14 bad habits that show lack of Self-esteem

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Self-esteem plays a crucial role in our overall well-being and success. It affects how we perceive ourselves, how we interact with others, and the choices we make in life. In this blog post, we will explore 14 common bad habits that can indicate a lack of self-esteem. By understanding these habits and their underlying causes, we can take steps towards building a healthier sense of self-worth and confidence.

Building Self-Esteem: Breaking Free from Common Bad Habits

Negative Self-Talk: Shifting Perspectives

Negative self-talk is a habit that involves constant self-criticism and focusing on flaws or mistakes. It undermines our self-confidence and hampers personal growth. Instead of dwelling on self-defeating thoughts, we should practice self-compassion and reframe negative thinking patterns. By challenging negative beliefs and replacing them with positive affirmations, we can cultivate a more empowering mindset.

Seeking Constant Validation: Embracing Self-Worth

Relying heavily on external validation and seeking constant approval from others indicates a lack of self-assurance and self-worth. True confidence comes from within, and it’s important to acknowledge our own value and achievements. By recognizing our strengths and celebrating our accomplishments, we can gradually reduce our dependence on external validation.

Fear of Failure and Avoidance: Embracing Growth

Fear of failure often stems from a lack of belief in our abilities and a fear of judgment or criticism. However, avoiding challenges or new opportunities hinders personal growth and limits our potential. By reframing failure as an opportunity for learning and growth, we can develop resilience and embrace new experiences with confidence.

Difficulty Saying No: Setting Healthy Boundaries

People with low self-esteem often struggle with setting boundaries and saying no to others. They may prioritize others’ needs over their own, fearing rejection or disapproval. Learning to assertively communicate our boundaries and prioritize self-care is crucial for developing healthy relationships and boosting self-esteem.

Inability to Accept Compliments: Recognizing Self-Worth

Difficulty accepting compliments or deflecting them with self-deprecating remarks stems from a belief that we are unworthy of praise or positive attention. By practicing gratitude and acknowledging our achievements, we can learn to embrace compliments graciously and build a more positive self-image.

Perfectionism: Embracing Progress

Striving for perfection and feeling intense dissatisfaction with anything less can indicate a lack of self-esteem. The constant need to be flawless arises from a fear of judgment or not meeting unrealistic standards. Embracing the concept of progress over perfection allows us to set realistic goals, appreciate our efforts, and celebrate small victories along the way.

People-Pleasing: Prioritizing Self-Care

Constantly seeking to please others at the expense of our own needs can be a sign of low self-esteem. The fear of rejection or abandonment often drives this behavior. It’s essential to prioritize self-care and recognize that our needs and well-being are just as important as those of others. Building healthy relationships requires a balance between giving and receiving.

Comparison to Others: Fostering Self-Appreciation

Frequently comparing ourselves to others and feeling inadequate or envious can indicate a lack of self-esteem. It’s important to remember that everyone’s journey is unique, and comparing ourselves to others only undermines our self-worth. Instead, let’s focus on our own progress, strengths, and individuality, fostering self-appreciation and self-acceptance.

Avoiding Challenges or Risks: Cultivating Confidence

A lack of confidence often leads to avoiding challenges or taking risks. This avoidance stems from a fear of failure and a belief that we are incapable of overcoming obstacles. Taking small steps outside our comfort zone and gradually expanding our boundaries can help build confidence and open doors to new opportunities.

Self-Sabotage: Nurturing Self-Compassion

Engaging in self-destructive behaviors or undermining our own success can be a manifestation of low self-esteem. Unconsciously, we may believe that we are unworthy of happiness or success. Nurturing self-compassion and challenging negative self-beliefs can help break the cycle of self-sabotage, allowing us to embrace personal growth and achievement.

Overapologizing: Communicating Assertively

Constantly apologizing for minor things or taking excessive responsibility for others’ emotions can be a sign of low self-esteem. This habit arises from a fear of conflict or displeasing others. Learning to communicate assertively, expressing our needs and opinions without excessive apologies, is essential for developing self-assurance and building healthier relationships.

Lack of Assertiveness: Expressing Authenticity

Difficulty expressing our needs, desires, or opinions assertively can indicate low self-esteem. This behavior stems from a fear of rejection, confrontation, or not being taken seriously. By practicing assertiveness and expressing ourselves authentically, we can gain respect and reinforce our self-worth in personal and professional settings.

Isolating Oneself: Connecting with Others

Withdrawing from social situations or avoiding social interactions can be a sign of low self-esteem. Isolation often stems from a fear of judgment or a belief that we are not interesting or likable. Building meaningful connections and engaging in social activities that align with our interests can help boost self-esteem and create a support network.

Self-Neglect: Prioritizing Well-being

Neglecting self-care, whether it’s physical health, personal grooming, or emotional well-being, indicates low self-esteem. It’s important to prioritize our well-being and recognize our own value. Engaging in activities that promote self-care, such as exercise, meditation, or pursuing hobbies, can have a positive impact on our self-esteem and overall happiness.


Building self-esteem is a journey that requires self-reflection, self-compassion, and the willingness to challenge and change negative beliefs and behaviors. By recognizing and addressing these 14 common bad habits associated with low self-esteem, we can take significant steps towards developing a healthier sense of self-worth and confidence. Remember, seeking support from trusted individuals or professionals can be beneficial in overcoming these challenges and fostering personal growth. Let’s embrace our uniqueness, celebrate our accomplishments, and nurture a positive and empowering self-image.


  1. Verywell Mind. (2022). How to Build Self-Esteem: 5 Strategies for Success. Retrieved from: https://www.verywellmind.com/how-to-build-self-esteem-4163573
  2. PsychCentral. (2020). 12 Habits That Can Indicate Low Self-Esteem. Retrieved from: https://psychcentral.com/blog/12-habits-that-can-indicate-low-self-esteem
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