When it comes to self-esteem, we tend to think we’re a lot like ourselves.
But we’re not, according to psychologist Robert Putnam.
Putnam, a professor of psychology at the University of Southern California, says the term self-image is often misused and that people often think that their self-worth is based on how much money they have or how good they look.
Putman, a self-help author, author of Self-Talk, and the author of The Self-Acceptance Project, recently spoke to NPR’s All Things Considered about why we feel self-conscious about our self-confidence.
“It is often difficult for people to be proud of themselves,” he said.
“When they’re in a position of power, it’s very difficult for them to be self-confident.”
What’s the deal with self-importance?
Putnam’s theory of self-assessment focuses on the concept of self worth.
Put it this way: You have self-belief, which is based in what you think you are, and you have a sense of self that’s based on the things you can control.
And when you think about how much you can change or how much control you have, you have an internal measure of self importance.
Put the two together and you get the idea that you can have the biggest impact on yourself if you’re confident in yourself.
So how do we get there?
Put it another way: Self-esteem is the feeling that you have of yourself.
It’s based in how much value you place on your own life, Putnam said.
When people are feeling insecure about themselves, their self esteem can be a little lower.
For example, a woman who thinks she’s going to lose her job because of her appearance might be worried that she might be judged by her colleagues, and may feel low self-acceptance, Putman said.
Put a lot of effort into making yourself a little less self-absorbed, and then the self-concept can take care of itself.
You’re not as confident, and your self-perception becomes more about yourself than the people around you.
Put more effort into being yourself.
“I think there’s a sense that there’s this internal standard for how people should be,” Putnam added.
“The way that people should behave.
I think people want to feel as good about themselves as they can.”
Self-confidence isn’t something you need to have, Putton said.
You need to create your own self-fulfillment and feel good about yourself.
Self-accepting yourself means you accept yourself for who you are.
You want to make yourself happy.
If you’re not feeling good about your self, you might try to change things about yourself, like eating healthier or exercising more.
But the best way to do that, Putney said, is to have self confidence.
When you feel self esteem is low, you may not have the confidence to try new things.
But you can try to make your self esteem higher by learning to value your own talents and accomplishments, which will help you feel more confident about yourself and yourself.
To get more insight from Putnam on self-doubt and how to overcome it, check out this video: