90-Day A Better Me Series
Part I: A Journey of Awareness
What Holds Us Back: The Unstable Foundation
Day 27: Looking for Value Outside of Ourselves
“It’s not your job to like me— it’s mine.”
Looking for value outside of ourselves is a VERY personal topic for me. For a long time, I had no personal perceived value. My self-esteem strictly relied on what others thought of me. I would do and do and do and wonder why I was such a doormat and I continued to feel like I used and under appreciated. I expected others to give me what I wasn’t giving myself. How would I even know when someone else valued me if I didn’t value myself? The answer is I couldn’t. I had a hole that nobody could fill. I opened myself up for attracting hate again and again (See Day 25).
We all deserve to be here in this life. Each breath we take has value. We suppress our gifts to the world by thinking we have to prove to the world that we deserve to be here. When we look for value in our actions, our intentions aren’t clear and connected to the actual gift of giving. We don’t feel the benefits of our capacity to give, love, and share ourselves with others. Our twisted lack of worth perceives things in a very skewed and dark way. The gift becomes an expectation on others. Once that happens we aren’t manifesting good things for ourselves.
Our red flag radar system is disengaged when we are trying to find our personal value outside ourselves too. We don’t have healthy boundaries, because that comes with personal value. We just want to be loved, wanted, and/or appreciated so are complete focus is getting a reaction for what we are doing. We can say people continually use me or expect me to do all this, but we aren’t innocent in this. If you are trying to get value by doing something…you are part of the negative cycle. That person may not capable of showing us respect and appreciation. If they are, we would sabotage the exchange by putting our insecurities into our perception of feelings, thoughts, actions, and reactions. Putting our value outside of ourselves is an endless cycle of self-sabotage. We attract hate easily. We can find messages that support this negative cycle anywhere and everywhere if that is where our focus is:
- Good hearts are more likely to be broken
- Being a giver means you will be used
- You are too kind
- You are a doormat
- People will use you
- Love hurts
- Only selfish people put themselves first
- Give until it hurts
- You complete me
- I’m incomplete without a you
- He/she made you feel_____________
- She/he made you do _____________
Oh how the list goes on! I remember when I was first transitioning out of living a codependent life, I would get so angry at all those messages. I didn’t know at the time that me hating the messages was just as bad as me loving them. Now, I see them as an opportunity to understand where a person is coming from.
My codependency which was me trying to find my value outside of myself led to what I call a savior complex. I liked to pick men who I felt needed to be saved. Others can do this with friends, volunteering, etc. It’s not about the action. It’s about the intention behind the action. I am completely responsible for the way I diverted my own lack of self-worth and put it onto attempting to save men who would say they wanted to get better but didn’t want to do the work. My codependency was my addiction. I derived my sense of value out of feeling needed by a man. I can honestly say that I wouldn’t have been able to even recognize what a healthy relationship looked if it was right in front of my eyes. I would have sabotaged any relationship that I didn’t feel needed.
A new way of looking at the world starts with awareness of our patterns that cripple us. One of mine was not taking responsibility for my codependent actions and having expectations of others to show me love and appreciation that I wasn’t showing myself. If we want to have people value us, we have to value ourselves first. People will treat us as good as we treat ourselves. When we have value, we don’t agree to do things that we know aren’t in our best interest. We don’t seek to do things to get the approval of others. We do things with positive intentions that contribute to the changes we want to see in our lives and the lives of others.
Just for Today
Become aware of how you try to get value from outside of yourself. Look at how that makes you actually feel. Be conscious of your expectations of others. What are you asking them to do that you aren’t doing for yourself? Do you want someone to value your time when you don’t value the time you give yourself? Do you want to be appreciated for doing things that you weren’t asked to do? Did you to them to be valued or because you just wanted to show you care? If you do things because you want to, you don’t expect others to react a certain way.
Don’t forget to check back for the “Day 27: When I put My Value Outside of Myself” a Letter from a Better Me.
With Love and Gratitude,
Rachael Wolff ©2019