How to cultivate a sense of unconditional self-worth

How to cultivate a sense of unconditional self-worth

There’s little, if anything, more valuable (when it comes to psychological wellbeing) than self-worth.

Solid self-worth is the foundation of happiness and success; it’s one of those things you need in order to enjoy other things.

But many people misunderstand self-worth and confuse it with, among other things, self-esteem.

So one of the first things we need to do if we want to build more self-worth is to understand what it really is and then, what we can do to enjoy more of it.

Which is why I’m happy to be sharing with you this great article by Adia Gooden via the TED Ideas site…

I have struggled with feelings of unworthiness for as long as I can remember.

From the outside, my life looked pretty perfect when I was growing up. My parents had a happy marriage, they were supportive and they earned enough for us to be more than comfortable. I was mostly happy, but I also had a deep sense that something was wrong with me.

My most painful moments were at parties. When I went to Black parties, my friends made fun of me because I was rhythmically challenged and I couldn’t get my awkward middle-school body to mimic the latest dance moves.

Then, as the only Black girl at parties associated with my predominantly white school, I was never chosen to dance. I was never the object of anyone’s attention. I felt like I didn’t belong.

So, at around the age of 12, I decided that the way to cure these feelings of unworthiness was perfection. Simple, right? If I was just perfect,  then I would fit in. I would be chosen. I would really be happy.

I threw myself into formal dance classes, worked hard in school and tried to be a supportive and selfless friend. My self-esteem was high when I got good grades and felt included — but it crashed when I didn’t do well academically or was left out.

I held on to the hope that if I could just find someone to love me, then I would finally feel worthy.

In college, busyness became my key strategy for trying to feel worthy. I juggled classes and tutoring with the Black Student Union, student government, gospel choir, step team … I barely gave myself time to breathe, to think, to be.

After college, my attention turned to trying to find a relationship to feel the void. The anxiety and ups and downs I experienced in this quest were exhausting. I remember going out to bars and clubs, and just like in junior high, I was rarely the one chosen to dance. I began to question my attractiveness with my brown skin and kinky hair and whether I’d ever be accepted by a potential partner. I held on to the hope that if I could just find someone to love me, then I would finally feel worthy.

I’ll let you in on a secret: None of it worked!

… want to know what DOES WORK? Keep reading the full & original article HERE