Worthiness

(This is a step-by-step, progressive course; if you arrived at this page first, please back up and start at the beginning, HERE.)

Each time you validate yourself, your successes and your problems, and simply your worth as human being, and each time you are validated by others, it adds another piece of solidity to your self-worth, your personal power and feeling of energy.

You are worthy. Of being loved, accepted, helped, happy, succeeding.

Most civilized societies now equate skill and success with worthiness; if you aren’t skilled and succeeding with something, you’re not deemed as worthy, as being equal to others, as being worth your place among others who are ‘better than you’. You grow up being taught this by unfortunately all-too-many sources.

Children are often, and mistakenly, thought of as being mini-adults. Many parents and other adults put down kids and teens for not being skilled at art, building things, working at things. It begins early, and by the time you’re a teen or young adult you can be thought of, and think of yourself, as unimportant, irrelevant, uninteresting, worthless, if you don’t have a particular career, strong skill set, success or interest mapped out for your life.

You need to learn again to separate skill from worthiness. As for skills, people should be a little hard on you. If you want to become skilled at something, it does you no good if people pat you on the back even when you’re putting in minimal effort and you don’t bother to attain any quality skill level. But they should not treat you as less of a person for this, valuing your existence less, not caring about your feelings, life happenings, troubles and ‘small successes’.

Perhaps the most common mistake you’ll make in your life, usually causing you all kinds of obvious and hidden inner turmoils, is trying to please people in order to feel worthy, cared about, in their eyes. Trying to please parents, living up to others’ standards, striving to do anything that will bring you love, respect, from those you love and respect.

When you are born, you are a beautiful, perfect, innocent being, worthy of everything! This truth becomes taken from you over your growing years, as you ‘don’t measure up’ in certain ways. There is always something – if you’re good at sports, maybe you’re not good enough, or maybe you’re not so smart academically; if you’re smart academically, maybe you’re not that creative; if you’re creative, maybe you don’t have much energy for other work, hate labor work, are usually broke; maybe you’re not as good looking as others; maybe you’re fat; maybe you’re gay, or skinny, or a workaholic, or ‘lazy’, or whatever. Notice I didn’t say any of these were ‘bad’… but whatever you are, someone else will think it’s wrong, think you don’t measure up, think something about you is lesser, unworthy.

And so you get put down for some things, or many things, or maybe even put down for the entirety of ‘being you’. Maybe you’re criticized often, never praised, or even worse, maybe you are unloved, even neglected or hated. And then you make the biggest, and most common, mistake people make all over the world:

You start to transfer those thoughts and feelings to YOU. You begin to think you’re not worthy of someone’s love, or respect, you begin to believe that something IS wrong with you because people treat you as if something is wrong with you.

But learning the following little tiny elusive point can save you an absolutely massive amount of suffering and self destruction for your whole life:

When people make you feel badly about yourself, simply for being you, this is THEIR issue, not yours.

Even – or especially – your parents; when we’re young we grow to think of our parents as kind of like gods. They have so much power, control over us, over our physical bodies, our health, shelter, eating, behavior, beliefs, our opinions of ourselves, our opinions of others. This carries into later years if you don’t break that power hold as an adult. Your parents’ opinion of you is the most important form of acceptance to you throughout your entire life, especially for your first couple decades, and possibly well into your old age up to the moment you die. And your teachers in school, your friends, your bosses and co-workers later on in your workplaces, even the strangers around you and the media, all contribute their opinions to your self worth.

But as you become an adult, and can start comparing your parents and other people who have a lot of presence in your life, remember: they’re all ‘just people’. They have their own issues and problems they’ve never learned to deal with, as you will have when you’re an adult and parent yourself. If the problems are severe, and people take their severe problems out on you, you can become really screwed up, trying to please people who… can’t be pleased. Trying to be accepted by… people who can’t accept you. Even trying to do things, be things, in hopes you will be loved… by people who may be incapable of loving you.

Do you see: All your life you can grow up convinced there is something wrong with you, leading to more and deeper problems for you, a destruction of your self-worth and self-respect… when in fact it is really their problems that they are taking out on you.

If you aren’t being loved unconditionally by your parents, or those close to you, something is wrong with them, not you. If you aren’t being helped, nurtured, and are being ignored, neglected, something is wrong with the people doing that, not you. If you aren’t being respected, thought of as important, and are being put down, attacked, judged as worthless, something is wrong with the people doing that, not with you.

Almost every crime ever committed in the world, is by people who grow up under the above circumstances, and are lashing out because of it. Almost every suicide, is by people who grow up under the above circumstances, and are wanting to escape the terrible feelings those circumstances engender in them.

It’s not enough to simply ‘not abuse’ or ‘not neglect’ children, teens, adults. Under ‘no abuse’ and ‘no neglect’, you can still grow up feeling worthless, enraged, uncaring. Babies, children, teens, adults need more than just an ‘absence of being treated badly’; we all need an actual positive force to nurture us into having a strong self-worth. And this positive force needs to be unconditional, simply because we are human and we exist, not because of any skill or success we are evincing. Worthiness, and skill and success, need to be delineated and separated as two different things by parents and by everyone else in your life.

For this step in your course, I want you to reconsider your worthiness. Consider the list of anyone and everyone who ever made you feel less worthy, less loved, even if this is the people closest to you, and I want you to consider that this is their problem, not yours.

I don’t even know you, yet to me you are entirely worthy of my love and respect. Whatever you’re like as a kid, a teen, an adult, whatever you’ve done and whatever has been done to you, you get my love and respect simply because you exist, you are you. If anyone doesn’t give you that, consider that there is something missing from them; I want you to stop believing it has anything to do with you, no matter even if they put you down for every last thing you do and make you believe it’s all your fault. Stop believing that. It isn’t true, it’s a complete lie.

I want you to start searching for, or at least being open to, the right kind of people. They’re out there. They’re the people who look at you with care, look at you like you matter completely, even if they don’t even know you. You might have to remain in the lives of people who make you feel bad, even people who love you but still do things to put you down and make you feel bad… but stop thinking that you deserve to be treated that way. Start forgiving people who make you feel that way, because there are problems in their own lives or upbringings that led them to treat you certain ways. Problems they might never overcome, perhaps never even be aware of.

Start believing there are people who care for you no matter what you are, who nurture you no matter what your station in life, no matter your accomplishments or lack thereof.

You are worthy. You were born worthy.
It may have been knocked out of you by people and by life, but I want you to re-realize your worthiness. Believe it until you no longer allow even a small crack in that belief, until you know you are worthy. It’s the truth. Do not confuse ‘worthy’ with ‘deserve’, with the delusion so many people now grow up with, thinking that the world and the people around them ‘owe’ them something. Deserve has nothing to do with worthiness, deserve is all about imbalance and cravings and narcissism.

Worthiness, means you feel equal to all others in existence, regardless of the skills and successes you may or may not have, regardless of your looks and color and culture and gender, regardless of what belongings you may or may not have, regardless of whether you’re broke and homeless and are standing beside a millionaire. You feel worthy simply because you exist, and you are you, and that is enough for you to stand strong beside the very best and the very worst, and stand up against them if you must, and still feel whole within yourself.

Validation is an important part of nurturing yourself, and the more you can do it, the more you surround yourself with the kind of people who validate you, the more you will be reminded that you are worthy. Unconditionally worthy. Without feeling this worthiness, it is difficult to even begin working on solving your serious life problems; the feeling of unworthiness not only saps your energy and positivity and hope, it also saps your belief that you are even worthy of getting past your problems and becoming a happy and fulfilled being.

Consider your worthiness, over and over. But do not fall into the trap of trying to use worthiness as currency, as if being worthy is going to ‘get’ you something, solve your problems, make people give you things and help you. Understanding, believing, then knowing your worthiness, simply helps you stop throwing up more roadblocks to your positive evolution, helps you stop buying into the toxic feelings of unworthiness that stop you from trying to move ahead, and opens you to accepting help and life events that, when you felt unworthy, you were shutting out or not bothering to try.

You were born with worthiness, it is in you naturally, it is in you right now, and if your realization of that has been beaten out of you by life, it is time for you to go in search of it again… to open to it again.

There is no problem that cannot be eased somewhat, moved through somewhat, when you begin to feel an unconditional worthiness within yourself.

Worthiness

You might feel small next to whatever large events and problems seem to be shaking your life… but you exist, you ARE, and you are 100% you. Why feel insignificant, unworthy? This frog is the size of my fingertip, it has no ‘accomplishments’, no dreams of success; yet is it insignificant? Is it unworthy of my care?

After worthiness, what NEXT?

11 Comments »

  • Diane says:

    There are no words to thank you for your generosity in sharing your experiences and wisdom. I felt so alone when I typed “help me, please” into Google. Actually, I am alone. But I don’t feel so alone now. Your story about the man who committed suicide was the wake up call I needed. There are so many people who cross my path each day needing validation, but I’ve been so stuck in my own sorrow it’s all I’ve been able to see. I can actually feel the anxiety lifting as I type these words. Thank you! You are an angel!

  • Tristessa says:

    Thank you for writing this, and the rest of your site. Having put “help me” into Google, I came here, feeling so lonely and sad I can’t be in my own skin. I’m seeing a therapist who told me last week to keep telling myself I am worthy of the things I want (to have a baby, for my husband to really love me as a person) but I don’t know how to feel it, because I don’t. I’m supposed to look in the mirror and do this, but I just see the face of a complete idiot, running out of time to become a mum.

    What you say here about other people knocking the worthiness out of us resonates. In a way I hope it is that, because if it is, the right kind of people could redress the balance. But does anyone exist who can love you purely for you, without judging you, and attaching conditions to the love? And how do you know that they can? Sometimes people keep insisting that they do, but their actions don’t match their words, because they are too afraid or preoccupied or self-interested to see you as a whole person.

    Anyway. Thank you.

    • Bannen says:

      Those people exist, but they are rare to find. But there is always one of them available to you: that non-judging and unconditional person inside you. Want to go looking for her? I have emailed you.

  • Kenny says:

    I couldn’t stop crying while I was reading. I hope I’ll deal with this better than before… (maybe I’m gonna read it more times…)
    I’m the one who always solve the problems of other people but never gets a help (only of a few friends) and I have many problems to trust on people and myself. I’m very insecure. But, I’m gonna try to change it, even if it’s hard, and try to stop to let “being ignored, not have a good word” bother me. I do too much for people and I do expectate the same when I need, I guess that’s my problem and why I think I’m so unworthy. I always try to do my best even for who doesn’t really care about me.
    Thank you for have done this text, it’s amazing. Ah, and sorry for my bad English, I still learning and I’m not using google translate.

    • Bannen says:

      Hi Kenny; you sound empty and tired; perhaps you’ve had a whole life of trying to help others… in order to make yourself feel worthy. But then others don’t really help you feel worthy in return. So you’re always on the output, but you don’t get regularly replenished by others who ‘input’ into you, and this is making you feel empty. And you need to go looking somewhere else to feel worthy; you need to change direction and start exploring inside you to find your worthiness. I have emailed you.

  • Lost says:

    Really needed this today, thank you. Thank you so much.

  • HEKATE says:

    My mistake is trying to ‘become’ worthy by doing. doing more, trying harder, twist myself into a pretzel then someone may realize that i’m worth to bother with,that i am alive that i have some interesting stories to share…Worthiness is about being not doing..i know and yet my automatic responses are still replaying. sob. I just need a hug…a strong squeezy hug that squeeze out all these ancient tears.

  • Sarah says:

    Thanks – I feel lifted already.

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