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Healthy Self-Esteem needs Self-Acceptance

Healthy self-esteem gives you the freedom to be YOU and fully enjoy life.

When we are comfortable with who we are, we can develop more genuine relationships and seek out experiences that fulfill us. In this way, self-esteem can lead to greater levels of happiness and overall quality of life.

Self-compassion involves treating the self with care and concern when considering personal inadequacies, mistakes, failures, and painful life situations.

Without self-acceptance, both psychological and physical wellbeing can suffer. Research from Harvard University suggests that poor self-acceptance can upset emotional control by directly disrupting brain regions that control it and by indirectly increasing stress signals.

Individuals that feel negatively about themselves have less gray matter in brain regions that control emotions than individuals with a higher level of self-acceptance (Pillay, 2016).

"Since low self-acceptance is linked with an increase in right-hemisphere brain activity, meditation, mindfulness, and particularly self-compassion can be practical tools for increasing it."

Research has also found that people were more capable of accepting praise and displayed more brain connectivity after practicing loving kindness meditation (Pillay, 2016).

This information suggests that self-regulation, self-awareness, and self-transcendence may provide a scientific basis for increasing self-acceptance. Self-regulation involves refocusing negative emotions with positive aspects of the self and learning to see negative situations as opportunities.

A person with high self-acceptance does not feel “less” than others because of his weaknesses and failures and does not feel “better” than others because of his strengths and successes.

Self-acceptance is the hallmark of a healthy relationship with the self.

Research has made connections between self-awareness and self-esteem (Cantley & Martin, 2020) and shown that self-awareness is something that can be taught.

"Finally, self-transcendence is the ability to connect with the world around you and depend less on your circumstances or situation to define you."
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