“Valuing Myself”

Some days I feel like all I am is an errand-runner, and not a very good one at that. I get a lot of things wrong. I can’t keep up with all the chores and everything else people want from me. I feel like I’m in over my head and start to give up on myself. Do you feel like this or am I the only one?

Even for most of us, like me and most of you reading this post, who understand the importance of self-appreciation and self-love, the act of expressing and experiencing love for ourselves can be tricky. Once we get over the negative stigma or our fear of being judged (which is often an ongoing process), we then have to deal with our own obsession with criticizing ourselves, as well as the fact that we may not actually know how to love and appreciate ourselves in an authentic way.

In other words, when we wait for other people, the accomplishment of specific goals or the manifestation of ideal circumstances to create the excitement, joy and inspiration for our lives, we give away our personal power and live in an insatiable way. Cheering for ourselves with passion, and with a true sense of love and appreciation is not arrogant, it’s actually required if we’re going to live a life of fulfillment, gratitude, and meaning.

Arrogance is based on fear and insecurity. Whenever I catch myself doing or saying anything arrogant (which I do on a pretty regular basis) it’s because I’m feeling insecure, wanting someone to like me or be impressed with me, or trying to compensate for some perceived “lack” within or about myself. There’s nothing “evil” about us being arrogant, it’s just not all that much fun for us or others — and living our life from a place of arrogance can cause a great deal of pain, suffering and hurt for ourselves and those around us.

Authentic self-appreciation is about loving, valuing and honoring ourselves, our gifts and all of who we are. The words, thoughts, and feelings may seem similar to arrogance; however, they’re not. Energetically, self-appreciation comes from a very different place within us than arrogance does. The more we practice loving and appreciating ourselves, the easier it is for us to tell the difference.

Here is a list of some things you can do to practice loving, appreciating, and cheering for yourself in an authentic and powerful way:

  • Speak about yourself positively
  • When someone compliments you, breathe, let it in and say “thank you” (don’t discount it)
  • Say affirmations to yourself in the mirror, and use your first name (i.e. “I love you, Shirley”)
  • Write down things you appreciate about yourself in your journal on a regular basis
  • Send yourself an email or card of appreciation — from you, to you
  • Buy yourself flowers or some token of appreciation that makes you feel good
  • Ask for the acknowledgment you’d like
  • Make requests of others (remember that you don’t have to do it all yourself)
  • Take time for yourself and by yourself
  • Celebrate your successes (big and small) and pat yourself on the back regularly

Being our own cheerleader is not about bragging, boasting or being better than anyone else. It’s about honoring, appreciating and loving ourselves in a real way. On this journey of life we are with ourselves in every moment — the more capacity we have to love ourselves, the more ability we have in turn to love others and share our gifts with the world.

And unfortunately, being our own cheerleader also means we have to accept there will be times where we need a “pick me up.” Being there for ourselves to pick up the pieces when we’re down, or when it seems things are falling apart, is a courageous thing to do.

We should not rely on others to put our lives back together for us. Rather, we must learn how to comfort ourselves and regain the positive outlook that will keep us going in the right direction.

Most importantly, when feeling down, we need to take the time to reaffirm our value and our worth by the use of positive self-talk and positive affirmations.

“You are a Work in Progress!”

Ok so YES, it’s true we are all a work in progress. Even me as I sit here and put together this post. The super-model on the magazine cover that is laying on your desk is a work in progress, Your boss that you may not like is also a work in progress. There isn’t one person on this planet that is 100% perfect in all areas of their life.

If you think you need to work on something in your life, it’s not the end of the world. It’s certainly no reason to stop believing in yourself. Don’t forget to be your own best cheerleader when you accomplish it!

Regardless of when you stopped believing in yourself, or why it happened, it’s not too late to start again. Chances are your self- belief tank just needs a little topping up. You’ll open up a whole new world of experiences and possibilities beyond your comfort zone when you do.

I believe you can do it. Do you?