Creating a More Just and Merciful World
How Counseling Improves Self Esteem
Self-esteem affects all aspects of our lives. Counselors who help their clients improve their self-esteem are contributing to better health and well-being.
Let’s Talk Self-Esteem
Self-esteem is the sense of personal worth and ability that is important to an individual’s identity. It is the degree to which we feel valuable and confident. There is “trait” self-esteem that is an individual’s inherent level of self-esteem, while “state” self-esteem is dependent on the level of success or failure in a personal goal.
Self-esteem drives behavior across many human activities and connects to the way we experience life events, our well-being, and social interactions. We feel positive emotions when experiencing success and negative emotions following perceived failure.
How Counselors Help Improve Self-Esteem
Counseling can help people who are struggling with self-esteem issues. Therapy offers insights into how people view themselves, and may lead clients to improved confidence and self-worth. Trained therapists and counselors work with individuals to delve into where their negative thoughts come from and reframe those thoughts.
Counselors have the ability to objectively look at their clients’ lives and offer empathetic and non-judgmental advice and tools to help them. Counseling and therapy help individuals gain perspective and become more self-aware, confident, and assertive.
Overall, effective counseling improves self-esteem through a process that explores challenges, ways to see things clearly, and facilitates positive change.
Effects of Low Self-Esteem
Low self-esteem is associated with feelings of self-doubt, sadness, inferiority, and self-isolation, as well as being overly sensitive to criticism and having suppressed anger. It may also be a symptom of a mental health condition such as depression and anxiety.
Self-esteem is developed in childhood. There are many reasons why children might have trouble maintaining positive self-esteem including struggles at home or in school. Positive and genuine feedback from adults motivates children to continue doing things well and better. Children with healthy self-esteem become confident and resilient adults.
During adulthood, people might experience low self-esteem when they have an unexpected life change that they perceive as a failure (e.g., legal or financial troubles, divorce, job loss, addiction). Counseling provides a more optimistic direction for these adults. Compassionate counselors consistently treat their clients as valuable and worthy of respect. This goes a long way in helping a person overcome low self-esteem.
Counseling practice has a background in humanistic, behavioral, and cognitive traditions and thus, many aspiring counselors pursue an advanced psychology degree with a concentration in counseling to receive appropriate training.
The relationship between counselor and client should be built on trust, respect, and confidentiality. As a counselor, you can guide someone with low self-esteem in a positive direction.
Find Fulfillment in the Psychology and Counseling Field
One of the best things about being a counselor or therapist is that you impact people’s lives in profound ways. You can build someone’s self-esteem while also building strong relationships. Nothing compares to seeing someone alleviated from emotional or psychological troubles.
A psychology degree is a path toward a fulfilling career in counseling or therapy. Choose Carlow’s Master’s in Professional Counseling: Clinical Mental Health Counseling degree program. This program offers clinical concentrations such as child and adolescent, trauma-informed, or forensic counseling. The program will give you the knowledge and skills needed to help people in a variety of social service and mental health settings.