Self-Esteem For the 21st Century

These articles illustrate Tina’s conception of self-esteem as something that’s not about thinking, “I’m so great,” but simply as the opposite of baseless shame.

9 Signs of Healthy Self-Esteem

What do you think of a person who always speaks well of others? Does she have high or low self-esteem? You could argue that in order to speak well of others, one must think highly enough of oneself not to be threatened by other people’s excellence. Such a person could be thought to enjoy healthy …

8 Things to Absolutely Expect in Relationships

Even though there’s a lot of talk about how entitled young people are these days, I see a lack of entitlement among all age groups in my practice as a therapist. I see people putting up with pretty poor behavior from people they love, without uttering a word of protest. Or, if they do protest, …

Replacing “Don’ts” With “Do’s” for Self-Esteem

After last week’s post on name-calling and how it ruins your self-esteem (and possibly other people’s as well), a reader called Multnoma left the following comment:  Ok. I get that I am holding myself back by calling names. Even if only in my head. Or under my breath. But it’s only another item on the …

Negative Self-Talk: Both Cause and Effect of Injured Self-Esteem

We can be so mean to ourselves. “Who do you think you are?” “Well, THAT was dumb.” “Just shut up right now; you’re making a fool of yourself.” And on and on. Why do we do this to ourselves? It’s learned behavior. No one comes out of the womb thinking, “Geez, I’m such a pathetic …

It’s Not a Pity Party If You Criticize Yourself

Self-pity has a bad rap. When people confess to me in therapy, “I had a pity party last week,” they’re usually embarrassed about it. They look as if they’re admitting they made a mean face at a baby or threw a plastic cup on the freeway shoulder. Their faces say, “I know I shouldn’t do …

Still Waiting For That Gold Star?

On your day off, do you feel guilty if you lie in bed all morning? Do you get up early even when you don’t have to be anywhere, just to avoid feeling lazy? Do you make yourself do things that aren’t necessary and that don’t affect anyone else, because they’re “the right thing to do”? …

Confidence, Self-Esteem, and the KLT Factor

Everyone wants to feel confident. It seems like at least half of my therapy clients mention confidence as an area they want to work on. But confidence isn’t something you can put on like a hat. It is a natural byproduct of knowing, liking and trusting yourself. I recently wrote a post about this for …

Even Good Parents Damage Kids’ Self-Esteem

It’s often been said, and not just by me, that low self-esteem is a silent epidemic. There are millions of words bouncing around the Internet on the topic of self-esteem, whether in kids or adults. In my view, the article you’ll find at the link below is one of the most coherent, accurate and interesting. …

Self-Esteem Means How Much You Like… Others?

I am most generous when I feel a sense of abundance. I’m at my kindest when I have compassion for myself. When I feel good about who I am, I radiate love toward other people. But when I feel bad about myself, when I let myself down, I have less to give. So I give …

Self-Esteem for the Holiday Season

You know what they say: Reduce, reuse, recycle. This week I’m reducing my workload by reusing a couple of blog posts to recycle still-useful information. I wrote the following pair of posts in 2010 for GoodTherapy.org, my favorite international therapist directory and one-stop self-help site. If the holidays stress you out a little (or a …

It Never Hurts to Ask

While shopping at a trendy second-hand store last month I spied a nifty pair of burgundy cowboy boots that looked about my size. I wasn’t in the market for boots that day, but these were pretty and I couldn’t resist trying them on. They fit perfectly! There was a price tag inside each boot. It …

Throw Out the Need to Be Right

I recently read a book by Gail Blanke called Throw Out Fifty Things. It’s about clearing clutter, and it was a really good read. An eye-opener. She talks in the book about not only physical but also mental and emotional clutter, and how to deal with it. The need to be right is one that …

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