Alcohol and low self-esteem connect intimately with one another because when you have low self-esteem, you may try to find ways in order to mask the problem. There are many things that can give you a temporary boost in confidence, including material possessions, status, money, sex, a new relationship, travel, drugs, and alcohol. However, these really only offer you a temporary and superficial form of positive self-regard. None of them can help you address the cause of your low self-esteem. Since drinking is so prevalent and ingrained in people’s lives, I'd like to address alcohol and low self-esteem today. Of course, not everyone drinks regularly because of low self-esteem issues. But if your image of yourself sober is starkly negative, whereas you only feel confident when drunk, then this may be a counter-productive habit.
Building Self Esteem
Living with your parents as an adult is more popular than ever before. Around 20 million young adults (aged 18-31) in the US live with their parents. In the UK, over a quarter of adults aged 20-43 still live at home. And the figure is even higher in Canada, with nearly half of young adults having this living with their parents.
When you struggle with a feeling of unworthiness, it's often because you are attached to certain assumptions about yourself. Here are three negative beliefs to be on the lookout for. You have to be able to notice them – and understand why they're toxic – in order to challenge them.
Being oversensitive to criticism is painful, and it often happens when you have low self-esteem. Whether the criticism is justified or not, your negative view of yourself distorts the criticism in a way that either maintains the low self-esteem or exacerbates it. You may not be able to avoid other people’s criticisms of you, but you can choose how you respond to those criticisms. Indeed, it is imperative to desensitize yourself so that you can separate reality from fiction and can feel confident about your self-worth, regardless of what anyone has to say.
Psychological projection of your low-self esteem onto others prevents you from addressing your self-esteem problem. You may engage in psychological projection unconsciously because having low self-esteem can be incredibly painful, so much so that you will unconsciously find ways to avoid facing that pain. Projection is known as a psychological defense mechanism and it is an example of one that often plays out for people who suffer from low self-esteem. Projection is the process of attributing qualities to others that you find most uncomfortable about yourself. All of this happens unconsciously. But it helps to know when psychological projection is taking place as this way it becomes easier to confront the hard truth and grow as a person.
For years you’ve heard that self-care for your mental health is essential, but many people find the concept hard to implement in their lives. Professionals and people who love you likely give you self-care for mental health ideas to try but they don’t understand that adding in something to your life is a challenge, especially when struggling with a mental health condition.
When your self-esteem is low, it can really help to do random acts of kindness in the day. Here are some small actions that can make a big difference to the lives of others, as well as your opinion of yourself.
You might be prone to feel jealous of other people's success and to feel worse about yourself if you suffer from low self-esteem. This is why it’s important to perceive other people’s achievements in a different light. Not only is it unhealthy to let your self-esteem be swayed by what other people are doing, it is also wasteful and unproductive to be jealous of other people's success.
Do you find that it's hard to make time for self-care? We all have busy lives and play many roles, but if we don’t take care of ourselves and listen to what we need, it makes it harder to take care of the ones we love. When we make time for self-care on a regular base, research shows that most of us begin to develop healthy self-esteem, are more mindful and present, and feel more control over our mental health.
There's a connection between low self-esteem and self-harm as having low self-esteem can sometimes lead to repetitive, destructive habits1 – including self-harming behavior. It’s important to be aware of why having a warped and negative opinion of yourself can lead to self-harm, as well as take note of the positive coping mechanisms you can adopt when times get tough.