The Difference Between Self-Esteem, Self-Love, and Self-Care (+ How They Affect Your Sex Life)

By Dr. Janet Williams, MD, Ob/Gyn


You might have heard the terms self esteem, self love and self care thrown around a lot, but what do they actually mean? And more importantly, how can they affect your sex life? Keep reading to find out! 



Self-Esteem is pride and confidence in our abilities and what we do. Perhaps you are the boss at work and your employees look up to you or perhaps you are an awesome mom with super cute and well behaved kids, you likely will feel good about that and good about your accomplishments in these areas. Self-esteem is based on an internal dialogue that we have with ourselves that is often driven by both external and internal influences such as family dynamics or cultural beliefs.



Self-love goes beyond simply liking yourself; It goes a layer deeper. It's often difficult to reach because of what society tells us. It involves our belief that we are worthy. And that we're worthy just as we are, right now...just because we exist. It's our regard for our own well being, our happiness and pleasure. And that includes sensual pleasure.



Lastly, self care is a practice. It refers to the actions we take to protect our well being, to improve our happiness, our health and our pleasure. This could include anything from working with a personal trainer or intimate life coach to getting enough sleep each night! Self care activities also allow us time for reflection which helps us become aware of our own needs and desires so that we may communicate those clearly with our partners before having any intimate encounters. 



When it comes down to it, loving yourself plays an integral role in creating a fulfilling sex life because it provides the foundation needed for genuine connection with another person—both emotionally and physically.  It's important to recognize how each concept contributes to building a healthy relationship with oneself as well as strengthening our bonds with partners through more meaningful physical intimacy—and ultimately improving communication within our sex lives! Developing these three areas will set you up for success when engaging in intimate experiences; so take the time now to start investing in yourself! For reading on self-love purchase The Body Is Not An Apology. To find out how to work with me in coaching and/or for hypnosis visit

- Dr. Janet

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