Bubbles McCoy wrote:If you fail on a test or just doing generally poorly in a class, you should feel like shit and work harder to succeed, not be secure with yourself as you are and level down a class and pretend like your failure is inconsequential.
Or worse, become convinced that that the failure was not your own. Perhaps the test was faulty, or you weren't taught properly; it couldn't possibly be that you lack the aptitude...
I always hated it when people told me I could do anything I wanted when I grew up. Only a few people (they happened to be particularly intelligent people whom I admired) were honest; they told me that, because I was very smart, I could do many great things that the other kids couldn't, but that there were also things the other kids were better at due to other abilities in which I was lacking. I understood that I had the potential to be a lawyer or a doctor, but probably not a teacher (I often lack the patience) or an athlete (I'm in good shape, but, at an awkward 5'9'', the only sport I have an even close to "ideal build" for is shuffleboard.) Thus, I was confident, but not arrogant. I think that's what we should be teaching our kids: everybody has things they're good at (to promote self-esteem) but nobody is perfect (it's good to be a little bit humble.)
Per the whole causality issue, it is *conceivable
that promoting ridiculously high self-esteem can cause those problems, especially if it's being drilled in from a very young age, when the mind is still malleable. It's hard to say of course; in part, it also brings in the nature vs nurture issue of to what extent criminals are born
rather than made
. After all, some people are genetically predisposed for clinical (severe) depression, but that doesn't mean you won't develop it too if everyone tells you how worthless you are.
EDIT:*It is conceivable
that their is a causal relationship.