The Consequences of Low Self-Esteem

By S. Renee Smith, Vivian Harte

A feeling of low self-worth is accompanied by thoughts about yourself where you see yourself as “less than” and “not good enough.” In order to lessen these thoughts, you try certain behaviors, all aimed at making you feel better about yourself.

But they don’t work. In fact, you find that a negative spiral is set into motion: You have low self-esteem, your thoughts reflect an image in your mind of a person who is lacking, you try to be competent and accomplished, but your low self-esteem causes you to fall short, and this then leads you to a feeling of lower self-worth.

What happens when you feel insignificant

If you have a sense of low self-respect, you may feel like you don’t matter. Although you may be in a crowd of people, you feel alone and that you don’t belong. You feel alienated from others and disconnected even from people you’re close to. It’s like you’re in an audience watching people happily conversing and relating to each other, and you’re just observing the show, on the sidelines and feeling lonely once again.

You feel invisible. You always find yourself at the outer edge of groups, where no one really wants to talk to you or be your friend. Even if you have friends, you feel that they take advantage of you and don’t see you as being as important as any of their other friends.

You feel you give to them, but you don’t see that you get the same in return. They don’t remember your birthday. They never call you to go out. When there was a death in your family, no one sent you a card or called you to offer condolences.

So you become withdrawn because you’re tired of making the effort to be with people. In fact, you’re tired of life in general.

In addition, you don’t have any purpose to your life. You don’t have anything to offer that’s valuable. You have no reason to dream because your dreams don’t come true. You may have a humdrum job, but that’s all. You come home, watch television, and go to bed. You’re invisible and insignificant.

The negative impacts of low self-esteem

Feeling insignificant can lead you to the point where you don’t even want to get up in the morning and face the day. Why make the effort? No one is going to notice anyway. No one cares.

If this describes you, it’s time to make the change to have more awareness of your value. You can’t wave a wand and take these feelings away in a moment. But as you understand yourself more deeply, you’ll realize that inside yourself is a marvelous person who is just waiting to jump out — a person who’s excited to be alive, loves to get up in the morning, and enjoys a life of success and happiness. That can be you!