There are ways to temper your toughest critic and take constructive control of your feelings.
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What I learned in my Psychology of Human Relations course in college is that self-esteem is the feeling to overcome obstacles that are thrown at you in life, so basically how you feel about yourself in a sense. self-confidence is basically the reassurance of this feeling because it is the how you feel about your abilities to overcome obstacles in life. Thus, you really cannot have one without the other, generally, because they are at the core of each other. Think of goals as the foundation for both, and self-efficacy and cognitive reconstruction as the tools to build them. Then think of your strengths and weaknesses as your blue print for building them, and finally motivation (which could be things like envisioning completing these goals as you have with other goals you have completed in life) as the fuel for action. All of this usually construes great self-confidence and self-esteem. Additionally, being around people who encourage you and expect a lot from you is also a part of motivation, but is more like extra help (extra construction workers in my analogy) to help build both these things (called the Galatea Effect).
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The final installment in a new 10-part series on ego defenses.
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