What Is Self Concept And How Does It Impact Your Confidence?

self concept

Your self concept says a lot about who you are. It impacts the way you feel about yourself, your self worth, and can even affect the type of success you achieve.

Even if you don’t know what self concept is, your self concept is actively influencing your life. And that’s because your self concept has everything to do with the way you perceive yourself.

So, what is self concept? How does it impact your confidence and self esteem? And most important of all: can you change your self concept to be more successful?

What Is Self Concept?

Self concept is your internal sense of who you are. It’s your unique understanding of what makes you you.

There’s a lot tied up in our self concept. From personality traits to ambitions to what we do to make a living, our self concept is a collection of the identities we carry throughout our lives.

“I’m a mother,” you say. “Is that my self concept?” Well, being a mother might be part of your self concept. But it’s not the only thing that makes you who you are.

You might also be a painter, a hiker, or a reader. Maybe you do yoga or work in the garden. Maybe your parents were born in Japan. Maybe you have plans to open a restaurant or want to learn to fly a plane.

Everything we are, do, think, believe, and feel makes up our self concept. It’s the self that we construct (and reconstruct) on a moment to moment basis.

Parts of our self concept are more fluid than others. There may be parts of yourself you have identified with since you were a child, like your family heritage or your spiritual beliefs. And there may be parts of your self concept that are less familiar, like a new hobby or partner in your life.

self worth

Is Self Concept The Same As Self Worth?

The short answers is: no. But let’s take a look at why.

Self worth has a lot to do with the way we value ourselves. There’s judgment tied up in our self worth. And whether we judge ourselves favorably or poorly affects the way we view ourselves.

Self worth is a part of our self concept, but it’s not the same thing. Self concept encompasses all the identities that make us who we are, while self worth is our perception of our own value.

How You Define Worth Impacts Your Self Concept

While self worth isn’t quite the same as self concept, the way you define worth can hugely impact them both.

The way you define worth affects the way you see yourself. It affects your self esteem, your confidence levels, and your self concept.

The reason so many of us suffer from lack of confidence and poor self esteem is because we’re using totally arbitrary means to judge ourselves.

Some people judge themselves based on the shape of their body. Others judge themselves by how much money they make. We judge ourselves in comparison to others, and if we think we’ve come up short, our self worth suffers.

“Wow, he’s in great shape. I wish I looked like that.”

“She got the promotion? I must not be working hard enough.”

“He’s always going out. I wish I had more friends.”

What’s worthy or unworthy in your eyes affects the way you see yourself. What you value changes your definition of who you are.

So, ask yourself: what’s important to me? What do I value? What do I use to define myself?

know your worth

Learn To Respect Yourself For More Confidence

One way that we can improve our self worth and our self concept is by learning to respect ourselves.

When you respect yourself, you not only affirm your self worth, but you also teach others that you are worthy, too.

When you’re comfortable in the skin you’re in, you glow. Seriously. People can see and feel the love you have for yourself. But cultivating more self-love isn’t an instantaneous switch. If it were that easy, we’d all be glowing!

More self-love is really about present moment awareness and acceptance. Many of us look at ourselves and want to be different. We look to the future for a moment where we’ll be better—improved in some significant way.

We reject our present moment selves as “not good enough.” The key to self-love? Change the dialogue from, “not good enough,” to “yes, good enough. Right here. Right now. Just as I am in this moment.”

Having more respect for yourself means respecting the person you are today—not the person you plan to become.

As Marisa Peer, Author of Mindvalley’s Uncompromised Life Program says, “To be happy you have to make peace with your past, love the present, and feel so excited about the future.”

While yes, you may reach those goals you’ve set for yourself in the future, that doesn’t mean you can’t love the process. It doesn’t mean you can’t love the person you are, or congratulate yourself on how far you’ve already come.

Everyone is a work in progress. The key is accepting the process and loving yourself through it.

respect yourself

5 Know Your Worth Quotes To Improve Your Self Esteem

If you’re looking for a little boost to your self-esteem, these know your worth quotes should do the trick. And hey, maybe you know someone else who needs some extra love today. Be sure to share your favorite quote with someone who needs to hear it!

What lies behind us and what lies before us are tiny matters compared to what lies within us. —Ralph Waldo Emerson

To be beautiful means to be yourself. You don’t need to be accepted by others. You need to accept yourself. —Thich Nhat Hanh

Find the love you seek, by first finding the love within yourself. Learn to rest in that place within you that is your true home. —Sri Sri Ravi Shankar

To love yourself right now, just as you are, is to give yourself heaven. Don’t wait until you die. If you wait, you die now. If you love, you live now. —Alan Cohen

You have so much power to keep yourself well. You have so much power to live a full, happy life. You have so much power to attract love, to have loving relationships, to be successful. Don’t give your power away. How you’re going to feel in life is really all up to you. —Marisa Peer

Which of these know your worth quotes was your favorite? Tell us below!


Shannon Terrell

Shannon Terrell is a writer based in Toronto, Canada. She revels in the thrill of exploration, whether it be new cultures, new landscapes, or new ways to bring on the happy. If she’s not hiking or practicing yoga, she probably has her nose in a book.

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