Our mind is always in conversation. Whether or not we interact with the outside world, our mind is always saying something to us. Just like your thoughts about your friends indicate the relationship you have with them, the thoughts that you have about yourself show your relationship with self. A low self-esteem is when this internal conversation is quite negative and more discouraging, than approving.
When we don’t have a strong mind, we can’t control our thoughts very well. Most of the times we don’t even register our internal conversation and can stay oblivious of the amount of negativity that we put on ourselves. That’s why it may be easier to diagnose a low self-esteem by checking for specific symptoms. These symptoms are mostly visible in our relationships with other people.
Symptom 1 – Unaccepting
Low self-esteem makes it difficult for us to accept someone’s help or nice gestures. We feel uncomfortable, when someone compliments us or tries to do us a favour. We try to refuse help, downplay the compliment and never think of asking for someone’s assistance, because deep inside we don’t feel worthy enough.
Symptom 2 – Pleasing
Instead of accepting someone’s help, we are eager to help others to the point, when we can’t say “no”. Low self-esteem makes us disregard our own interests in favor of serving others. This sacrifice makes us feel good and worthy. We don’t believe that people can love us and treat us well, unless we always do something nice for them and put effort to deserve their regard.
Symptom 3 – Adjusting
As a part of pleasing others, we tend to adjust our personality and behaviour to people that surround us. We may fake character traits, likes and interests just for the sake of fitting in and being accepted by the crowd. This behaviour comes from a deep belief that people will not like us the way we really are.