On one side, it could be said that there is confidence, and on the other side, it could be said that there is self-worth. The first one could be seen as something one can experience at one level, and the other could be seen as something they can experience at another level.
Therefore, even though one is confident, it doesn’t mean that they value themselves, and although one can value themselves, it doesn’t mean they will always come across as though they are full of confidence. This doesn’t mean one can’t have both, but what it does mean is that one thing doesn’t always lead to the other.
For example, a cake can look magnificent, but that doesn’t mean that it tastes as good as it looks. It could be said that it is easier to make a cake look good than it is to make a cake taste good.
This is similar to how it is often easier for someone to develop confidence than it is for them to develop self-worth. However, while confidence is something that can come and go, self-worth is not as transitory.
Confidence is often something that one experiences through receiving feedback from others. For instance, one can have their hair done and then people can tell them how good they look, and one can then end up feeling confident.
Another way this can happen is when other people tell them that they have done a good job. Through receiving their feedback, one can end up feeling confident.
Once they have received this feedback from others, they can feel on top of the world, and then as time passes, the feelings, thoughts and sensations that they are experiencing can start to disappear. This can then cause one to come crashing back down, and they may feel the need to do something else in order to gain more positive feedback from others.
However, if one values themselves, it will be possible for them to feel good without needing constant feedback from others. When they experience a change in their emotional state, they are unlikely to have the same need to find another way to experience positive feedback
If one is in an environment where they are receiving constant feedback, they may come across as though they are not only confident, but that they value themselves. Yet, if they were to spend time by themselves or to be around people who don’t give them the same responses, they might soon come crashing down.
When one needs constant feedback on how they look, for instance, it is likely to show that they haven’t developed their self-worth. And as they don’t value themselves, they need other people to give them what they can’t give themselves; however, it won’t be possible for them to internalise what they hear.
Even though one may value themselves, it doesn’t mean they will come across as though they are an extrovert. They might not stand out, and this is because they not going to be in a position where they are trying to prove themselves to others.
Yet, if they were to open up about the rest of their life, it might soon become clear that they value themselves. This doesn’t mean that they will be famous or have lots of money; what it is likely to mean is that they will treat themselves with respect and that their relationships will be healthy, among other things.
As a result of how they feel about themselves, they are unlikely to act as though they are more important than others. This is because they are going to be operating as a whole human being as opposed to being stuck in their head.
When one doesn’t value themselves and their confidence is based on how other people respond to them, it can mean that they are out touch with their body. It can then be normal for them to have an exaggerated sense of importance.
This will be because they are out of touch with their shame, and it is then going to be a challenge for them to have a grounded sense of themselves. Without the body’s shame to keep the mind in check, it is going to be normal for one to get caught up in the illusions that the mind creates.
What this shows is how important it is for one to not only focus on their mind when it comes to developing self-worth, but to also focus on their body. In fact, it could be said that the most important area to focus on is the body.
A Common Outlook
It is often said that our self-worth is defined by what we believe, and this can then cause one to focus on their mind. This also creates the impression that one can develop self-worth through having the right beliefs.
They can then end up using affirmations, positive thinking and success as a way to change their beliefs. However, there is a strong chance that this will cause one to cover up how they truly feel, and as was motioned above, this can cause them to create a false-self.
Another way of looking at this would be to say that it is not so much that one needs to develop self-worth, as it is they need to realise their self-worth. This is because it is not something they can really develop; it is something that is an inherent part of who they are.
One’s self-with is something that will be found in their body and not their mind, however, in order for them to realise this, they will need to work through the pain that is in their body. Once they get in touch with this pain, they are likely to see that they are carrying toxic shame.
Behind toxic shame is going to be their inherent worth, but all the time they are carrying this it is not going to be possible for them to realise their inherent worth. This is not something that can be changed by thinking or behaving differently, and it won’t change through achieving success either.
One way for one to let go of their toxic shame will be to face how they feel and to tolerate the charge until it begins to discharge. Being around people who affirm their inherent worth will also be an important part of this process.
Toxic shame can only survive when it is being covered up, and this is why it is so important for one to shine the light on this part of themselves. The assistance of a therapist and/or a support group is likely to be needed here.
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Oliver JR Cooper
Oliver JR Cooper
Author, Transformational Writer, Teacher & Consultant.
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That which is contained within these articles is based on my own empirical understanding and is true for me at the time they were written. However, as I continue to grow, what I perceive as the truth will inevitably change and as a result of this - parts of these articles may not reflect my current outlook.