Confidence and Self-Esteem | Thinking Free

Confidence & Self-Esteem

Confidence & Self-Esteem

Self-Esteem

Self-esteem is the way in which we perceive ourselves, our abilities and our value as individuals. Low self-esteem is a lack of positive regard for oneself. It can be crippling, and is arguably one of the leading causes of social anxiety. Positive self-esteem means regarding yourself as valuable and deserving, treating yourself with respect, and feeling good about yourself and is a sign of good emotional health.

Children learn a system of values and beliefs, including self-beliefs, from their parents from a very early age and so the way in which a parent communicates and interacts with their child is influential on the development of that child's identity and their sense of self-esteem. A child has a need for positive regard from other people and self-worth. If these needs are not fulfilled by a parent, then a child can possibly develop low self-esteem. "Conditional positive regard is where positive regard, praise and approval, depend upon the child, for example, behaving in ways that the parents think correct.  Hence the child is not loved for the person he or she is, but on condition that he or she behaves only in ways approved by the parent(s)" (Saul McLeod, 2007 Simply Psychology).

Our opinions of ourselves are founded in our experiences. The negative views that can be formed as a child are just that - childlike opinions. They are now outdated and can form a barrier to careers and relationships. The 'critical inner voice' continues into adult life.

Not everyone with low self-esteem comes from a childhood environment of emotional neglect. Sometimes people from a positive background can have their self-esteem and confidence eroded through negative life events and setbacks.

The Inner Voice

Our minds can be seen as similar to a tape recorder; some of us are programmed to record positive things, others the negative. This is why some people seem to be able to bounce back from adversity and setbacks easily, whilst others cannot. Such people find it easier to dust themselves off and start again, listening to their positive, reassuring inner voice. People with low self-esteem and a critical inner voice find it much harder to do this. They need to rid themselves of the negative programming and start to recognise the positive in life.

Hypnotherapy can help because it speaks directly to the subconscious part of our minds that holds these negative beliefs. I can work with you to:

  • Identify the root causes of your low self-esteem
  • Eliminate past negative programming - modifying personal belief systems, taking the negative labels that you have applied to yourself in the past and re-labelling with positive ones
  • Reinforce past successes - building on the areas of life in which you have shown confidence, enabling you to see the achievements you have already made
  • Self-assertion - reinforcing what you want and building confidence to stand up for what you want in life

In addition to hypnotherapy sessions, I can provide a recording that you can use at home to encourage you to develop positive affirmations.

Self-Confidence

Self-esteem refers to how you feel about yourself overall; how much esteem, positive regard or self-love you have. Self-esteem develops from experiences and situations that have shaped how you view yourself today. Self-confidence is how you feel about your abilities and can vary from situation to situation. A person may have healthy self-esteem, but low confidence about situations involving specific skills or abilities, such as mathematics, for example.

Poor self-confidence can, like poor esteem, stem from a person's upbringing. However, most of us will experience low confidence at some point in our lives – after all, we cannot be good at everything! Traumatic life events, either a single event or series of events, can erode an otherwise healthy level of self-confidence. Relationship breakdowns, family and work issues, bereavement – these can all affect our well-being.

(Source: Therapy Web)

Hypnotherapy can be used to help people with low self-confidence of a either a temporary or ongoing nature. After identifying the reasons behind a lack of confidence, how it affects you and what you want to achieve, I can work with you whilst in a hypnotic state to improve your confidence using visualisation, imagery and future projection techniques. Hypnotherapy can also help to desensitise you to any triggers you might have.