May 19: Self-Worth

Monthly Career Freedom Guide

A lot of changes are happening, momentum is building, but the new future might not seem to be right next door >>> Do you feel the same?

A lot of people in my circle are also yearning for a fresh new start in their careers and in how they make a living.

Amidst all the changes around us, as well as within us, we’ll need strong roots to ground us firmly, so that we won’t be taken away by the storm.

Those roots that ground us are our Self-Worth.

Self-worth is defined by Merriam-Webster as:

“a feeling that you are a good person who deserves to be treated with respect.”

Psychology researchers tell us that whether we have opportunities to experience success in our adolescence would highly influence our self-worth (Clark-Jones, Michigan State University, 2012).

As we grow older, we understand there is no free lunch. If we desire something, we need to put out something in exchange.

It can be in material forms like money or something to barter with.

It can be our charisma and beauty.

It can be be-friending someone who has the resources by trying to fit in and finding similarities.

It can be hard work.

It can be our unique gifts, talents and services that come easily to us but quite difficult for others.

It can be our compassion and warmth.

It can be our wisdom, our unique perspective and our intelligence.

There are no guarantees that when we put in efforts we MUST get what we want.

But since we expected that to be true, when we don’t get what we want, we could experience the sense of failures, disappointments (+ guilt and shame) from others and from ourselves, and wonder if there is something wrong with us.

And that vicious cycle begins: We work hard to achieve what was expected on us >> gain love and praise from others >> feel validated, so even more motivated to achieve their expectations >> fail in meeting targets >> lose respect from others >> feeling not worthy and not good enough >> trying to work even harder but feeling torn and disintegrated inside.

In short, we learn to believe that we only see our own values in the eyes of others.

Bear in mind it’s just a learnt behaviour. No one is born like this!

As an infant, have you ever question your deserving-ness in being fed when you were hungry?

No. You just cry out loud and EXPECT & DEMAND the world to take care of you. Because you know you’re worth it.

We don’t live on a lone island so fulfilling some expectations of others are expected.

But we don’t define how much we are worth by benchmarks of others.

What we see in the eyes of others is merely a reflection of the mirror.

And WE have total control of how we show up in the world!

Your mirror does not define you.

And trying to change your reflection in the mirror, is just silly.

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I have a quick question for you:

Who do you think you are? ( Asked gently with smiley eyes~)

Maybe you’ll say…

I am [my name].

I am [my job title].

I am [my gender, age, nationality, family role].

I am [my current mood].

I am [my personality traits].

I am [ my physical appearance].

>>> What if we strip away all these labels, what left?

All of these labels are given to you AFTER you were born anyway, trying to define who you are as a living being with a soul inside.

You are a human being.

NOT a human doing.

So just stop defining yourself with what you do, what you have done, and what you haven’t done!!!

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My favourite exercise for raising self-worth quickly:

Mirror Work (Louise Hay, You Can Heal Your Life)

Every morning when you wash your face, look into the mirror, have eye contact with yourself and declare:

  • [Your name], I’m proud that you ……..[list 7 reasons]
  • [You name], I forgive you for…… [ list 7 reasons]
  • [Your name], I commit to you that…[ list 7 items like , “I’ll never judge you as lazy when you need rest”; “I’ll never betray you by saying yes when I truly want to say no”]

So simple, but so profoundly life-changing.

I challenge you to do this for at least consecutive of 7 days, and NOT crying in tears of relief and peace of mind.

This exercise is THAT intense.

Because until we start to grow a loving and intimate relationship with our own self, we cannot help but keep projecting our expectations and shadows onto our partner, and that hinders us from seeing their authentic self. True intimacy cannot be attained when neither side is embodying their truest nature of being.

Let’s reclaim the “I” in all your sentences, and the next time you speak “I”, show more respect towards yourself: Your time, your energy, your money, your desires, your feelings, and your boundaries.

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What I’m currently reading/watching –

I love my virtual mentors! This month I’m reading:

Becoming Supernatural: How Common People Are Doing The Uncommon by Joe Dispenza

I’m becoming a huge fan of Dr Joe Dispenza’s work recently who is a genius in bringing spirituality and science together in a very understandable way. Even just watching his interviews on YouTube are mind-blowing. Highly recommended if you love unlocking more about the power of the mind.

Brené Brown: The Call to Courage on Netflix

Can you NOT love Brené Brown ??! Watching her latest show on Netflix just crack me open. At the end what makes us human, is our human-ness – our emotions, our vulnerability, our courage amidst all fears, and the complicated beauty in between.

Investing in your self-worth always has the highest ROI 🙂