As I picked up the pen to write this, I wondered if I had any right to talk about this. If I had any right to talk about self-worth and self-value.
I, who went by each day on a rollercoaster of self-esteem. Every day was a constant battle of reminding myself that ‘I am beautiful’ (as mundane as that sounds, the sudden thought of the opposite sends me into a tumultuous journey of finding myself again).
I still remind myself with phrases like: ‘Believe in yourself’ ‘You can do it”, ‘You are worth it’, ‘Don’t give up’, ‘Remember when you did this and that, you can do this too’. But what I’ve come to realize is that whatever it is you are wondering, worried about; someone out there is wondering or worried about the same thing. And, as you help yourself, you help others as well.
So, this isn’t an article to tell you how to. This is to remind both myself and you too. For we know the truth in our hearts, we only need reminders (to defeat the fear, believe and live up to our values).
1. Believe in your beauty:
Perhaps, we should start from the physical. Look into the mirror, absorb all the features you see; your face, eyebrows, eyes, cute nose, lips, the dimple in your cheek or the lines that form when you smile. Do it! Smile… your teeth…pearl strokes of beauty.
Notice more, the extras and features you love the ones you wish to change. But No! Don’t think about changing them, just absorb them all in. Everything together, make you YOU and beautiful. No comparison whatsoever.
Your cheekbones are perfect…dentition…on point. That gap was meant to be there and the little spot on your face has come to stay. Accept your beauty, it belongs to no one else.
2. Believe in yourself:
Confidence comes from accepting yourself and trusting in your decisions. The more you do this, the better you get at it. Trusting in yourself may be scary. It is quite easy to seek answers from others because of the fear of being wrong.
Getting answers from others also gives the excuse of blaming someone else but yourself when things turn out bad. But, trusting your gut and acting upon it gives you the permission to believe in you. And with continuous use, that little voice becomes louder and hopefully, you lose the fear and listen more.
There is deep knowledge within us; an intuition that has been put there by God. But sometimes, we are too scared to listen (scared it may not be true).
3. Respect yourself:
It comes with the confidence. Give yourself the respect you give to those you admire, then you begin to admire yourself. Pause and reflect on those you admire and why you hold them in such esteem. Treat yourself that way too. Bring out the admiration from the inside.
List your strengths including weaknesses and fall in love with both. It’s easy to see the good in others and forget that in ourselves. So, write down your strengths. Try to cultivate the habit of writing and reflecting on what you have outlined.
At least start small by writing down 10 of what you are good at and love about yourself. Then another list of things you wish to work on. The former list should be more than the latter. If it’s not, then work on it, you have more in you than you think you do. Read the weaknesses by noting how you intend to work on them. Likewise, look at and feel proud of each written words associated with your strengths. Read like you would read the citation of an important person because you are one.
Read the weaknesses by noting how you intend to work on them. Likewise, look at and feel proud of each written words associated with your strengths. Read like you would read the citation of an important person because you are one.
Read and believe. Everything on that list is you and No, the weaknesses do not make you lesser as everyone has their weaknesses. Everyone, even those you admire, but our admiration lets us see little of the other side.
4. Live it as you believe:
Knowing who you are, gives you the confidence to live and believe in you. Also, it gives you an edge over your former self. The confidence to act and speak because you are coming from somewhere deep inside you. There is power inside each one of us; the power to believe and act. The power we can wield if only we believe.
Conclusively, as social beings, we seek validation from others but the best validation is from our own selves. Because, as the comments and belief of others wear off, we are faced with our own voices. That tiny negative voice that pops in the head once in a while may never go away. But you’d wear it down with the positive one gaining confidence.
And, sometimes, we may not win this fight, we’ll fight every day. Some days we’ll win, some days we wouldn’t. May the days we win be more than the days we don’t.
I hope you have been inspired enough to start living up to your worth and values fully.
Thank you, Shakirah.