“Strong people have a strong sense of self-worth and self-awareness; they don’t need the approval of others.”― Roy T. Bennett
People who struggle with lack of self-worth tend to be doubtful of their own abilities, opinions and their behavior towards others. They often have self-deprecating thoughts, which impacts their sense of self.
Having lack of self-worth not only keeps us from realizing our value but also takes away the opportunity of creating something valuable for others.
People with a good sense of self-worth are likely to be more happy, confident, decisive, and more content compared to the people with lack of self-worth. How do these people do it? How can you become more like them?
Here are 7 ways through which you can work on your personal development and build a strong sense of self-worth.
If you find it difficult to say no to people when they ask you for help, it is likely that you are afraid of being seen as an “un-nice” person. This trait of pleasing others is making you seek approval from the outside, when the approval for anything in life must come from within.
You need to understand that you can not be at someone’s disposal at all times. Saying no comes at a cost of disappointing others but it also comes with the opportunity to have more time and energy to yourself to do the things that you like. And when you start investing your time and energy into tasks that are important to you, it makes you happy and satisfied as you don’t have to burden yourself with the guilt of disappointing or displeasing others.
“Self-awareness is the ability to take an honest look at your life without any attachment to it being right or wrong, good or bad”, said Debbie Ford, an American author.
The person who you actually are, the things you do, the way you react, the way you treat others and yourself, the kind of relationships that you have with other people and the way you are perceived by others. – the unwashed and uncoated version.
The person you wish to be, the values and beliefs you want to live by, the kind of influence you want to have on people, the things you expect from yourself and the way you want to be perceived by others. – the ideal version you desire to be.
Evaluating both the versions of you, you become aware of where you presently stand and where you want to stand in future (physically, mentally, emotionally and financially). By taking a look at both the positions, you get an idea of the areas that need improvements and the things that need to be changed in order to grow and become a better person and to reach your objectives.
Doing this helps you find the right direction in your life, you start working towards your goals and this establishes the foundation of building self-worth.
Setting healthy boundaries in all aspects of your life play a major role in creating your self-worth as it means protecting your physical, mental, emotional as well as social well being. Once you become self-aware, and you work on creating the person that you aspire to be, it is crucial for your unhindered growth that you let other people know that you have some limits that can not be crossed.
We can understand how setting boundaries help creating our self-worth by the following example:
Boundary: Not tolerating disrespectful behavior
Everyone deserves to be treated respectfully. But, often times, we get sidelined by people in a group of friends, mistreated by our partners, get yelled at by strangers and sometimes our friends during discussions. If you don’t let other people know that you do not like being yelled at or being treated in a certain way, if you don’t make it loud and clear that you can not accept such behavior from anyone, people will take you for granted.
You don’t have to be loud in your words to convey the message to others. Remember, “actions speak louder than words.” It is actions that holds worth and it is your actions which makes it unequivocally clear that you don’t take what you can’t accept.
For example; if you find yourself in an argument with someone, and they start throwing bad words at you, tell them at once that you can not accept such language and immediately walk away.
Creating boundaries like these help you realize your self-worth and help creating a healthy, relationship with yourself where you respect your own values and boundaries.
The art of mastering our minds is accomplished through discipline. Discipline teaches us to control our behavior, manage our time and direct our energy wherever we want. Through discipline, we learn to command the decisions of our own life.
Being disciplined basically means, that everyday you make a promise to yourself to do or not do a particular thing and you fulfil that promise! This builds confidence and self-trust, trust in your abilities and capabilities. The doubts that you had initially slowly fade away and you start respecting your own judgement and you begin to see yourself as worthy.
Not measuring your worth by your circumstances
Never measure your worth by your successes or failures as circumstances in life tend to change. Abundance and adversity are mere events in life. They, in no way, define who you are or who you can be. Attaching yourself to the things that you obtain in life is similar to labeling yourself with a price tag. But, people don’t come with price tags. People learn and acquire knowledge, grow and evolve, they build and become, create and contribute; while things just remain and deteriorate. Value of human beings can not be depreciated as that of things can. So, if things and circumstances in your life don’t define you, how can they determine your self-worth?
Valuing your efforts
Instead of determining your worth by the things that you have in life, determine your worth by the amount of efforts you put into achieving them. Valuing your efforts means that you appreciate the things you have achieved and you find worth in everything that you receive, but you don’t attach your own value to those things.
Valuing your efforts has a positive and a progressive effect on your life. When you value your efforts, you do so because you know that it gets results. And once you start believing in your own endeavors, it dissipates the fear of failing, and slowly but eventually, you climb the ladder of success.
Everything that your efforts get you- money, fame, health, relationships, are worth something and it’s your efforts that help you achieve those things.
Trying out something new and challenging
Trying out something you have never done before or something that you have always wanted to but never did because you find it challenging may be just what you need in order to feel worthy.
When you do something that’s out of your comfort zone, you get to have a different experience. You learn new way way of doing things and gain a fresh perspective on life. You break boundaries of your own abilities and go beyond what you thought was your limit.
Challenging yourself to do new things and overcoming those challenges help boost your confidence and motivates you to do more. It generates self-trust and self-esteem and this reinforces a sense of self-worth in you.