5 Signs Of Low Self-Esteem
5 Signs Of Low Self-EsteemGuest Contributor April 24, 2015 Life No Comments
By JASON DEMAKIS
5. Selective Reasoning
The absolute worst offender on this list – and we’re ALL guilty of it!
Selective reasoning is the art of leveraging only the key pieces of data, information, or logic that helps your argument look stronger – when the reality is, if you didn’t cherry pick the data, you’d have “no leg to stand on”, as lawyers enjoy saying.
People do this all the time to avoid one simple, harmless outcome: being wrong.
Oh no! Heaven forbid you or I are actually wrong about something we thought was true!
You mean you or I had an incomplete piece of the puzzle, and were so emotionally invested in our understanding of that perspective, we locked ourselves off from learning the truth because we’d rather protect our precious egos?! How will the world ever continue if you’re right and I’m wrong?!
In extreme cases, this can come through as flat out white lying.
We do this because we’d rather avoid people’s unpredictable reactions toward us, and not have to “explain ourselves” if we cross into touchy or (socially) taboo territory.
What’s unfortunate is that there’s no need to lie about your true self – yet social and cultural expectations here in the West can make it difficult (but far from impossible!) to be disgustingly yourself.
How much do you keep hidden from co-workers and family in regards to your true passions and goals for this life?
Why do you feel that you need to keep these things to yourself?
Do you feel the world won’t support you if they know your truth?
Why does it matter either way, since you’re already torturing yourself by forcing yourself to suffer through each day, keeping the real you locked behind that suit, tie, and desk?
If you’re genuinely happy, you’re ahead of the majority of people.
If you’re not happy, what the hell are you doing…?
4. Changing Your Truth to Satisfy People/The Situation at Hand
Similar to the above, albeit ever so slightly different.
What makes this one a different variety of selective reasoning, is that a key sign of low-self esteem is the “social chameleon/people pleaser” role; whereby an individual sacrifices their uniqueness in order to be accepted into a social group.
There’s a big difference between friendly conversation, and completely masking who you really are so you don’t “stand out too much” at a party or social gathering.
This is also exactly why you lack interesting experiences with other people.
People are not stupid.
They can pick up on vibes, even when they aren’t conscious that they’re doing so.
Your vibe gives you away, every single time.
Remember that! Be the vibe you want to express, hold it as best you can, and watch how reality adjusts to meet you.
3. Passive Aggressiveness Disguised as “Concern for Safety/Security”
This is also known as “I’m mad about my life, because I realize there are things I COULD change, but I won’t put in the effort, because I like the attention I get from complaining about things more than the results of having solved them!”.
Do you have friends or family that fit this mold?
Nothing is more aggravating than someone who will spend 30 minutes explaining to you WHY setting goals and bettering your life is a waste of time (this happens to me all the time with people who have read my stuff).
Well, you just wasted 30 minutes of my life I could have spent bettering myself instead of listening to you complain.
“But who will protect the women and children?!”
Someone with the courage to take action and create safety directly, proactively, and intentionally, rather than waiting around for things to happen, and then merely reacting to them.
Passive aggressive behavior is the sign of a character weakness (it’s ok to get all sorts of pissed at that statement – just do me a favor, and hang in until the end of this article to see the big picture).
It epitomizes the term “beta male” (or beta female, for the women).
Is your world composed of orders and tasks created by alpha males/females?
Do you realize you can be an alpha male/female too, and that you don’t have to suffer your entire life in a dominance hierarchy, simply because social conditioning “says you should”?
Do you realize that just because most people will follow this advice unquestioningly, that it doesn’t mean that you have to?
Do you realize that plenty of people have said “screw this”, and jumped out of the 9-5 and did something great? Most of those people go on to create products and services that help you pass the time while you tap pens at your desk all day.
Do you use security as an excuse?
It’s shouldn’t be surprising then that security is for cowards.
What are you truly resonating with…?
2. Aiming Low for Goals/Setting Goals that are Too Small
Guess what? This is also precisely why you procrastinate.
Setting goals that are too small seems like an intelligent idea; what better way to “test” the waters than by biting off a little bit at a time?
Per usual, common sense betrays the counterintuitive reality of personal growth.
Setting too small of goals reinforces a timid lifestyle.
You never know how much progress you could really be making if you truly gave it your all, because you’ll be drowning in low-leverage tasks under the guise of “busy, productive work!”.
People on this level think they are starting a business because they check their email every 10 minutes instead of working on and improving their product or service directly.
Take away “starting a business” and replace it with “living life”, and you have an accurate picture of how complacent most people are here in the West. I don’t say that to be cynical or judgmental; it’s a blatant observation of human behavior. Raw psychology at its finest.
Small goals kill your drive, motivation, and enthusiasm for life.
1. Refusing to Accept 100% Responsibility
This is it, my friends.
This is the one that causes endless arguments in the comments (the reason I closed the comments section, btw) – you are 100% responsible for everything that happens in your reality.
Not 80%, 95%, or 99.9%.
The number one argument here will be “That’s not true; people don’t CHOOSE to be victims of murder, rape, theft, crime, etc!”
That assertion is definitely debatable (neither of us could prove or disprove the type of vibe someone is emitting at the time of the event, their patterns of behavior for attraction of such circumstances (associating with sketchy people, etc)), but such an individual always has the choice of how to respond to such situations. Even in worse case scenarios, the individual always has a choice on how to continue life after such an event.
Disclaimer: This does not mean that rape or any of that is ok. That’s NOT what I’m saying here. It’s truly unfortunate I even have to say this, because in today’s world, someone WILL take offense because they can’t understand neutral discussion of uncomfortable topics (another HUGE issue plaguing humanity, in my honest opinion).
Granted, most life situations are never at that extreme end of the scale; you have much more freedom and mobility in terms of your destiny than you’ve probably been conditioned to believe.
This is why society is based entirely around fear-driven consequences; control, control, control! The people in “control” are afraid to lose what little they have (the ultra wealthy), so they have to try and control other people as best as possible, so they can keep their gold!
A large, diverse group of humans too afraid to test what’s possible within a society composed of rules and regulations created by, not gods, but…GASP…other humans!
Not only are they human like the rest of us, but they’re also terrified of life, and will do anything to maintain grasp on what material security they can muster. The ultra-wealthy have the most to lose, because they live with the most materialistic crap. More toys and poisons to cling to and use as excuses .
If you live your life based around catering to the throes of this socially-conditioned reward system, your life is not your own. Your life is composed of a plethora of social distortions created and maintained by people who have the money and power to ensure that they continue to have money and power.
This is quite literally the highest manifestation of the lower ego personality/separation from source that’s possible: fear, greed, and control. These are all virtues based in the assumption that we’re all separate.
If you’re asking “Well, what else can we do?”, at least you’re thinking of alternatives here!
Most people with low-self esteem are in such a spot because they avoid taking true responsibility for their lives. When I say this, I’m speaking mostly about the emotional state/centers. These are the places those with low self-esteem need the most help; their emotional states take over their thinking, and then it’s a downward spiral. Being emotionally responsible is not something that commonly crosses the mind of most people.
You’re not responsible just because you can force yourself to tolerate a dead-end job just to pay your rent and eat crappy bargain-bin food. I’m sorry, but that’s not responsibility – that’s obedience.
Obedience and responsibility are not the same thing.
That’s society’s definition of success (blind obedience), and you already know that satisfying that definition, no matter how well you do it, leaves you feeling dead and unfulfilled inside.
You lock yourself into a stagnating, limiting path under the guise of the social “responsibility” of paying taxes, and “paying your own way”. Have you noticed the attitudes and lack of passion in such people’s eyes? The cubicle has more freewill and courage than they do.
Your #1 responsibility in this life is to enable yourself to become the best possible version of yourself.
How can you do this when you convince yourself that pre-established social definitions for things like responsibility, goals, and success are more important than your own definitions?
Are you simply living your life by someone else’s dictionary definitions…?
Conclusion & My Path Through Low Self-Esteem
It doesn’t take a mathematician to figure out that those who are most reactionary to this post will most likely be those with low self-esteem, while the rest of the crowd is just nodding their heads, sipping their coffee.
Trust me, I get it. I was on the reactionary side of the equation for years.
One of the things that used to piss me off to no end were writings and articles talking about how “people need to get over themselves and start living life”.
I used to take those articles very personally, as if the author were delusional, and wasn’t accounting for the diversity of circumstance in the world.
Then one day, I realized they were right (see #5 again for a refresher).
I put my own ego aside and considered that perhaps I was the problem.
I wasn’t necessarily creating problems per say, but I was definitely allowing problems to perpetuate in my life from a very passive standpoint.
This is just as bad as creating problems.
Problems are problems, and you have to deal with them either on the creation side of the equation (thoughts and actions), or the experiential side (circumstances occurring around you; how will you react?).
One of the key things that raised my awareness to my own denial was how easily other people – even just via writing an article – could push certain buttons with me, while others remained un-pushed.
If what they were saying didn’t have SOME grain of truth to it, why was I getting defensive? What did I have to defend? My severely warped relationship to rationalizing low self-esteem as a viable and effective means for navigating this life?
Eventually, I realized that low self-esteem wasn’t a very effective way to make progress in this world.
All of the things I genuinely desired on the deepest levels were all on the other side of low self-esteem.
I had to stop identifying with those parts of my personality that exemplified low self-esteem whenever it cropped up – and that’s exactly what I did.
Whenever I’d notice my old behavior patterns, I’d stop right where I was and raise my consciousness on the situation.
Almost always, my initial assumptions would be unwarranted, and purely defensive and reactionary.
It’s amazing when you stop and think about how many of us do this in everyday situations without questioning it.
Now, think of society as a whole, operating and interacting with itself in just a 24 hour period.
Eventually, I figured out that the key to leaving low self-esteem behind was to consciously choose my state of being, and anchor it there as much as possible.
This is something I do with my clients on a regular basis, and it’s the foundation of my health & wellness coaching system. Your state of being is everything. Most will oscillate between various states during the day, unconsciously. When you consciously and intentionally choose your state of being, you can begin purposely resonating with the types of realities you’d like to experience.
Rest assured, if you want to experience something other than low self-esteem, try consciously and intentionally “feeling” another emotional state. The more you practice this, the more you realize how most people don’t do this, and you instantly have a huge advantage.
I assert it’s this very advantage that keeps you searching Google endlessly for that ‘perfect personal development tip/trick”.
Do you have the courage to try it for yourself, or are you just going to keep searching Google until you find an answer that satisfies your current beliefs?
(If you have additional questions on how to begin locating your biggest belief blocks, don’t hesitate to get in touch with me via [email protected], My Facebook page, or visit my Consultation section for more information on how I can help YOU get unstuck in life!)
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