You can define self-esteem in a way that reflects confidence in your ability to deal with life and in your right to be content and feel value. Realize that self-esteem is a sense of value that should not change, even if alterations in circumstances temporarily alter your view of yourself.
Evaluate your life for some of the corollaries of positive self-esteem. If your confidence in yourself is high, you also should possess such traits as rationality, intuitiveness and the ability to deal with change. If you make mistakes, you should be willing to own up to them and remedy them. Kindness and cooperativeness are two other traits associated with people who have high self-esteem. If you feel that you have high self-esteem but do not demonstrate many of these traits, consider evaluating your self-esteem levels more critically.
Take a look at your relationships. People with high self-esteem tend to have relationships that last longer and are more rewarding, and vice versa. If you think that your self-esteem is high but have a hard time maintaining relationships, your calibration may be inaccurate.
Self-worth is your perception of the value that you have had since birth. Your value as a person doesn't change, but your ability to perceive that value can suffer if you have setbacks. Take encouragement from the fact that everyone has value, and if you perceive that your self-esteem is low, begin looking for ways to elevate it to a more appropriate and accurate level.