Self-esteem is the complex process of one's belief and understanding of themselves. It involves a reflective look at one's own self-actualization or perceptions of oneself. These beliefs are formulated through time and experience and are often different from how others may see oneself. Self-esteem has many facets inclusive of self-actualization and self-idealism that work differently in the perceptions one may have about themselves. Many factors affect the assimilation of one's self-esteem, past experiences, life situation. Other key factors are role satisfaction and present life stresses. Positive and negative experiences, relationships and autonomy also are key factors in identifying how one feels about themselves. Finally many influences may be subliminal and affect self-esteem without an individual even realizing its impact on them. Perceptions can be real and based on formative thought and follow a logical pathway of formulation. Other perceptions maybe unrealistic and be a derivative of focusing on self-ideal and or influenced by subconscious mechanisms. Some of these mechanisms are defense mechanisms that facilitate adaptive strategies in preserving the various parts of one's ego. Identifying how one perceives themselves in itself can be dimensional. The comparison of perceptions and beliefs to the reality is sometimes a factor. Acquiring this reflective skill takes time and sometimes feedback from significant others. Self Esteem is something that significantly affects each individual everyday whether they are aware of it or not. Fostering an adaptive healthy self-esteem that is resilient and realistic is a positive mechanism in self-realization and self-preservation. These essential facets to wellness are keys to personal health and wellness in the balance of all things. One must understand they have self-worth in order to develop and reach goals and have a productive life. It is essential to note that an adaptive self-esteem means something different to each individual. What is significant is that self-esteem is an integral part of oneself and it can be reflected and built upon to bring personal wellness and health and success.
Nurturing the self-esteem of children maybe challenging at times. Children at various ages see themselves and have different influences on perceptions of themselves. A supportive approach is always best. Share ideas with your child about what they think about themselves. Many age groups are egocentric and developmentally this is appropriate. Positive praise and adaptive routines that encourage adaptive life habits are always the best foundation. Focusing on personal attributes like kindness and strength will assist them in seeing the levels of themselves. Giving praise appropriately and discipline within means assists them in development of their morale ethical self. Children are vulnerable and require support and guidance in understanding the world and experiences around them. Keeping them feeling loved and fulfilled is essential to how they view themselves and their situation. Allowing children to voice what they feel about themselves or an experience builds their understanding of themselves, their identity and ultimately is a start in building their own personal adaptive self-esteem. The dimension of one's self-esteem is always evolving and is always changing and developing. The ability to see how self-esteem influences health is an essential understanding or actualization. Keeping perceptions and feelings realistic and positive about oneself is a life skill. See previous blog post on Individuality.