We strive so hard to be worthy and to “make it” in this world. We expend huge amounts of effort to attain levels of achievement or positions that our egos tell us are markers of success. Many of us even overextend ourselves financially to buy what we can’t afford in order to project images of success. We push ourselves to do more and acquire more so that we can be more. The question is why? Why do we work so hard to meet these arbitrary standards of worth and success? Why do we fall prey to extrinsic measurements of our worth? The answer is a simple one — we have forgotten who we really are.
When we believe that we have to achieve or acquire something to increase our worth, we are coming from an inner place of feeling small. We believe that attaining a position or acquiring a material object will help us feel bigger inside. Therefore, we focus on the “prize,” whether it be an acquisition or a title, believing that our value is attached to its attainment — believing that moving to a higher level professionally, socially, or materially, will help us feel like we are “more.”
This is success according to the ego, but what happens when we attain the position or the object? Does it fill up that inner space that aches with emptiness? Does it fill us with lasting happiness and peace? This is where things can be a little deceiving because, initially, we may experience euphoric feelings of having “made it.” We celebrate our success, but do these feelings last? Or, like the elusive peak that mountain climbers seek, is it just one more ridge on the way to the top?
My experience has been that the elation does not sustain itself. How can it when it is a reaction to an event and not a state of being? Events don’t last; they come and go. The only constant in any experience is me… and my inner state. If I am looking for affirmations of my worth, I will continue to seek situations in which I can experience acknowledgment and expressions of worldly success. The problem with this scenario is that when the elation of one success fades, I need another “hit” of success to feel that “high” again. My life becomes one of moving on a wheel of continual striving to find reflections of worth from the outside world, and these are tenuous and fleeting at best.
There is another way, and it is the way of truth. I don’t need to look for affirmations of my worth from others or in markers of external success, and neither do you. Our worth is within us where it has always been. As God’s Children, how can we not be worthy? All that God is lies within us for we are expressions of His infinite Love. We don’t have to prove anything to God. His Love for us is unconditional and eternal.
When we allow ourselves to feel small, we are identifying with ego and that identification means that we believe that we are separate from everyone else and that we need to strive for success and recognition in the world. When we open into the amazing greatness of that which we are, we are choosing to identify with what is truth — that God is our Source and Creator — and that makes us magnificent beyond words.
At this point on my journey, it seems that my experience of worthiness comes down to being present in each moment. It is the times when I am not practising awareness and I am operating unconsciously that I forget who I really am. It is at these times that I experience insecurities and anxiety because I default to identifying with ego. When I come from a solid sense of being — when I make time to go within and experience the incredible love and peace that is there for me — I experience glimpses of the magnificence that we all are. These glimpses tell me what is truth, and they keep me returning again and again to the importance of choosing consciously for God in each moment. When I do, I know two things: I am anything but small — in fact, I can’t even begin to comprehend my magnificence — and I yearn to experience ever more of the heaven that waits within me.
My spiritual sisters and brothers, you are glorious beyond words because God created you. You have worth beyond measure because you are a Child of God. I pray that you will choose to remember your true identity in each moment so that you can open into your inherent worth. Remember that the only constant in any situation is you and your inner state of being, which is a matter of awareness and the continual choice that you are challenged to make — for the ego or for God. Glimpse the Love that you are, and you will never be satisfied with the empty promises of ego again. You will seek to reunite with your essence, your Source, which is God. Namaste.