The strength found in believing YOU ARE ENOUGH.

The Strength Found in Embracing Your Worth

I wrote this post for ProHealth’s Inspirational Corner, where it first appeared last month:

Confession? I’ve never been a super confident person.

I am kind, yes. Caring, yes. But confident? It’s never been my strong point.

Many of my years have been spent feeling ‘less than’; worrying too much about what other people thought and holding on to far too many careless words spoken to me. I have struggled with the thought that I’m somehow too much in the same breath that I don’t quite measure up.

When illness hit hard several years ago, this area of my life felt as exposed as it ever had before. I couldn’t push down the feelings any longer. They bubbled up and overwhelmed me. And as a result, I believed many lies in the wake of all that was lost over that first year of illness.

When I could no longer drive, I believed I was a burden.

When I had to cancel plans over and over again, I believed I was a disappointment.

When I could no longer work or play the same role in community, I believed that I no longer had anything to offer.

There were moments when I could push away these lies, but more often than not the honest truth was: they crippled me. And every moment that they weighed heavy on my heart, they kept me from seeing myself through honest eyes.

They kept me from embracing the strength that comes from believing the following words:

‘I am enough’.

Regardless of how limited my illness has left me, how many friendships have faded, or how discouraged I have felt: the core of who I am is still here. And if it’s changed, I believe it’s only changed for the better. My spirit is stronger. I have a deeper love and compassion for others. My approach to life is more purposeful and authentic.

And friend? You are enough, too.

Believing that Who You are is Enough When You're Chronically Ill.

When you and I believe that powerful statement, if only for a moment at a time, we recognize that we are more than our illnesses. We choose to believe we have value. That we are more than the sum of the things we cannot do.

I’ll be the first to admit that this change in perception is not an easy switch. The many reminders of how different life now looks makes this challenging.

But it’s possible…

We can turn to the people who believe in us. Sometimes we need the encouragement of others to bring life to these words. People who see our bravery and our worth. We feel valued when we are reminded: we are loved.

Tapping into our faith can help lay the foundation. This will look different for each of us as we all have different backgrounds and perception of faith. Find ways to connect with the truths that remind you of your worth, that bring your soul rest and peace.

We can put our abilities, our value on paper. Sometimes we need to make the effort to own our gifts. Perhaps we could benefit from writing out the talents/abilities that others say we have or that we see in ourselves. Taking the time to focus on that list periodically (or as often as needed) can help refocus our thoughts about ourselves.

Saying it out loud helps to engrave in on our hearts. Okay, so it sounds weird. But stay with me! Hearing ourselves say it is powerful. Even if it’s just a whisper to begin with. If you need to wait until you’re alone, that’s fine. You could say something as simple as the following: “I am enough. I am valuable. I am talented. I have something to offer.”

Even if we have to remind ourselves of this over and over again, that’s okay! I believe baby steps are just as valuable as giant leaps. Needing reminders doesn’t change the fact that this statement is true for us.

Our lives may look different, but our worth hasn’t changed one bit. We’re still as valuable as ever.

We are more than enough.

 

Want to read more about how I’m learning to find life, healing and purpose in the midst of this life of illness? You can download your own free copy of my book “Embracing the Raw” by clicking here.

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16 comments

  1. Paul Lingren says:

    Kami
    Your views are well articulated, honest, vulnerable and extremely valueable. I am sure others appreciate you as much as I do. I couldn’t hope to ever find a more articulate, inspirational and loving daughter in law.
    Your messages bring hope and insight for the hurting and the healthy alike.
    Love you
    Dad

    • Joyce Lingren says:

      I agree totally with dad. We love you. I also echo many of your thoughts today. I, too, have had years of not feelung I had much value. I’ve worked extra hard to please others and wanting only to be included but to end up in
      disappointment…often asking why I am not good enough or what’s wrong with me? Thank yoy for your perspective. Love you sweet one. Mom

      • Kami says:

        Thanks for sharing your thoughts and shared struggle, Mom. It is a challenge to find one’s place when the root of pain is there, telling us we don’t have enough to offer. I’m not nearly where I’d like I be in accepting my worth but these are my baby steps. I find it’s easier to see it in others! And I see yours. I see your heart and value and how much you offer to those around you in love, kindness, and tangible help. Love you dearly.

    • Kami says:

      Thank you so much for all your kind words here and in many other moments, Dad. I am blessed to have such a caring father-in-law and love you very much!

  2. Clodagh says:

    Another amazing post Kami! I look forward to the emails telling me about your new post. They are always so inspiring and provide me with hope. I love how raw and honest you are, I can relate to your words. Thanks you X

  3. Brittany W says:

    This is wonderful. I’ve had a hard time embracing the concept that I am enough, just as I am– but it’s true! You have such a wonderful perspective and I love your honesty.

    • Kami says:

      Girl, you and me both. I find that writing pushing me outside of my comfort zone – to accept the truths I believe in some level and own them. Constant work in progress here, though. Thank you for the encouragement and support!

    • Kami says:

      Thank you for reading and sharing that my posts have been helpful for you, Valerie. I appreciate the encouragement! Reminds me to keep writing and sharing. <3 Hugs to you!

    • Kami says:

      I’m with you, Shelley. It’s harder for me some days, too. I’m so glad the post came at just the right time for you! Thanks so much for reading. Sending you gentle hugs. xo

  4. Faye Kallas says:

    Hi Kami, you are such a blessing to me. As I read your post, I have had those feelings of not enough and trying to please people but I came to realize it was wearing me out. I had to allow God to heal me in these areas!

    • Kami says:

      It is VERY wearing trying to please others while also working hard to care for yourself. Our journeys toward healing are all individual, but I’m thankful for the small steps my soul has experienced. So glad to hear you are healing, too! <3

  5. Chris Brown says:

    Thought-provoking and interesting, both.
    The danger and potential trap of worthlessness and crumbling self-esteem is clear.

    I have to avoid it a different way, not being keen on either faith or hope.
    (Yes, it’s a minority approach.)
    But any which way it is not necessary to fall victim to a sense of vanishing value and self-esteem.

    • Kami says:

      I so agree, Chris. It’s been an un-learning process for me, accepting and valuing myself. I have been reminding myself how I see other people. If I can see their value and worth, why wouldn’t I do the same for myself? Thanks so much for reading and sharing your thoughts here!

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