Validation and self worth
How many of us have looked to other people or situations to validate our self worth?
Perhaps you look to your partner, family, friends or social media for validation? Or perhaps you base your self worth on whether you have reached your ultimate potential and success within your career, relationships, lifestyle or personal life? Often, the looming words are heard as ‘I’ll never be good enough until...’ or ‘when I achieve this then I’ll be happy’ or ‘I’m no good unless....’ or ‘one day.....’
Everyone can experience this from time to time, but it’s important to know that whilst other people’s opinions and situations do matter to a certain extent, the only person you may have dumped and whom you absolutely need to listen to is yourself!
The question is ‘what do you need to make you happy?’ Take a moment to breathe and step away from all the chaos stress and expectation of life and really consider what it is that makes you feel content and happy!
Then ask yourself is it really true that your self worth needs to be validated by these other situations? To a certain extent these people or situations can increase our confidence and can help us to feel better, but even people I’ve known or clients I’ve coached who seemingly may have everything still feel empty, lonely and they need other situations, circumstances or people to validate their self worth.
3 ways to start validating your self worth:
1. Focus on the ‘Here and Now You’: forget the future for a moment. The past is gone, the future is not yet here (although we can always plan!) Consider for a moment who you are and what you’re truly proud of (personally, professionally etc) and ask yourself this one simple question and give yourself 1-3 answers (these can be small or large)
‘I am proud of myself and love myself because...
this will help you to clarify your main values and to start loving yourself again in the here and now rather than letting your inner critic or hypothetical self run the show!
2. Ask: What part does your fear play?
Often our fears can be based on rejection by ourselves or other people and a fear of not being good enough or liked or how by not achieving something this will somehow impact different areas of your life. However, everyone’s fears are different. It’s important to know what you’re fearful of and how this is bullying your self love and validation into various degrees of submission. Does fear really deserve such a platform? How is it holding you back? Only loving yourself will take you forwards.
3. Gain some perspective: when Steve jobs was nearing the end of his life, he wrote about how he wasn’t able to take his wealth, lifestyle and status and success with him. At the end of the day we are all born and we will all certainly die but the greatest opportunity is to live a life that YOU want to live! In order to do that you need to give yourself permission, to love and to validate yourself and to live a colourful life led not by your inner critic but by your by your inner cheerleader.