When You’re Feeling Hopeless About Having Low Self-Esteem
Many people who struggle with having low self-esteem have done so for many years, perhaps for even most of their lives. When you suffer from low self-esteem for this long, you may wonder whether you will ever get rid of it and be able to view yourself in a positive light. Despite the time that has passed and your genuine efforts to build self-esteem, negative feelings about yourself may remain. Your inner critic may be a constant feature throughout your day or crop up during particularly stressful times in your life or major life events. Here, we will highlight what it’s like to feel hopeless about having low self-esteem and how you can combat this kind of despair to ensure that you move forward in your mental health journey.
Hopelessness About Having Low Self-Esteem
Having low self-esteem in the long-term is especially frustrating when it gets in the way of your ability to live a full and happy life. Your low self-esteem may affect your career, friendships, romantic relationships, and willingness to do certain things. The negative self-talk in your head can be a powerful obstacle.
Even though much time has passed, your negative self-image remains. This is in spite of all the people you meet and know who sing your praises and appreciate you for who you are. This may also be in spite of years of mental health therapy, self-help, and consistent facts about yourself that are contrary to your low self-esteem, such as the ways in which you show you are capable and virtuous in your day-to-day life.
If in spite of all this, you still regard yourself in a harsh and unkind manner, and this can make you worry about always feeling this way. You may imagine that your critical inner voice will be a permanent fixture in your head, always waiting to raise its voice the next time you make a mistake or when something doesn’t go as planned. This can lead to a feeling of despair. You may find it hard to imagine a future in which your thoughts, feelings, and beliefs about yourself could be improved and allow you to lead a fulfilling life.
Low Self-Esteem Isn't Hopeless and Doesn’t Have to Be Permanent
In your mental health journey, it’s important to keep in mind that low self-esteem doesn’t have to be permanent. There are many ways that your self-esteem can improve over time:
- Building self-esteem can be a long and gradual process. So while you may still suffer from intense low self-esteem while having worked on it for many years, this doesn’t mean you can’t reach a point where your self-esteem is healthy. Patience and persistence are crucial when it comes to building self-esteem.
- Self-esteem may rise throughout adulthood. Many people may struggle with low self-esteem during their adolescence and young adulthood, but over time, it often improves. This is because people usually discover more fully what they’re like as a person and learn how to accept themselves. Moreover, with adulthood comes more opportunities to test one’s capabilities and this tends to translate into a greater degree of self-esteem.
- Self-acceptance is always a choice. While your low self-esteem may have originated from your childhood or upbringing, this doesn’t mean it is etched into your mind forever. At this moment, you can still make a conscious decision whether to reject or accept what you’re like as a person.
- You have a greater ability to challenge your low self-esteem than you imagine. You are not a slave to your inner critic. Always keep in mind that you are able to talk back to it in a productive manner – and the more you do this, the quieter and less impactful this voice will become. In addition, you can always act in ways that challenge your self-esteem, which could involve trying something you’ve always wanted to do or entering the dating scene, despite your thoughts trying to prevent you from doing so.
Having low self-esteem for years can be unpleasant and disruptive in so many ways. But what you may find in your mental health journey is that having low self-esteem and overcoming it will provide you with many lessons and resources that will end up improving your life in all sorts of ways.
How has having low self-esteem affected your feelings of hopelessness? Please comment below.
Woolfe, S. (2019, August 28). When You’re Feeling Hopeless About Having Low Self-Esteem, HealthyPlace. Retrieved on 2020, November 26 from https://www.healthyplace.com/blogs/buildingselfesteem/2019/8/when-youre-feeling-hopeless-about-having-low-self-esteem