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  • denisepatten

Feeling not good enough?

Ever have those worries that others don’t really like you? Or that your achievements are poor in comparison to others? Do you struggle to say no to others, even when it causes you harm or leaves you feeling stressed? Do you believe that you are fundamentally a bad person and don’t deserve any positive recognition? Or are you someone who hates what they see in the mirror? If you relate to any of these statements, you are likely to be suffering from low self-esteem and ought to know that you are NOT alone. In fact, many of the clients that I see experience low self-esteem, as well as those in my friend and family groups, including myself on occasion!

Self-esteem can be simply summed up as how we value ourselves (or don’t if we have low levels). Experiencing low self-esteem will evidently have a negative impact on our quality of life yet may also impact on those around us and their relationship with us.

Our self-esteem may be impacted by various things including:

Overly authoritative, absent or uninvolved caregivers


Social media and values within peer groups

Belief systems (eg; family or religion)

Relationship problems

Health problems



Signs of low self-esteem to look out for in yourself and others:

Social withdrawal

Negative self-talk

Constantly seeking affirmations or advice from others


Sensitivity to feedback

Obsessions with others or personal issues

Fear of failure

Unhealthy relationship with food and/or drink

Lack of boundaries

Ways to improve self-esteem:

Build healthy and positive relationships

Learn to recognise what you need to feel good and start doing it

Start saying NO when you really don’t want to do something

Focus on your achievements

Evaluate your negative thoughts regularly to change your narrative (you are not your thoughts)

Practicing self-compassion and acceptance

Physical activity

Mindfulness or meditation

Forgiving yourself (and others if possible) for mistakes made

It’s important to work on self-esteem throughout our lives. By doing so we build resilience to deal with challenges that may make a dent in our confidence. Attending talking therapy is a good way to spot your weaknesses and find ways that can help you to build and maintain a healthy way of being.

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