You have an inner light that shines brightly, waiting to be unleashed. Deep within you lies an inexhaustible source of self-worth and confidence, intrinsic to your being. No matter what challenges or setbacks you face, this inner light can act as your guiding star, helping you navigate life with courage, compassion, and grace.
Yet so often this light remains dimmed by layers of self-doubt, negative self-talk, and unhealthy comparisons to others. You allow your worthiness to be defined by external measures like accomplishments, possessions, relationships, and approval from others. But true self-worth comes from within. It is who you are—your essence, values, and spirit.
This inner light is your birthright. It’s time to rediscover your intrinsic self-worth by removing all that dims your light. Let your radiance shine through with self-love, self-acceptance, and self-belief. Build your self-worth from the inside out and uncover your inner brightness. A luminous life awaits you. The journey begins now.
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What Is Intrinsic Self-Worth?
Intrinsic self-worth means valuing yourself for who you are—your inherent qualities, values, and character—rather than what you achieve or what others think of you. It comes from within.
When you have intrinsic worth, you appreciate yourself unconditionally. You know your worth isn’t defined by external factors like your job, relationships, or accomplishments. Your sense of value comes from inside.
How do you build this unshakable self-worth? Here are some tips:
- Practice self-acceptance. Learn to appreciate yourself as you are, flaws and all. You don’t need to be perfect to be worthy of love.
- Pursue your passions. Do things that ignite your spirit and give you a sense of meaning or purpose. Your interests and values are what make you uniquely you.
- Set boundaries. Don’t let others take advantage of you or determine your self-worth. Stand up for yourself in a compassionate way.
- Avoid self-judgment. Notice negative self-talk and replace it with more constructive ways of viewing yourself. You are not defined by your perceived shortcomings or mistakes.
- Help others. Make a positive difference in the lives of people around you. Using your gifts to contribute value to the world builds self-worth from the inside out.
Your worth isn’t defined by what you do or what others say about you. You are inherently valuable simply because you exist. When you fully embrace this truth, you’ll shine with an inner light that no one can dim. You’ll tap into a wellspring of worthiness that flows from within.
How Intrinsic Self-Worth Differs From Extrinsic Self-Worth
Building true self-worth comes from within, not from external sources. Intrinsic self-worth is all about valuing yourself for who you are—your core qualities, values, and character. Extrinsic self-worth, on the other hand, depends on outside factors like achievement, praise, appearance, and possessions.
- It stays with you no matter what. It remains steady and secure through life’s ups and downs. Extrinsic self-worth fluctuates based on ever-changing external factors, leaving you on an emotional roller coaster.
- It fosters inner peace and contentment. You appreciate yourself for the wonderful, unique person you are. Extrinsic self-worth leads to constant self-doubt and comparison with others. You never feel good enough.
- It allows you to be authentically yourself. You make choices based on your own values and desires rather than bending to please others or meet society’s unrealistic expectations. Extrinsic self-worth causes you to lose your true self in an endless quest for approval and validation.
Building intrinsic self-worth is a journey. Make the choice each day to value yourself for who you are—your character, principles, and spirit. Surround yourself with people who appreciate you for who you are. Engage in self-care and pursue your passions. Over time, you will uncover your own radiant inner light.
Intrinsic vs Extrinsic Self-worth
|Intrinsic Self-worth||Extrinsic Self-Worth|
|Based on internal factors, such as values, beliefs, strengths, passions||Based on external factors, such as achievements, appearance, social status, popularity, wealth,|
|Tend to accept and appreciate themselves for who they are, regardless of external circumstances||Tend to seek validation and approval from others|
|Have a sense of purpose and meaning in life||May feel insecure or inadequate when they fail to meet certain standards or expectations|
|Pursue their own goals and interests without being influenced by others||They may also compare themselves to others and feel envious or inferior.|
Extrinsic and intrinsic self-worth each have benefits and drawbacks. Extrinsic self-worth can inspire us to put in extra effort, fulfill our potential, and give back to the community. Yet it can also lead to self-doubt, dependence on other people’s approval, and vulnerability to rejection. Being self-assured, tenacious, and sincere can be made possible by our intrinsic value. But it can also lead to us being complacent, alone, and unresponsive to criticism.
Depending on a person’s personality, values, and aspirations, there may be different ideal levels of self-worth. However, some general guidelines are:
1. Recognize that you are more than your achievements, appearance, or possessions.
2. Appreciate your unique qualities and talents, and use them to make a positive difference in the world.
3. Seek feedback from people who care about you and respect you, but do not let them define you.
4. Learn from your mistakes and failures, but do not let them diminish you.
5. Challenge yourself to grow and improve, but do not compare yourself to others or judge yourself harshly.
6. Find joy and fulfillment in what you do, but do not attach your happiness to external outcomes.
So shine on, you crazy diamond! You are a spark of the divine, perfectly imperfect, and absolutely worthy of love. The more you fill yourself up from within, the less you’ll seek from without. Now go let your light shine!
Why Intrinsic Value Matters More Than What Others Think
Here are few reasons why it is important.
1. Build Your Own Self -Worth
You have a light inside you that shines brightly. But too often, we let the opinions and judgments of others dim our inner glow. We seek external validation and measure our worth by what people think of us rather than recognizing our own intrinsic value.
2. Stop Looking Outside yourself.
- Stop worrying so much about what others think of you. Their approval or criticism does not define your worth.
- Do not let the number of likes, followers, or friends you have on social media determine your self-esteem.
- Do not measure your success or failure by society’s standards. Follow your own path.
3. Look Within
Turn inward to find your light. Some ways to build your intrinsic self-worth:
- Practice self-acceptance. Learn to appreciate yourself as you are, flaws and all. You are enough.
- Focus on your strengths. Notice the qualities, skills, and talents that make you uniquely you. Be proud of them.
- Follow your passions. Pursue the activities and subjects that ignite your enthusiasm and excitement. Nurture your interests and gifts.
- Set your own goals. Do not let others dictate what success means to you. Decide what really matters to you and work to achieve it.
- Be kind to yourself. Treat yourself with the same compassion you show others. Speak to yourself with encouragement and praise.
4. Your Light Shines brightly.
Do not measure your worth by what others think of you. Their judgments and opinions are beyond your control. You have a radiant light within that makes you who you are; focus on fanning your inner flame. When you accept and believe in yourself, you glow from the inside out. And that is the light the world needs to see.
Shine on, friend! Your bright spirit illuminates the way for others.
How to Start Building Your Intrinsic Self-Worth
Building your intrinsic worth is absolutely within your power. It starts with recognizing your inherent worth as a human being, embracing your strengths, values, and purpose, and nurturing self-love and acceptance. Let’s explore how you can start chipping away at any self-doubt and build rock-solid self-esteem from the inside out.
1. Focus on your strengths.
What are you good at? What do you excel in? Make a list of your key strengths, skills, talents, and accomplishments. Be specific and proud of them. Refer to this list when you’re feeling down to remind yourself of how awesome you are. Play to your strengths whenever possible.
2. Identify your core values.
What matters most to you? What principles guide your choices and behaviors? Pinpoint 3-5 values that shape your character, like kindness, courage, or growth. Choose the values you want to cultivate. Referring to your values helps build self-worth because you’re actively becoming the person you want to be.
3. Practice positive self-talk.
Speak to yourself with encouragement and praise. Replace negative thoughts with more constructive ones. Say “I can do this” instead of “I’ll never get this right.” Give yourself pep talks. Be your own best cheerleader. The way you talk to yourself shapes your self-perception, so make it uplifting.
4. Nurture self-care.
Make yourself a priority. Engage in regular self-care like exercising, socializing, pursuing hobbies, limiting screen time, and getting enough sleep. Take a holistic approach to wellness. When you feel good physically and mentally, you’ll feel better about yourself on the inside. Self-care is an act of self-love.
5. Accept yourself.
Learn to appreciate yourself as you are instead of some idealized version of who you think you “should” be. You are perfectly imperfect, and that is okay. Challenge unrealistic expectations and negative social comparisons. Surround yourself with people who love and support you unconditionally. Self-acceptance is the foundation for self-worth.
Building intrinsic self-worth is a journey, not a destination. With practice and patience, you can develop unshakeable confidence in yourself from the inside out. You are deserving of love, especially your own. Now go out there and shine!
So there you have it: the keys to unlocking your inner light and cultivating intrinsic self-worth. Stop seeking external validation and start appreciating yourself for who you are. Focus on your values, priorities, and purpose to build an internal compass. Practice self-compassion and positive self-talk.
Do small acts of kindness each day to spread good in the world. Make progress on meaningful goals and celebrate your wins. Surround yourself with people who love and support you. You have so much amazingness within you. Now go out there and shine; you absolutely deserve to feel good about who you are! The world needs your light.
- How to cultivate a sense of unconditional self-worth by Adia Gooden PhD/ Nov 18, 2020, published in TED
- Watch This If You’re Struggling With Your Self-Worth – Psych2Go YouTube Video
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