“True belonging and self-worth are not goods; we don’t negotiate their value to the world.” ~Brené Brown, Braving the Wilderness
I was on a transatlantic flight, listening to Brené Brown’s new book, Braving the Wilderness, when this statement made me sit up in my reclined seat. I backed up the audio and played it again. And again. Once we landed, I got on Amazon and bought the book. (Sometimes, you need to be able to hold that kind of goodness in your hands. Or maybe that’s just me.) What’s interesting, though, is that her statement has been evolving a bit, transforming itself in my subconscious into something like this:
Your value is not negotiable.
Read that again. Your value is not negotiable. It isn’t up for debate. I’m not talking about value condensed down to a dollar sign; your value as a human being is not the domain of actuaries.
So I want you to really read these words again. Say them out loud. Listen to them. Let them soak into those dry places in your soul.
You have value. You are valuable. You are valued.
You have worth. You are worthwhile. You are worthy.
If you read those words and have issues speaking them out loud about yourself, much less believing them, I have a question for you: Who told you?
Who told you that you had to earn love?
Who told you that you had to perform on life’s stage to be worth something?
Who told you that you were nothing but the sum of your failures? Who told you that you were nothing but the sum of your successes? Who told you that you were nothing?
Who told you that your value depended on your bank account? Your gender? The color of your skin? Your orientation? Your family status? Your grades? Where you went to school? If you went to school? What kind of car you drive? The brand name on your jeans? Where you work? Where you sit at lunch? The number on the scale?
Who told you that your heart and soul and thoughts and dreams and hopes and beliefs had a price tag? Who told you that they were to be haggled down for the lowest bidder?
Dear friends, I don’t know who told you these things, but they were wrong. Your life matters. Your presence in this world has a purpose. You have an impact to make upon this world that is solely reserved for you.
You are worthy. You are valued. And your value is not negotiable.