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How to Recognize When You’re Not Giving Yourself Enough Care

No matter how much those around you shower you with love and affection, it can still be hard to love yourself.

Recognizing when you're not caring for yourself enough is the first step toward creating a healthier approach to the world and gives you a whole new lease on life!

Seeing the signs and acting on them can save you a lot of spiraling thoughts and tough days alone. Instead of being caught in a constant cycle of negative emotions and uncontrollable feelings, catching the signs of a lack of self-care gives you the advantage.

No Control

Being able to control your life is a big part of self-care and self-esteem.

If you take a good, long look at your life and, as you look around, feel that there’s no way you’re in control of your own life, you might be lacking some self-care.

Things may start to feel helpless, like there’s nothing you can do to change your circumstances. Low self-esteem makes it hard to see even the little areas where you do have control. Understanding the difference between an external and internal locus of control can be really important for moving forward with confidence.

Having an external locus of control means believing that external forces such as luck or other people have the most significant influence on one's life. On the other hand, having an internal locus of control means believing that one's actions and decisions have the most significant impact on their life outcomes. People with an internal locus of control tend to take more responsibility for their successes and failures, whereas those with an external locus of control tend to feel like they have less control over their lives.

As you improve the care you have for yourself and increase your own self-esteem, your sense of self-control will improve as well!

Negative Comparisons

Whether you’re in third grade or 93, you’re bound to make a few comparisons to those around you! It’s a basic function of society to compare and contrast with the situations and people within your orbit.

Sometimes these comparisons can be good for your self-esteem and help boost your confidence in the long run. But many times, it can be detrimental to your overall self-esteem to compare yourself to others.

As you compare yourself to those around you, it can sometimes inspire you to continue to improve and boost your growth as a person. If you’re struggling with your self-esteem, however, those same comparisons can leave you feeling out of the loop and “less than.”

It can be hard to get yourself out of that destructive loop! Teaching your mind to stop with the comparisons and reflect on how you’re unique is the first step in making it a reality!

Issues Asking for Help

There’s a common misconception that asking questions or asking for help all the time is a sign of low self-esteem, but the opposite is true!

When you find that you’re having issues asking for help with even the smallest issues, it might be because you lack the self-care and self-esteem to see yourself as worthy of help. There’s something to be said for having the confidence to ask for help when you need it!

As you look at your life, the idea of asking for help from anyone might send you into fits. Recognizing the issue is the first step toward healing your own self-love and self-esteem.

Once you see that you lack the confidence in yourself to ask for help, the next step is just a small one: find a way to reach out, even if it’s the tiniest task available!

As you start to reach out to others, your perception of your own self-worth will begin to change and adapt and grow!

Unable to Accept Positive Feedback

Everyone loves a compliment! At one time or another, we’ve all been the person who shrugs off those compliments and doesn’t take the feedback no matter what’s said.

Learning to accept compliments is a foundational element of self-care. The way others perceive us is one of the first building blocks in our own self-love. A common symptom of a lack of self-care is being unable to accept this positive feedback, no matter who gives it.

When someone gives you a compliment or positive feedback, take a moment to breathe and simply thank them for the feedback! It’s a small step but one that will resonate throughout the rest of your life as you learn to love yourself again.

Negative Self-Talk

While there are a lot of ways that outside influences affect your self-care, the biggest influence at all is your self-talk.

Those voices in your head, your inner monologue, and those spiraling thoughts all make up the negative self-talk that can drag you down. If you lack some self-care, that negative self-talk can completely take over your life.

It can be hard to fight against self-talk if you don’t have any outside influences! The cycle of negative self-talk is nearly impossible to break on your own.

Creating healthier self-talk and positive thoughts starts with letting out the negative ones through journaling and other positive activities! Breaking up the logjam of negative self-talk takes practice but has massive consequences for every area of your life!


Reading the signs of a lack of self-care is the first step toward creating a healthier version of yourself! When you can see the signs, you can start to create better situations and self-talk that will boost your self-esteem and help you get your life back under your control.

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