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Although the terms Self Confidence and Self Esteem are often used interchangeably, they actually describe two quite different concepts.
A dictionary defines...
Thus Self Confidence is about one's abilities, while Self Esteem is about one's sense of worth as a person. Let's look at what this means through an example...
When you go for a job interview, self confidence is the quality that causes you to believe that the interviewer will find you qualified, and offer you a job. Self esteem is the quality that causes you to believe that you are a valuable person whose life is important -- regardless of the opinion of the interviewer and of whether you are offered the job.
Self confidence and self esteem overlap in that both qualities will tend to get you to apply for the job, and to show up smiling and well prepared for the interview.
If you get offered the job, both qualities will tend to continue to support a positive attitude and positive actions in your life. However, if your job application is declined, your self confidence is more likely to be undermined than your self esteem.
Self confidence depends upon frequent success for reinforcement. If you apply for ten jobs and are turned down ten times, your self confidence is likely to be greatly diminished -- or perhaps shattered. To gain self confidence again, you would need to make some external change. For example, you might apply for a different kind of job, or search in a different city. If you inflate your self confidence solely through internal means - such as repeating, "I will get this next job. I will get this next job." - you will have created a false self confidence, and are likely to be disappointed by job interview number eleven.
Self esteem, in contrast, is solely about your internal state, and does not require external reinforcement. A strong sense of self worth (self esteem) could easily survive a hundred job application rejections. With a belief in your self worth, you might continue to show up smiling and well prepared for job interviews, or you might start your own business, or you might move in with a friend and help with the housework. In any case, you would continue to have a positive attitude, value yourself, and welcome the world with a smile.
How to Gain Self Confidence
Those who believe they can do something
and those who believe they can't
are both right.
- Henry Ford
Success consists of going from failure to failure without loss of enthusiasm.
- Winston Churchill
How to Build Self Esteem
Always be a first-rate version of yourself,
instead of a second-rate version of somebody else.
- Judy Garland
He who knows others is wise.
He who knows himself is enlightened.
- Lao Tzu
How Self Confidence and Self Esteem Reinforce Each Other
Trust yourself, then you will know how to live.
- Johann Wolfgang von Goethe
The future belongs to those who believe in the beauty of their dreams.
- Eleanor Roosevelt
Self esteem and self confidence work best together. When you believe in your inherent value, it becomes easier to gain a belief in your ability to succeed at real world tasks. And when you believe in your abilities, it becomes easier to value your whole self.
By building both your self esteem and your self confidence, you can live joyfully and productively - regardless of circumstances.
Thank you for reading How to Gain Self Confidence - How to Build Self Esteem.
Read How to Feel Good About Yourself and my other Self Help How To Articles on becoming your best self.
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Self Esteem - Confidence
Living with Joy, Purpose, and Conscious Choice
Success - Career
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Jonathan Lockwood Huie
"The Philosopher of Happiness" - is the author of 100 Secrets for Living a Life You Love, co-author of Simply An Inspired Life, speaker, personal coach, and creator of the popular Daily Inspiration - Daily Quote free email and Regaining Your Happiness in Seven Weeks e-training program.
All materials and writings are copyright © Jonathan Lockwood Huie,
except for quotes and other specifically identified material which belong to their respective copyright holders if applicable.