|Where Does Self- Esteem Come From?
"You cannot rely on others for your self-esteem. You must look within to find out who you really are."
-Anika, age 17
Self- esteem develops and comes from within yourself, but it is influenced by messages that you receive about yourself from:
- Your self-esteem is higher if you and the other members of your family talk, support and spend time with one another.
- Your self-esteem is influenced by whether your friends support and respect you. You should not, however, base your self-esteem on what your friends think.
- When teachers encourage you to be proud of your work, take challenges, and develop some of skills to a finer point, it makes you feel good and causes you to have higher self-esteem.
- School Activities
- Playing on a team, or working on a school newspaper or yearbook helps you to learn new skills, try new things, and enjoy success, all of which raise your self-esteem.
- Social Life
- Hobbies, clubs, dating, parties, and other social activities affect your self-esteem and help you to identify what kind of friends you like, your interests, and your goals.
- How women are portrayed on TV and in the media can affect how you see yourself. Women are often portrayed as unusually thin.
- You should not compare yourself to these unreasonable images because that will cause you to have low self-esteem.
- Instead, if you set more realistic standards for yourself you may have higher self-esteem. The images of skinny women won't affect you since you know that they are both unreasonable and unhealthy and since you are happy with yourself.
"Self-esteem is not something you get over night. It is something you have to build up . It is important to know who you are so you can stick up for yourself when someone puts you down and so that it doesn't affect you as much."
-Natasha, age 16