Good news

Researchers uncover the surprising age at which your self-esteem peaks

It may not always feel like it, but new research suggests your self-esteem is growing steadily across decades. (Photo by Pedro PARDO / AFP/Getty Images)

In a society that so often glorifies youth, it’s good to remember that lots of things get better with age: fine wine, friendships, and — it turns out — self-esteem.

Self-assurance can sometimes feel frustratingly elusive, and for sure it has its ups and downs, but the wonderful news is, yours almost certainly hasn’t peaked yet. New research published in the journal Psychological Bulletin suggests that, even with occasional setbacks, self-esteem grows steadily over time (with a little plateau in the teen years), until the age of 60. And once you hit that sweet spot, you’re likely to stay there for an entire decade, with only a slight decline in your 70s and 80s.

The analysis of how self-esteem changes with age, from age 4 to 94, was based on more than 300 previously published studies, using data from almost 165,000 people. Not to be mistaken with narcissism, self-esteem includes “feelings of self-acceptance and a positive attitude toward the self, but does not necessarily imply that the individual feels superior to others,” the researchers explain.

So keep all that in your back pocket for a bad day — it’s so nice to know that even across life’s tough spots, your upward trajectory is steady. Onwards!

Read the full story at The Cut.

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