In psychology, self-esteem or self-worth is a person's self-image at an emotional level; circumventing reason and logic. The term differs from ego in that the ego is a more artificial aspect; one can remain highly egotistical, while underneath have very low self-esteem. The maintenance of a healthy degree of self-esteem is a central task within psychotherapy, where patients often suffer from excess degrees of self-criticism, hampering their ability to function.
Much debate about self-esteem centres on the definition of the term. New Age thought can provide self-serving views of the concept; other views can discount the existence or merely the usefulness of the idea.
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