So often I see people who suffer from extremely low feelings of self-worth. The dictionary defines self-worth as "the sense of one's own value or worth as a person". It is about who you are, not what you do. So often in our society we are encouraged to measure ourselves against others rather than paying attention to our intrinsic value. It is so important to develop and enhance feelings of self-worth coming from within rather than from external sources. To feel an intrinsic sense of self-worth, is to be powerful. If your value comes from within, it is truly yours. If you look externally for validation, it can be taken away and is not within your control.
So if you do just one thing - stop comparing yourself to others, it is a losing battle! Challenge your critical inner voice and practice a bit of self compassion. Treat yourself with the same kindness and respect you would a friend. And add meaning to your life by taking part in activities that are important to you. By challenging your critical inner voice and stopping comparing yourself to others, you can begin to get a feeling of your own self-worth. By pursuing activities that are meaningful and in line with your personal beliefs, you can develop your sense of yourself as a worthwhile person.
Did you know that March 20 is the International Day of Happiness? Celebrated all over the globe on March 20th, International Day of Happiness is a day that recognizes the importance of happiness to human beings and is also a day in which people are encouraged to do those things that make them happy.
Action for Happiness have put together 10 keys to happier living, their GREAT DREAM.
Giving - do things for others
Relating - connect with people
Exercising - take care of your body
Awareness - live life mindfully
Trying out - keep learning new things
Direction - have goals to look forward to
Resilience - find ways to bounce back
Emotions - look for what's good
Acceptance - be comfortable with who you are
Meaning - be part of something bigger
So think about what makes you happy? Go on, smile, share and think positively. Spend some time with friends and family, spend some time alone, be mindful, dream, listen to music, say thank you and mean it....do what makes you happy!
What do you focus on? So often we focus on what's wrong, or what bothers us, why people upset us, or get caught up in negative thoughts that spin round and round in our heads generating anxiety. That is why it's so important to develop the skill of focusing our thoughts, because it is so true that what we focus on we amplify. The ability to direct our own focus using hypnosis, visualisation or mindfulness can have a profound influence on us. Learning how to focus on positive possibilities...what's right...and what we want. So if you want to develop a new skill...try developing the skill of focus, and begin focusing on your strengths and amplify them!
Have you got an internal critic? I'm betting the answer is yes because most of us have that inner voice, the one that will happily give a running commentary on our lives, making negative comments and generally giving us a hard time.
The interesting thing is not whether or not we have that inner critic, but whether we choose to listen to it or not. Have you ever stopped to wonder whether it is actually worth listening to? How do you know whether to pay attention or not?
When I talk to clients and ask them whether they consider themselves to have high self-esteem or not, I have discovered that the ones who do have high self-esteem have something in common - they have learnt that their internal critic is not always worth listening to and have strategies for ignoring it. Some clients describe how they pretend they have a volume control and can turn down the volume on the negative voice. Others imagine another more positive voice coming from their other shoulder. Others just simply imagine turning their backs on the critic or walking on by ignoring it.
The interesting thing is not whether you have that internal critic or not, but whether you accept it and listen to it without question, or whether you have ways of filtering it out. So the next time you're aware of that negative internal voice, just stop and wonder whether you should take it seriously, or whether you can come up with your own ways of ignoring it. This is an important skill that you can develop and will lead to you being much happier in the long run!