People can have low self-worth for many reasons. From past experiences and rejection to comparing themselves to others on social media, it’s often a complex interplay of different factors.
But you can catch a glimpse of someone’s low self-worth if they casually drop certain phrases in a conversation, too.
In fact, they might not even know they have low self-respect, but to you and perhaps others, that’s as clear as day.
So, let’s see what these typical phrases look like.
1) “It’s probably my fault, as usual”
The person who says something like this has a habit of assuming responsibility for things that go wrong, revealing a clear pattern of self-blame.
And look, when you have low self-esteem, you think everything’s your fault, basically. Wherever you turn, people blame you for something, and that reflects in your self-image.
However, that says more about them than it does about you. For what it’s worth, you could be surrounded by manipulators and even emotional abusers who love putting you down and blame you for every little thing, regardless of whether it’s your fault or not.
2) “I’m probably not the best person to ask for advice”
This one suggests a lack of confidence in giving helpful advice or direction, potentially stemming from a belief that their opinions or knowledge aren’t valuable.
It reflects a self-perceived inadequacy, so they don’t think they should be advising, helping, or offering support or insights to others.
And that’s just inherently wrong. Unless someone asks you a very specific and technical question that’s out of your area of knowledge or expertise, you can give recommendations and advice to others.
I mean, if you look at almost any influencer ever, you quickly see most of them are no experts at what they’re saying. In fact, many of them are straight-up bullsh*t artists.
3) “I don’t deserve good things happening to me”
Okay, unless you’re a serial killer or an abuser or something, you deserve good things happening to you.
I don’t believe in Karma, as the most vile people ever live great lives and walk among others who deserve much more than them.
So, this expression unveils a deep-seated belief in unworthiness. It can be linked to feelings of guilt or a distorted self-image that prevents the person from fully embracing or expecting good fortune.
4) “I don’t want to bother anyone with my problems”
This expression suggests a reluctance to share personal issues. Someone who says this has a belief that their concerns are burdensome to others. They also don’t think these problems are big or interesting enough to others.
Honestly, this can be from a fear of being a nuisance or a belief that their problems aren’t significant enough to warrant attention.
I mean, I can somewhat relate to this as I don’t like to share personal problems with others or even ask for help until my back is pressed against the wall.
In many ways, I’m like a cat hiding any bad emotions from others and acting like everything is peachy.
5) “I’m not sure why anyone would want to be friends with me”
This delusional phrase unveils a sense of unworthiness as the person questions the value they bring to friendships.
It echoes a lack of self-esteem and an assumption that others don’t find them interesting or likable.
But here’s a newsflash: most people are extremely boring. They work nine to five, maybe have a drink after work or go straight to pick up their kids, and go home.
There’s simply nothing extraordinary in most people’s lives. Why do you think everyone’s drinking alcohol or taking drugs?
It’s because their lives suck, and they need a coping tool that will help them forget that fact.
6) “I’m not talented like you are”
Here, the person is comparing themselves unfavorably to someone else, stressing a tendency to downplay their own skills.
They might have an imposter syndrome, where they underestimate their abilities, assuming others are more talented.
And although there’s merit to being talented, droves of extremely gifted people never succeeded at anything because they weren’t willing to work for it.
Relying solely on talent without putting in the necessary effort to develop skills, learn from experiences, and continuously improve results in stagnation and eventual failure.
And here’s a similar phrase.
7) “I don’t really have any special skills or anything”
Yet another phrase that downplays personal strengths, suggesting a lack of recognition or acknowledgment of their unique abilities.
If you think that about yourself, you might struggle to identify your strengths or see them as ordinary, underestimating their value.
Or, you may need to pick up a book or two and work on learning some skills. It’s never too late to make something of you.
Some of the most successful people out there became successful late in their lives.
I’m talking about people like Stan Lee, who only achieved widespread recognition in the comic book industry during his 40s and 50s.
And my favorite actor, Samuel L. Jackson. Although he had been acting for years, he didn’t achieve mainstream success until later in his career. His breakthrough role in “Pulp Fiction” came when he was in his 40s.
We also have Sam Walton (Walmart), Alan Rickman, Julia Child, Vera Wang, Ray Kroc (McDonald’s), Colonel Harland Sanders (KFC), and so many others.
8) “I guess I’m just not that good at things”
This phrase is similar to the one above and hints at self-doubt, suggesting they underestimate their abilities across different areas.
It’s a way of downplaying their skills, possibly due to a fear of falling short or comparing themselves unfavorably to others.
9) “I’m used to being disappointed, so it’s okay”
This statement reveals a coping mechanism where the person expects disappointment, possibly as a way to shield themselves from potential hurt.
In my opinion, it implies a history of negative experiences that have shaped their outlook on life. And that’s a shame.
I know very well where they’re coming from as I have used it many, many times. If not aloud, then quietly to myself.
Look, I learned too late that nothing good will just fall in your lap. You have to go out and take it. You have to work for it if you want to live an extraordinary life.
10) “I always mess things up”
This one hits close to home, as well. Whenever I tried something new and failed at it, I’d say, “Why do I even bother when I always mess things up?”
For me, it was a mix of past experiences and low self-worth. But, the worst thing was that I went into new projects with this defeatist attitude that became a self-fulfilling prophecy.
I had a clear lack of confidence in my ability to handle situations successfully, encouraging a negative self-perception.
I expected to fail, and so I did. What a shocker.
11) “I don’t think I could handle that, I’m not strong enough”
Facing tough situations can be intimidating, and it’s okay to feel unsure. But think about this: you might be stronger than you think.
Strength isn’t just about muscles; it’s also about handling whatever life throws at you. Instead of saying you can’t handle something, consider what you’ve already overcome.
Some people are born mentally and/or physically stronger than others. For the rest of us, we have to work on it every day if that’s something we want to see in ourselves.
People who have low self-worth should start by reflecting on negative thoughts and understanding their origins.
My best advice is to start engaging in activities that bring joy and a sense of accomplishment. If you think you don’t have any abilities or talents, start developing new skills and hobbies.
With every new skill, you’ll be a more interesting person too, and you’ll be more well-versed in different aspects of life.
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