Most of my readers are girls, but I know I have a few dedicated male readers…thanks for the support Dad 😉 Honestly, this applies to everyone though, not just girls. Last week I shared a little bit about a seminar I went to discussing some of Brené Brown’s research and told y’all that I might make a mini-series out of the most important points. I talked about perfectionism last week (if you missed that post, you can find it here), but this week I want to share with you some things I learned about worthiness. Now…I’m going to get a little real with y’all so just be prepared.
Brené defines worthiness as “the feeling that we are enough just as we are and that we are worthy of love and belonging”. This is something I’ve struggled with all my life. If I’m being honest, based on Brené’s definition, I still haven’t accepted my worthiness. Most days I still don’t feel like I’m enough just the way I am. My inner dialogue often sounds a lot like this: “If I could just be more this, or more like that, or look like this…then I would be happy with myself and believe that I’m enough.” I’m not saying this looking for pity. I just know that a lot of people reading this probably struggle with these same thoughts, and I want you to know that you’re not alone. It’s easy to get caught up in this mindset, I know. Everywhere we go we’re being told that we should do blank, or we should look blank, or we should be blank. It’s easy to lose yourself in all of the blanks. You may wake up one day, like me, and literally not even know who you are anymore. Brené says, “When we spend a lifetime trying to distance ourselves from the parts of our lives that don’t fit with who we think we’re supposed to be, we stand outside of our story and hustle for our worthiness by constantly performing, perfecting, pleasing, and proving.” We lose our authentic selves in the process of trying to gain everyone’s approval. How can you believe in your worthiness if you’re not being true to yourself? You can’t. You no longer believe in your worthiness, therefore you start hustling for it. You wake up everyday and get farther and farther away from those parts of yourself that you’ve deemed unworthy. But here’s the thing…in our attempt to feel loved and feel that we belong, we’re really just doing the exact opposite. Our sense of worthiness is ultimately the very thing that allows us to feel love and belonging.
I’ve decided to take this transitional period in my life and use it to really get to know myself (cliché, I know) and find those things that I’ve been hiding in an effort to fit in and please everyone else. I wish I could tell you that once you realize you’re hustling, it’s easy to stop. It’s not. I’ve spent roughly 15 years hustling, so it’s unrealistic to think I can just stop. It’s a decision I have to make every single day…and guess what? Some days I fail. And you will too. But it’s ok. Each day is a new opportunity to be true to yourself, so just take it one day at a time. And, though it may not feel like it sometimes, by embracing your authentic self you will begin to feel love and belonging. It’s taken me over 6 months to develop a healthy enough mindset to put this into practice. There’s no timeline, so don’t get discouraged.
I hope this reaches at least one person who needs to hear it. As always, thanks for reading and have a great week!
Find Brené Brown’s book here! It’s less than $10…you can’t beat that 😉