ADD & low self-esteem: discover the characteristics and increase your self-esteem

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ADD & low self-esteem: discover the characteristics and increase your self-esteem
Many adults with ADD have feelings of guilt, shame, and self-judgment; i.e. low self-esteem and low self-esteem. This is often very drastic and has a lot of influence on their lives. This article shows what the characteristics are, where they may come from and how you can increase your self-esteem.

People with ADD would never criticize others as much as they criticize themselves.

Extremely self-critical: ADD and self-esteem

Although feelings of guilt, shame, and self-judgment are also characteristics of other psychological problems (such as depression), low self-esteem/self-esteem is so strongly associated with ADD that it is very difficult to tell where ADD ends and where low self-esteem begins.

ADD & low self-esteem: discover the characteristics and increase your self-esteem

People with ADD would never criticize others as much as they criticize themselves. When people judge themselves so strongly, it indicates low self-esteem, not low performance. Self-esteem is the quality of self-esteem that is reflected in one’s emotional life and behavior. An apparently positive self-image does not always have to be the same as true self-esteem. People who are full of themselves on a conscious level have no real self-esteem at the core of their psyche. Their exaggerated self-esteem is a defense against the deep-seated sense that they are worthless. For example, the successful workaholic has low self-esteem, regardless of his conscious and projected self-image.

Characteristics of low self-esteem

All of these point to a basic attitude toward yourself that is conditional and does not reflect true self-esteem:

  • Conscious, firm self-criticism.
  • An inflated ego, being full of yourself, which you often see in politicians.
  • Craving the approval of others.
  • Frustration at failure.
  • The excessive tendency to blame yourself when things go wrong, or the urge to blame others. In other words, the tendency to always blame someone.
  • Not treating the weak or subordinates well, or taking it without resistance if someone else doesn’t treat you well.
  • Being quarrelsome, always having to be right, or just assuming you are always wrong.
  • Trying to impose your opinion on others or being afraid to say what you think for fear of criticism.
  • Allowing your emotions to be influenced by what others think or rigidly rejecting what others have to say about your work or behavior.
  • An overwrought sense of responsibility for people you’re in a relationship with and, as we’ll see later, not being able to say “no.”
  • The need to perform so that you feel good about yourself.
  • How you treat your body and psyche says a lot about your self-esteem: neglecting your body or soul with harmful substances and harmful behavior, working too hard, and not having enough time and space for yourself, indicates a lack of self-esteem.

Conditional Self-Esteem

ADD & low self-esteem: discover the characteristics and increase your self-esteem

Self-esteem can be distinguished into two forms: unconditional and conditional self-esteem. Self-esteem based on your achievements is called conditional self-esteem or acquired self-esteem. Conditional self-esteem is judgmental; true self-esteem is accepting. Conditional self-esteem is fickle and depends on the results you get. True self-esteem is stable and not dependent on something you acquire by chance. Conditional self-esteem places a high value on what other people think. True self-esteem is independent of the opinions of others.

Acquired self-esteem is a false imitation of real self-esteem: no matter how good it makes you feel at the moment, it gives no real value to the self. You then only value your achievements, and without those achievements, you would reject yourself. True self-esteem is who you are; conditional self-esteem is just what you do.

The possible causes

Where do self-criticism and lack of self-esteem originate? The conventional view is that the low self-esteem of adults with ADD is a natural result of the many failures, missed opportunities, and setbacks they have experienced since childhood due to their neurophysiological deficits. As plausible as this sounds, this explanation explains only a small part of why people with ADD don’t think much of themselves.

Adults with ADD do not have low self-esteem because they don’t achieve much, but it is their low self-esteem that makes them critical of themselves and their performance. And in part, it is also their low self-esteem that these people do not reach their full potential, do not strive to develop their creativity and self-expression, and do not venture into activities and projects where it is not certain that they will succeed.

People with ADD feel safer if they don’t try things because they are terrified that they will fail. The problem in many ways is not in what they do in their lives, but in how they view themselves.

The relationship between needs and self-esteem

When we no longer know how to say no, we give up our self-esteem.

When children are born, they cannot yet hide or suppress their feelings, whether they be a feeling of hunger, fear, discomfort, or pain. Healthy newborn children are very good at showing their anger and making it very clear when they don’t want something. Since the emotional expression is so important to our survival, nature will never allow us to lose that ability unless our environment demands the suppression of our emotions. However, when we no longer know how to say no, we give up our self-esteem.

Adults with ADD are, as it were, overwhelmed by all the yeses they say. But a lot of those yeses aren’t real yeses at all. It’s no’s they don’t dare to utter. Women with ADD, in particular, tend to give more importance to the needs of other people than to their own.

The need to be needed

Being wanted becomes a kind of drug.

Not being able to say no can be linked to the need to be needed. The need to feel that other people need you comes from the earliest experiences you had as a child. If the child does not feel accepted unconditionally, it learns that it must do its best to be accepted and to get attention. If he doesn’t, he feels anxious because he subconsciously fears that he will be cut off from his parents. Later as an adult, if he isn’t working on something specific, he has a vaguely uneasy feeling that he should be working on something specific.

Adults with ADD have no inner peace because they never knew inner peace as children. They fear rejection and have the insatiable need for confirmation from others that they are wanted and valuable. Being wanted becomes a kind of drug. True self-esteem is negated by its false shadow, conditional self-esteem. What they do and what others think about it is more important than who they are.

Increase your self-esteem

ADD & low self-esteem: discover the characteristics and increase your self-esteem

One of the hurdles that adults with ADD face when trying to boost their self-esteem is that they don’t really know who the person they need to value is.

Because a well-developed core self depends on accepting feelings, if you lose touch with your emotions, you lose touch with yourself. What then is left to be appreciated? Just a false self, a fantasy of what we would like to be and what others apparently want from us. Sooner or later, people will come to understand that this false self—that wants what it thinks it needs to want, and that feels what it thinks it needs to feel—doesn’t serve them. One of the hurdles adults with ADD face when trying to boost their self-esteem is that they don’t really know who the person they need to value is.

Assignment: So take a good look at yourself, who are you really? What are your feelings during the day? You don’t have to know all this at once. Ask yourself these two questions throughout the day and write them down. After a while, you can probably form a good picture of who you really are or want to be.

Find your self-esteem: follow your impulses

Self-esteem starts with finding our true impulses which we then show the light of day.

Ironically, despite their poor impulse control, adults with ADD have stubbornly suppressed their authentic, real impulses. On the surface, you see superficial impulses in these people. Still, underneath is authentic impulses that prompt them to meaningful activities, assert their autonomy, follow their own truth, and connect with other people.

The deeper these authentic impulses have sunk, the less these people know who they are or in which direction their path is headed. Self-esteem starts with finding our true impulses which we then show the light of day.

Assignment: Ask yourself: what are your authentic impulses? In addition, be crazy: do what you really want for an hour.

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