It's easy to go through life and measure ourselves every step of the way. We use our jobs, our income, our possessions, and our social status to apply a ranking upon ourselves, albeit unconsciously.
Sometimes we're okay with the ranking, but most of the time, we're dissatisfied. And while some degree of self-critique is important for our growth, there is something far more important at stake when we measure ourselves.
Out of our constant need to measure ourselves comes a sense of, or oftentimes a lack of, self-worth.
You might get down on yourself for not having a productive day at work or not making enough money. You might then think you're not a valuable human being, which spirals you into a bout of depression.
Sure, it's frustrating when you have a bad day at work, or if you can't figure out how to turn your passion into a career. I'm not suggesting these things aren't difficult. But, are they a true signal of your worth?
The answer is no. They are simply unpleasant experiences that you've had. They have nothing to do with you, the one having the experience.
I could go so far as to say that your worth is complete just by the fact that you exist.
But if you don't see it that way, that's okay. How about defining your worth based on making someone else smile? Picking up a piece of litter? Holding the door open for someone?
How could it be that our ultimate sense of worth doesn't come from the fact that we brightened up someone else's day, or better yet, our own day?
You see, in the grand scheme of things, we're here for a very, very short time. We come and go in the blink of the universe's eye.
In this short time, have you forgiven yourself? Have you looked inward and smiled? Have you reminded yourself that you're doing your best?
Let these actions be a sign of your worth. You made something better than it was before it found you. How is that not the most beautiful, valuable thing the universe could ask of you?
What if the simple act of raising the moment in front of you was a measure of true self-worth, and not how much money you make or how productive you are?
Remember, there's a difference between your value in an economy and your value as a human life.
Our attitude should never be down - or up, for that matter - based on our value in the job market. That is what it is, and we can certainly do our best to improve it. But don't ever let it be the sole measure of your worth.
More importantly, we ought to derive our value from the fact that we're here as a living, breathing entity with the willpower to act as we wish.
Is that not valuable enough?
Stop judging yourself because you had a bad day. That has nothing to do with who you are, or what you're worth.
You are worth everything, because you are you, a living, breathing, loving soul who's doing your best and just trying to be okay.
Live with substance!