by inferring a negative meaning about ourselves. A self-defeating action often follows. Each event can, instead, be a chance to learn about ourselves, if we face our fear of doing so and the negative beliefs about ourselves that sustain the negative meanings.
- Slow down personalizing. Target personalizing to slow impulsive responses. You can begin to interfere with these automatic overreactions by using relaxation and stress management techniques. These techniques are directed at self-soothing the arousal. This allows us to interrupt the otherwise inevitable automatic reaction and put into play a way to begin to face the unacknowledged fears at the root of low self-esteem.
It will take time. Try it it in slow spurts. It will make a world of difference!