Confidence vs Self-Esteem – What’s the Difference?

Confidence and self-esteem are two words that get thrown around a lot in the world of psychology. And it’s not uncommon for people to think they mean the same thing. Even though they overlap, they are not the same.

  • Self-confidence refers to your belief in your abilities. Self-confidence can vary in different life situations. For example, you can feel confident in your math and problem-solving skills but much less confident when it comes to singing or painting.
  • Self-esteem refers to how much you value and appreciate yourself. Self-esteem comes from the inside, and it can be described as our inner critique. 

In addition to the difference between confidence vs self-esteem, we will tell you more about the effects of low confidence and self-esteem. We will also add some tips on how to increase them and feel better than ever!

Happy reading!

Confidence vs self-esteem

What are the Effects of Low Self-Esteem and Self-Confidence?

Low self-esteem and low self-confidence can have a negative effect on many aspects of our lives. A person with low self-esteem often criticizes themselves with a touch of self-deprecating humor

Here are some of the signs of low self-esteem:

  • You are never engaging in any activities where you can be judged. Examples are competitions, courses, debates.
  • Avoiding social contact.
  • Feeling awful when criticized.
  • Thinking negative about yourself.
  • Thinking that everyone else is judging you and your abilities.

Now, here are some of the signs of low self-confidence:

  • You tend to apologize even though there is no valid reason for that.
  • You are visibly nervous when it comes to interviews, tests, etc.
  • You can’t look another person in the eye when talking to them.
Sad girl on a yellow background

How to Increase Your Self-Esteem?

Low self-esteem often starts in our childhood. It comes from the way we are treated by our parents and surrounding. It is essential to know that your parents have a vital role in how you view yourself as an adult – and this can affect all aspects of life, including relationships, career choices, etc.

Here are some of the things you can do to increase your self-esteem:

#1 – Address Negative Beliefs About Yourself and Replace Them

Before we start working on increasing our self-esteem, we need to understand which beliefs do not serve us. Try to answer these questions as honestly as possible, and you will better understand your self-esteem.

  1. Do you think that you are an interesting person to be around? Why?
  2. How do you feel when someone criticizes your work or opinion?
  3. Do you believe that you are good enough to achieve anything that you want?
  4. Do you think that you deserve to be loved and happy?
  5. Do you have a fear of being rejected?

You can now choose one negative belief to work on. Write down how do you feel about that and what are the positive outcomes if you change that.

Once you are aware of your negative belief, start replacing it with positive and realistic thoughts.

Negative thought – “I can’t do anything right.”

Positive replacement – “I can learn anything I want to put time and effort into practicing.”

Negative thought – “I will never find love and be with someone who loves me.”

Positive replacement – “When the right person comes along, they won’t care about all my flaws. Instead, they will appreciate how unique I am.”

Keep in mind that your positive replacement has to be as realistic as possible. While we want to change our core beliefs, we don’t want to be dishonest with ourselves.

#2 – Find Out Your Strengths

If you have low self-esteem, you might find it difficult to list your strengths and qualities. That is why it’s essential to take time and write down as many of your strengths as you can.

By doing this exercise, we are committed to ourselves that these positive traits exist in us. They might be buried deep within our unconsciousness, but they still belong to us!

The more often you acknowledge yourself for these qualities, the stronger they will become!

Here are some questions that can help you get started:

  1. What do I value most about myself?
  2. What is something about me that I wouldn’t change?
  3. What standards would I like to uphold?
  4. What makes me unique?
  5. What things can you do on your own and not rely on anyone else for support or approval?
  6. How would my friends describe me in one word?

#3 – Keep a Self-Esteem Journal

Journaling is an excellent way of dealing with different issues in our lives. It helps us cope with difficult emotions, and it’s a great way of keeping track of our progress.

Journaling not only helps you improve your self-esteem but also improves your focus, patience, creativity, and critical thinking skills!

Here are some questions you can address:

  1. How do you feel about yourself when you wake up in the morning?
  2. Did anything out of the ordinary happen today that affected how you felt/thought about yourself?
  3. What do I expect of myself in social situations?
  4. How do you feel about yourself at the end of the day?
  5. What are some things that make you happy throughout your week?

By reflecting on these questions, we become more aware of our emotions. We will better understand how certain events affect our self-esteem, and over time it becomes easier for us to spot positive changes.

Make sure to write down all the benefits that come with journaling! This way, we can keep track of which practices work best for us.

Confident young man on a pink background

How to Increase Self-Confidence?

Confidence is believing that you are good enough to achieve great things. Low self-confidence is the never-ending circle that we need to break! This mainly means that people with low self-confidence are less likely to succeed and achieve the success that might expand their confidence.

For example, if you have some difficulties in math, low self-confidence might prevent you from going to a tutor or asking for help. As a result, it will be hard for you to improve since we all need support and encouragement sometimes!

Here are our 3 tips on building self-confidence:

#1 – Think Less, Do More!

How long have you delayed visiting the gym for the first time or trying a new hobby?

How many years have you postponed writing that book?

Do not let fear of failure stop you from taking action and starting something new. Even if it doesn’t work out as expected, we can always learn more by trying! And this is what matters most, learning about ourselves through making mistakes.

Doing things is the key to building self-confidence. So take that action and try new things!

When we repeat something many times, we become good at it. When we are good at something, we are confident that we can do it again anytime.

It’s simple as that!

#2 – Set Goals and Stick to Them!

Setting goals and making plans is a great way to boost our self-confidence!

The first step is choosing the goal or task that you are willing to complete. Next, write it down and make sure to give yourself a reasonable deadline. Then, divide the goal into smaller tasks that you can finish to achieve your goal.

You will be surprised by how motivating these small goals are! After each accomplishment, we become stronger and more determined to succeed, boosting our self-confidence even further!

This is when the magic happens – once our confidence increases, so does our productivity. We start taking on new challenges because we know that nothing is impossible if only we believe in ourselves enough!

By setting and achieving our goals, we start to believe that we are capable of doing anything we set our minds to. This is the essential part of building self-confidence!

#3 – Talk to Strangers (Sometimes)!

Your mum will definitely be against this one, but, hey, this is the trick that will work!

When you see someone who wants to talk to you in a waiting room, for example, don’t ignore them. This might seem difficult at first, but it’s not as hard as you think – especially if you have been practicing your social skills through journaling for some time by now!

This small habit can boost our self-confidence in no time because we are forced to face new situations every single day.

And guess what? Every experience counts when it comes to building self-confidence!

If you think that you don’t have the opportunity to talk to someone new, try talking with the person working in your local coffee shop, for example. You will be surprised how easy it is to start a conversation!

By talking with strangers and overcoming those awkward moments of silence, you become more comfortable around people, which makes everything easier later on down the road.

We Believe in You

Confidence vs Self-Esteem Conclusion

Now, we understand the difference between self-confidence and self-esteem. To recap, self-confidence is the belief that one can achieve something, while self-esteem is how good we feel about ourselves.

In this blog post, we have explained some of the ways to build self-confidence and self-belief and to increase our chances to succeed in life!

Hopefully, this article was helpful, and we look forward to seeing you in the next one!

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