A healthy connection to your self-worth, your sense of your own inherent value, is essential to your happiness and well-being.
This is true for all people, and it is particularly true for artists, performers, and those who know they possess a “creative mind.” As a creative being, you need to rely on a sense of self-worth that is resilient, flexible, and fluid.
The Value of Being Grounded in Your Self-Worth
When you’re connected to vibrant feelings of self-worth, you can make art that you believe in. You trust the value of what you create – its message, meaning, power, and purpose. When you are anchored in a sense of strong self-worth, you’re prepared to take what you create and share it with the world.
Grounded in your sense of self-worth, you don’t question what you create, you just do. You don’t get stuck worrying whether your art will impact your audience or how others will perceive you. You just trust that your work will reach those who will appreciate it.
When you create from a place of worthiness, you don’t try to measure the value of what you create, you just feel your work’s inherent value. And, you don’t compare yourself with other artists or professionals, you just do your creative work and let it make its imprint into the world.
It’s not about proving anything. It’s about living and playing in the imaginal, creative realm. It’s about bringing your daydreams to life. It’s about engaging in your craft and pure self-expression. Fully trusting your creativity, you can give a clear voice to unanswered questions, the complex spectrum of human experiences, or the unique depth of your characters. You can create a life grounded in your sense of self-worth rather than from a desperate place of proving yourself.
Self-worth is not about who you are, it’s about what you do with what you are.
Yes, all of this is possible when you’re in touch with your self-worth. It’s a simple yet powerful way to live, but it can feel so difficult to attain.
Sadly, our modern society seems to be designed to make you question your own sense of self-worth. Advertising, the beauty industry, and the social media influencer landscape can all force you into a perpetual comparison game that makes you feel like you need to do more and be more in order to measure up.
Maybe you don’t even know who you are, what you want to do with your life, be or accomplish anymore…
Fortunately, you have the power to take back your own internal narrative and change your own relationship with your sense of self.
How do you hold on to your self-worth in a world that seems designed to make you question yourself?
Embrace your insecurities and self-doubts
It’s important to note that rooting yourself into your own inner worth is not about clinging to perfection.
Self-worth is not about never feeling insecure or scared. Trusting your own worthiness does not permanently insulate you from feelings of shame, rejection, or about never feeling unseen or unloved.
Self-worth is about trusting that, despite life’s challenges and your occasional emotional ups and downs, you have an awareness of your intrinsic value and an enduring belief that you have and add value to the world.
Able to accept your imperfections as well as your skills, talents, and passions, you can express your creative energy, show up, and share your art.
Supported by your self-worth, you can connect to your full humanity and access real courage, determination, and power to pursue what you want to create.
Embrace your authentic self
You can discover and connect to your self-worth by doing your “inner work.” This means that you’re consciously and actively involved in getting to know who you are – all your brightness, beauty, shortcomings, and shadows.
Self-exploration requires emotional space and the ability to stay with whatever you encounter within. There are many ways you can do this. Mindfulness or meditation. Journaling or practicing yoga. Working with a good therapist, coach, or mentor. Reading the right self-help books or joining a support group can also help.
When you dedicate yourself to self-knowledge, you will connect more fully with the various aspects of who you are. Some parts of you may have been disowned or dismissed, while others may have been devalued or unseen. Still other parts may have been dormant for a long time and prove eager to come to life.
Most importantly, as you know yourself more, you become more resilient and you can withstand life challenges, your own internal battles, and the external messages of unhealthy standards of beauty and success.
As you get in touch with your authentic self, your self-worth evolves, becoming more solid and consistent.
Being authentically connected to your value it’s not something you possess or can lose. It just is… you know what you can or you can’t. What you are and what you aren’t.
Self-worth is something you can access within yourself. It’s something that flows freely when you’re in a relationship with all of who you are – your talents, your messiness, your unfinished parts, your craziness, your beauty, and your imperfections.
You’ll never be certain about whether your creative work will be remembered or forgotten, seen or ignored, valued or dismissed. This is a big unknown we all live with, especially if you’re a professional artist or performer.
If you are at the whims of the outer world for your self-worth, it can cause you to get stuck in dreaming, longing, fears, or frustration – unhealthy and unproductive ways of dealing with feeling out of control. This is a path to addiction, depression, and anxiety.
Remember, you can’t control the outcome, you can only create opportunities for your own best outcome. You can only control your own process and keep steady at your work.
When you put your efforts toward growing, learning, and developing your artistic craft, you take control of developing your self-worth.
It’s possible to participate in a competitive world without losing track of your self worth when you know how to navigate the unknown and what you can’t control.
If you need more in-depth work around self-worth issues, psychotherapy can help you heal emotional trauma that may keep you stuck in external validation. You can reconnect to yourself and your self-worth from inside-out. The most stable, fulfilling, necessary sense of self-worth is cultivated from within.
Being anchored in a sense of strong self-worth, you’re prepared to take what you create and share it with the world.
I am Mihaela Ivan Holtz, Doctor in Clinical Psychology. I help creatives and performers with their life struggles, depression, anxiety, performance anxiety, creativity, relationships and love, PTSD, and addictions – to become their own best version. You can read more about Therapy for Creatives here.