So many times I have sat and struggled with that exact question: What am I worth?
For many years I was stumped. Stumped and unable to define exactly what I was worth to the world. How I brought value. How I contributed to society and what impact, if even any, I had on the people around me.
For many years I sat and believed that I, quite frankly, wasn’t worth much. That the sacrifice of myself in my entirety was the only way that I was worth anything to this world. That only by giving myself to others with no regard for my own well-being was the only way that I was able to truly serve the world. I was wallowing in a place where I thought what little care I was giving myself was all that I needed. Taking a few moments here and there for myself was all that I was worth in comparison to the work that I was dedicating myself to.
What loving parent would do that to their child? Limit them care and love based on the things that they did, the things they produced. Based on what they measured that their child was giving to the world.
If a loving parent wouldn’t do this to their own child, why is it okay for me to do this to myself? Why is it okay for me to determine the self-love, the self-care that I deserve based on what I measure I am giving to the world? Why are my successes the ultimate determinant of being someone who matters?
Some measure their self-worth solely based on their career. How much do I make? How close is that promotion? Am I getting assigned that next big project? How tasking it must be to compare yourself to your coworkers everyday. Compare yourself to a set of numbers on a performance review. Determine whether or not you are valuable based on the revenue that you are bringing in instead of who you are as a person on an infinite scale of awesome. I choose the scale of awesome.
Some days it is harder to give than others. The world tests us, pushes us, and gives us real life exams on how dedicated we are to love one another, ourselves, in the face of hate. Does having an off day make you unworthy? Does having an off moment make you an evil person that isn’t worthy of love? What about when someone else impressions upon you that you are not worthy? What gives them the right to determine whether or not you are valuable?
The answer is simple: You are worthy. You are valuable. You matter and you do make an impact.
Days will be better than others. If you move through each day with love in your heart, not only for those around you, but also yourself, then you’re doing exactly what you should be doing. Who is the person that is always with us? Giving or taking away from us? Making choices that effect everything around us? Me, myself, and I. Everyday I have the chance to make myself a priority and decide that I am worth my time and energy, regardless of the “measurables” that society tries to impress upon me.
You, too, have the opportunity to love yourself in the face of “the measurables”. The “you could”s and “you should”s that the world is pushing down on you. I challenge you to alter your mindset to instead include “I can”s and “I will”s that will bring you at least one step closer to the imagined life that you deserve.
Think of what an impact each one of your steps will be. Each moment you decide that you are more than the value that you or someone else has limited you to and you decide to create more for yourself, you put a shift in the matrix. As you do for yourself and choose to love yourself in a truly healthy way, in the process you will lift up those around you, inspiring their own self-love and creating a whirlwind of change. Yes, just you can make the world shine in a way that it hasn’t before, just because you decided that you were worthy of love.
Light shines from within. Sometimes it takes getting a little cracked up before we let it shine through.