You Are Unique – The Self-Worth Challenge

OucYTJ1437052207Welcome back to The Self-Worth Challenge. Each week I am addressing a topic related to self-worth and I include a few questions at the end to help you consider how you value yourself and how to strengthen it further.

Although this will only take you five minutes or so, it will set you up to consider this aspect of your self over the coming week.

If you are new to the challenge you might want to start at the beginning and work your way through the series. The very first post is linked here.

Last week in ‘Your Feelings Count‘ we explored the importance of valuing our feelings and you looked at the what we might have been taught to deny. This week we are moving on to your uniqueness.

There is no one like you in the world. You have your own talents and abilities.

Now, of course, you have heard this before. We all know it logically but it is so easy to diminish the truth of this statement. So many of us do not allow ourselves to feel it or even think it.

There are so many things that we do that limit our ability to acknowledge our own strengths.

How We Limit Ourselves

We Take Our Strengths For Granted

We often take for granted the things that come naturally to us because they have always been there. It is so easy to not see our talents or if we do know them, we tend to think of them as nothing at all. However, when we really acknowledge what is special about us then we can properly begin to utilise what we have and harness our power.

We Diminish Our Talents Through Comparison

Of course, when we look to the outside world to get some clarity on our personal value more often than not we can see other people around us who appear to possess the same or better talents than we do. This can then make is dismiss the talents we have.

Valuing ourselves is not about comparisons, however. Comparisons have their place. We can learn from others and we can also learn about ourselves through them. But it is important that we acknowledge our own strengths and talents with out diminishing them just because we see others that have something similar.

Acknowledge your own strengths without diminishing them because you can see them in someone else Click To Tweet

The truth is we cannot actually be compared to anyone else. We are all different and bring something unique to the world.

Take me as an example. When I look around I can see plenty of other writers who are amazing. I also see other Counsellors and Hypnotherapists that deeply impress me. I can see people who are gentle and thoughtful too. All skills and qualities I posses. Whilst I have plenty I can learn from these people, they are not me. Their skills do not diminish my own. I have unique qualities (even if there are times when I look at others and it doesn’t feel that way).

We Can’t See Where Our Strengths Will lead Us

The well known quote from Steve Jobs

You can’t connect the dots looking forward; you can only connect them looking backwards. So you have to trust that the dots will somehow connect in your future.

reminds me that the dots in our lives (which I think of as peoples strengths and knowledge from their own life experiences) all add up to something very different for each person and none of us know exactly what that will be.

Even when we have plans, they may not work out the way we thought but there will always be something else. As human beings we are amazing. We constantly grow and adapt.

We Confuse Valuing Ourselves With Achievement

Sometimes we seek value through particular achievements.

‘I will feel good about myself when…’

I have lost weight, won an award, run a marathon, proved myself etc etc.

Whilst having goals in life is a great thing, we don’t want to hand the power for valuing ourselves to some external event or achievement. We are all unique and what is important about us is already within us right now. Not in six months time when we pass an exam or when we have done something we consider makes us worthwhile.

'What is interesting about you, is you' Alonzo King Click To Tweet

‘I Need To Be The Best To Be Important’

In a similar vain to the above, some people tie their self worth to achieving the elusive state of being THE BEST. Our society lords the people who are ‘The Best’ and so we imagine that being top at something will give us that feeling of value. It may do temporally but the feeling of self-worth only lasts if it is within us.

Again, it is fine to have goals but not to make your self-worth tied into achieving them. An athlete who wins a race is of no less personal value than one who comes second or last. In fact, there is no race without the athletes who come second, third, fourth, fifth and so on.

For most walks of life there is no clear cut best, anyway. Ideas of the ‘best’ changes constantly and quite frankly there are not awards for the majority of what is important in life and neither should there be. We have intrinsic value as we are.

We have intrinsic value as we are. Click To Tweet


The Self-Worth Challenge Questions

Take a moment to stop and think about what you have within you that has allowed you to live your life till now. Here I am talking about more than your achievements but your life experience, the things you have learnt, your innate talents, skills and temperament.

Look around at all the people you see in your daily life. See their uniqueness and allow it to help you fully acknowledge your own.

Does it feel comfortable to acknowledge yourself as unique or is it difficult?

If it is uncomfortable really start to question that belief in yourself over the next week. As you go through your days continue to notice the individuality of others and then your own. Notice what you bring to the world and how it is different from anyone else. If you find yourself diminishing those things you notice or dismissing them, then gently stop yourself. The more you can acknowledge your self the more you can give to the world. We will build on this next week.

There is no one like you in the world. You have your own talents and abilities Click To Tweet

If it is okay to acknowledge that you are unique then be pleased with yourself. To take this a little further over the next week take some time on a daily basis to imagine your future self with all the power to utilise your unique skills and talents. When anyone begins to imagine the things that they want in life, like their most powerful self, then they are explaining to their subconscious mind what they want from their lives.

Imagine your future self and consider these questions.

What is your future self doing?
Does your future self do things differently to you?
Is there any difference in how your future self presents themselves (hair, clothes, posture)?
What does your future self think about herself/himself?

If you are not used to imagining yourself in this way it can feel strange, however, it is really of great value. The more you do it the easier it will become and the image of what you can achieve will become clearer.

The next topic on The Self-Worth Challenge: Name Your Strengths

If you are excited by the prospect of this challenge please tell your friends. It is a great thing to do and be able to share with those who care for us.

I would be love to know any aspect of this that you would like to share with me. I am aware that these journeys are often very personal, so if you would rather not it would still be great to know you are following along.  I will respond to all comments.

So what is next?

If you liked this article then you may also like:

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54 thoughts on “You Are Unique – The Self-Worth Challenge

  1. Such an inspiring post and a great reminder that we are all unique, with our own talents and abilities and that we should celebrate them. I have to admit that I have been guilty of constantly striving to be the best and any sense of worth that I gain from achievements has generally been fleeting – as you say, if it doesn’t come from within it is only transient. It’s only been in the last few years that I have begun to feel more comfortable in my own skin and stopped comparing myself to others. Thank you for sharing this – will have to look back at your other posts in the series as well.
    Louise (Little Hearts, Big Love) recently posted…The Friday Focus 31/07/15My Profile

    1. Hi Louise. Great to have you on board. It is wonderful that you are already on the path to valuing yourself more than ever before. Work of this kind can at times be challenging but it has so many long term benefits that it is so worth taking time to do it. Thank you for sharing and your lovely comment. Kirsten

    1. It is so easy to do just because we have them there all the time in most cases. i am glad you liked the post. Thanks for commenting. It is appreciated. Kirsten

  2. Great post! It’s interesting because we have such perceptions of ourselves that aren’t always true and it can be really hard to change those perceptions. My old drama school taught us something that reminds me of your questions – to visualise what we wanted in our future in an attainable way. I also think believe in doing your best as opposed to being the best. Takes away the comparison to others 🙂 #momsterslink
    Emma’s Mamma recently posted…Advice to a childless friendMy Profile

    1. Visualisation is a very powerful thing to do. I do also agree with your ‘doing your best’ versus being it. although comparison is a natural thing to do it is best then to make sure that we take it back to being out us, not anyone else. Thanks for your insightful comment. Kirsten

    1. Hi Rachel. I am glad this was of interest to you. It is great to stop and consider ourselves in this way. Thanks for commenting. Kirsten

    1. I am really glad it was of use Laura. It is great to reset ourselves from time to time. We all make comparisons which is fine as long as we remember our uniqueness. Thanks for commenting. It is appreciated. Kirsten

    1. Hi Victoria. Thank you. I am glad to hear that you are valuing yourself more. It is indeed a journey throughout our lives and as we do value ourselves more we stand up for ourselves in ways we couldn’t have imagined. It is a good place to be. Thanks for commenting and hosting your fab linky. Kirsten

  3. Hi, thanks for this post. My future self is wise and balanced. I have just split up with my partner (well in February actually) and have just moved into a new flat with my 11 month old baby. It was absolutely the right decision, I feel liberated and able to be absolutely me once more. I feel happy with who I am. I am on a journey though and I really sense that. It is still early days and I have not yet established that routine and balance that I feel that I and my son need in our lives. It may take some time, but that is the aim and that is my vision of my future self (hopefully to be achieved in the short term). Thanks for the tips.
    Pen recently posted…Make believe stories about my neighbourMy Profile

    1. Hi Pen, Thank you for sharing your experience. Your future self sounds great. Keep allowing yourself to imagine that person and be them for a short time. It has a snowball effect of building up for your mind the person you are becoming. Because without a doubt you do have that person within you otherwise you couldn’t visualise them. Well done in valuing yourself enough to make tough decisions that are good for you and your baby. Kirsten

    1. Thanks very much Nige. Loved your post too on moments that you have learnt from. Have a great weekend. Kirsten

    1. Hi Lianne, It is a great thing to do isn’t it! We all can benefit from stopping to value ourselves. Thanks for your support. There is more on its way. Kirsten

  4. I love this post! As I am now on a journey of finding my purpose and experiencing life outside of being a wife and mom. I will definitely be coming back to see your next post. thank you!!

    1. Wonderful Chantale. Thank you for letting me know. It is quite a journey after motherhood but it can also be exciting to rediscover ourselves with all the new skills we have learnt over the years of being a parent. Kirsten

  5. It is funny I wrote a post the other day about how when I started blogging I hadn’t read anyone else blog and how I believed it was good for me because I most likely never would have started had I compared myself to others. I have always doubted what I have to offer and so opening up through blogging has been a great experience for me and a chance for me to realise I have my own voice and message to share. You always inspire me. Thanks for linking with #mummyandus
    Mackenzie Glanville recently posted…Sold #mummy & usMy Profile

    1. Hi Mackenzie, It is so important to feel that we have a voice. Finding our own ways of expressing ourselves is very important. I am so glad that you have got this way of sharing your message. It is scary to start with for many of us but as you say it is a process of discovering our voice and sharing what we have to give. I am am personally so glad that you do it. Have a great week. Kirsten

  6. I must admit, I am my own worst critic. I was criticized my whole life by family. I was constantly put down but I have a very defiant spirit so I set out to prove them wrong throughout my childhood. When my grandfather told me that he believed I would be “knocked up” by the time I was sixteen, dropped out of high school and probably on drugs, I set out to prove all of it was not me. He told me this when I was thirteen. When my great-uncle told me that I would end up just like my mother (who, in his mind, was a drug-addicted whore), I set out to prove him wrong. When I was told I would never amount to anything, I went to college to prove them wrong. Now, as an adult though when I had to quit my job and having PTSD, I criticize myself for not being better. I know what I am capable of but all of these obstacles keep getting in my way. Sometimes it’s overwhelming and that’s when I put myself down. I hold myself to a high standard and when I don’t meet that standard, it hurts. I now understand though that I don’t need to be perfect and I certainly don’t need to prove anything to anyone but myself. I love the quotes in your post. Maybe I should write my own post about conquering my own doubt of my self-worth. Thanks for sharing!
    Michelle recently posted…Life quote #1My Profile

    1. Hi Michelle. It is very tough to have lived with so much criticism from a young age. It sounds like you have really fought back. It is really important that the fight is more about what we want than proving others wrong otherwise we can get lost in the battle. I am so glad that you are valuing yourself more. You have so much just as you are. Even though things are getting in the way when we work on being ourselves and valuing our feelings, the journey all teaches us something and adds to what we have to give. I would love to read your post. If you do one please let me know. Thank you so much for sharing. Kirsten

      1. Hi! Yes, I have come to realize that I don’t have to prove myself to anyone and it has actually made me happier and made me feel stronger. Thanks for commenting. I have written two posts about my experience with PTSD. Here is the first one:

        and the second:

        I hope you enjoy reading them. The second post, especially helped me because right prior to writing it, I had some issues with family and normally when that happens I clam up and won’t express myself. Not this time though. I wrote it anyway and am really proud of myself! Let me know when you have read it. I would love to hear your feedback.
        Michelle recently posted…Music Has Always Been My Rock!My Profile

        1. Great Michelle. Thanks for sharing the links. I will read them when I have returned from holiday. From what you say just writing them was a really good shift in the right direction. Kirsten

    1. There is a difference between striving to be all we can be and being critical of ourselves. We can do one without the other. The difference is probably best heard in the way we talk to ourselves which I cover later in the series. Many if us internalise a powerful critic which is okay as long as we can hear it as that and still be good to ourselves. Thanks for your support and comment Trista. Kirsten

    1. Well Thank you for sharing that Lady Nym. It sounds like you need to sit with that knowledge for a little while and see where it takes you. Often just by acknowledging something is difficult for us, it begins to change. It takes strength to acknowledge those things so it would be great if you could be pleased with yourself. The next in the series might be a good one for you as we start to be more specific. Thank you for sharing. Kirsten

  7. What a WONDERFUL post Kirsten! I love this and can’t believe I’ve missed the rest of the self worth challenge. When I’ve got more free time, I must pop back and start from scratch, as it’s such a fabulous idea!

    In regards to appreciating my own uniqueness, like so many of us, I have found it incredibly difficult at times. However with age and wisdom, comes an acceptance and I’ve found, even a love for things about myself which I may have previously disliked or not even noticed. I’m certainly the most comfortable I’ve ever been in my own skin.

    We are all unique and thank goodness for that! And of course, we all have value to offer. So anytime spent on realising and working on this, sounds brilliant to me. WELL DONE 🙂 xxx

    Katie / Pouting In Heels recently posted…MY TOP TEN TECHIE THINGS FOR SUMMERMy Profile

    1. Hi Katie. Thank you for sharing. I am glad to hear that you are feeling more comfortable than you ever have. I think that this is a lifelong journey to open ourselves up to our own power. It is wonderful to look back and see how acknowledging ourselves has impacted our lives and also wonderful to look forward and think of what else we will discover in ourselves. It is very exciting. Kirsten

  8. What a great program! I just found you through #twinklytuesday and I like what you´re talking about. I will go back to the previous week and try and do your challenge. Its a great resource for everyone. I will share it with our mommitment FB page, I think they will love it too!

    1. Thank you Orana, I am so glad you liked it. The series is a resource that I would love people to use. It is so important to value ourselves and it is an ongoing journey through life. Thank you for letting me know you have found it and sharing on your FB page. Kirsten

  9. I really look forward to reading your posts when I come over from #mummyandus. I enjoyed this weeks journey of self discovery, I’m particularly guilty of taking for granted my own talents, thinking that everyone else thinks, speaks or behaves just like me! This defies logic of course, but it has taken many years of insistence from my husband to believe that I ‘have a way with words’ before I would take the plunge and begin writing. The recognition of this talent has been enormously liberating, and writing has brought about personal reflection and growth; just like the Steve Jobs quote, the dots of my future have writing written into them!
    Lisa recently posted…The Junctions Of Motherhood; 15 Moments That Will Change Your Parenting JourneyMy Profile

    1. Hi Lisa, It is wonderful to read about your journey. It is great to discover what we can achieve when we acknowledge our talents. It is exciting to think what else lies in store when we acknowledge/discover more of our strengths. I am so glad you like the series. Thanks for sharing. Kirsten

    1. Thanks for letting me know Zena. I am glad the series is helping you reflect on yourself. Next week I have some practical activities to do that can be really helpful with this. Kirsten

  10. I definitely need to go back to the beginning of this course. I find it hard to think of anything I do or have that is unique. I am my own worst critic and constantly compare myself to others. I’m going to try and make some time over the next week to have a read. Thanks so much for sharing and linking up to #PickNMix
    Mummyandmonkeys recently posted…Allergy Friendly baby meal ideasMy Profile

    1. It can be tough when we have not allowed ourselves to think about these things before. Allow yourself to sit with the concept of uniqueness and see what comes up. It is mostly that you become comfortable with the idea that you are unique at the moment even if it is tough to say why. Next week I go into identifying your strengths because we all have them although many of us just don’t see what they are. Thanks for commenting. Kirsten

  11. This post really struck a cord with me, I am always comparing myself to others and thinking what they do so well rather than what I do well. Really inspiring I am going to look through the other posts you have done for this series – so well written as well Thanks for linking up to #sundaystars
    Everything Mummy recently posted…Tesco’s Eat Happy ProjectMy Profile

    1. I am glad it struck a chord with you. It is so important to stop and value who we are and what we have in the present time. Thank you for your kind words and letting me know. Kirsten

  12. I really loving this series of posts! It’s exactly what I need to hear. Although at the same time equally difficult. Thanks for linking up with us on the #bigfatlinky hope to see you there this week.

    1. Hi Martyn, I am glad to hear that it is helpful. In some ways as a Counsellor I am also glad to hear that it is difficult. Not that I want that for anyone but because I know that when we are touching on challenging issues there is the potential for growth which is exciting. Thank yu for letting me know and feel free to ask any questions and I will do my best to help. Kirsten

    1. Hi Debbie. Different is good it means you have something different to bring the world. It is not always easy to be different though until we learn to value what is within us that most others don’t have. Thanks for sharing. Kirsten

  13. As always uplifting and inspiring and we don’t give ourselves enough credit and comparison is such a hard thing to ignore. Thank you so much for linking up to Share With Me. #sharewithme

    1. You are so right Jenny. It is not that we should ignore comparison, it has its place, but we need also to appreciate ourselves. Thanks for commenting. Kirsten

  14. I find it very easy to see my uniqueness, but I find myself defending it. For instance, I am happily single with absolutely no interest in dating or pairing up, and while I generally stay mum on the topic, I find myself over and over explaining WHY I’m single and happy with it. But every time I have to explain myself, I feel more and more like there’s something wrong with me for not going with the standard model of being half of a couple… although not enough to accept a date!!

    Thanks for linking with #TwinklyTuesday and being such a positive voice in our community.
    Sadia recently posted…Make-It Monday: DIY Teacher GiftsMy Profile

    1. Hi Sadia, Thank you so much for sharing this. It is great that you are comfortable with your uniqueness. Recognising it is the biggest step. In general when we find ourselves defending something too much it is because at some deeper level we are uncomfortable. This could be for so many reasons and it will be very individual. It could be a need to fit in right up to unconscious deeper fears. It is really worth exploring what that is so that you can be okay with yourself, just as you are. It is daunting when we notice these things in ourselves but also exciting because they are an opportunity for growth and when we grow all sorts of unexpected developments can come out of it. Thanks for choosing this post on Twinkly Tuesday. It is much appreciated. Kirsten

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