It has been thought that your level of self-esteem determines your overall experience of life. However, what most people don’t realize is that there are two kinds of self-esteem and they are not equal!
If self-esteem is self-worth and self-confidence, it’s very important to determine the source of this sense of worth. Do you feel good about yourself just because you’re you, or do you feel good about yourself because of something outside of you? In other words, is your self-esteem self-dependent, or other-dependent? The fact is that what we often call self-esteem is usually other-dependent esteem. Other-dependent esteem is entirely dependent upon others or events outside of you. This kind of esteem can depend upon how much people like you, getting good grades in school, having a successful career, being a good parent, having the right relationship partner, and much more. In other words, you feel better about yourself only when others feel good about you or when you can take credit for something good that occurs.
True self-esteem, or self-dependent esteem, is not dependent upon the way others think about you. It isn’t dependent upon your accomplishments and material possessions, either. You feel good about yourself simply because you are you, based on your self’s intrinsic value.
Is your self-esteem dependent upon something outside of yourself? If so, what is it? Make a list.