A big part of my struggle with low self-worth was believing that I was unlovable and not worthy of love…
This caused me to desperately seek out relationships to prove that I was worthy and lovable. My first serious relationship started during my senior year of high school and continued into my freshman year of college. Honestly, I should have listened to the nun at my all-girls Catholic high school that advised me to end my relationship and go into college as a single woman to get the full experience…
As a freshman in college, I began feeling stressed and anxious when my boyfriend didn’t want to make the hour-long drive to come visit me, when he seemed disinterested when I would visit him, and when he eventually broke up with me. I was crushed and heartbroken!
After getting back together a few months later, only to find the same disinterest arise once again, the pattern of getting into relationships with guys who were emotionally unavailable was just getting started. In most of my relationships, the anxiety and worry I felt about my significant other eroded the quality of the relationship. Under it all, was my fear of being unlovable and my belief that I was unworthy of love.
When I finally ended up in a relationship with a guy who was good for me, I was bored! Hmmm… needless to say, this was exhausting. I spent many years in a state of agony, just hoping a man would love me so that I could get rid of the horrible feeling of being unworthy of love.
My fear of being unlovable came to a head when I was in a relationship with a great guy who could not and did not fall in love with me during our two-year relationship. I faced my ultimate fear of being unlovable. Even though I thought that would break me, the reality was facing that fear is what helped me to realize that I am lovable. It was not easy by any means, but I eventually came to understand that my partner not falling in love with me wasn’t about me being unlovable… it was about his limited capacity to love. This freed me from my relationship anxiety and desperation for love. Cue the deep sigh of relief!
Sometimes, facing our worst fears is exactly what we need to overcome them.
This experience taught me that I no longer needed to search outside of myself for a partner to complete me and make me worthy. Affirming myself that I was lovable and worthy marked a powerful transition in my journey to unconditional self-worth.
I wonder if you can relate to my story at all…
Have you ever tried to use a romantic relationship to feel worthy?
Have you felt crushed after someone left a relationship with you or didn’t choose you?
Have you started a relationship with a lot of hope, only to feel empty inside after the initial rush of infatuation wore off?
If you have, know that you are not alone.
Using romantic relationships to prove we are worthy just does not work. Maybe it will for a short period of time, but eventually, our unaddressed feelings of unworthiness will re-emerge and cause stress and anxiety, making it hard to have a healthy and stable relationship.
We can attempt to blame our partners for the void that we feel within us, but we are the only ones that can fill and heal that emotional void of unworthiness.
The way out of this exhausting cycle is to connect to our unconditional self-worth. You ARE worthy of love, no matter what you’ve done or what you’ve gone through.
There are many practices I will share with you in upcoming episodes that will support you on your journey to connecting with your unconditional self-worth, but for today…
Here are some self-love practices that you can use to remind yourself that you are worthy of love…
Treat yourself the way you hope a partner would treat you. This could involve indulging yourself with a delicious meal, drawing a candle lit bubble bath for yourself, giving yourself gifts, affirming wonderful things about yourself, and spending time doing things you enjoy!
Take some time to think about the ways in which you prefer to receive love and then offer yourself love in these ways. It’s okay if it feels silly at first, but do it anyway. It will get easier. Commit to one thing that you can do this week to show yourself some love.
Bonus points if you journal about it!
When you engage in self-love, you are communicating to yourself that you are worthy of love and care just because you’re you.
“One of the best guides to how to be self-loving is to give ourselves the love we are often dreaming about receiving from others.” – bell hooks
What changes when you know you’re worthy?
When we know we are worthy unconditionally, we show up as complete people dedicated to building healthy relationships and we don’t fall into codependency. When we know we are worthy, we set healthy boundaries to nurture all of our relationships and stay balanced.
For me, knowing I’m unconditionally worthy of love has prepared me for a healthy, flourishing relationship with my fiancé. Yes, you read that right! Fiancé! Our love blossomed just after my last ‘unlovable’ relationship, when I was no longer desperately searching for a partner to complete me. Divine timing, huh?
CALL TO ACTION:
Get my FREE worksheet on Recommendations for Self-Love Practices: https://view.flodesk.com/pages/5ff8c0853faa8147f5dda85b
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