Since the days of playing on the playground, humans have wanted to belong. To be liked. Much didn’t change all throughout around schooling. Especially in high school. If anything it got worse.
Our sense of wanting to be part of the “in crowd” caused friction with other friends. We were quick to shed our longstanding friendships with others who weren’t deemed to be cool enough. Yea, it meant that much to us to be a part of the popular crew.
To sacrifice memories and years of loyalty for supposed fame. I have seen it time and time again. But it all boils down to one word. Validation.
That’s it. For some reason, we feel that we have to be validated by other people. You know it because you all have said it like I have many times as a child and young adolescent. “If they only like me, then everything will be fine.”
Sound familiar? Well, you were wrong. And if you are still saying it, you still are. Sorry, but I have to tell you like it was told to me. I don’t need anyone’s validation about my self-worth.
Now, I am not talking about ideas. Or products and other things that you create. That’s different. I am talking about yourself. Your emotions. How you feel when you look in the mirror.
Sure, we want our significant other to tell us that they love us. That they can’t live without us. We want our kids to depend on us and always want us to be around for them. We want our friends to need us and call on us to strengthen our bond.
But that’s not what I am talking about. Those are relationships. They don’t validate your self-worth. They show only that people want and perhaps need to be around you. And if they do, then you have done half the job already.
No, I am talking about doing a self-evaluation. I am talking about getting in tune with your thoughts, Your feelings better yet. I need for you to do what we call in the military a deep dive.
A deep dive in the military is when we look at a mission, a problem, etc and get to the bottom of it. We pull away all the contributing factors and really look at what we are trying to do. We use all types of methods to do this, but my favorite is the whiteboard.
We used to use this board to plan out the most elaborate and simple tasks and operations. I don’t know what it is, but it’s eye-opening when you see something in black and white. When you can visually see the problem along with a solution it is amazing.
I have three here at home that I use all the time. But if you don’t have one handy, this is what I want you to do. Take out a sheet of paper and draw a line down the middle. On one side write down everything that you love about yourself. On the other side write down everything that you want to change.
Don’t think too much about it. Just write what comes to mind. Hopefully, there are more on the side of things that you want to change. Seriously. No matter how highly we think of ourselves, we all have things to work on.
So now that you have your list, start to work on those things each and every day. To Not to one day become perfect, but to continue to progress through life positively. Because ultimately it’s about striving while making progress. It’s about validating your life on your terms and realizing your true self-worth.
What are you validating in your life today?