Where You Get Your Sense of Self-Worth

By Leo Babauta

So much of our difficulties can be entangled with our sense of self worth — from whether we take care of ourselves with good habits to how we are in relationships to how much confidence we have at work.

Think about your biggest difficulties (other than problems at a national or global level) … how many of them could be resolved if you had an unshakable confidence in your self-worth? If you felt whole, complete, and incredibly worthy?

You could create and put your creation out into the world with confidence, and even market it to others.

You could launch a business or venture, create an organization to serve others, teach something you care about.

You could speak confidently in public, put your ideas out there, stand for yourself. You could set boundaries, express your needs, take care of yourself.

This all comes from a strong sense of self-worth.

But we are taught from a young age to get our sense of self-worth externally:

And so on. The problem with this kind of external validation of our worth is that it is fleeting. Sometimes we’ll get it and feel good about ourselves, and many times we won’t get it and will feel discouraged, rejected, miserable. And then we’ll seek more of the external validation, because that’s what we know to do when we need to feel better about ourselves.

So … what can we do? We can seek to find our self-worth from within.

This can be a lifetime exploration, but some places you might look:

Some of these might be challenging — that’s OK! Notice how you respond to challenge, and find wonder in that as well. Keep exploring, keep bringing curiosity, keep bringing wonder and love.

What would it be like if you had an abundant sense of self-worth always available to you?

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