Self-esteem, self-worth, the actual-self and the ideal-self
We each have a picture of ourselves that is created and defined by our thoughts, experiences and assessment of our own self-worth. This self-worth (or self-esteem) is produced when we reflect on our current position on life, perhaps along with our goals and achievements to date. We look at what we want to be (ideal-self) and how I am now (actual-self) and come to a decision about how close these two people are. If they’re close we may form a positive analysis of ourselves; our position in life and our self-esteem would be buoyant. If they diverge to a degree that goes past the point of satisfaction then our self-esteem or self-worth is impacted and a negative picture of ourselves is created.
If the actual-self is distinct from our ideal-self then our self-esteem can be said to be low. The impression that we have of the actual-self therefore becomes one that is not achieving, is not having an affect and is an image of a person that is not acceptable to the overall self.
Various attributes make up the different parts of the overall self and are further distilled into the actual-self and the ideal-self. They may encompass various traits such as general personality, communication skills, intellect, ability to learn, emotional connectedness or social capital.
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