Building high self-esteem

by Dominic Nuesiri

What is Self esteem?

This is the belief in one's own abilities and of being capable of meeting life's challenges and being worthy of happiness- National Asscociation of Self-Esteem (NASE)

It is an abstract that mostly deals with the feelings harbored by individuals towards different parts of their lives. self-esteem is related to two basic components.

How Does it Grow?

To appreciate the development of self-esteem you must understand your self-concept. Self-concept is defined as the bundle of facts opinions beliefs perceptions about yourself that are present in your every life moment of every day-Phillip C. Mcgraw (N.York: Simon & Schuster 2001)Pg. 69-70.

This self-concept is as a result of a myriad of experiences, relationships and defining factors throughout one's life. These defining moments occur at key points in the development of all individuals. At different levels, the forces of influence and the basis by which one evaluates oneself change. Children are highly impressionable , adolescents are easily swayed by peer pressure and adults have a tendency to relate self-worth with material things or career success. These are the three major areas where one's self-esteem is nurtured or seriously damaged.

  • Childhood
  • Adolescence
  • Adulthood

Low self Esteem ? How do you know?

Your Self-esteem affects your behavior and subsequently your decisions in a very strong and definitive way. When people have low self-esteem here are some traits they may exhibit.


  • Easily influenced by others
  • Participation in self-destructive habits
  • Poor communication or social interaction skills

People with low self-esteem usually loose themselves easily to group thinking and have very little confidence in themselves. The trait also manifests in the form of over-indulgence in acts that are potentially harmful like drinking and smoking excessively. They are hard to talk to and always appear to be introverts.

Recognizing High Self esteem.

People with high self-esteem are usually quite easy to spot as they usually exhibit a lot of confidence and tend to be optimistic. Here are some traits

  • Decision makers
  • Not easily offended
  • Open minded and respectful
  • Positive personalities

Increasing Self Esteem

In the book Human Relations;Principles and Practices by Mr. Barry L. Reece, the author gives 8 major ways by which self-esteem can be made to grow in individuals.


1. Search for the source of low self-esteem- Refers to paying close attention to the issues that may cause individuals to lose confidence in themselves or become unhappy.

2. Identify and accept your limitations

3. Take responsibility for your actions

4. Engage in strength building (Identifying your dominant talents).

5. Seek the Support and Guidance of Mentors

6. Set Goals

7. Practice Guided Imagery

8. Use Positive self-talk

Sources