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Self-Concept vs. Self-Esteem: What's the Difference?

Edited by Harlon Moss || By Janet White || Published on November 23, 2023
Self-concept is an individual's perception of themselves, while self-esteem is the value or worth one assigns to themselves.

Key Differences

Self-concept is the understanding and perception an individual has of themselves, encompassing beliefs and identity. While, self-esteem is the evaluative aspect, reflecting how much value and worth individuals place on themselves.
Self-concept consists of various elements like roles, skills, and personality traits. Whereas, self-esteem is formed by one’s feelings of worthiness and personal value.
Self-concept influences how individuals perceive their abilities and roles in various contexts. However, self-esteem affects confidence and attitudes towards oneself, impacting motivation and behavior.
Self-concept evolves with experiences, shaping one’s identity and self-perception. Conversely, self-esteem can fluctuate based on life events, successes, and failures.
A positive self-concept contributes to a clear sense of identity. Meanwhile, high self-esteem is often linked to mental well-being and resilience.

Comparison Chart


Individual's perception of themselves
Value or worth one places on themselves


Beliefs, identity, roles, traits
Feelings of worthiness, personal value


Shapes self-perception and identity
Affects confidence and self-attitudes


Evolves with experiences
Fluctuates with life events and achievements

Mental Health Impact

Contributes to sense of identity
Linked to well-being and resilience

Self-Concept and Self-Esteem Definitions


Perception of oneself in various roles and contexts.
Her self-concept evolved as she grew from a student to a professional.


Sense of personal value and self-respect.
High self-esteem was key to her positive outlook on life.


Personal identification with certain traits and characteristics.
Her artistic skills were a vital part of her self-concept.


Emotional evaluation of one's own worth.
Low self-esteem made her doubt her capabilities.


Understanding of one's own personality and abilities.
His self-concept was rooted in his talents as a musician.


Degree of confidence in one’s own worth or abilities.
His self-esteem fluctuated with the ups and downs of his career.


An individual's overall perception of their identity.
His self-concept was influenced by his cultural background.


Personal judgment of one’s own worth.
Her high self-esteem was evident in her confident demeanor.


The collection of beliefs about oneself.
His self-concept was shaped by both his successes and failures.


The value one places on their own abilities and qualities.
His self-esteem improved after he successfully completed the project.


The mental image or perception that one has of oneself.


Pride in oneself; self-respect.


The view of one's self; self-image.


Confidence in one's own worth; self-respect.


One's conception of the kind of person one is.


The holding a good opinion of one's self; self-complacency.


A feeling of pride in yourself


The quality of being worthy of esteem or respect;
It was beneath his dignity to cheat
Showed his true dignity when under pressure


How do self-concept and self-esteem differ?

Self-concept is about self-perception, while self-esteem is about self-worth.

Can self-concept affect self-esteem?

Yes, a positive self-concept often leads to higher self-esteem.

What is self-concept?

Self-concept is an individual's perception and understanding of themselves.

Why is self-concept important?

It forms the basis of how we understand and interact with the world.

How are self-concept and self-esteem developed?

Both develop through experiences, feedback from others, and personal reflection.

What impacts self-esteem?

Successes, failures, social comparisons, and personal beliefs impact self-esteem.

Is high self-esteem always good?

Generally, yes, but overly high self-esteem can lead to arrogance.

What is self-esteem?

Self-esteem is the evaluative and emotional regard a person has for themselves.

How can one improve their self-esteem?

By setting realistic goals, practicing self-compassion, and positive self-talk.

How do people with positive self-concept behave?

They are typically confident, adaptable, and have a clear sense of identity.

Does culture affect self-concept?

Yes, cultural values and norms can shape one’s self-concept.

What factors influence self-concept?

Social interactions, personal achievements, and cultural background can influence it.

Can self-concept change over time?

Yes, self-concept evolves with new experiences and changing roles.

Can self-concept influence career choices?

Yes, self-perception can guide one’s career path and aspirations.

Is self-concept related to personality?

Self-concept includes understanding one’s personality traits.

What are signs of low self-esteem?

Self-doubt, negativity, and lack of confidence indicate low self-esteem.

How do children develop self-concept?

Through exploration, feedback from caregivers, and social interactions.

Can therapy help improve self-esteem?

Yes, therapy can address underlying issues and promote healthier self-esteem.

What is the role of self-esteem in relationships?

Self-esteem affects how one views and conducts themselves in relationships.

Does social media impact self-esteem?

Yes, it can both positively and negatively influence self-esteem.
About Author
Written by
Janet White
Janet White has been an esteemed writer and blogger for Difference Wiki. Holding a Master's degree in Science and Medical Journalism from the prestigious Boston University, she has consistently demonstrated her expertise and passion for her field. When she's not immersed in her work, Janet relishes her time exercising, delving into a good book, and cherishing moments with friends and family.
Edited by
Harlon Moss
Harlon is a seasoned quality moderator and accomplished content writer for Difference Wiki. An alumnus of the prestigious University of California, he earned his degree in Computer Science. Leveraging his academic background, Harlon brings a meticulous and informed perspective to his work, ensuring content accuracy and excellence.

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