Defining Your True Worth
Anyone else struggle with an incessant inner people pleaser? Or struggle to define and accept your own worth? I know I have battled this for years myself. But now, at 36, I am glad to say that I atleast have an awareness of both my people pleasing tendencies and my recurring insecurities. And I have gathered some tools along the way to help me step more authentically into my decisions without the need to please others first.
"If you know your true worth, you do not need anyone else to confirm it." - Alan Cohen
Do you ever have moments where your self doubt stands in the way of a potentially good outcome in your life? Maybe you are plagued by the fear that others will judge you, or maybe you simply remain paralyzed by the fear that you are not worthy enough to receive this good outcome? Well, you are not alone. We all self sabotage ourselves - a lot.
It is easy to get caught up in the cycles of fear surrounding either our belief in our own worth or our concern that we will not gain approval from the world around us. It takes a lot of bravery to push those opinions aside, but if we take the steps to define our own worth, and seek approval from within first, then the courage we need to chase our dreams comes forth in a more natural way.
If you have an idea or a dream you are working to make a reality the surest way to fail is by placing too much weight on seeking approval or validation from anyone else. If you set out to achieve your goal with a primary focus on how you or your efforts will be perceived you will be placing far too much energy outside yourself and in turn you won't have the energy needed to take your dream across the finish line.
I speak from experience. I have always been a dreamer and a doer with the confidence and grit to see it through - but - I am also someone who has simultaneously struggled deeply with a need to please and gain approval. Looking back I can recognize many times in my life that I cared most about what others thought, sought out far too many opinions, and ultimately sabotaged the outcome I was hoping for.
We are human, to some degree we are all affected by this desire for validation. In time, however, I have learned that there are ways to silence this inner people pleaser enough to put your own truth above all else. The greatest tool I have found in working through this type of challenge is to make a list of all the facts I know about my own talents and capabilities. By making this list I am able to remind myself that I know better than anyone else what I am capable of achieving and only I know my true worth. I then journal about moments from the past when I was faced with the fear of how myself or my ideas would be perceived, journaling further about what the outcome was after I pushed past that fear. Again, this allows me to be reminded of what I am capable of achieving despite what anyone else may think, those stories from the past are my proof.
I have also made it a habit to choose wisely who I share my ideas or dreams with. Before I share my ideas with someone, I think first about whether or not their opinion might crush my spirit or derail my plans. I now know the people in my life that I can safely share my dreams and goals with and I avoid sharing with the people who might potentially take the wind out of my sails. It's a matter of acting with intention. If you focus first on what you know you are capable of and the worth you know in your heart is yours , you will surely have the confidence to accomplish any dream your heart has. And when you intentionally avoid the opinions that may be detrimental to your goals, you are able to act with more authenticity and you will know that you did so from a powerful place within.
Our fears, insecurities and desires to please others won't necessarily go away, but we can quiet them, we can tell them firmly that we are in charge of steering this ship and ask them kindly to take a back seat. Because ultimately, this life is ours to create, and our true worth is ours to define.