The relationships you form with family, friends, and romantic partners all play a role in determining your personality traits, especially self-esteem and confidence. According to studies published in the American Psychological Association, positive and supportive social relationships are a key factor in shaping self-esteem in people aged between 4 and 76. 

Similarly, positive and supportive parental relationships cultivate self-esteem in younger children and shape the adults they will be later in life.

Positive Relationships

The best relationships are those formed with kind, honest, caring people who will celebrate your accomplishments and support you no matter what. These types of secure relationships help build trust, confidence, and belief in yourself. 

They can help you be more willing to try new things and improve your view of yourself (self-esteem) and how you talk to yourself (self-talk).

Negative Relationships

On the other hand, abusive and critical relationships can take a serious toll on your self-confidence. People who put you down or don’t respect you can damage your sense of self and inhibit your self-confidence. 

It's important to be able to recognize these kinds of negative relationships in your life. Unfortunately, people with low self-esteem due to negative early familial relationships tend to keep developing low-quality connections throughout their life.

Forming Secure Relationships

Building healthy relationships is a crucial part of developing self-confidence. However, this does not mean letting go of all your relationships that you deem negative. 

Some relationships can be improved if both parties choose to work on it. Working toward secure relationships is a great goal. But this means strengthening your relationship skills, too. 

You can do this by:

  • Focusing on personal boundaries

  • Practicing effective communication,

  • Taking time for self-care 

All of these are things that you can work on within yourself. This process will help you build new, better relationships and reconnect with people who can support you better.

Check out the Confidant Health Learning Library's Relationships and Communication section to discover more about Relationship Styles.