Owning Your Value and Building Self-Belief


5/18/20243 min read

We crave appreciation. A kind word, a pat on the back, a "well done" – these affirmations light up our hearts and fuel our motivation. But what if I told you the most potent source of appreciation and confidence lies not in the hands of others, but within the very core of your being?

It's tempting to rely on external validation. We chase compliments, yearn for approval, and tether our self-worth to the fleeting praise or harsh criticism of others. The problem? People see us through their own lenses, shaped by experiences and biases. Their praise, while heartwarming, can be like a butterfly – beautiful but evanescent. And their criticism, even if unintentional, can linger like a storm cloud, long after the words have faded.

True, lasting confidence isn't built on shifting sands of external opinion. It's forged in the fires of self-belief – a deep-seated understanding of your own inherent value. It's about recognizing your strengths, acknowledging your efforts with unwavering honesty, and celebrating the incredible journey you're on, complete with its inevitable detours and stumbles. It's about becoming your own fiercest advocate, your most reliable source of appreciation.

Here's why relying solely on external validation is a recipe for disappointment, and how to cultivate your inner compass of self-belief:

The Flawed Mirror of External Validation:

⦁ Subjectivity: Imagine two people viewing the same painting. One might admire its vibrant colors, the other might find them jarring. Similarly, people perceive your strengths and weaknesses subjectively. Relying solely on their opinions creates an unreliable measure of your true worth.

⦁ Shifting Sands: People's opinions can change like the weather. Today's praise can turn into tomorrow's criticism based on their mood, experiences, or changing priorities. Your self-worth shouldn't be at the mercy of such fleeting validation.

⦁ The Comparison Trap: External validation often leads to comparing yourself to others. This fuels feelings of inadequacy and ignores the unique talents and skills you bring to the table.

Building Your Inner Compass:

⦁ Unearthing Your Gems: Embark on a personal excavation project. Identify your strengths, the skills that make you shine. What are your core values, the principles that guide your decisions? Unearth your passions, the activities that set your soul on fire. Write these down, say them out loud. This self-awareness is the foundation upon which you build your confidence.

⦁ The Journey, Not the Destination: Shift your focus from the relentless pursuit of perfection to the beauty of the ongoing process. Celebrate your small wins, the conquered challenges, the moments you overcame self-doubt. View setbacks as stepping stones, lessons learned and experiences that make you stronger. Every step on your journey adds to your value and resilience.

⦁ Practice Self-Compassion: Treat yourself with the same kindness and understanding you'd offer a loved one. We all make mistakes, experience moments of doubt, and face roadblocks. Acknowledge these experiences, learn from them, and most importantly, forgive yourself. Self-compassion isn't weakness, it's the fertile ground where self-belief flourishes.

Examples of Owning Your Value:

⦁ The Artist: Imagine a painter who creates art from their soul, pouring their emotions onto the canvas. They don't wait for critics to declare their work a masterpiece. Their confidence stems from their own passion and the joy they find in the creative process.

⦁ The Athlete: Picture a runner who trains relentlessly, pushing their limits with every stride. Their motivation doesn't come from external validation, but from their own desire to improve and a deep sense of purpose in their athletic journey.


External appreciation isn't meaningless. A heartfelt compliment from a friend can brighten your day, and recognition for your achievements can be deeply satisfying. But when you build your confidence from within, external validation becomes the delightful garnish, not the main course.

You are the author of your story. Don't relinquish the pen to the whims of others. Embrace your value, find joy in the journey, and become your own greatest source of appreciation and unwavering self-belief. With this inner compass guiding your way, you'll navigate life's path with the unshakeable confidence to conquer any challenge that comes your way.