Understanding the difference between self-esteem and self-efficacy can make a huge difference in your life. Is it worth taking the time to learn more? Definitely.

When it comes to living a fulfilled and meaningful life, it’s important to understand yourself and have clarity about your goals. That’s why it’s essential to distinguish between self-esteem and self-efficacy. Both are sources of powerful motivation, but they are not the same thing. That’s what this article is about making sure you understand how these two states of mind work differently so that you can decide for yourself which one best fits your needs or situation.

Let’s take a closer look at the vital distinctions in “Self-Esteem vs Self-Efficacy” as well as how they affect your thoughts, feelings, and behavior.

What is Self-Esteem?

Self-Esteem vs Self-Efficacy-What is Self-Esteem
Self-Esteem vs Self-Efficacy-What is Self-Esteem

Most of us have heard of self-esteem, but what does it really mean? Simply put, self-esteem is the value you give to yourself; it’s your opinion or judgment of your own worth.

Individuals with high self-esteem

  • are able to recognize and accept their own strengths and weaknesses in a healthy way.
  • They generally accept compliments and criticism, looking at failure as an opportunity to learn rather than an indication that they’re not good enough.
  • They tend to be more focused on their goals because they trust in themselves and their abilities, which drives them to strive for success in all aspects of life.

What is Self-Efficacy?

Self-Esteem vs Self-Efficacy-What is Self-Efficacy
Self-Esteem vs Self-Efficacy-What is Self-Efficacy

Self-efficacy has to do with our personal confidence in our ability to handle a variety of tasks, situations, and problems. Those who have high self-efficacy believe that they can face tough situations with courage and resilience, while those who have low self-efficacy may feel more helpless in the face of obstacles and challenges.

Individuals with high self-efficacy usually have the following characteristics:

  • believe in their own capabilities;
  • set challenging but realistic goals for themselves;
  • have a positive attitude about their past successes and failures;
  • Understand the importance of perseverance in achieving success;
  • take responsibility for their actions;
  • Have a strong sense of purpose and direction.

High self-efficacy also helps people adapt quickly to change, handle difficult tasks, and make effective decisions. People with low levels of self-efficacy, on the other hand, tend to have negative thoughts and doubts about their abilities, which can hinder them from achieving their goals.

How to Develop and Nurture Self-Esteem

Self-esteem and self-efficacy are two different things; the former is about how you feel about yourself, while the latter is about your ability to achieve something.

“Self-esteem is an individual’s opinion of their own worth. Building your self-esteem involves validating your worth as an individual, appreciating yourself for who you are, and understanding that you are unique and capable of great things.

There are several things you can do to develop and maintain healthy levels of self-esteem:

  1. Acknowledge your mistakes, but also celebrate your successes, even the small ones.
  2. Practice positive affirmations such as telling yourself, “I am capable” or “I am good enough.”
  3. Identify the individuals who bring out the best in you and surround yourself with them.
  4. Stay away from negative people who make you feel worse about yourself.
  5. Treat yourself kindly, with compassion, and with understanding, just like you would treat a friend or loved one with kindness.
  6. Take care of yourself by getting plenty of sleep, exercising regularly, and eating healthy foods.

The more you practice these tips on a regular basis over time, the more your self-esteem will grow. That’s how to truly nurture it!

You have the power to change your life for the better
You have the power to change your life for the better

How to Develop and Nurture Self-Efficacy

So, how do you develop and nurture it? Well, first off, there are certain things you can do to cultivate a more positive mindset and boost your sense of self-efficacy. These can include:

  1. Practicing positive self-talk acknowledging yourself for completing tasks, giving yourself credit for successes, and forgiving mistakes
  2. Keep track of accomplishments and review them regularly this helps to remind you of achievements and build on future successes.
  3. Practice mindfulness try to focus on the present moment and stay in control of your emotions during difficult times.
  4. Make use of positive affirmations say them out loud or write them down, and repeat them often.
  5. Set realistic goals instead of aiming for perfection, aim for progress, and reward yourself along the way.

There are also activities that can help you practice developing your self-efficacy:

  1. Taking on a challenging project that tests your skills
  2. Trying something new outside of your comfort zone
  3. Identifying areas where you need to improve and working towards those goals
  4. Building relationships with people who inspire you
  5. Connecting with those who share similar interests or goals as yours

With these tips and activities in mind, there’s no need to worry about possessing low amounts of self-efficacy, as it’s something that can be developed over time with practice and persistence!

What’s the Difference: Self-Esteem vs Self-Efficacy

Do you really know the difference between the two? Let’s take a look at how they compare and what sets them apart.

1. How you feel about yourself1. How confident you feel in your ability to make a difference
2. based on your inner thoughts and beliefs2. based on your perception of past experiences
3. influenced by outside factors3. more internal
4. Affects overall sense of self-worth and identity4. Affects the ability to perform a specific task or achieve a specific goal
Self-Esteem vs Self-Efficacy


Self-esteem is how you feel about yourself, whether or not you like or respect yourself. It is based on your inner thoughts and beliefs, and it is frequently influenced by outside factors like other people’s comments or situations that make you feel either good or bad about yourself.


Self-efficacy, on the other hand, is all about your belief in your ability to complete tasks or reach goals. It’s based on your perception of past experiences that have gone well, which then affects how confident you feel in the future. Your level of self-efficacy can vary depending on the situation; for example, you might feel confident in one situation but lacking in another.

The difference between self-esteem and self-efficacy boils down to one key thing: while self-esteem is focused on how much value you put on yourself, self-efficacy is all about how capable you believe yourself to be, and both are important for developing a positive sense of self and achieving success.

This is due to the fact that strong self-esteem promotes a positive self-image, which can then result in increased confidence in one’s skills.

On the other side, those with low self-esteem could have a hard time feeling like they are valuable, which might affect how effective they are. They could have self-doubt and be reluctant to take on new tasks or work toward their objectives.

Benefits of High Levels of Self-Esteem and Self-Efficacy

Benefits of High Levels of Self-Esteem and Self-Efficacy
Benefits of High Levels of Self-Esteem and Self-Efficacy

We get it; self-esteem and self-efficacy can be hard to differentiate. But having a high level of each is undeniably beneficial. So what are these benefits?


High levels of self-esteem can bring a certain confidence and contentment that make it easier to make decisions, solve problems, and even handle relationships. Self-esteem can also lead to better physical well-being through improved overall nutrition, exercise, and sleep habits.


High levels of self-efficacy provide motivation, resilience, and endurance in spite of setbacks and enable us to set ambitious goals that we have the capacity to achieve. As a result, we are less likely to be discouraged by temporary obstacles or setbacks we may face along the way to the goal and are able to maintain our attention on long-term objectives.

In summary, having a healthy level of both self-esteem and self-efficacy increases your capability to understand yourself better and have more control over your life, and that’s always a good thing!

Don't let negative thoughts or opinions hold you back from pursuing your dreams
Don’t let negative thoughts or opinions hold you back from pursuing your dreams.
How Self-Esteem and Self-Efficacy are Related
How Self-Esteem and Self-Efficacy are Related

You might be surprised to learn that self-esteem and self-efficacy are related, but there is a real connection between the two. While they are related, it’s important to remember that they are not the same thing.

Your self-esteem, which is how you see and perceive yourself, can be affected by things that happen outside your control or other people’s opinions. Self-efficacy is how confident you feel in your ability to make a difference in your life and achieve goals, which is more internal and based on individual experiences.

Factors that influence self-efficacy

Several things can influence your level of self-efficacy, including:

  • Feedback from others: If you receive praise or encouragement from those around you, it can help boost your self-efficacy.
  • Difficulty level: When tasks become more difficult, it can lower self-efficacy because you may fear not being able to complete them.
  • Perceived control: If you feel like you have control over a situation or task, it can increase your levels of self-efficacy.

Both self-esteem and self-efficacy play an important role in our lives. Self-esteem provides us with valuable feedback about ourselves and our accomplishments, while self-efficacy gives us the confidence we need to keep going when times get tough.

Take Home Message

As the saying goes, “We can do anything we set our minds to.” And at the heart of this is self-efficacy, which is the driving force behind our goals and ambitions. Whether it’s a career goal, a personal development goal, or a physical challenge, self-efficacy is the belief that we have the motivation, skills, and resources to achieve our goals.

However, self-esteem refers to how we feel about ourselves and is frequently influenced by how others view us. Self-esteem is an important part of our emotional well-being, but it’s self-efficacy that gives us the confidence to keep going even when we feel like giving up.

Ultimately, both self-esteem and self-efficacy are essential for a healthy, balanced life, and both are necessary for success. By understanding the difference between the two, you can use them to your advantage and


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