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The Disadvantages of General Well-Being in Self-Esteem

Part of having strong self-esteem is having a good sense of well-being. A State University of New York study reported that the link between general well-being and self-esteem is very high.

There are measurements for general well-being, or GWB, that allow researchers to break down the components in the complex relationship between positive and negative effects on a person’s life, age, gender and physical well-being, as well as his home, personal and work or school life.


General Well-Being

General well-being is a lifelong source of joy. Specifically, general well-being refers to a person’s mood, satisfaction, positivity and happiness. GWB is measured by a person’s ability to have positive feelings about himself and his life. How an individual feels about his life affects how that person feels about work, his social circumstances, members of the family and society in general.

There is a dichotomy in this relationship between a person and his sense of well-being in that the circumstances surrounding him feed into his GWB and his GWB feeds into his response to his circumstances.


Well-Being in Self-Esteem



Self-esteem defines how you feel about yourself. Self-esteem refers to the attitude individuals have about themselves. Self-esteem runs the scale from positive to negative, and how someone feels about herself is a result of her relationship with family, society, culture and the people with whom she shares her life.

In 1965, Morris Rosenberg designed the Rosenberg Self-Esteem Scale, which is a 10-question Likert scale using a four-point measure, ranging from “strongly agree” to “strongly disagree.” From the possible maximum score of 30 points, people are able to measure their own sense of self-esteem numerically. This scale is still the standard for measuring self-esteem. The higher the score, the better your self-esteem. If you score 15 or under, your self-esteem is considered to be low.


The Link Between General Well-Being and Self-Esteem

Friends, fun and laughter help your general well-being. GWB is part of self-esteem, and vice versa. The better you feel about life in general and the better your financial, health and relationship situations, the higher your GWB is bound to be. The more positive people are in assessing how they feel about their level of achievement, respect and value in the overall scheme of life and the world at large, the higher their self-esteem.

If a person has good self-esteem but some aspect negatively affects his well-being, his attitude can be diminished. By the same token, if he receives a blow to his self-esteem, such as being rejected by a loved one, that can damage his sense of well-being.


The Disadvantageous Connection Between General Well-Being and Self-Esteem

Some negative happenstances are beyond your control. Because the link between general well-being and self-esteem is so high, any impact on one can affect the other—but the impact is not reliable. GWB results from a combination of external factors as well as internal elements, and thus your sense of general well-being can be affected by circumstances beyond your control.

For instance, if you lose your job, this can impact your GWB, which in turn can damage your self-esteem. Your sense of well-being can be harmed by health issues. This, however, might not affect your self-esteem. The bottom line is that while there is a strong interaction between GWB and self-esteem, external factors can affect GWB but there is not necessarily a connection between that negative impact and a decline in self-esteem.


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