This world expects you to simultaneously feel worthy while chipping away at your feeling of worthiness. We are constantly surrounded by messages that tell you that you aren’t good enough as you are, especially women. Women have magazines dedicated to telling you how to be more sexy, beautiful, thin or more appealing to men. We are sold products to make our hair softer, shinier, more voluminous along with makeup to cover our skin and enhance what is already there. And, let’s not even talk about the clothes. Things lift, separate, bind and make things look bigger or smaller than what they are. And, if none of that works, there is Photoshop and filters. We are bombarded with ways to change what we project to the world that is presented as making ourselves better, but also whispers that the “real” version of ourselves isn’t good enough.
Men aren’t immune. They are sold that they are inadequate unless they make lots of money, drive expensive cars and date lots of women that other men admire or feel jealous. There is constant pressure to project to the world that they have it “all together” and know how to make all the right decisions. If you take a misstep as a man, the fall from grace is far and not all recover from the guilt and shame. And, their life is a reflection of what they believe about themselves or, at least, it is sold that way to them as young men.
The economic system is built on people feeling inadequate. We wouldn’t need things if we didn’t feel like we needed things. How much junk have you bought that you haven’t even touched a year later, but, at the moment, you thought it was the thing that was going to make you happy and change your life? Many have closets overflowing with clothes, shoes and accessories and countless items designed to elicit attention. Many spend money on diet plans and exercise videos. I can say, I have wasted money on the newest exercise video only to have it collecting dust while I sat on the couch eating ice cream.
I’m not saying no one should have material things and these things aren’t enjoyable. Or, that some people don’t benefit from them. I am just saying that the messages are designed in such a way to trigger the feeling of unworthiness that seems to chip away at us starting in middle school into adulthood unless we become aware of it.
But, the truth is that none of us is unworthy. We are all special in our own way and we each add value to the people who love and care about us. There is someone who would be sad if you weren’t here. There is someone who would feel your absence. And, that has nothing to do with all those things you buy. It has everything to do with your heart, mind, and ability to give. We don’t place as much value on our just being here. We keep trying to create some concrete legacy of things that will last long after we are gone. But, those things, even buildings, get torn down to their foundation and no one remembers who lived there. But, hearts and minds, resurrect people every singled day with words as simple as, “remember that time, such and such did…”
You can live on forever and you are worthy of that, you just have to love while you are here to be loved in return.