Hypnotherapy for Low Self-Esteem
Definition of Low Self-Esteem
Self-esteem means regarding yourself as valuable and deserving, treating yourself with respect, and feeling good about yourself. Self love, or unconditional positive self-regard, is a hallmark of emotional health.
Perhaps the most important quality a parent can demonstrate and impart to a child is self-esteem. People with high self esteem have the ability to bounce back from adversity and overcome setbacks in pursuit of their goals. They are the ones who, as the song goes, “pick themselves up, dust themselves off, and start all over again.” When others attack or abandon them, they tend to buck themselves up with reassuring thoughts rather than getting consumed with self-hate or anger at the other. Sure, they feel pain. They grieve. But they work through it and move on with their lives.
Low or no self-esteem is arguably the most common cause of social anxiety, fear of failure, and loss of motivation. Left untreated, diminished self-regard and limited self-worth can lead to depression, isolation, despair, and even suicidal thinking.
People with low self-esteem tend to self-sabotage. They lack follow through on their goals and tend to procrastinate. They often have a very negative, critical inner voice. (For a detailed discussion of self-sabotage, its many forms, and treatment with self-sabotage hypnosis, see my article “Understanding and Overcoming Self-Sabotage.”)
Causes of Low Self-Esteem
Low self-esteem is a form of spiritual impoverishment that children suffer when growing up in dysfunctional families where abuse and neglect are the norm. Since young children tend to model their parents’ behavior, it is not surprising that parents with low self-esteem raise children with low self-esteem. This is not to say, however, that such children are condemned to a life of low self-esteem. They can acquire good self-esteem with work on themselves. Hypnotherapy for self-esteem provides tools and procedures that can help.
Not every person with low self-esteem grew up in abusive or neglectful families. Your self-esteem can be derailed long after you leave a family nest in which you were nurtured and encouraged, supported and recognized.
Traumatic life experiences can erode self-esteem. Consider the soldier who serves the country, fighting on the front lines in a war s/he may not really believe in, and then returns as an injured vet to face inadequate financial support, minimal health care provisions, and no job.
Think about the struggling single parent of a special needs child whose spouse left them shortly before they lost their job. Both might suffer loss of self-esteem.
Even a series of minor setbacks in career, finances, or relationships, occurring over a relatively short stretch of time, can adversely impact a person’s sense of self-worth, causing them to question their abilities and second-guess their choices. If thinking about these occurrences becomes obsessive and highly self-critical, confidence plummets and resistance to moving forward intensifies.
Symptoms of Low Self-Esteem
The following list includes common signs of low-self esteem. If you exhibit some, many, or all of these, you would likely benefit from hypnotherapy for self-esteem.
- Withdrawal from social contact
- Nervousness, anxiety or panic attacks
- Self-medicating with drugs, alcohol, food, gambling, shopping, etc.
- Shirking responsibilities
- Procrastinating or giving up on goals
- Doing yourself physical harm (from biting your nails to self-mutilation)
- Chronic dissatisfaction with your appearance
- Comparing yourself unfavorably to others
- Putting yourself down in front of others
- Obsessive negative self-talk*
Negative Effects of Low Self-Esteem
The following list includes common negative effects of low self-esteem. If you exhibit some, many, or all of these, low self-esteem could well be the cause and hypnotherapy for self-esteem could very likely help.
- Poor self image
- Physical illness
- Substantial weight gain or loss
- Difficulty achieving goals
- Loss of purpose
- Loss of sexual desire and function
- Depression with suicidal thoughts
- Harmful addictions
- Damaged personal relationships
- Financial problems
- Job loss or career stagnation
Building Self-Esteem with Hypnotherapy
Hypnotherapy is a relaxing, natural, and safe, brief-term form of therapy that involves an interactive process to redirect the attention of both the conscious and subconscious mind where low self-esteem develops and festers. Hypnotherapy for self-esteem can create positive changes in ones perception of their self-worth and self-acceptance provided that the client cooperates. The client must really want to make the changes, must believe that they can make positive changes, and must be open to using the tools and techniques.
The first step in my hypnotherapy for self-esteem process is to gain understanding of the client’s problems and goals through conscious cognitive inquiry and to determine whether they have the appropriate motivation and acceptance. Next I induce in the client deep relaxation and inward focus. This calms their emotions and allows access to their subconscious mind. Then I present a variety of hypnotic suggestions, visualizations, and other techniques that nourish and support development of the positive attitudes, feelings, beliefs, and actions necessary for healthy self-esteem.
From a digital recording of the hypnosis portion of each session, I provide the client with hypnotic reinforcement in the form of either an audio MP3 file or CD for use in between sessions. The clients who get the quickest and best results are those who use these reinforcements.
Hypnotherapeutic Treatment Plan for Low Self-Esteem
The treatment plan for low self-esteem must be customized to each individual client’s particular case. There is no “one plan fits all.” The approach I take to each case, however, is outlined below.
- Identify components of low self-esteem
- Negative effects
- Set initial goals
- Develop a hypnotherapeutic strategy with specific tools and techniques
- Provide self-esteem hypnosis
- Track progress
- Set new goals
- Revise strategy
- Implement revised strategy
- Repeat steps 5 through 9 as needed
Self-Esteem Hypnosis Tools and Techniques
The following list includes some of the tools and techniques I use in self-esteem hypnosis:
- Deep Diaphragmatic Focused Breathing
- Progressive Relaxation
- Post-Hypnotic Suggestion
- Self-Esteem Visualization
- Interactive Self-Esteem Building
- Guided Imagery
- Inner Child Work
- Resource State Creation
- Negative Trigger Desensitization
- Positive Memory Revival
- Positive Trigger Association
- Negative Self-Talk Redirection
- Positive Suggestions for Self-Empowerment