• Anne Ward | Mindinsight

Is Self-esteem Over-rated?


Wikipedia defines self-esteem as an emotional judgement that a person makes about their own worth. A google search of self-esteem reveals 65 million hits, suggesting how widespread interest in this concept is. However, how people feel about themselves wasn’t considered a serious question until the early 1960’s, when the self-esteem movement took roots in American culture.

Self-esteem gained momentum in the 1980’s after John Vasconcellos, a US politician, began promoting the idea that low self-esteem was the cause of crime, teenage pregnancy, drug abuse and school underachievement. He believed that by boosting childrens’ self-esteem, they would ultimately live happier lives. Vasconcellos' ideas were adopted into mainstream attitudes around how children should be educated and raise