Schedule an appointment or email us today. (888) 813-9613
Self-esteem is a term that really refers to how we think about ourselves. In a sense, it is the aggregate of all of the thoughts that run through our mind when thinking about our confidence in our abilities. When people talk about good self-esteem, what they’re really talking about is a healthy level of self-confidence. Poor self-esteem on the other hand, has to do with excessive self-criticism. Pervasive poor self-esteem can result in anxiety and depression. Cognitive behavioral therapy is the most researched treatment proven to be effective in helping build self-esteem.
Cognitive behavioral therapy is the cutting-edge treatment of choice for most psychological problems. It is designed to be brief, problem-focused, and active. Rather than focusing on early developmental history and relationships, cognitive behavioral therapy targets the problems that are occurring in the present. Cognitive behavioral therapy for low self-esteem may include a combination of the following treatments:
Cognitive restructuring: Cognitive restructuring is a combination of recognizing unhelpful thinking patterns, and replacing them with more effective thinking patterns. Cognitive restructuring for low self-esteem often focuses on identifying negative thoughts about oneself, and identifying distorted thinking, such as labeling oneself as a failure due to one skills deficit or negative event.
Behavioral activation: When people have low self-esteem, they often avoid activities and situations that they fear they will not do well in. As a result, they have few opportunities for rewarding experiences, and often become depressed. Behavioral activation reverses this cycle by helping people re-engage with life, and thus have more rewarding experiences.
Assertiveness training: People with poor self-esteem often have difficulty asking for what they want, saying no to requests, or making their true feelings known. Assertiveness training is a way of helping people learn to effectively and skillfully get what they want from others without sacrificing their relationships.
Problem-solving training: When people have had low self-esteem over a long period of time, they tend to feel helpless in many situations. Problem-solving training helps people find a sense of agency by teaching them to recognize problems, identify resources and potential solutions, and finally carry out effective plans.
Social skills training: Low self-esteem is often intertwined with social skills deficits. Social skills training helps people increase positive and rewarding social behaviors and decrease negative social behavior, such as complaining.