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Defining Self-Esteem, and Opposing Viewpoints. Week Two. Agenda. Branden’s Definition of Self-Esteem Expanding the Definition Beyond Branden Opposing Viewpoints: Is Self-Esteem a Valid Construct?. Self Esteem: The Immune System of Consciousness. What is meant by Consciousness?

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agenda
Agenda
  • Branden’s Definition of Self-Esteem
  • Expanding the Definition Beyond Branden
  • Opposing Viewpoints: Is Self-Esteem a Valid Construct?
self esteem the immune system of consciousness
Self Esteem: The Immune System of Consciousness
  • What is meant by Consciousness?
  • What is meant by Immune System?
self esteem the immune system of consciousness4
Self Esteem: The Immune System of Consciousness
  • Self-esteem provides…
    • Resistance
    • Strength
    • Capacity for regeneration
  • Having solid SE is not a guarantee against suffering, but makes a person less susceptible and better equipped to cope, rebound, transcend
the two components in branden s definition of se
The Two Components inBranden’s Definition of SE
  • “To trust one’s mind and to know that one is worthy of happiness is the essence of self-esteem”
  • Self-Respect
    • Some use the term Self-Regard
  • Self-Efficacy
broader statements from branden s definition of se
Broader Statements from Branden’s Definition of SE
  • “The value of self-esteem lies not merely in the fact that it allows us to feel better but that it allows us to live better”
  • Self esteem involves certain action dispositions:
    • to move towards life rather than away from it
    • to move toward consciousness rather than away from it
    • to treat facts with respect rather than denial
    • to operate self-responsibly rather than the opposite
the two components in branden s definition of se7
The Two Components in Branden’s Definition of SE
  • Self-Efficacy
    • Confidence in the functioning of my mind
    • Confidence in our ability to think, understand, learn, choose and make decisions
    • Confidence in our ability to cope with the basic challenges of life
      • Earning a living
      • Take independent care of oneself in the world
      • Able to function effectively in interactions with other human beings
    • Ability to bounce back and regenerate
    • Self-trust; Self-reliance
    • A disposition to expect success for our efforts
the two components in branden s definition of se8
The Two Components in Branden’s Definition of SE
  • The consequences of low self-efficacy
    • Distrusting one’s mind
    • Mental passivity
    • Less awareness in my activities
    • Less persistence in the face of difficulties
      • If I distrust my mind, I am more likely to be mentally passive, to bring less awareness than I need to my activities and less persistence in the face of difficulties
    • Passive spectator
    • Victim of events
    • Discomfort with the new and unfamiliar, and over-attachment to yesterday’s skills
the two components in branden s definition of se9
The Two Components inBranden’s Definition of SE
  • Self-Respect
    • The conviction that our life and well-being are worth acting to support, protect, and nurture
    • Assurance of my value
    • Confidence in our right to be successful and happy
      • Joy and fulfillment are my natural birthright
    • The feeling of being worthy and deserving
the two components in branden s definition of se10
The Two Components inBranden’s Definition of SE

Self-Respect

The feeling of being entitled to assert our thoughts, needs and wants

The feeling of being entitled to achieve our values, and enjoy the fruits of our efforts

Joy in being who I am, not in being better than someone else

Satisfaction with our moral choices

Our happiness and personal fulfillment are important enough to work for

the two components in branden s definition of se11
The Two Components inBranden’s Definition of SE
  • The consequences of low Self-Respect
    • Unfulfilling relationships
    • Happiness anxiety
    • Surrender over treatment from others
branden s three basic observations on self respect
Branden’s Three Basic Observations on Self-Respect
  • If we respect ourselves, we tend to act in ways that confirm and reinforce this respect, such as requiring others to deal with us appropriately
  • If we do not respect ourselves, we tend to act in ways that lower our sense of our own value even further, such as accepting or sanctioning inappropriate behavior toward us by others, thereby confirming and reinforcing our negativity
  • If we wish to raise the level of our self-respect, we need to act in ways that will cause it to rise—and this begins with a commitment to the value of our own person, which is then expressed through congruent behavior
causation
Causation
  • What is meant by causation?
  • Why does causation loop?
      • If I respect myself and require that others deal with me respectfully, I send out signals and behave in ways that increase the likelihood that others will respond appropriately. When they do, I am reinforced and confirmed in my initial belief
      • If I lack self-respect and consequently accept discourtesy, abuse or exploitation from others as natural, I unconsciously transmit this, and some people will treat me at my self-estimate. When this happens, and I submit to it, my self-respect deteriorates still more
the impact of self esteem
The Impact of Self-Esteem
  • Independence
  • Ability to manage change
  • Willingness to admit (and correct) mistakes [without falling apart]
  • Better equipped to cope with troubles that arise in our lives
  • Recover more quickly from failure
  • More energy to begin anew
  • Neutral or positive anticipation of social encounters
    • “We do not approach encounters with automatic expectations of rejection, humiliation, treachery or betrayal”
  • Generosity toward the achievements of others
the impact of self esteem15
The Impact of Self-Esteem
  • Solid SE = Relationship Satisfaction
    • SE provides a foundation for appreciating and loving others
  • Low SE = Relationship Dissatisfaction
    • If I lack respect for and enjoyment of who I am, I have very little to give – except my unfulfilled needs
      • I am reduced to seeing others merely in terms of what they can or cannot do for me
the impact of self esteem16
The Impact of Self-Esteem

Low SE = Relationship Dissatisfaction

If I do not feel lovable, it is difficult for me to believe that anyone else loves me

If I do not accept myself, how can I accept your love for me?

Your warmth and devotion are confusing: it confounds my self-concept, since I “know” I am not lovable. Your feeling for me cannot possibly be real or lasting.

This can become exhausting for those who love us

Unwittingly, I become a saboteur of love

Demanding excessive reassurances

Venting irrational possessiveness

Making catastrophes of small frictions

Seeking to control through subservience or domination

self fulfilling prophecies
Self-Fulfilling Prophecies
  • Expectations lead to actions
  • Actions beget realities
  • Realities confirm and strengthen the original beliefs
point to ponder
Point to Ponder

“We may need a good deal of reflection and self-examination to appreciate how our deepest view of ourselves shows up in the ten thousand choices that add up to our destiny”

~ Branden, page 17

self esteem versus arrogance and narcissism
Self-Esteem versusArrogance and Narcissism
  • SE provides joy in being who you are, not in being better than someone else
  • A lack of self-esteemis more likely toresult in:
    • boasting,
    • bragging,
    • arrogance
how do se and mental disorders interact
How Do SE and Mental Disorders Interact?
  • Defining mental disorders
    • Relates primarily to brain functioning
      • SE relates more to self-judgment
    • Impaired functioning
    • Unbearable symptoms
    • May be situational
      • Grief or bereavement
      • Fear response
how do se and mental disorders interact21
How Do SE and Mental Disorders Interact?
  • Defining mental disorders
    • May be biological
      • Severe depressions
      • Bipolar disorder
    • Distorted views of reality
      • Hallucinations
      • Loss of touch with reality
    • Organic brain damage
      • Developmental disorders
      • Learning disorders
how do se and mental disorders interact22
How Do SE and Mental Disorders Interact?
  • Prevention
    • Solid SE has the greatest preventative effect against anxiety disorders and non-biological depressions
    • SE helps the individual judge challenges realistically, provides self-trust in known personally strengths, producing hope for reasonable resolution
how do se and mental disorders interact23
How Do SE and Mental Disorders Interact?
  • Cure
    • Solid SE reduces the perception of suffering, overwhelm, paralysis of victimization, hopelessness, helplessness
    • SE helps the individual to have the trust to ask for help from others without the fear of judgment nor being diminished
how do se and mental disorders interact24
How Do SE and Mental Disorders Interact?
  • Chronic mental disease will likely result in insufficient SE
  • SE will not prevent nor guarantee immunity from mental disorders
  • You may have a mental disorder and solid SE
  • You may have low SE and not develop a mental disorder
is se purposeful
Is SE Purposeful?
  • Can a person have solid SE and not be aware of it?
  • Self esteem is not a free gift of nature; it has to be cultivated, has to be earned
self esteem and personality
Self-Esteem and Personality
  • Personality is underpinned by the concept of “traits”
    • Traits are considered constants throughout life and vary little over the human lifespan
    • Traits are present from birth
self esteem and personality27
Self-Esteem and Personality
  • SE is fluid
    • SE can, and does, ebb and flow
    • SE may purposefully be diminished or enhanced
    • I would propose that SE is not present at birth, but the mechanism for developing SE is ingrained in each infant
  • SE can be modeled, taught
branden s emphasis upon reality
Branden’s EmphasisUpon Reality
  • Our SE must be grounded in reality, built over time through the appropriate operation of the mind
  • Requires a respect for reality
  • When we seek to align ourselves with reality as best we understand it, we nurture and support our self-esteem
  • When, either out of fear or desire, we seek escape from reality, we undermine our self-esteem
the power of positive self esteem by peter k gerlach msw
The Power of Positive Self-Esteem by Peter K. Gerlach, MSW
  • Characteristics of people who have high self-esteem:
    • Ambitious
    • Goal-oriented
    • Communicative
    • Loving
    • Attractive
the power of positive self esteem by peter k gerlach msw31
The Power of Positive Self-Esteem by Peter K. Gerlach, MSW
  • Characteristics of people who have low self-esteem:
    • Fearful of change
    • Non-communicative
    • Insecure
introduction to social psychology by jessica l collett ph d
Introduction to Social Psychologyby Jessica L. Collett, Ph.D.
  • Self-esteem is the evaluative component of the self.  If you verify your self-concept, your self-esteem increases.
  • Strategies to verify self:
    • Selective interaction- choose to interact with people who share your conceptions of self
    • Display identity cues that illicit identity confirming behavior from others
    • Behave in ways that support identity claims
    • When we process other's feedback, we do so in ways that support or self-concept
introduction to social psychology by jessica l collett ph d33
Introduction to Social Psychologyby Jessica L. Collett, Ph.D.
  • Where does the self-esteem come from?
    • Parent-child relationships
    • Performance feedback
    • Social comparisons

Source: http://ocw.nd.edu/sociology/introduction-to-social-psychology/lectures/class-self-esteem

the trouble with self esteem by michael edelstein
The Trouble with Self-Esteemby Michael Edelstein
  • Study: High self-esteem and failure to quit smoking
  • Study: Math test takers rate their abilities higher than actual scores
  • Study: Aggressive individuals express favorable views of themselves
  • Literature reviews suggest no links between:
    • SE and teenage pregnancy
    • SE and child abuse
    • SE and most cases of alcohol and drug abuse
  • Author recommends stopping global evaluation

Source: http://www.smartrecovery.org/resources/library/Articles_and_Essays/Self-Acceptance/self_esteem.htm

the use and misuse of self esteem by harvard mental health letter
The Use and Misuse of Self-Esteem by Harvard Mental Health Letter
  • Study: adolescents with low SE at increased risk for poor mental and physical health, poverty, criminal activity
  • Study: pre-adolescent boys with low SE had 60% higher rate of drug dependence ten years later
  • Study: child abusers and criminals, in general, do not suffer from low SE
  • Studies: your opinion of yourself is not closely correlated with what others think of you
  • Psychopaths, tyrants and school bullies have a high opinion of themselves and believe others admire them
ain t i great the problem with self esteem by daniel greenstone
Ain’t I Great!: The Problem with Self-Esteem by Daniel Greenstone
  • Offers his critique of SE literature for children, and a history of the SE movement for children
  • Criticism largely based on teaching SE affirmations that ignore realities, challenges or mistakes
british social policy and the construction of the problem of self esteem by frank furedi
British Social Policy and the Construction of the Problem of Self-Esteem by Frank Furedi
  • Offers a critique of SE being too broadly defined, encompassing all of humankind’s ills
  • Further asserts that institutions (government, schools) embrace an agenda of SE curriculum and policies, thereby becoming “moral entrepreneurs”

Source: http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/news/uk/article853784.ece

self esteem is not our national wonder drug by leslie schenkma kaplan
Self-Esteem Is Not Our National Wonder Drug by Leslie Schenkma Kaplan
  • Believes educators and counselors are over-selling and misunderstanding self-esteem
  • Believes educators teach self-esteem that is often expressed as self-aggrandizement rather than as developing self-competence
  • Quotes another author who wrote that the United States has received international criticism for our preoccupation with self-esteem as a national reluctance to grow up.
  • Suggests teachers and parents focus on real-world skills to improve SE

Source: http://tinyurl.com/husr224-kaplan