Is self esteem a personality trait

By M.Farouk Radwan, MSc.

Is self esteem a personality trait

Contrary to common beliefs, self confidence is not a personality trait that people are born with but its just the habit of trusting your own skills, abilities and traits.

I am sure that the first time you used the internet you didn’t have confidence in your ability to locate what you wanted and you were a bit confused. Nowadays you have confidence in your ability to reach whatever you want in few seconds because you managed to do it many times before.

So we can say that self confidence is built whenever we succeed in doing something many times until we start to believe that we can do it anytime we want. (see How to gain self confidence).

Some people lack confidence in certain activities because they never managed to do them successfully (like public speaking for example). The person who fears public speaking might have tried to do it earlier yet found himself feeling anxious and afraid. Had he managed to speak successfully few times he would have became confident about public speaking.

In other words self confidence is no more than a set of positive beliefs that are formed due to various reasons , including being able to do something successfully. Once those beliefs are developed you can be a confident person.

Now for the good news. Any person can develop those positive beliefs and become confident. contrary to some common beliefs there are no self confidence genes.

How to have confidence in yourself

So does this mean that you can’t be confident in doing a certain activity unless you do it many times successfully? But what about the people who seem to be confident during their first experiences?

In the Solid Self confidence program i said that if you managed to trust your own problem solving abilities and your life skills you will start to feel confident even in situations that have a high degree of uncertainty or situations that you haven't faced before.

For example if you managed to solve the life problems you faced when you were a teen then you are more likely to feel confident in facing the life problems you face as an adult even if they were completely different. (see Why am i not self confident and Self confidence fields).

Self confidence and external factors

So is self confidence related to external factors? Can you depend on money, authority, power and fame to feel confident?

The problem with external factors is that they always change and are never constant. Even if you are one of the most famous celebrities in the world you could soon be replaced by a new comer who takes the lights from you.

Dependence on the external factors results in an unstable self confidence but depending on the skills that brought you the external factors can surely give your self confidence a much higher stability. After all you can lose the new car you bought but you can’t lose your money making skills that helped you buy the car. (see External self confidence).

So in short, in order to feel self confident everywhere and in each situation you face you must learn how to trust your abilities and skills instead of trusting your money, your popularity or your position.

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Want to know more?

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