How do self esteem needs apply to us in our daily lives?

Expert Answers
pohnpei397 eNotes educator| Certified Educator

We often hear people say that they act in a given way because they need to be able to live with themselves.  This is an example of how much self-esteem needs mean to us in our daily lives.

We need to feel that we are good people.  We need to feel that we are good at doing things and that we are able to take care of ourselves.  Often, these needs drive what we do in our lives.  For example, if we want to think of ourselves as frugal and sensible, we might buy many fewer things.  We might forgo things like eating out or going to movies because we want to feel that we do not waste things.  If we want to feel independent, we might change the oil on our own car or do various home improvements ourselves rather than paying others to do those things.  If we want to feel that we are good parents we might let give our children more independence even if it scares us.  We do many of these things because we need to feel good about ourselves.  These are self-esteem needs.

redrocket88 | Student

Self esteem is the value we own within self. In our daily lives we can either gain a positive sense of self esteem or a negative sense of such. The connections ot relationships we have to the people around us in the world we live in, self respect, confidence, recognition/acknowledgement, independence and freedom are all examples of the things that will impact on how this particular need is met. Positive self-esteem can be valuable. People will often gain a sense of fullfillment, security, confidence and will feel accepted. Negative effects of a poor sense of self-esteem are seen through the way people react; emotions, attitudes, actions, decisions etc. People may feel excluded and ones self dependance may be shattered rather than constructed and how other needs are meet can defined. Perceptions of self-esteem can modify overtime (new possibilities, new connections, growth/age etc.)

Belief in in your own values and abilities/talents, being happy and knowing that you have the personal resources and character strength to deal with life's challenges often lead people to have high levels of self-esteem.

So, in answer to your question a bit more specifically (finally haha) Positive self-esteem may help us to socialise better with others; own good relationships with people, be confident; try new things, be independant, maximise our potential, feel safe and secure, be able to better manage fears and axieties, as well as meet physiological need thus gain self-actualisation ; wellbeing.

Negative self-esteem may cause  poor socialisation with others, lack of confidence, a sense of dependancy, lack of trust/faith in self, a fear of one's personal saftey and poor meeting of needs, futhermore effecting how wellbeing is achieved.

daskalos | Student

Simple, if your self esteem is high your confidence and achievement usually matches it. If it is low you usually second guess yourself, sometimes not even trying.  Self esteem usually causes us to be in one of three categories: trying to succeed, trying not to fail and not trying. 

Many people today find themselves in the trying not to fail.  In this model people become underachievers or purposeful overreaching.  Purposeful overreaching gives a person an out; they can say I could have never made that anyway the odds were strongly against me.   Hence, I didn’t fail, I never had a chance.   It may feed the ego, but does do much for self esteem.