Menu Close

Apex Recovery Blog

6 Signs of Self-Esteem Issues and How to Treat Them

A woman looking at herself in the mirror

What are self-esteem issues? Across the world, it is estimated that about 85% of adults and adolescents have low self-esteem, which is the feeling of constant self-criticism and self-doubt. This number is constantly increasing, with the rise of comparison culture and other negative comparisons.

When you have poor self-esteem, it can lead to many other mental health problems, including eating disorders, anxiety, substance abuse, and more. Self-esteem issues affect people in many different ways, so it is important to recognize the signs of self-esteem issues so you can learn how to treat them. 

Do you want to learn how to overcome negative thoughts and deal with your emotions to improve your self-esteem? Keep reading this article for the top six signs of self-esteem issues and how to treat them. 

1. Low Confidence

One of the most common signs of self-esteem issues is having low confidence. Low confidence may seem interchangeable with self-esteem issues, but they build off of each other. 

When you have low self-esteem, you may not have an accurate understanding of your abilities, which makes it hard to rely on yourself in difficult or unknown situations. When you are self-confident, you also build your self-trust, which makes it easier to navigate different areas of your life. 

To improve your self-esteem, it is important that you find ways to improve your confidence in different areas of your life. For example, you can practice a new skill to prove to yourself that you are capable of doing anything you set your mind to.

You can also get professional mental health treatment to help improve your self-confidence. 

2. Degrading Social Comparison

Another common sign of people with low self-esteem is that they often make degrading social comparisons. While social comparisons are not always a bad thing, negative comparisons can make it easy to damage your self-esteem. 

A negative social comparison is when people compare themselves to others who they think are better than they are. Instead of using this social comparison as an inspiration to improve, it leaves them feeling inadequate and not good enough. 

Many people have seen an increase in these types of comparisons as social media influence has grown.  

One way that you can improve these thoughts is by practicing gratitude and focusing on your strengths. You can learn to be grateful for what you have, rather than focusing on what you don’t have. This will also make it easier to celebrate other people’s strengths without wishing that you had them. 

3. Difficulty Accepting Compliments or Positive Feedback

Next, you may have difficulty accepting compliments or other types of positive feedback if you struggle with self-esteem. If you don’t have a good opinion of yourself, you may find it impossible to believe that other people would think highly of you. 

Instead, you think that people giving you compliments are lying to you or just trying to make you feel better about yourself. 

When someone makes a nice comment to you, instead of thinking of the reasons why it isn’t true, you can start by saying thank you and giving yourself more praise. This way, you will begin to believe it when people are kind to you. 

4. Inability to Voice Your Needs

Another side effect of self-esteem issues is not being able to voice your needs. If you don’t think highly of yourself, you may not feel like you are worthy of being helped. 

This will make it difficult to prioritize your needs and ask for help when you need it. Many people also may feel embarrassed to ask for help. Being unable to help yourself may make you feel incompetent. 

While it can be difficult to ask people for help, you can start small. It is also important to understand that it is a two-way street. If other people can ask you for help, you can ask them for help as well. 

5. Poor Boundaries

When people struggle with their self-esteem, it often results in poor boundaries. People who feel like they are not respected will often fear that people will not like them if they set boundaries. 

This lack of boundaries can lead to even worse self-esteem when you are not able to stand up to people who don’t respect your needs. People-pleasing often leads to you neglecting your own needs and feeling guilty about saying no to people. 

While it can be difficult to start setting boundaries, it will lead to others treating you with more respect. 

6. Negative Self-Talk

Finally, negative self-talk is something that people with low-self esteem do, even though it typically exacerbates the issue. This is because people tend to focus on their flaws, rather than their strengths when they have confidence or self-esteem issues.

Often, people start using negative self-talk as a way to joke about their insecurities, even though it will make them worse. 

If you want to learn how to help self-esteem issues, you can start by replacing your negative thoughts with positive ones. If you think something negative about yourself, you can replace the feeling by listing a few things that you like about yourself. 

Improve Your Self-Esteem Issues Today

Self-esteem plays an important role in mental health and can lead to many mental health issues if it goes unchecked. By recognizing these signs, you can learn how to treat self-esteem issues in your own life and how to think more positively about yourself. 

Do you need help learning how to overcome self-esteem issues? Apex Recovery can help! Our team of mental health professionals provides rehabilitation and counseling services for mental health issues, drug and alcohol addiction, and more. 

Contact us today to learn about our mental health services and to improve your self-esteem today. 

Call Our Toll-Free Hotline 24/7 at 877.881.2689