Self Esteem is the overall emotional evaluation of own worth. The perception one has of self and what she/he is worth. it is a judgement of oneself as well as an attitude towards self. A healthy self esteem is an important aspect of one’s personality because it keeps one emotionally healthy and brings the ability to take risks and achieve set goals and targets. According to Nathaniel Brandon self esteem is “the experience of being competent to cope with the basic challenges of life and being worthy of happiness”.
For children, achievement in school, social experiences with those in the immediate vicinity of the self such as parents, peer, teachers, as well as the overall cultural aspects lead to development of self esteem. A negative self esteem can be a cause of self discouragement as well as mistrust towards towards others and loss of own worthiness. Parenting style is crucial in formation of self esteem. Parents who are caring but not over indulging, allow their children the formation of their own opinions, encourage freedom and responsibility tend to form a healthy self esteem.
A healthy self esteem also acts as a means to deal with failures and errors, since one’s own efficacy in mind and own value is not questioned by oneself. In contrast, a low self esteem or a negative self esteem tends to do the opposite. It can lead to one not being able to fully utilize the intellectual capacities and deprives one of thinking creatively and taking reasonable risks or benefit from one’s own intelligence. Low self esteem also inbuilts a sense a fear in a person of failure or lack of achievement and acceptance.
A psychologically healthy child develops own self esteem through the use of own mind and intellectual capacities and gains an ever increasing sense of control over own existence by choosing values that demand constant growth.
A healthy self esteem helps form a strong, positive sense of personal identity. A positive self esteem in an individual grows contributes in identification of one’s goals, independent actions, and is a self generator & not afraid of responsibility.