Healthy Self-Esteem

Healthy Self-Esteem

What does it refer to?

How does self-esteem form?

Self-esteem forms from childhood to adulthood. It depends on our interactions with other adults or peers or friends (we can be lucky enough to have others offering us compliments, encouragement, and acceptance and remind us how valued we are, or we can have the bad luck to hear criticism, rejection, insults or verbal abuse).


It can be influenced by the environment we grow up in (a child can learn they are less than others or better than others depending on the neighborhood they live in, the house they live in, or the clothes and food they have access to). 

It can also be influenced by our own process of thought and how much access we have to support and information (we can become our own abusers by repeating “I am worthless”, or “I am a failure”, or we can use the support from friends, specialists, books, internet, and self-love strategies to adopt a healthy self-image).


Why is healthy self-esteem important?

Our life satisfaction will be greater if we strongly believe we are worthy of love, comfort, enjoyment and well-being. Only if we allow ourselves to start building this worthy self-image we can change the present moment and our relationship with ourselves and with others.

Even though sometimes people are not used to the concept of self-confidence and self-respect and acceptance, it doesn’t mean it cannot be built.

Picture this:

Did you drive a car when you were 8? Did you know how to write an essay when you were 12? No.

As well as we were not able to drive a car as children but we have learned that as adults, we were able to change that with a decision of wanting to do it, and with a step-by-step process.

The same, we can offer ourselves a chance for a happy life, by building healthy self-esteem, self-worth self-deserving perception.

Our life satisfaction will be lower if we believe we are not valuable, unlovable, and unworthy of acceptance and compassion. This is science, it has been validated for many years. And felt daily by millions.

What we ask from life and give ourselves in this short life will depend on how much we believe we deserve it!

Let me use an example to check with you about a situation I see so often with my women in therapy.


I talk to my clients and they say: “I don’t know how I find them, but I tend to get friends or boyfriends that criticize me a lot. They have a problem with me for being too sensitive, ignorant, not smart enough, too messy.”

Searching together what could have caused this dynamic in her relationships, we find out her mother used to call her those words. When asked if she truly believes those etiquette words addressed to her she says: “I mean, yes, otherwise they wouldn’t all keep saying that right?”


Another example:


“I don’t understand what happened. My boyfriend always criticizes me for being too emotional and tells me what do to, he acts like he is superior and I am below him.”


 Searching together what could have caused this dynamic, she recalls many moments when she said: “You think you are just better than me because you can keep your calm all the time”.


So, what do you think happened here?

Were the women being accused of being in a specific negative way because they really were like that and they should listen to the opinions of others?

Or could it have been something else?

The self-full-filling prophecy

Are you familiar with the concept of a full-filling prophecy, where what we expect will happen (even if it is false) ends up confirmed?


At the personal level, it explains how what we believe about ourselves, also other people will believe about us. And that what we believe about ourselves is what we become.


If I walk around at dates, interviews, and social gatherings telling people how bad I am at communicating, how bad I am at managing my emotions, how bad I am at sports or dance, at making new friends or at managing my stress and emotions, this is exactly what they will think about me.


I am just serving them direct information to believe about me, like serving a cake on a plate.


If I suggest to people that they are better than me or that I am not good enough in any way, or if I deeply believe I am not worthy of their love and respect, they will subconsciously adopt it as truth and act accordingly (criticize me, correct me, control me, or even leave me, if I think I am not worthy of their love).


If I keep telling in my head I am inferior, stupid, or bad, guess what?

I will influence others, through my attitude, behavior and words to believe that as well, about me.

 And they will treat me accordingly.


The same concept applies when the woman who thinks all men are bad finds only bad guys for relationships, the same as the woman who thinks she is bad at cooking…and never cooks and eats junk food and gains weight.


If I believe I am worthy of respect, love, loyalty, and honesty, I will only tolerate these behaviors from others and I will be able to see when I am not treated as I deserve.

The same I have to be aware of what I believe about myself, take responsibility for increasing my self-worth image and make sure I take decisions (to maintain friendships, relationships, jobs and experiences) based on that value.


1. Presenting a client study case example from my 12 years of experience so it becomes easier to understand the concept:

Lack of self-esteem: I had a client, M., that was struggling with high levels of anxiety. Before any meeting at work, no matter how prepared she was, (and the fact that she already had two years of experience) she felt her heart was pumping, a node in her throat and her stomach in pain. Every meeting and possibility to speak in front of her team would be dreadful. What if she made a mistake or did not know an answer during the meeting? What if she would say something stupid or foolish? What if she would be faced with a task and was completely unprepared to solve it? And everyone would lose respect for her?

M. was completely ignoring her personal capabilities and value and felt powerless in front of any incertitude, even though she had years of work experience, because of her lack of self-esteem and trust.

M. learned after just 6 sessions what her biggest obstacle was, the relationship with her mother, how to heal it and how to create the empowerment and emotional freedom she was craving for.

If you are reading this article so far, you are probably wondering as well how to increase the quality of your life and relationships through healthy self-esteem. I hear you!

I would be honored to guide you on your journey as I helped thousands of people before to live an empowered life.

Contact me for a complimentary clarity session on your situation.

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