“Before you can win, you have to believe you are worthy.” – Mike Ditka
Someone gives you a compliment and you say: “Oh, you’re just saying that…”. Someone buys you something you’ve been wanting for a long time and you’re like: “You shouldn’t have!”. Someone offers to help you out and you go: “You don’t have to do that for me.”.
Is this just social programming? Or is it rooted in a feeling of not being worthy of seen, loved and helped?
Either way it does two destructive things. Saying these things programs us to not fully receive gifts from other people. Also, it deprives the other person of the joy of giving the gift.
There are two words that can break this habit.
I used to do the same thing myself. Never fully took a compliment, never received a gift and declined help. Until I saw how it affected my friends. We were out eating and drinking and one of the guys wanted to treat us all (fancy bastard!).
I felt awkward since I knew I couldn’t pay him back. The stuff on the menu was a little pricy. I was on welfare at the time. Then he said something like: “Dude… You’re robbing me of the pleasure!”. I didn’t understand it at the moment but the underlying truth dawned on me a few years later.
Oh, yeah! The two words? “Thank you”.
That’s all. Nothing complicated.
At first it’ll feel awkward and not genuine at all. But remember that you’ve had plenty of years practicing and internalizing the feeling of not being worthy. This is just another program to open up ourselves to receiving the gifts of life.
Then one day you’ll have that moment when you’re given something and say: “Thank you!”. You probably won’t realize it while it’s happening but after a while it’s there. You know that you really felt worthy of the gift bestowed upon you.
There are other ways of changing your programming. You could make a list saying “I’m worthy of…”. You could turn that into a chant. If you really want to make it stick try rhyming or repeating a rhythm (iambic pentameter is teh shiznit!).
The “fake it till you make it”-principle applies here. It’s like building muscles. You need to put in the work before you see the results. You’ll have off-days when you forget and fall into old patterns. And that’s completely OK! Just like with meditating just notice the slip and move on.
People try to give good advice like: “You should believe in yourself!”. Yeah, thanks for the advice. But HOW!? How do you do that when you don’t feel it? You KNOW intellectually that you have every right to feel worthy of joy, love, respect, success etc. But your whole physical being says something completely different.
Strike a pose! Straighten your posture, imagine that you’re a superhero (you are babe!) and declare your mission to save the world!
The first time I did this I felt like… Such. A. Jackass. After a few times I kind of got into it. Some would say a little too into it. I started feeling more confindent in the things I was saying. They rang more true.
Remember that if we just understand the fundamentals of how we work we can change our habits, our actions and our minds.
When thoughts marry feelings we are moved into action.
You feeling uncomfortable? Good. Lean into it. That’s how you’ll grow.
“Self-worth comes from one thing – thinking that you are worthy.” – Wayne Dyer
“Nobody needs to prove to anybody what they’re worthy of, just the person that they look at in the mirror. That’s the only person you need to answer to.” – Picabo Street
“Wanting to be liked means being a supporting character in your own life, using the cues of the actors around you to determine your next line rather than your own script. It means that your self-worth will always be tied to what someone else thinks about you, forever out of your control.” – Jessica Valenti
“Once a week, I like to slip into a deep existential depression where I lose all my sense of oneness and self-worth.” – Bo Burnham
“Encouraging young people to believe in themselves and find their own voice whether it’s through writing, drama or art is so important in giving young people a sense of self-worth.” – Michael Morpurgo
“It is very dangerous to have your self-worth riding on your results.” – Jim Courier
“Your self-worth has nothing to do with your craft or calling, and everything to do with how you treat yourself.” – Kris Carr
“When you get to a place where you understand that love and belonging, your worthiness, is a birthright and not something you have to earn, anything is possible.” – Brené Brown
Amy Cuddy – Your Body Language Shapes Who You Are