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In one of my previous jobs in my corporate life, I worked for a company that had a very toxic attitude to work hours. It seemed to be that you would be judged, not based on your results, but by how late you stayed back. Which totally sucked for me because I was never an evening person. My brain switched off after 3pm. But that is only because I am a morning person. I can jump out of bed at 5am and get more done before the sun comes up than most people. So because of this weirdo culture (that is actually not all that uncommon, sadly), I felt like I had to start super early to make up for not working back late. So I would start work at 7:30 in the morning. Seriously. I wanted to make sure my car was the first one people saw in the car park so that they’d think “well, Michelle was here bright and early”. I made sure I sent off loads of emails as well so that when people got in, they’d see I had already done a tonne of work. I was desperately trying to prove that I was a hard worker.

This need to prove myself didn’t go away until I acknowledged myself for my work. When I finally saw myself for what I truly was – a dedicated, hard working and talented employee – that need to prove myself disappear.

That’s when I discovered, the antidote to that urge to prove yourself is to APPROVE OF YOURSELF.

When you love yourself, there is no need to seek it from other people. Loving yourself means to acknowledge all of your abilities, skills and talents. It means knowing that you are the best you in the whole world. It means you are enough and when you receive love, approval and acceptance from others- well that’s just a cherry on the cake.

So how can you start to love yourself more and approve of yourself?

Firstly by acknowledging everything that you do. Give yourself credit for all the achievements you’ve had to date. Look at what you’ve been able to accomplish. You deserve a medal!

A great way to cement that acknowledgement is to create some positive affirming statements. Such as “I am smart, intelligent and wise”. or “I am a great friend who is fun to be around”. or “I am a highly valued employee”. Whatever feels best for you, affirmations can really help to ground those feelings of self-acceptance and approval.

Finally, look at the areas where you have been seeking approval from others. Where have you been trying to prove yourself? What would it look like if you didn’t need to have their approval? How would your behaviour change? What would be different? Start exploring each scenario and take action as if you didn’t need to prove yourself. Act as if you already approved of and loved yourself fully. Sometimes faking it till you make it helps put the wheels in motion.

So today I encourage you to be aware of the moments where you feel like you need to prove yourself, look within and show yourself a bit of love and kindness. You deserve it.

 

Have you been feeling stuck and not making the progress you would like to be making on your goals? Then you need my e-book “Help! I’m Stuck” which walks you through the 8 major obstacles we all face on the journey to our goals and how to overcome them. Get your copy here.

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