I did something for myself tonight.
It’s been a long time coming, and it’s not all so often that I put myself out there in life. I can only assume that I have been the metaphorical simmering pot, my needs have been pushed back but have been bubbling away every so slowly until one day, they just spilled out. I had to address them, I couldn’t ignore them anymore.
So that’s exactly what I did, I tended to my needs and I took action. Actual adult responsibility, instead of burying my head in the sand. It felt great, and now i’m pinching myself.
So why has it taken me so long to get here? Why have my needs not felt as important as everyone else’s? Why haven’t I prioritised me?
Lately I have been digging in to the black box of who I am and how I got here, to this place in my life where I have so many emotional ailments that I’m struggling to bunch them all together in to one bouquet. One huge ‘flaw’ that I keep stumbling across is that I have an extremely limited belief of how much I am worthy, and how much it has held me back from being who I want to be. So much up to the point where I don’t have a clue in hell who I even want to be anymore. My drive and my will to be has completely dissolved – I just don’t know what I want anymore.
So when this small spark ignited inside me, an actual urge to be something, I couldn’t turn a blind eye to it this time. It had been so long since I wanted something, I grabbed and ran with it.
It sounds so easy doesn’t it, like its the most straightforward thing to do? I don’t know if you have experience of this but for me it’s never been so simple, and it all boils down to a few things I have recently realised about myself.
- I need other people to validate my ideas
- If somebody advises otherwise, I will radiate towards their advice, even if my thoughts say otherwise
- I often feel like an ‘imposter’ and a ‘fraud’
- I’m frightened of what other people will think of me if I fail.
- I’m terrified what other people will think of me if I succeed.
Well if this isn’t a mash up of self loathing I don’t know what is.
One thing that I realised when I wrote all these points down, is that there seems to be a central theme around other people.
How the hell did other people come in to this? When did I pass my own self-worth baton over to everyone around me who literally have no business in my life? No wonder I have been so anxious and held back. Who would I have been in my life if I had decided ‘oh, actually i’m going to cling on to my own worthiness instead’. I have given permission for other people who don’t have any care for me whatsoever to validate what I can, can’t and shouldn’t do in my life and as a result I have allowed myself no control over my thoughts, my decisions and my actions.
I’ll tell you a funny story, which, come to think about it is actually deeply sad, but it gave me a little chuckle tonight. When I was 16, I was exploring my career options, not quite sure about the path I wanted to take as many aren’t at that age, and I decided to do something that I loved to do. Something I was passionate about. Something I was good at – no – great at. It should have been a time in my life who I could really explore my own inner potential, open limitless doors, but instead it kind of went in the opposite direction.
I started to receive a lot of negativity from my peers because I was GOOD at what I did. I received criticism for being too good. I got treated differently for trying. I got ridiculed, unwanted attention which as a very self conscious and shy kid I loathed.
So you know what I did?
Listen to this. Read these words very carefully.
I deliberately sabotaged my work, so I performed worse and other people could do better than me.
Honestly. I messed up on purpose so I didn’t have as much attention. I genuinely believed that I didn’t deserve to do good to the point where I messed up what could have been a wonderful career. I decided that self-sabotage was the answer. All for the sake of pleasing other people.
I say this is funny, it feels less funny now i’ve written it down. Do you know what else I have noticed? I cringe at the thought of admitting that people were jealous of me. Not cringing that they actually were. Cringing because i’m admitting they were. Because I have never felt worthy enough inside to justify people feeling that was at something I was good and passionate at. I feel a heavy shame in admitting and accepting that. It is shame that runs deep.
It is a shame that has been rooted in to me and it’s come from somewhere. Im pretty certain people aren’t born coming out of the womb feeling a deep shame and unworthiness about themselves.
So to answer my question, why do we dumb down our worth?
For me it’s because somewhere along the way I shyed away from learning to validate myself and wrongly assumed instead that validation comes from other people. I ran away from the responsibility and gave it to others instead. As a result, I never lived my life the way I could have lived my life the way I would have allowed myself to. I let other people tell me how I am supposed to feel about myself, and I have been walking around with feelings of insecurity and feeling victimised, unsafe and fraudulent. That’s not a great place to be. But in recognising it, this can change.
This week, I will be practicing being more aware of when I look to others for validation and seeing if I can flip that around and find it in myself instead. I will be breaking the chain of I’m stupid and I’m not good enough, and saying ‘I can do this!’ instead. My worth isn’t for somebody else to decide, it’s for me to decide. It’s for me to decide mine, and it’s for you to decide yours. It’s for us to take back that control and stop leaving it in unfamiliar hands. We deserve more than that. We deserve to succeed and do well in life. To take back our personal power. We deserve to be able to admit that people are jealous of our work and our success, there is no shame in that. We deserve life and to live it the way it is supposed to be lived. We deserve to start right now.
If you are reading this, and this rings true to yourself and your own habits, I challenge you to join me in taking back our power from the hands of others and learn how to give back to ourselves as we truly deserve. Self love creates external love. Let’s make magic.