If you often find yourself in these 8 situations, you probably lack self respect and confidence

We all want to believe we’ve got a healthy dose of self-respect. 

We shower ourselves with affirmations, follow inspiring accounts on Instagram, and maybe even dabble in the occasional therapy session. 

But what if self-doubt is more insidious than we realize? What if it’s hiding in plain sight, masquerading as quirks and habits we thought were helpful? And what if we’re sabotaging ourselves more than we’re aware of?

We’ve all read those generic self-help articles that tell us apologizing too much or being a people-pleaser are signs of low self-esteem. 

But life isn’t an online quiz, and the signs aren’t always that obvious.

This isn’t your average “5 Ways You’re Ruining Your Life” listicle. We’re going deeper, darker, and dare I say, funnier. 

Because let’s face it, sometimes the best way to confront our flaws is with a little bit of humor.

Read on!

1) You’re a flaky flake

There are some situations in which a last-minute-ditch is acceptable, don’t get me wrong. 

Emergencies, mental health crises, lost hamsters, etc.

But if you’re the type to hit RSVP in an instant whenever an invite is sent your way…

Only to later find yourself overcome with an urge to nestle into the depths of your sofa and binge-watch trash TV whilst munching on popcorn; you’re not really canceling for valid reasons.

There’s nothing wrong with hanging out in your own company, but consider whether agreeing to plans in advance is then necessary. 

The reality is that last-minute cancellations cause others more harm than it does you, and leave them feeling sore and wary of your commitment levels.

The sort of ghosting isn’t purely about being flaky, either. 

You’re in essence, undervaluing your own presence through your no-show coupled with your lack of valid reasoning. 

2) “I’m sorry I’m sorry I’m sorry!”

You apologize for everything. 

Someone accidentally bumped into you? Whoopsie, my fault!

Barista drop off the wrong order? Must be your fault. Apologize profusely, immediately.

And remember to stumble over your words as you thank the waiter profusely for bringing you the food you paid for.

Although saying a sincere sorry when you mean it is a wonderful trait to develop, going one step beyond that and over-apologizing isn’t mere politeness…

It’s actually a subconscious way of diminishing yourself. 

Excessive apologizing gives off the impression of desperation as if you’re trying to cling to those around you; always be willing to take the blame because you feel yourself an unworthy easy scapegoat.

3) The wardrobe of worry

You don’t buy clothes for the here and now. 

You buy for who you want to be.

And this doesn’t even have the motivating effect you thought it would have, nor does looking at dresses you bought for a five-pound-lighter give you the buzz you thought it did. 

The racks of items you purchased with visions of future-you attending glitzy cocktail parties and glamorous festivals don’t bring you any joy now. 

Getting dressed in the morning has instead become a fretful and worrisome event, packed with guilt and shame about not being more confident/lighter/cooler.

Not only is your home packed with clutter; you’ve got yourself stuck in a limbo of waiting until you feel ‘worthy’ enough to wear them. 

You dream about a future that is picture-perfect and confident, but wasting away the present as you mutter to yourself, “I’m not good enough as I am right now.”

4) “Everyone agrees with me!”

The issue with surrounding yourself only with people who always agree with you is that you essentially plop yourself down in an echo chamber.

You carefully curate your social media feed to only show opinions that align with your own. 

You’ve essentially built a fortress of confirmation bias, where your beliefs are never challenged or questioned. 

This means that even incorrect beliefs can, unfortunately, snowball into huge core values, as whilst you might think yourself open-minded, you’re not exposed to enough variance in opinion to truly determine how able you are to comprehend other people’s experiences.

Rather than some form of intellectual curiosity, surrounding yourself with people who harp in agreement like parrots suggests you may have a deep-seated fear of being wrong

Of course, you need not tolerate people whom you find crude or heartless but consider the ramifications of only exposing yourself to those who nod ardently in your favor.

Plus, the more the merrier!

5) Coupon king/queen

Like a hound with an avid nose for discounts, you sure can sniff out a sale from a mile away, and you pride yourself on never paying full price for anything. 

But somewhere along the line, your sale obsession stopped being about the thrifty side of things and turned into more of an obsession.

You find yourself up late at night, browsing eBay or other secondhand platforms with wide eyes and a slightly manic tap-tap-tap of your fingers. Terms like ‘Black Friday’ or ‘Boxing Day Sales’ or ‘Cyber Monday’ get your heart racing.

And somewhere along the discount line, you lost the sense of shopping for frugality and instead began to devalue yourself, losing interest in your purchases and now never fully believing yourself worthy of a full-price item.

6) “No” doesn’t exist in your vocabulary

You’re the go-to person for favors

Why?

Because everyone knows that you cannot refuse a request, and rather than appreciate you for the goodness of your heart, they’ve now started to exploit your kindness…

You find yourself regularly the last person to leave the office, and on the weekend, you’re usually babysitting your friend’s kids (whilst they hit the bars), or agreeing to plans you have zero interest in (before you cancel on them last minute anyway!)

You’re so afraid of conflict or disappointing others that you’ll sacrifice your own needs and desires.

And whilst you might think you’re showing your appreciation for others by doing these chores for them, believing they’ll appreciate your hard work…

The unfortunate reality is people simply begin to see you as an asset, or a free resource to be exploited. 

And that inability to say “No” withers your self-respect and the respect others have for you.

7) Everyone is living a better life than you

Admit it.

You’re addicted to scrolling through social media, comparing yourself to everyone you see. 

They’re always on vacation, getting promoted, or showing off their picture-perfect relationships. 

Meanwhile, you’re stuck in traffic, eating leftover takeout (which you’ve now managed to dribble all over your nicest work shirt), and wondering if your cat secretly hates you.

Comparison is truly the thief of joy and is a perfect recipe for self-loathing. 

If your days begin with a morning doom scroll through influencers on yachts and flawless, airbrushed models downing green juices after pilates, then ends in much the same fashion, consider the impact this might be having on your own confidence.

The reality is that life is never quite as perfect behind closed doors, and you’re only sucking the joy out of your own life by consuming excessive social media and berating yourself in the process.

8) “I can FIX them!”

You’re drawn to emotionally unavailable people, struggling with addiction, or just plain old messy. 

You tell yourself you’re helping them, but secretly, you may feel more comfortable around broken people because it makes your own flaws seem less glaring.

Now, there is some goodness in this trait. You likely see the best in people (or make up some good characteristics and paste them onto the person for eternity.) You are likely a glass-half-full type of person.

But the reality of making space in your life for the toxic and harmful individuals out there only causes damage to you, and you alone.

This type of behavior isn’t compassion; it’s codependency. 

In the words of Stephen Chbosky, ‘We accept the love we think we deserve.’

If all the love you’re accepting comes at a price, consider how much self-respect you have, and try to aim for healthy, reciprocated relationships that better you – not tear you apart.

So, what next?

If any of these scenarios resonated with you, don’t despair. Self-respect isn’t something you’re born with; it’s something you cultivate and expand with practice.

Here are a few tips to get you started:

  • Set Boundaries: Learn to say “no” without guilt. Your time and energy are valuable, and you don’t owe anyone an explanation for prioritizing yourself.
  • Embrace Your Flaws: Nobody’s perfect. We all have quirks, insecurities, and weird little habits. Learn to laugh at yourself and embrace the things that make you unique.
  • Challenge Your Assumptions: Don’t be afraid to question your beliefs or seek out diverse perspectives. Growth happens when you step outside your comfort zone.
  • Invest in Yourself: Take a class, learn a new skill, or simply spend time doing things that bring you joy. You deserve to be happy, and your happiness shouldn’t depend on external validation.
  • Seek Support: If you’re struggling with self-respect issues, don’t be afraid to reach out for help. Therapy, coaching, or even just talking to a trusted friend can make a world of difference.

Remember, self-respect isn’t about arrogance or ego; it’s about recognizing your inherent worthiness. 

And you deserve to take up space, to have a voice, and to live a life that feels authentically yours.

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