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Self Esteem – Can You Ever Have Too Much?

Self Esteem – Can You Ever Have Too Much?

If you were suffering from low self-esteem you might well think that the best way to cure it would be to develop super high self-esteem. After all, you can never have too much self-esteem, can you? And there are plenty of people out there who’d agree with you. But are they right?

When it comes to self-esteem can you have too much of a good thing? Yes you can, too much self-esteem may prove to be an issue in a variety of situations. When it comes to self-esteem, having the correct amount is perfect, whereas having too little or too much can blight your life and that of those with whom you engage. For years it was thought that bullies suffered from low self-esteem but now it appears that many of them have very high self-esteem indeed.

But how do you know if you or someone close to you might be over-endowed with self-esteem?

Things to Be Aware Of

If you think that you are developing a self-esteem that is too high or if you are wondering whether a friend or family member may be suffering from high self-esteem, below are some symptoms to be aware of:

  • Feelings of superiority
  • Constant need for boasting
  • Taking advantage of friends or family members
  • Assuming their needs are the most important
  • Unwilling to change their own habits or personality as they assume it’s always everyone else’s fault
  • Inability to control personal impulses

You or your friend/family member may tick all the boxes when it comes to having too high self-esteem but does it really matter? Only if it holds you back…

Do people avoid you and/or fail to invite you to things

Other people may find it difficult to maintain a relationship with someone who has high self-esteem is because they just won’t want to spend time with them.  The majority of people who are over-confident are not fun to be around and they generally make outings rather tiresome for others to handle.  Nobody wants to be around someone who hogs the limelight, boasts non-stop, takes the best of everything and puts others down. That said the person with overly high self-esteem might just assume that their friends and family members are just jealous losers and not be overly bothered about being rejected by mere mortals.

Understanding the Personal Handicap

Although the majority of people believe that low self-esteem is a personal handicap that requires fixing, high self-esteem is just as destructive.  There have been various personality studies that have shown a link between overly high self-esteem and criminal behavior, stating that people with an overly inflated sense of self-worth/self-esteem will be more likely to commit a crime. They are also likely to be more self-centred and are not natural candidates for embracing equality, diversity or caring for the environment. Such an attitude may bite them (and the rest of us) on the backside at some stage of course but Mr.& Ms. Self-entitlement ain’t going to worry about that anytime soon!

Having an imbalance of self-esteem, whether it be positive or negative, is not great when it comes to forming relationships and getting ahead in life. The main quality associated with improved personal outcomes is self-control (psychologist Roy Baumeister), a quality lacking in those with overly high self-esteem. Plus, having too high self-esteem makes you a far less likeable individual.

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