Self-worth. We tend to think of it in terms of self-esteem, but self-worth is much more than how we feel about ourselves. I think self-worth is an action. It’s how we treat ourselves, how we speak to ourselves and how we allow others to treat and speak to us.
I have struggled with this A LOT. I stayed in a marriage where the things that were said to me were extremely unkind, to the point that they colored what I said to myself. I have said unthinkable things to myself, I have devalued myself in what I believe I’m worth to world and I have allowed others to devalue me.
I think self-worth is a hard one because it requires us to stand up for ourselves, against our own demons and against the actions of others. Sometimes we have allowed ourselves to feel so devalued that standing up is a monumental task. And the ways that others devalue us can be small, and it’s easy to “let them slide” initially. But the problem with letting it slide, even once, is that it quickly becomes a habit, until we have allowed that person to have no value of us. And when others stop valuing us, we stop valuing ourselves.
I challenge you to value yourself, to yourself and to others. But to do that, we first have to consider the ways in which we are devalued. So let’s talk about some of the most common ways.
1. We don’t honor commitments we make to ourselves. (Guilty!) I promised myself I would make a point of meditating for at least 10 minutes every single day. I made this promise to myself because I know how good it is for my soul to take some time to quiet my mind. Have I been doing it lately? No. Not honoring that commitment diminishes my self-worth.
2. We say terrible things to ourselves. Why? Of all the horrible things strangers on the internet are willing to say to each other, why on earth would we do that to ourselves? (I’m not smart enough, pretty enough, I’m fat, I’m not worthy, not enough, not…) PLEASE, just stop already. Stop beating yourself up.
3. We allow other people to say terrible things to us. If you find yourself spending time with someone who is constantly telling you everything that is wrong with you, cut that person out of your life. Seriously, no one needs that.
4. We don’t respect our own time, and we allow others not to respect our time. That one friend who always forces you to wait on them? Maybe you should spend less time with them. Maybe they don’t deserve your time if they aren’t willing to be respectful of it. This goes for clients too. Appointments are made for specific times. Emergencies happen, but if a particular client has lots of emergencies, well, they don’t really have emergencies, they just don’t respect you.
There are more, but these first four are the biggies. Concentrate on these, and your self-worth is bound to see a positive impact.