How Low Self Esteem Could Be Negatively Affecting Your Social Life

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Why am I not like the others? Why do I feel so anxious? Can I leave now? Do I have to meet them? Are these a few of the questions that go through your mind whenever you have interactions with others? This may be an indication that you have low self-esteem. Low self-esteem is a negative perception of self and the belief that persons share the same view. Being social is a daily occurrence and persons with healthy self-esteem are not impacted negatively when doing this.

The process of socialization is one that is considered vital, as it allows us to learn and reinforce societal norms. Having negative thoughts can have devastating effects primarily on your mental health. With a negative belief system, your happiness and self-worth are heavily impacted. The dependence on what others may think or do often hinders how you interact socially.

Difficulty Maintaining Social Relationships

Feelings of low self-esteem, dread, and anxiety are often felt when an invitation is presented to socialize. The possibility of social interaction initiates defense mechanism avoidance. The making up of excuses, signing up for an extra shift at work to become unavailable, or just canceling at the last minute. This leads to a breakdown of friendships and even intimate relationships as there is no effort for reinforcement of personal bonds.

Negative self-talk is carried out by people with low self-esteem because they are unable to effectively process the interactions with others positively. Why am I not as handsome as him? Why do I not look like her in this dress? Do they notice that I am here? While interacting you constantly doubt and second guess yourself around others; this lack of confidence can impact your friends and how they interact with you.

Unable to Take Advantage of Opportunities

Social networking is a greatly beneficial activity to engage in periodically. This allows you to make connections and present yourself as a brand. When in social reaction settings, it is noticeable that you are less outspoken and withdrawn than others. This is a reaction with the aim of preventing any attention being focused on you.

The lack of confidence gives individuals a negative impression of your capabilities and how well you communicate with others. It can be interpreted as a lack of interest in what is being offered and the opportunities that could be great for your development, specifically career development.

Abusing Substances

The difficulty experienced when socially interacting may lead to substance abuse. This is another action to try and cope with meeting the expectations of others. The use of alcohol and other drugs removes the inhibition of negative self-talk.

This allows for the processing of feedback positively from others and protecting the fragile mental state you are in. Alcohol and narcotics can reduce the occurrence of anxiety and physical responses that are not socially accepted. However, this can lead to an inability to control what you say or do. 

Emotional Dependence on a Significant Other

The reliance on another person for reinforcement of self-image and potential is often a coping mechanism to function in daily life. This can be very harmful if the significant other uses your low self-esteem as a source of dominance and possibility for abuse. Constantly seeking approval leads to a dependence on their permission to interact with others.  

The reliance on the individual to accompany you to social events and can impact your interactions with others. This may deter others from speaking with you and helping when the other person is around. The dominant individual can take advantage of your vulnerability and portray a negative image of you to others. They can try to isolate you from friends and family, who would like to help with your mental health.


The effect low self-esteem has on your daily life can be crippling to your social development. What you think of yourself and others are heavily influenced by your self-esteem and may not truly reflect reality. Without getting assistance from a professional, the short-term effects may gradually have long term implications. Take the time to analyze, how this is affecting your life and get help from a professional who can assist your confident true self and find the happiness you deserve.

John S.

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