Stigma is the prejudicial and negative treatment we receive when others only see an aspect of us instead of who we are as a whole person. Facing stigma from others can be damaging and hurtful. Do you ever stigmatize yourself?

Self-stigma is the biased, negative judgment that we impose on ourselves. You may have stigmatized yourself if you’ve

  • Paid more attention to certain aspects of yourself more than you do on other aspects of yourself
    • Caught yourself over thinking the words, actions, and nonverbal behaviour of others, “knowing” that you’re not measuring up
    • Noticed self-derogatory thoughts running through your mind
    • Found yourself agreeing with your derogatory thoughts
    • Felt that you’re not good enough for someone or something
    • Felt worthless

When you stigmatize yourself, you are seeing yourself unevenly. Rather begin to notice when you’re self-stigmatizing, and intentionally shift your focus to something good about yourself. Purposefully keep track of your positive thoughts and actions. When you shift your focus this way, you will gradually stop stigmatizing yourself and you may find that you like yourself.