8 Signs of Low Self-Esteem

From emotional abuse to bullying, a person’s self-esteem may be impacted in many ways. These issues may start at a young age and show up later in life. It can affect everything from your perception of yourself, your perception of others, to even your physical health. In this article, we’ll be covering eight signs that you have low self-esteem. As always, this article is for informative purposes only. Any medical and psychological advice should be taken by licensed professionals. 

1. Self-Doubt

While it may seem obvious, feeling down on yourself is a huge sign of having low self-esteem. However, people may not even notice that they’re doing it. They may find themselves overanalyzing their actions and are highly critical of themselves as well. This may manifest itself in many areas that can hold them back. Perhaps someone skips the play auditions because they don’t think they’ll make it. Or maybe the only thing stopping someone from asking out someone they like is their feeling of inadequacy (Chen, 2017). 

2. Excessive Apologizing

 Saying “I’m sorry” in situations that are not your fault, or just using the phrase excessively shows that a person may lack confidence. While apologizing for situations you have no control over is one issue, some people may apologize to others to avoid conflict. Doing so, even though they don’t agree with the other person’s actions. It’s important to think about what you are apologizing for and if it’s necessary to do so (Newsome, 2015).

3. Blaming Others

While some people may put excessive blame on themselves for situations that they aren’t responsible for, others may thwart responsibility onto others. These people may be indecisive in a situation and fear taking responsibility for failure. They may also put blame on bigger situations in order to feel that they’re not the issue. Feeling that you didn’t get accepted into a job because you aren’t lucky enough is one way people shift the blame onto their situation (Chen, 2017).

4. Bad Posture

Surprisingly, having low self-esteem may come with more than just psychological problems. People may find themselves slouching more compared to those with higher self-esteem that stand up straight. Slouching over time can lead to bigger issues, fortunately, there is a multitude of stretches and exercises available online to correct poor posture (Psycare 2019). 

5. Habits

Some people develop coping mechanisms to make up for their low self-esteem. They may find themselves picking at scabs, biting nails, or playing with their hair in social situations. They may partake in these habits without even thinking about it! While some of these habits are harmless, others may lead to physical issues such as scarring (Newsome, 2015)

6. Downplaying Achievements 

Having low self-esteem can affect a person’s self-worth and value. They may feel that their achievements are minuscule and downplay them in front of others. Others may dismiss compliments and feel unworthy of praise for their work. They may feel that they are still inferior to others despite what they have accomplished and do not understand compliments (Psycare 2019).

7. Negative Self-Image

People with low self-esteem may look down on themselves and feel that their features are negative. Perhaps they think that they are unattractive or unintelligent. On a personality scale, they may think they’re too lazy and unsociable. In any case, they feel that they’re somehow inferior to others even though these thoughts are often illogical (Betterhelp, 2014).

8. Perfectionism

Some people feel that their work needs to be perfect in order to feel competent. Similar to negative self-image and downplaying their achievements, they may use perfectionism as a way to feel accomplished. However, they may find themselves giving up early or even avoiding starting projects altogether due to their fear of failure. They may scrutinize anything that falls short of perfect and be highly critical of others who fall short as well (Betterhelp, 2014).

Having low self-esteem can be problematic in so many ways. It’s important to recognize the signs and find ways to circumvent them. The roots may extend far back into childhood and may go unnoticed. What’s your take on having low self-esteem? What are some traits that you’ve noticed? Let us know in the comment section.

Like this article? We have it available as a video as well.


  • Chen, R. (2017, July 14). The 7 Warning Signs of Low Self Esteem. Retrieved from https://www.embracepossibility.com/blog/warning-signs-of-low-self-esteem/
  • Department of Health & Human Services. (2014, August 21). Self-esteem. Retrieved from https://www.betterhealth.vic.gov.au/health/healthyliving/self-esteem
  • Editors, P. (2019, December 11). Low Self-Esteem: Conditions. Retrieved from https://www.psycare.org/condition/low-self-esteem/
  • Newsome, T. (2015, September 24). 11 Weird Signs Of Low Self-Esteem. Retrieved from https://www.bustle.com/articles/112199-11-weird-signs-of-low-self-esteem-that-are-easy-to-miss

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