Contrary to what is conveyed in most books about self-esteem and self-confidence, there is no need to “raise” or “boost” or “improve” your self-esteem. In your possession is already self-esteem that is perfect, complete, and without any damage. This self-esteem is based on the innate worth of your Natural Self-Esteem, which is the self that you truly are. While the self-esteem that is based on the ego may be mended a little bit here and there, your Natural Self-Esteem cannot be improved any further. You can only realize and experience it. Let us compare the ego and the Natural Self and how they relate on how to help someone with low self-esteem.
The Ego And Its Fickle Self-Esteem
The most important characteristic of the ego is its dualistic view. The ego likes to compare, to distinguish, and to sort out. It sees things in terms of right or wrong, black and white, good and bad, and so on. This leads consequently to the second feature of the ego, to make judgments. Judgments about ourselves are executed by an ‘assistant’ of the ego, the Inner Critic. (Or you may say the ego puts on a different hat and calls itself the Inner Critic.)
As regards self-esteem, the dualistic view of the ego leads to comparison. The ego wants to ‘keep up with the Joneses’ self-esteem and seeks for ways and means to get comparable better self-esteem. In order to make comparisons, the ego uses external conditions as a yardstick: success at work, possessions, accomplishments, looks, who has the most exuberant Christmas decoration, etc.
But as the ego relies on conditions, this means that its self-esteem is conditional as well. And conditions are bound to change over the course of time. The result is that the self-esteem that is based on the ego is vulnerable, fickle, shallow, and always in danger to crumble.
The Natural Self Is Impregnable
The Natural Self, or as it is also called, the true self, the real self, or the unique self, is what you truly are. Although the ego with its concepts, attachments, worries, judgments, and its whole story about who it is, try to make us believe otherwise, the moment you are in the state of the Natural Self-Esteem and experience its reality, you know without a shadow of a doubt that this is what you really are.
You are the Natural Self-Esteem and not the ego. The Natural Self is not an upgraded version of your ego, nor anything you have to build up. While the ego is an artificial construction, the Natural Self, in contrast, is your natural state of being.
This state of being has long been a part of the spiritual tradition of the East. But only lately, western psychology has made use of that state for psychotherapy, like Richard Schwartz in his book Internal Family Systems Therapy, or Neil Fiore in Awakening Your Strongest Self. Now you can make use of this state too.
The Natural Self-Esteem has qualities you can experience, and one of them is its self-esteem. When you are in the state of the Natural Self, you can sense the innate worth that goes along with it, your Natural Self-Esteem. This worth is undamaged, indestructible, and immune to any kind of critic or judgment. It is perfect and complete.
While the ego says “ I am this and that,” the Natural Self says “I am.” It is no need to evaluate itself by achievements, appearances, or any other condition. The essential goodness of your Natural Self-Esteem is experienced as a worth beyond reasoning. Sticking with natural self-esteem, can give you answer on how to help someone with low self-esteem.
Why Choosing An Integrative Solution?
“We strongly advise you to prefer approaches and therapists that combine several models instead of using only one approach.”
Jeffrey E. Young, founder of Schema-Therapy
There are many diverse approaches to on how to help someone with low self-esteem. They are not only based on diverging scientific understandings of the problem, but they also focus on different aspects for treatment and healing, such as dealing with emotions, controlling the thinking, treating the body, changing core beliefs, examining the past, etc.. So the $64,000 question is: What is the best method for you?
Up to recently, each of the two major schools of psychology – depth psychology and cognitive-behavioral psychology – took the stance that their findings and methods of healing represent the whole truth, excluding each other from the grown-up table of psychotherapy. A scientific stalemate with no land in sight prevailed for several decades.
But in recent years people like Jeffrey Young and other explorers of the mind have concluded that the best way to heal the rift between the two main schools is to integrate them. Others, like the author Ken Wilber, stress the importance of addressing the different stages of development in a comprehensive therapy. Still others focus on the integration of the three modi operandi of the human being: thinking, feeling, and acting.
How To Benefits Of An Integrative Solution
The view on the human mind and the methods of both schools are so diverse, that it is hardly possible to unify them into a singular concept. While depth psychology emphasizes the uncovering of unconscious motives and intentions. Cognitive psychology stresses the importance of working with beliefs and judgments. So, instead of creating one single method it makes more sense to use the best of both schools and let them work together in an integrated way.
Both schools of psychology complement each other. They address different stages of childhood development. While depth psychology’s main focus is on an early, nonverbal stage, cognitive psychology addresses a later, verbal stage. They are not merely two different ways of understanding and healing the mind. They have complementary qualities and you do not want to miss any of them.
You are going to harvest the so-called synergy-effect. That means the applied methods and practices not only complement but also reinforce each other. The result would not be achieved in any other way. Thus you increase the effectiveness and quickness of each. It is the dramatically increased speed and potency of an integrative method that makes it so advantageous.
Finally, you can solve the problem to sort out which approach is the best for you. Since all the major schools are included in addition to several supporting practices. You are not in danger of leaving anything important out. You may rest assured that the best and suitable method for you personally include because every major method is a part of Natural Self-Esteem. If you want to be rather safe than sorry, an integrative method is the best answer for you.