Most moments of feeling valuable are derived externally, from other people’s praise rather than an innate understanding of our own significance. However, when we look outside ourselves for value we betray ourselves and pay the high price of mediocrity. We’re continuously challenged to choose between the outer and inner forces to establish our own self-worth. Self-respect, self-love, and a belief in our basic goodness have to fight against giving in to feelings of social anxiety and shame, the fear of isolation, and the expression of suppressed anger. Our need to belong is the core trigger and nourishing force behind our tendency to give in to these pressures. Life presents us with many mountain tops of success and valleys of failure. In these valleys, we face embarrassment, exclusion, shame, and guilt. So how can we retain a sense of worthiness, especially during times of distress? Particularly when we feel guilt and shame, it seems almost impossible to reclaim our innocence and give ourselves the chance to start over. Shame and guilt create strong dynamics of self-punishment and often reinforce an endless cycle of choosing the wrong route to happiness and healthy self-esteem. An extreme example is the struggle of convicted criminals. Once a person has broken a significant rule, our opinion of him changes. He moves to the other side of the line, the dark side, even if it was a momentary lapse in judgment. He is now marked by that bad choice for life. From there the opportunities to return to normalcy are limited. But the same dynamics apply to all of us. When we fail, or see others fail, a shadow is cast and it is even harder to move on. We fight to forgive ourselves and we fight to remember the goodness that is now buried beneath the failure. But regardless of our failures, our natural right is to be here even when we’re excluded by certain parts of society for breaking their norms, rules, or values…..Aayaat.t

2 thoughts on “Most moments of feeling valuable are derived externally, from other people’s praise rather than an innate understanding of our own significance. However, when we look outside ourselves for value we betray ourselves and pay the high price of mediocrity. We’re continuously challenged to choose between the outer and inner forces to establish our own self-worth. Self-respect, self-love, and a belief in our basic goodness have to fight against giving in to feelings of social anxiety and shame, the fear of isolation, and the expression of suppressed anger. Our need to belong is the core trigger and nourishing force behind our tendency to give in to these pressures. Life presents us with many mountain tops of success and valleys of failure. In these valleys, we face embarrassment, exclusion, shame, and guilt. So how can we retain a sense of worthiness, especially during times of distress? Particularly when we feel guilt and shame, it seems almost impossible to reclaim our innocence and give ourselves the chance to start over. Shame and guilt create strong dynamics of self-punishment and often reinforce an endless cycle of choosing the wrong route to happiness and healthy self-esteem. An extreme example is the struggle of convicted criminals. Once a person has broken a significant rule, our opinion of him changes. He moves to the other side of the line, the dark side, even if it was a momentary lapse in judgment. He is now marked by that bad choice for life. From there the opportunities to return to normalcy are limited. But the same dynamics apply to all of us. When we fail, or see others fail, a shadow is cast and it is even harder to move on. We fight to forgive ourselves and we fight to remember the goodness that is now buried beneath the failure. But regardless of our failures, our natural right is to be here even when we’re excluded by certain parts of society for breaking their norms, rules, or values…..Aayaat.t

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s