Welcome 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 it will only take you five minutes or so the aim is that 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 the first instalment we looked at the importance of self-worth and we explored the fears and hopes related to it. This week we are moving on to valuing your feelings.
The start to valuing ourselves is to accept our emotions (and I mean all our emotions) as valid. How we feel at any point in time is an essential part of who we are. When we deny our feelings we deny an important part of ourselves and we lose valuable information that we can learn from.
The problem is that we are taught through life to judge our emotions. We classify some as good and some as bad. Which ones we classify into which group depends very much on our upbringing and the culture we live in.How we feel at any point in time is an essential part of who we are Click To Tweet
We may learn to dismiss sadness as a weakness even though it is an essential part of the human experience. From it we grow and develop.
Similarly anger may be an emotion we ignore or even despise, despite its important role in our lives. It lets us know when a line has been crossed. It prepares us to stand up for ourselves. (There are, of course, certain reactions that come from feeling angry that are not helpful. However violence or rage normally come from unexpressed anger bursting out in an inappropriate time or in an inappropriate way).
The problem comes when we judge certain feelings that we have.
‘I shouldn’t feel like this’
‘Why do I feel like this? It’s not right’.
When we are busy denying a feeling it stops us using it as the tool that it is meant to be. If I felt angry for example, denying it might stop me acting when necessary or exploring the deeper reasons behind the situation and why it is causing such a strong response in me.
The more emotions we deny the less we feel able to be ourselves. It can begin to feel like we are wearing a mask, unable to show who we are. When we spend so much energy ignoring, denying or hiding our feelings we lose touch with ourselves and our strengths.
It is almost impossible to value ourselves when we reject key aspects of who we are.
There are no good or bad emotions. There is no right or wrong way to feel. They just are. They tell us something. When we stop judging certain feelings we are able to make use of them.It is almost impossible to value ourselves when we reject key aspects of who we are. Click To Tweet
The Self-Worth Challenge Questions
So lets start this weeks questions about you. Many people find it helpful to jot down their ideas so that they can look back on them.
Most importantly really be aware of your first thoughts after each question. Don’t filter out anything for an answer you find more acceptable. There is no right and wrong or good or bad when exploring your inner world.
What emotions do you judge as good and which bad?
This is a very important question to answer for ourselves. Once we have identified what we deny (or are uncomfortable with) we can begin to watch out for these feelings, subtly allowing them into our lives bit by bit. We can begin to practise how to process them differently and be more true to ourselves. It could be anything. Some people learn to deny happiness or fun because they feel it is not for them.
When you find yourself in the future denying or ignoring a feeling you have, consider
How can I allow this feeling?
For example, someone who realises they deny anger might begin to notice that instead of getting angry they cry. From there they can begin to question if their tears are anger and what other approaches could be used to express that feeling.
Similarly, if someone realises that they ignore sadness then they can begin to spot the times they are sad. They might find that instead of allowing the sadness they become very busy sorting things until it appears to go away. From this knowledge that person could notice those times of intense activity and question what they might be feeling sad about.
If this is challenging then think about the people that you care about and how you would help them if roles were reversed by asking yourself….
How would you support a friend who was feeling the same as you?
Could you apply the same kindness to yourself?
The next topic on The Self-Worth Challenge: Your Are Unique
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.
I would be happy 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:
- The Self-Worth Challenge
- Why It Is Great To See Other Parents Struggling
- 5 Tips To Deal With The Endless Work Of Motherhood
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