Low Self Esteem is dangerous, to ourselves, and to others. Low self-esteem creates a state of depletion within us that comes from years of “looking down on” ourselves, running ourselves down, and ignoring our own wants and needs. Such self-denigration compels us to seek outside ourselves for “esteem,” looking to our jobs and “titles,” or trying to get our sense of worth from others.
Our low opinion of ourselves however, keeps us feeling like we don't deserve recognition/”esteem” from others, so we resort to maladaptive ways to get the acceptance and respect we crave.
In seeking to feel some relief from self hatred, we do certain things like: we martyr ourselves for a cause; we tell lies to win their approval or get them off our backs; we set ourselves up for punishment we think we deserve; or neglect our health and well being.
These are just a few examples of the kinds of things we do when we feel bad about ourselves. We blame, justify, exaggerate, and manipulate … all in an effort to hide our perceived worthlessness so we can “hoodwink” somebody else (besides us) into caring for us.
We want them to give us the approval we won't give ourselves! We believe it is their job to esteem us back into health.
We give ourselves up for them with the notion that they are supposed to do the same for us. We go on ignoring and neglecting ourselves, and whining and complaining about how they don't love us! We mistreat others when we hold them responsible for our unhappiness; we mistreat ourselves as well, when we look to them for a sense of worth and acknowledgement.
We must remember that making us feel better is not their job. It is our job!