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Sunday, October 31, 2010

Low Self Confidence and Low Self Esteem - What is the Difference?

 by pmangala


Often, the terms self esteem and self confidence are used interchangeably. But there is a subtle distinction between the two terms.

Self confidence has to do with your belief in yourself and your abilities. Self esteem has more to do with how much value you put on yourself as a person. The difference between low self confidence and low self esteem is often the difference between the questions - "Can I do it?" Vs "Am I worth it?".

Low self confidence is typically driven by fear. What kind of fears? Fear of embarrassment, fear of rejection, fear of criticism, or fear of failure to name a few. Some of these fears usually originate, and gain ground, from our perception of how other people would react at us, based on our past experiences or our imagination. While other fears, like the fear of failure, for instance, could arise when we set tangible or intangible goals for ourselves, and start to evaluate our self worth based on our progress in achieving these goals.

But, both these kinds of fears, many times, point to an underlying issue of low self esteem as well.

So what about having good self confidence? Does having a good self confidence imply a feeling of great self worth as well?

Unfortunately, No.

Gaining self confidence, or getting a positive boost to one's belief in self-abilities, does not necessarily translate to an equivalent increase in terms of one's estimation of one's self worth.

Case in point: Some of the popular celebrities who radiate confidence on stage, but suffer in quiet desperation to the point of being driven to depression in their private lives. And that's possibly because their feeling of self worth is not keeping pace with all that they have achieved in their lives.

But the converse is always true - A low self esteem always leads to low belief in one self (low self confidence), and improving self esteem is a natural way to boost self confidence.

"Low self esteem is like driving through life with your hand-brake on." -Maxwell Maltz

We need to learn to get that brake off! The sooner we learn to do it, the better and happier our life will become.

Prashant is the editor and owner of:

His knowledge and insight has led others, just like you, to a happier and more successful life style. Visit his site to find out more about low self confidence, the causes and telltale signs of low self esteem, and discover plenty of ideas and tips for gaining self confidence and improving self esteem.


1 comment:

  1. Good post on this topics. I read the whole story and couldn't agree more with what you have said in this post.

    Many people nowadays suffer from both of lack of self confidence and esteem while also try to make themselves better.