Psychology Today published an article that explores the neurological processes which are activated in moments when we have low self-esteem. Studies show that this distressing feeling is active in the same place that the ‘suffering component’ of pain is active, showing that states of low self-esteem are not only mentally taxing but also physiologically painful.
The article focuses on an individuals status relative to his or her social context.
“An increase in status is one of the world’s greatest feelings. Dopamine and serotonin levels go up, linked to feeling happier, and cortisol levels go down, a marker of lower stress. Testosteronelevels go up too. Testosterone helps people focus, feel strong and confident, and even improves sex drive. With more dopamine and other “happy” neurochemicals, an increase in status increases the number of new connections made per hour in the brian. This means that a feeling of high status helps you process more information, including more subtle ideas, with less effort. With the reduced threat response, you are more able to think on multiple levels at once.” Check out the full article HERE.