4 Signs Of Low Self-Esteem In Men

man with the low self esteemPerceiving themselves as persons with low self-esteem, great number of men nowadays goes through life with fear and frustrations. Weak self image causes the sense of worthlessness, being unlovable, hopeless etc.

There are numerous reasons for low self-esteem in men. As self-esteem is built through life, different life experiences (especially those from childhood) are the ones based on which the general image and feeling of self worth have being developed. Failures, frequent criticism, lack of support and affection are just some of the reasons which cause low or even extremely low self-esteem in men.  Additional pressure on men is the society in which money and status are the synonyms for a successful man, which may lead to development of complexes and feeling of inferiority since childhood.

Consequences of low self-esteem can be quite serious. It can bring to the development of anxiety and depression, decrease of job or study performances, relationship problems or problems in friendships, etc.

In the following lines I’ll describe 4 most frequent symptoms of low self-esteem in men. Majority of them I myself had, for others I mostly found out while talking to other people who had low feeling of self-worth. However, symptoms of low self-esteem are more or less equal for men and women but can be different in intensity (it’s proven that e.g. women are more jealous than men).

Recognizing them would be the initial step in building healthy self-esteem, which is the pre-condition for success in any life sphere.

1) Negative thoughts and self criticism

Persons with low self-esteem often have negative thought patterns which are constantly repeating. The future is dark and uncertain and there’s often fear and tensions of how to overcome future challenges and problems.

Even minor and harmless mistakes end up in stream of self-critical thoughts that additionally intensify the sense of insecurity and distort the self-image. “You cannot even solve such an easy problem, you fool”-those and similar statements often pass through their head.

Men with low self-esteem consider success as coincidence and not as consequences of own abilities. Satisfaction with the achieved results, if any, is short-lived.

2) Lack of self-confidence, possessiveness, jealousy

Men with low self worth are unsure of themselves and they call into a question whether they are even lovable. They will constantly question their own values and search for them in others.

This is especially well reflected in intimate relationships where they’re self-focused, defensive and hyper sensitive. They often have unreasonable expectations from their partner and constantly search for the proof of being lovable. If  behaviour of their partner is not as expected (it’s often about irrational and exaggerated expectations), this may cause anger or offense, or even the desire to additionally satisfy the partner in order to be sure they’re lovable. There may come to demotivating thoughts and conclusions that they are not so lovable and that their partner is completely right. This brings to additional distortion of self image and so on.

They are often jealous in relationships. They often believe some affection or security they get is threatened and someone will take it over from them. This is actually about fear of the loss of something they believe it’s valuable because essentially they don’t think they’re good enough.

3) Difficulty in accepting compliments and easily hurt by criticism.

Man with low self-esteem has difficulties in accepting compliments because he believes they’re given from decency, ridicule or intention to get some benefits. Thoughts as “Does he/she really think like that or this is just the sarcasm” are usual.

 Self image is fragile and almost every criticism is taken from granted regardless of the fact it is objective or not.

- Compliments were special problem for me. Whenever I’d get some, I thought that person was kidding with me. I simply didn’t appreciate my knowledge and skills, I thought everyone could do that and compliments seemed unnatural because it seemed there wasn’t reason for them. Even though the person who gave me a compliment had best intentions, my attitude would change and I‘d become cold and repulsive towards that person.-


4) Social withdrawal

Considering himself as boring person, a man with low self-esteem believes he’s undesirable for socializing. Therefore, he often has only 1-2 friends with whom he’s open and more relaxed. New acquaintances are rare and when they happen, relationships are superficial and brief. This especially refers to intimate relationships. When they’re in such a relationship, there comes to things described in the section no.2.

These would the most important signs of low self-esteem in men. In case you still haven’t, you should read my article on how to improve self esteem by changing mindset.

Marko Peric (24 Posts)

Marko Perić is blogger and owner of mymindexpert.com.He started with his personal development journey 12 years ago. Since January 2013, he began writing articles on self-esteem, motivation, mind power…Read more about Marko here .


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