How to Develop a healthy Self Esteem

Developing healthy self image in Marriage

We all hold certain idea or beliefs about ourselves. One’s selfconcept (also called self-construction, self-identity, self-perspective or self-structure) is a collection of beliefs about oneself.

These beliefs are built over the years largely by our reflection of the reactions of others towards us or the responses of others to our actions. It determines how we feel, sees and accepts ourselves.

The question – who am I ? is asked so often that it confirms that people are struggling with their identity and are searching for a core sense of themselves.

Our identity should be seen as an ongoing process. Rather than a static snapshot, we should embrace a flowing sense of self, whereby we are perpetually re-framing, re-organizing, re-thinking and re-considering ourselves. The emphasis shouldn’t only be on discovering who you are (what is buried beneath) but on facilitating the emergence of what you’d like to experience – who you want to become.

I have worked with several people who lack a good sense of who they are or possess over bloated ego. This poor self-perception usually is at the root of several cases of abuse, settling, and desperation in relationships.

A lady who doesn’t know what she’s worth will do demeaning things at the request of her partner just to secure his love. A guy can be manipulated to go beyond his value limit because he wants to impress a lady. People’s sense of self is tragically limited especially if they perceive themselves as worthless and undeserving of love.

Being unaware of what you’re worth is what drives many into becoming desperate for attention, validation, approval, and love from the wrong source. Abusers, unfortunately know that their victims are needy, so they fill that need but also with a scourge. These victims, on the other hand, take the treatment that is meted out to them because they don’t know they deserve better.

At the other end of the identity, continuum are those who claim to know themselves so well. This other extreme also signifies a fragility about one’s identity. To know yourself so well leaves no room for growth. Even more, it suggests such persons are trying hard to protect their vulnerability; they are obviously afraid of embracing their real selves.

To help develop a good self-concept, we need to let young ones know from an early age, how valuable they are. We live in a culture that it is extremely difficult to praise and appreciate people. Most of us are scared that if we praise a child/person excessively or frequently the person becomes egoistic. That’s not true, in fact, the reverse is the truth! Give your child a good dose of love so much that she/he is uncomfortable in an atmosphere devoid of love.

Parents and guardians should learn how to speak positively into the lives of their children/wards. Help people develop a healthy sense of self-worth, the benefits are massive, even in marriage.


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Nike Adekunle is the president of SWiM (Sisters, Wives and Mothers} Forum. At SWiM, Nike and her team equips men, women, married and singles with all the information and strategies needed to make relationships and marriage work. In collaboration with members of SWiM, She hosts REALationship Unfeigned (an initiative that promotes healthy relationships) and Roaring Lioness (a prayer focus group). Nike is a relationship coach, marriage counselor, blogger, writer and an author. She currently has four books to her credit. To get her books, visit

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