The first step in building self-worth is to stop comparing yourself to others and evaluating your every move; in other words, you need to challenge your critical inner voice. The critical inner voice is like a nasty coach in our heads that constantly nags us with destructive thoughts towards ourselves or others. This internalized dialogue of critical thoughts or “inner voices” undermines our sense of self-worth and even leads to self-destructive or maladaptive behaviors, which make us feel even worse about ourselves.
However, we can challenge the inner critic and begin to see ourselves for who we really are, rather than taking on its negative point of view about ourselves. We can differentiate from the ways we were seen in our family of origin and begin to understand and appreciate our own feelings, thoughts, desires and values.
A true sense of self-worth can also be fostered by practicing self compassion. Self-compassion is the practice of treating yourself with the same kindness and compassion as you would treat a friend. This involves taking on what can be described as the “COAL” attitude, which means being Curious, Open, Accepting and Loving toward yourself and your experiences rather than being self-critical.
There are three steps to practicing self-compassion:
1) Acknowledge and notice your suffering.
2) Be kind and caring in response to suffering.
3) Remember that imperfection is part of being human and something we all share.
Adding meaning to your life, by taking part in activities that you feel are important, is another great way to build self-worth. Helping others, for example, offers a huge boost to your sense of self-worth.
Generosity is good for you, both physically and mentally, and studies now show that volunteering has a very positive affect on how people feel about themselves. People find meaning in many different ways; think about the activities and interests that feel meaningful to you personally and pursue those activities to build a more positive feeling of self-worth.
Find “a goal that is bigger than the self.”
Acting on principles, in ways that you respect, is another important quality to foster as you develop a higher level of self-worth.
When our actions do not match our words, we are more vulnerable to attacks from our critical inner voice and less likely to respect ourselves.
By challenging your critical inner voice and stopping comparing yourself to others, you can begin to get a feeling for your own self-worth. By pursuing activities that are meaningful to you and acting in line with your own personal beliefs, you can develop your sense of yourself as a worthwhile person in the world even further.
What are YOU going to do today to practice self-compassion? 💕💕💕
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