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Many people in the West struggle with the idea of self-worth. They envy others, think that other people are far better, and see little worth in themselves. They look in the mirror and see someone full of flaws – a “failure” or “loser.” I know I have had times like this, and I am sure most of you have too.
They are also terrified that if anyone REALLY got to know them, they would run the other way. Shame, negativity and even anger drive their sense of self-worth as they beat themselves up for the least little mistake. And they think that everything that goes wrong is their fault, whether it is down to them or not.
Reasons for Negative Self-Worth
There are many reasons for this, but most start at a young age because we are expected to behave in a certain manner and will usually be punished in some way if we fail to meet the expectations of others. This can be as simple as being put in the naughty corner because you have done something “bad,” sent to bed without supper, of deprived of something you were really looking forward to, to constant criticism and being made to feel like nothing you do is ever good enough and you will never amount to anything.
If the last sentence sounds like an overly critical parent, this is one of the main sources of a distorted sense of self-worth. It can be just as bad to have an exaggerated sense of self-worth due to the excessive praise of an over-enthusiastic parent, but a low sense of self-worth is more likely to hold you back from the life of your dreams than over-confidence. I know that I give my girls a lot of praise, but I try to temper this with some more sensible comments too which hopefully will help them grow up with a balanced sense of self-worth.
The constant feeling that you “should” be, do, think, own, or earn X can leave a person feeling as though they are never good enough. It might even trigger them to give up. They’re never going to be good enough, or so they constantly think, so why bother? This can lead to a lack of ambition, and even self-sabotage due to this kind of self-limiting thinking.
The Benefits of Affirmations
Affirmations are one of the best ways to transform negative thinking into positive, “can-do” self-talk that will support you emotionally and intellectually. So what are affirmations? Think of affirmations as power words and phrases to drive you forward with your personal growth and development. They tap into both your conscious and subconscious mind, sending you messages that will drive you forward to success.
Affirmations help you accept who you are, and change what you choose to change. You can use affirmations to eliminate negative character traits. You can also use them to improve your skills and abilities, or even add new skills and abilities. With the help of affirmations, you can learn how to control your anger, avoid procrastination, stop smoking, and boost your self-confidence.
At first many people may scoff, thinking that they are “silly”, but you are feeding your brain positive messages regularly. And the more you feed your brain this way, the more you will find you will learn to accept your new beliefs.
Here are some affirmations worth trying, to help with self-worth and self-esteem issues:
1. When I believe in myself, others do too.
2. I express my needs and feelings clearly and know I am worthy of being happy.
3. I am my own unique self, value myself, and insist that others value me too.
4. I love and accept myself unconditionally.
5. I always do the best I can.
6. I respect myself and others.
7. I deserve all the success I have in my life.
8. I am free to make my own choices and decisions.
9. My high self-esteem allows me to accept compliments easily and also freely compliment others.
10. It matters little what others say. What matters is how I feel about myself and that I am living my truth.
11. I am letting go of past struggles, for a brighter future.
12. I have let go of the need to seek approval from others.
If you’ve been struggling with feelings of low self-worth, try repeating one or more of these affirmations a couple of times a day and see what a difference it can make to your life. Remember to adopt an open mind at first, and don’t give up. Soon you should start to feel more positive about yourself, and your feelings of self-worth will continue to grow.
If you read this and decide to give it a go, let me know how you get on. And which affirmations did you adopt? I’d love to hear back from you. Speak soon.