Are you?

Feeling unworthy can be rooted in many experiences we’ve had as children, teenagers, or adults.

Not everyone who feels unworthy feels the same way, it all depends on where that draining feeling is coming from.

Struggling to see anything through that overwhelming feeling of unworthiness is incredibly exhausting. There are ways, though, that you can help yourself.

It’s time you enter a new relationship with your mind and soul. Your true self is hiding in there, ready to shine.

Explore some of the most probable reasons you’re feeling unworthy, and follow our advice on how to undo that feeling and find freedom.

5 Possible Reasons Why You’re Feeling Unworthy

1. You had distant or demanding parents who didn’t give you enough love and acceptance

woman sitting on highway in jeans and boots closing her eyes

Feeling of unworthiness can be rooted in your mind and soul since you were only a child.

If your parent or caregiver was distant in any way (physically, emotionally, or psychologically), it might have caused you to feel not good enough.

Every good therapy session begins with a therapist asking questions about the patient’s childhood years and there’s a very good reason why.

At that age when our minds develop and we learn how to handle emotions, our surroundings play an incredibly important role.

Everything that happens in the first couple of years in our life are foundational roots for the development of a person’s mental health.

Your parents might have been loving and present, yet too demanding through your teenage and adolescent years.

Constantly trying to fulfill all of their expectations and demands and never feeling like you succeeded to satisfy them completely, will make you feel unworthy.

2. People in your life are judgmental and critical

woman inside the car looking outside with face in focus

Everyone seeks acceptance. It’s our human need to want to be a part of society, community, or group of any kind.

In order to feel that way, we are usually prone to adapt and change who we are in order to fit in.

More often than not, a human being who’s trying to change their essence to become accepted will develop the feeling of being unworthy.

What you are will always remain a part of you, making you think you don’t belong.

Some people are always ready to throw their attitudes and opinions on others, offering little acceptance and a whole lot of judgment and criticism.

There’s a chance you’re surrounded by family and friends (yes, it’s usually your loved ones) who unknowingly make you feel like you’re less worthy.

In their mind, they are motivating you to become better, but what they’re actually doing is ruining your self-esteem.

3. You are overly self-critical

pensive woman in front of a mirror wearing a blue dress

Trying frantically to become the best possible version of yourself, then criticizing yourself harshly whenever you make any kind of mistake – these usually cause low self-esteem.

It’s a positive thing to try to improve yourself, but judging yourself on a level that makes you feel less worthy is an issue.

You think that your behavior and thoughts come from your honest desire to guarantee your well-being, but they don’t.

That need for perfection in everything you do is causing you a whole lot of negative emotions that, one by one, make your life a living hell.

Self-doubt leads to constantly criticizing yourself in your mind, or even aloud, and that leads to self-hatred, a devastating emotion that can be hard to recover from.

4. You had traumatic experiences

woman tucked in a corner of a pink structure wearing white top and jeans with head bowed down

You were emotionally, mentally, or physically abused by an unknown person, a parent, family member, boyfriend/husband.

If there’s a traumatic experience in your past, then you can be almost certain that’s what’s causing your feelings of unworthiness.

Every kind of abuse leaves a mark – a deep scar that can be either on your body, your mind, or your soul.

Most often it’s on all three and it takes a whole lot of positivity, outside help, self-help, and strength to deal with it.

Going through abuse of any kind knocks down your self-esteem and makes you question everything about yourself, including your self-worth.

5. You have an inborn desire to satisfy other people’s needs

focused young woman

There are people who, for one reason or the other, seem to have a need to satisfy other people’s needs and expectations.

No matter what else is happening in their life, they only feel good when needed and when able to respond accordingly.

If you’re one of those people, finding yourself in life circumstances where you simply can’t satisfy a person (some people are impossible to satisfy) or are no longer needed, you’ll feel less worthy for not “doing your job.”

Also, in the long run, constantly taking care of others and never paying any attention to your own needs will leave you feeling worthless.

6 Powerful Ways To Let Go Of Feelings Of Unworthiness

1. Accept your emotions

sideview of a woman closing eyes facing a body of water wearing white top

The first step to solving a problem is admitting that you have one. Your emotions are important.

The way you feel isn’t shameful. At this very moment, it’s authentic and yours.

Accept it for what it is. Don’t try to beautify it in your own mind.

Think about how you feel throughout the day and what triggers your feelings of unworthiness.

Try to connect those triggers to actual reasons (things that happened in your past) that made you question your self-worth.

Connecting the dots will help you be consciously in tune with how you’re feeling and therefore be a starting point to finding your way to freedom.

2. Revisit your attitudes about your own personality

adult woman sitting near a body of water with the blurred city on the background

If someone would ask you right now to speak about yourself, what would you tell them?

There’s a good chance your answer would be filled with many negative traits (at least in your own mind if you wouldn’t say them out loud).

We form our opinions of ourselves in accordance with how other people respond to us. If you were surrounded by negative, critical, judgmental people, the feedback you got was probably horrific.

If something traumatizing happened to you or your parents didn’t do a good job giving you love and acceptance, that also shaped the way you think of yourself.

Revisit those opinions.

Try to think about yourself in other terms such as: being kind to others, being successful in certain things, being funny, being… whatever you are.

You aren’t who you were told you are, you are who you are.

3. Let go of other people’s judgmental attitudes

free woman spreading arms with a bright sun at the back in silhouette

Trying to carry expectations others put on your back is a difficult task. People judge us not based on who we are, but on who they are. Always remember that.

What someone thinks of you usually speaks so much more of them than it does of you. Why? Because we see the world and other people through our experiences, emotions, and souls, not theirs.

Other people only see a small part of you and allow themselves to judge and criticize you based on that. If what you do doesn’t suit them, that only means it doesn’t suit them.

It doesn’t mean that it shouldn’t suit you.

You do you. Let go of what others think of you, or even worse, what you think they think of you.

4. Think about your positive traits

beautiful woman hugging herself and smiling near the doorway of an old structure

A road to acceptance and self-love is long, and there are some important steps you should make.

One of them is reminding yourself of your strengths, talents, and virtues, and being genuinely proud of them.

Think about positive things you’ve done that brought a change in someone’s life. Think about all the kindness and love you spread among other people.

Find a way to remind yourself that you have so many positive traits. Write it down somewhere or come up with a personal mantra that speaks to you.

Say it every day for as long as you need to. Learn to recognize your virtues the way you recognize others’.

Every success is important – celebrate them all.

5. Always try to do your best

woman hand painting holding a brush and a palette

Over time, feeling unworthy can cause a person to stop even trying. What this does is only makes things worse.

Whatever it is that you do, always try to do it with as much energy, passion, and love as you can.

Not only will this make your success more probable and therefore increase your otherwise low self-esteem, but doing something with great care and involvement will make you feel stronger on its own.

Don’t simply do something to get it finished (unless it’s something you really hate doing). Try to get involved, especially when it’s something you love.

6. Go easy on yourself, everybody makes mistakes

curly haired woman closing her eyes and smiling

Exercise self-compassion. No matter how good you are at something, you’re going to make a mistake sooner or later.

It’s absolutely normal and even necessary. Mistakes are our teachers.

When something like this happens, don’t immediately criticize yourself or accumulate negative emotions. Imagine that it’s someone else who did what you did.

What would you tell them? I guarantee you’d be much more tolerating and less critical towards anyone who isn’t you.

Apply the empathy, understanding, and compassion that you’re willing to give others to yourself.

Realizing your self-worth comes from loving yourself and loving yourself comes from accepting who you are – mistakes and all.

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