Dangers of Basing Self-Esteem on Appearance or Weight

Dangers of Basing Self-Esteem on Appearance or WeightSelf-esteem is the opinion one has of their self or their self-worth. Having high self-esteem is important, because it serves as the foundation for how life is lived and experienced. Self-esteem will affect thoughts, feelings and behaviors. It plays a part in determining happiness, personal identity and how individuals develop relationships with others. Individuals with good self-esteem tend to exude confidence, have a positive outlook on life and push towards success instead of failure.

What Determines Self-Esteem?

A person’s self-esteem is determined by many factors. One’s environment, experiences and biological makeup all play a role in how he or she feels about themselves. Unfortunately many individuals base their self-esteem and self-worth on external sources such as appearance and weight. This way of thinking is unhealthy, because it causes individuals to base personal worth on approval from others or through comparison to others. Seeking approval from others leads to unhealthy physical and psychological consequences. Common issues that arise when individuals base their self-esteem on external sources include the following:

  • Relationship problems
  • High-stress levels
  • Self-hatred
  • Anger
  • Anxiety
  • Feelings of un-fulfillment, depression, loneliness and despair
  • Distorted self-perception and self-image, body dysmorphia

Self-esteem is an important party of a healthy and balanced life.

How Does Low Self-Esteem Trigger Eating Disorders and Substance Abuse?

Having poor self-esteem and no feeling of identity can make an individual feel lost. Constantly attempting to perfect one’s appearance or body shape can be a painful experience. The physical and psychological stress can be too much to cope with, and individuals can fall into unhealthy habits. Eating disorders and substance abuse are common among individuals with low self-esteem and self-image. Drugs and alcohol can be used to cope with the sadness, anxiety and emotional pain. Individuals can temporarily forget about their “inadequacies” and have their moods altered in the process.

Seeking fulfillment and happiness based on appearance and weight can take over an entire life, becoming an obsession. When individuals have poor self-esteem or are unhappy, they can take their eating habits to drastic levels. Starvation, binging, purging and obsessive eating behaviors can easily develop.

Finding Self-Worth through Recovery Treatment

Individuals who are struggling with low self-esteem, distorted self-perception or other body image issues find that healing lies in treating all issues involved. Recovering from unhealthy eating practices or even an eating disorder requires holistic healing of the mind, body and spirit. Without looking at the underlying causes of eating disorders, substance abuse or other self-destructive behaviors an individual will never be able to find lasting recovery. Unresolved issues such as low self-esteem will continue to resurface and hurt the individual. Individuals must find professional help to discover all issues related to self-esteem such as depression, anxiety, substance abuse, eating disorders and more. Healing will come through a combination of therapies, counseling, stress management, life skills training, nutritional counseling and more.

Find Treatment Programs for Low Self-Esteem and Related Issues

Treatment is available for those struggling with low self-esteem and related issues such as disorder eating and substance abuse. You can call our toll-free 24 hour helpline and talk with a specialist about getting treatment help today. We can answer questions, provide assessments and connect you with a treatment program that is right for you, if you are ready. You are only a phone call away from beginning a journey towards self-discovery. Please call now.