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Teen Self-Esteem: Your Way to Success

by Tiara Gulla

The Teenage Years are one of the hardest time periods, if not the most, in any individual’s life, especially in today’s world. Bullying, body image, peer pressure, academic demands, school violence, social media, etc., can tremendously impact a teen’s psychological & emotional well-being. First, let's look at what self-esteem is.

What is Self Esteem

Self-esteem is how we value and perceive ourselves, and start feeling whether we are competent, sufficient, and deserving enough. There are three different forms of self-esteem: high self-esteem, low self-esteem (where most teenagers fall), and a healthy self-esteem.

Some Signs of Low Self Esteem in Teens

Having low self-esteem means that you tend to think negatively about your abilities, you lack confidence in yourself, and you judge yourself negatively.

What Causes Low Self Esteem in Teens

There can be several reasons due to which teens may feel they suffer from low self esteem. Some of the factors which can spark low self esteem amongst teens are given below:

  1. Poor Interpersonal Skills - If a teen is not good at establishing lasting friendships due to poor communication skills, they start struggling in creating an impact on others. They may start feeling awkward. This can create a lot of distress and lead to a loss of confidence amongst them.

  2. Thinking Negative About Themselves - Teens at times start feeling that nobody wants to hang out with them, and then get caught in a loop of negative thinking. This leads to low self-esteem.

  3. Negative Body Image - Teens at times become too critical about their own appearance. They are not to be blamed, since they have too much unnecessary exposure to social media and influencers, who make them believe that only a certain body type is good. They can be bullied in schools or amongst their peer group, and thus people can be very harsh towards them. This eventually can lead to a low self-esteem.

  4. Underachievement in Academic Performance - Some students may not be able to learn as fast as others do. This leads to under-confidence. When a teen is not able to perform in academics as good as their peers do, they start getting a feeling of being inferior, and this, thereby, leads to a low self esteem.

There can be many more reasons due to which teens can suffer from a low self-esteem. Some teens may not fit in their friend circle well, there can be differences in cultures, income, thought patterns, behaviors, family situations, gender identity issues, etc. This makes teenagers feel self-conscious and can negatively impact their self-esteem.

How to Improve Self Esteem in Teens?

While looking at the causes for a low self-esteem in teens above, we understand that positive self-esteem is very important for teens. It needs to be developed from early childhood so that we can create young and confident adults in the long run, who can solve problems on their own. A young adult with a healthy mind and a good self-esteem is more likely to display a positive behavior around and impact, themselves, others and their society in a positive manner.

Some of the ways by which we can improve teen self-esteem:

  1. Start being n the company of the people who treat you well

  2. Choose your peers wisely

  3. Learn to accept failures

  4. Try to be self-compassionate

  5. Don't be too hard on yourself

  6. It’s okay to make mistakes — nobody is perfect!

  7. Set realistic goals for yourself and make your plans accordingly

  8. Don't get too influenced by social media

  9. Be kind to everyone and make a difference

  10. It’s okay to see a therapist for help

  11. Identify your strengths and embrace your weaknesses

  12. Learn new skills to expand your interests and abilities

  13. And most importantly, be kind to yourself!

Do things that make you feel like yourself and by which you are able to create a difference for yourself and others at the same time. Through these tips, you are bound to improve your self-esteem.

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