Your self esteem is based around how much you like yourself, irrespective of your abilities, position or anything else. Having a high self esteem means you are comfortable with yourself and happy with the person you are. This doesn’t mean you will not strive for more, but will do so for your own satisfaction. Those with high self esteem will never feel inadequate or inferior to others as they are content with the person they are, flaws and all.
Self confidence is based around your confidence in your abilities which is quite separate, although linked with, self esteem. Self confidence can also vary in different situations. You may feel completely confident in your ability to do your job well – high self confidence – but have no confidence in your ability to ice skate – low self confidence.
Now, you may be thinking, but I have never been ice-skating, of course I would have low confidence in that area. But not necessarily. You can have confidence that you will do your best and learn quickly. Going ice-skating with this attitude makes it more likely that you will learn quickly, reinforcing your positive self confidence. However if you have the attitude ‘I’ll be so useless at this, I’m bound to fall on my bottom and make a fool of myself’ then that is what is likely to happen, reinforcing your poor self confidence.