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Self-esteem and confidence

self; esteem; self-esteem; confidence; happy; happiness; youth; young people; misery;

Healthy self-esteem is feeling good about yourself, and feeling that you are a worthwhile person. This doesn't mean being overconfident – just believing in yourself and knowing what you do well.

Contents

Some people have a negative view of themselves, or 'low self-esteem'. This may be because they are affected by critical comments or 'put downs', or because they think that they should be 'better' than they are. Constantly comparing yourself to others can lead to low self-esteem because there will always be someone who can do things better, appear more popular or be better looking.

What having good self-esteem feels like

  • Believing that you are an OK person and that other people like you.
  • Feeling relaxed inside.
  • Feeling confident that you will be able to achieve things in life that you want.
  • Feeling that it is worth trying to do things well.
  • Feeling proud, satisfied and happy when you achieve the things you set out to do.
  • Knowing you can make things happen in your life.
  • Being able to think of creative ways to get around things that get in your way to success because you believe that you have the ability to achieve what you want.
  • Noticing and enjoying your successes.

Ways to boost self-esteem and confidence

If you do not think positively about yourself  there are things you can do to boost your self-confidence and self esteem.

  • Notice when you are thinking badly about yourself and try to change this.
  • Stop comparing yourself to others – everyone is different. If you compare yourself to others you will always find things missing in yourself and your life.
  • Try some positive self-talk – think about the things you do well and remind yourself of these. Talk yourself up, not down.
  • Think of times you have tried something new and succeeded.
  • Think about your qualities that have helped you in your life.
  • Think about what makes you happy and make sure that you let yourself do these things.
  • Do things that you know you are good at.
  • Try something new, like a new sport or a new interest.
  • Accept compliments when people give them to you.

Everyone makes mistakes and no one is perfect.
If you lack confidence and have a low self-esteem, it may be helpful for you to get some advice from a counsellor, psychologist or your local doctor.

The way you view yourself can be affected by things that are going on in your life, such as too much stress, difficulties with friends or family, or not liking how you look. This website has a range of topics that may help listed under the categories 'Healthy Mind' and 'Relationships'.

Resources

South Australia

  • The Second Story Youth Health Service (TSS)
    - Central: 57 Hyde St, Adelaide
    - South: 50a Beach Rd, Christies Beach
    - North: 6 Gillingham Rd, Elizabeth
    Youth Healthline 1300 13 17 19 (Monday to Friday 9am to 5pm) 
  • Kids Helpline Ph 1800 551 800.
  • Your local Community Health Centre.
  • Your doctor.
  • Your school counsellor.

General

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The information on this site should not be used as an alternative to professional care. If you have a particular problem, see a doctor, or ring the Youth Healthline on 1300 13 17 19 (local call cost from anywhere in South Australia).
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