How Women Define Self-Worth & What Makes Us Happy

   By SheSpeaksTeam  Jun 14, 2023

What makes us feel good about ourselves and how can we improve self-worth?

We recently asked over 1,000 women all about feeling good about themselves and how self-worth can be determined. What we found was that women see these two things very differently and use different methods to achieve both.

Check out some of the key discoveries made through this survey -

Biggest Impacts on Self-Worth

  • Family and upbringing was the number one factor on self-worth with 81% respondents choosing this option.
  • Career and professional success is also a big force with 65% of women saying this impacts self-worth.
  • Tying with career and professional success was “romantic relationships" at 65%.
The Struggle Is Real, What is Driving Low Self-Worth?
  • On a scale of 1 - 10, with 10 being most confident and 1 being least confident about self-worth - 25% rate themselves a 1, 2 or 3. Only 20% would go with higher score of 8,9, or 10 and 55% are in the middle, between a 4 and 7.
  • Number one of the list of ways women feel their self-worth is lowered is by “comparing myself to others” with 61% of respondents citing this as a struggle.
  • More than half (54%) said either a “childhood experience” or “negative self-talk” contributed to low self-worth.
  • And close to half (45%) felt that “relationship problems” was a factor in low self-worth.
How Can Women Achieve a Sense of Higher Self-Worth?
  • According to our study, most women (77%) say that surrounding yourself with positive people will do the trick.
  • Next would be setting and achieving goals at 72% and 71% say just being with loved ones can up your feelings of self-worth.
  • More than half (64%) say that using positive affirmations helps.
  • And 50% say getting professional help with a therapy or counseling can do wonders for self-worth.
Here are a few quotes from some of our SheSpeaks members who took the survey.....
  • "Our environment and who we are surrounded with daily contribute a lot to how we act as a person.
  • "Children are very much influenced by their family growing up, especially their parents. If they are belittled as a child their self worth is diminished."
  • "I see this all the time in my friends I try to encourage them to feel more confident But It's hard after years of "you can't", or "don't do that", or "be careful", I try very hard not to fall into that trap!"
  • "Females are groomed early on to be a certain way by their families and even by society. So many things they expect of females, while using other behaviors that are considered good in a male is considered unladylike. Societal norms/expectations for females are totally outdated and awful, and thankfully they are changing."

What Brings Women Down and Makes Them “Feel Badly” About Themselves?
  • Not “being valued or respected by others” is the number one reason women report they feel badly about themselves, with a whopping 74% answering in this way.
  • 67% say that “failing at something” can make them down about themselves.
  • And 66% say that being criticized is enough to make them feel badly about themselves.
 Women Who Are Feeling Good About Themselves Say…
  • Accomplishing goals (87%) is a great way to help feel good about yourself.
  • A close second at 82% is “being kind to others”
  • 78% of respondents say “taking care of yourself physically” is another way women are boosting the way they feel about themselves.
  • And “being respected by others” also scores pretty high in this category at 74%.
Aliza Freud, SheSpeaks founder and CEO and noted women’s insights expert, found some of the results about negative impacts on self-worth as “concerning.” “A large percentage of women (85%) say that they have struggled with low self-worth. The fact that almost this identical percentage (84%) report that their self-worth has a strong effect on their happiness, we know that it is an important factor in mental health,” said Freud.

Do you relate to any of these findings?

Share your thoughts with us below!



Make a Comment

sharman421 by sharman421 | TALLAHASSEE, FL
Oct 21, 2023

Raised in that typical family and era where girls and boys looked forward to different roles really played a toll on my generation. Everything from females should be submissive while males shouldn't cry was so wrong for both sexes. Let's hope treating ALL of our children as equals will help them recognize their self worth.

LittleMamaB0920 by LittleMamaB0920 | Baldwin, MI
Oct 07, 2023

I struggle with self worth daily something I have been trying to work on lately.

Jeny0324 by Jeny0324 | Memphis, TN
Jul 24, 2023

A complete report uncovers how ladies see self-esteem and what adds to their bliss. Family and childhood assume a urgent part in self-esteem, while contrasting oneself with others and negative self-talk present critical difficulties. Encircling oneself with positive impacts, accomplishing objectives, and looking for proficient assistance arise as strong systems to upgrade self-esteem. The discoveries shed light on the significance of confidence for mental prosperity.

TexasSunflowers by TexasSunflowers | Port Neches, TX
Jul 09, 2023

Not feeling valued or respected by your family and friends has a huge impact on how we see ourselves and how we feel about ourselves. I am learning with age that I need to choose what makes me happy and what I want is important, life is to short to worry about what others think of our choices.

Gravesara by Gravesara | Lake Wales, FL
Jul 09, 2023

What I found interesting is often how we talk about ourselves is how we perceive ourselves, even if others don?t perceive us the same way. As a parent and educator I realize that we also showed children how to talk about themselves when we talk about ourselves, for better or worse..

Bugg88 by Bugg88 | Vacaville, CA
Jul 08, 2023

Not ?being valued or respected by others? is the number one reason women report they feel badly about themselves... This part of the story spoke volumes to me. I feel like a lot more woman with children are committing suicide or harming the people they love a lot more these days due to this deep struggle that's going on with them. It's a taboo subject, but it's real. I've had a long conversation with a woman that's walked a sad path of disrespect and a family that made her feel less than. She finally broke one day. Walked away and never looked back.

Leefifer19 by Leefifer19 | Greeley, CO
Jun 29, 2023

I think my autonomy and empowerment, by feeling in control of one's life choices and having the ability to make my own decisions that align with my values and aspirations are what's vital to me and what describes self-worth to me and definitely happiness!

Preethy by Preethy | Dunlap, IL
Jun 28, 2023

We will be always value about ourself / our self worth and this topic really increased my confidence!

Preethy by Preethy | Dunlap, IL
Jun 28, 2023

We will be always value about ourself / our self worth and this topic really increased my confidence!

Valgal03 by Valgal03 | CORP CHRISTI, TX
Jun 27, 2023

Great story it's very relatable

syennax by syennax | Ardmore, AL
Jun 21, 2023

This really speaks to me. I know there isn?t one person that doesn?t struggle with self worth. Everyone goes through it but there is always good to come in the end.

LeleSpeaks by LeleSpeaks | ATHENS, GA
Jun 18, 2023

I can relate and do have these issues. Good seeing the feedback!

ChipsAhoyfavho by ChipsAhoyfavho | loves park, IL
Jun 18, 2023

I def still struggling with my own sense of self worth up until I was about 20. Reaching the age of 22 I realized that I didn't truly trust myself-like at all🙄. I was always trying to intellectualize the constant uncomforted/ anxiety/nervousness that seems to spur up when making every single desion (on top of hormones and family drama/abuse). Anyway I know I am all better for it more or less and at least. I'm ecstatic to be vibrating at such at high lvl of authenticity that I no longer attract any weird illusions. Such as lowering my standards and expectations of myself, my inner circle, and buisness partnerships. Trusting my intuition 1st!

nickelet11 by nickelet11 | ROSWELL, GA
Jun 18, 2023

failing and being critizied is never a great feeling but i learn and come out a strong, wiser person after them.

MzNini by MzNini | ORLANDO, FL
Jun 17, 2023

These statistics are so alarming because it appears as time change, the negative view of the notation of women remains the same.