How often do you hear self-worth these days? I read about it in books and blogs and social media pages, I hear it in podcasts, clips and even in general conversation. A lot of this is focused on the “positive” elements of someone, and this is emphasised and hugely reinforced in social media. This is problematic. Let me explain why. Firstly, I need to dig into what self-worth is. Self-worth noun The sense of one’s own value or worth as a person; self-esteem; self-respect. In its very definition it is about value. With an object we purchase its value is dependent on what it has to offer AND the needs it doesn’t meet e.g. a cheaper version will not last as long hence it is cheaper. So to our own value takes into account our internal assets AND our flaws. Yes…our flaws too! Those with high self-worth know their weaknesses, they don’t think, or pretend to think they are perfect. They acknowledge their flaws, and further they do something about them. If you are only focusing on the strengths of yourself, are you ignoring parts of yourself? Are you ignoring them because you don’t like them, or because you feel ‘less than’ because of them? This will mean that when something occurs in life that forces you to be confronted with a personal flaw your self-worth drops. If you own ALL that you are, your self-worth will not fluctuate with external events, it may just be the reminder you needed to work more into that space. This is the issue with a lot of what you see on social media. By only presenting the ‘positives’ of ourselves and claiming we love this about ourself, and so we are showing our self-worth, we are missing a huge part of the equation. As a younger person I always had a firm grasp on the first part of self-worth. I was always able to list my strengths and my weaknesses easily. I had no problem acknowledging what I excelled in, what I was decent at, and what I really struggled with or needed to work on.
- I have great ideas, but I struggle to see an idea right through to completion.
- I am very reflective but can over-analyse.
- I am a passionate person, but I can be too narrow minded in the pursuit of something.
- I am empathetic, and I can take things too personally.
- And I can’t sing to save myself! I got a certificate in primary school saying “Sings well in groups” Even as a ten year old I understood what my teacher was telling me and thought it was amusing, because I totally agreed!