There is accumulating evidence suggesting that stability of self-esteem, which refers to the magnitude of short-term fluctuations in an individual’s self-esteem, has important psychological functions. It can not only influence people’s feelings of anger, depression, and well-being, but also moderate the relationship between level of self-esteem and psychological health. However, knowledge about the neural mechanisms underlying stability of self-esteem is limited. Consequently, it is unclear what the difference or connection is between the stability and level of self-esteem, and how they modulate state self-esteem. To answer these questions, we first developed an integrated model to conceptualize the relationships between stability of self-esteem, level of self-esteem, and state self-esteem. Furthermore, we combined classical psychometry and neuroimaging techniques, stress induction, and physiological and biochemical tests to reveal the neural mechanisms underlying stability of self-esteem comprehensively and systematically. The current study will contribute to the understanding of the neural pathway underlying stability of self-esteem and thereby elucidate the nature of self-esteem, which has important theoretical and practical implications.