Self Esteem - Life Transitions

Self-esteem is often negatively effected by life changes, such as divorce, aging and medical problems.


How Our Self-Esteem Changes As We Age

After decades of debate, a consensus is emerging about the way self-esteem develops across the lifespan. On average, self-esteem is relatively high in childhood, drops during adolescence (particularly for girls), rises gradually throughout adulthood, and then declines sharply in old age. Despite these general age differences, individuals tend to maintain their ordering relative to one another: Individuals who have relatively high self-esteem at one point in time tend to have relatively high self-esteem years later. This type of stability (i.e., rank-order stability) is somewhat lower during childhood and old age than during adulthood, but the overall level of stability is comparable to that found for other personality characteristics. In psychotherapy, understanding these patterns of self-esteem development is important when working with issues involving self-esteem with children and adults.

Changing Low Self-Esteem and Insecurity

Low self-esteem and insecurity are often a fear of negative evaluation - a fear that someone will think badly of you. If you have low self-esteem, this fear will be perpetuated. It is of paramount importance to develop a sense of self worth, to like yourself and acknowledge the many important aspects and qualities you have. Then you won't worry so much about what others think of you.

In order to maintain or build our self-esteem, it's important to recognize them and nurture these qualities within ourselves. There are many ways to develop a sense of self worth and self-esteem.

Below Are some helpful ways to start developing self-esteem.


  • Take full responsibility for your life, stop blaming others.
  • Consciously generate rational thoughts and feelings of approval for yourself and acceptance in place of old thoughts of inferiority and inadequacy. Be in charge of your thoughts.
  • Be willing to create a lifestyle that generates, nourishes and maintains sound self-esteem (associate with others who have high self-esteem).
  • Participate in life at the highest level you can and do things you like to do.
  • Watch what you say, avoid excessively negative criticism of youself, and stop being critical of others.
  • Keep your awareness (thoughts) focused in the present time instead of living in the past or future.
  • See yourself as being self sufficient and don t come from a needy place in your relationships.
  • Stop feeling guilty. See mistakes as valuable lessons. See the cause and effect in your behavior (what produces desirable results and what does not) in place of moral judgments of right/wrong, good/bad, better/worse.
  • Give yourself the simple pleasures in life.
  • Positively acknowledge yourself frequently and keep a diary of all your strengths, qualities and accomplishments.
  • Give yourself permission to do nothing, periodically. Schedule time by yourself.
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