Always looking for external validation left me feeling empty and unhappy. Here’s my journey to self-love.

Raised on the East Coast, I was always the one aiming to please, constantly seeking validation from parents, teachers, and everyone around me. This pursuit continued into my adult life, especially in the demanding corporate world. Despite receiving ample praise, a persistent emptiness lingered, prompting a significant revelation: my self-worth relied entirely on how others perceived me. It became clear that a change was necessary – a shift toward loving and valuing myself more.

The journey to self-love wasn’t easy or straightforward. There were moments of self-doubt, times when old patterns resurfaced, and periods where I felt like giving up. But with each step forward, there were also moments of clarity, growth, and deep-seated joy.

It’s been over two years since my journey to self-love began. Moving from New York to Oregon has brought about its own challenges and learning experiences in the process. Now that I am on the other side, re-adjusting to life without the constant need for external validation, I want to share with you my journey and the lessons I’ve learned along the way.

Finding the root cause of my need for external validation

My journey to self-love began with acknowledging my deep-seated need for external validation. It was a hard pill to swallow, realizing that I had been living my life for others rather than for myself. But it was also liberating. For the first time, I could see the root cause of my unhappiness.

I started by identifying the triggers that would incite this craving. Whether it was a job well done at work, a compliment from a friend, or even a ‘like’ on social media – these were all sources of external validation that I had become dependent on.

Next, I started journaling about my feelings and thoughts. This helped in two ways – it allowed me to vent out my frustrations and insecurities, and it also made me aware of patterns in my behavior and thought processes.

During this period of introspection, I realized that I had been equating external validation with self-worth. That’s why no amount of praise or positive feedback ever felt enough – because it was never about the validation itself. It was about feeling worthy.

Once I identified this, I knew I had to flip the script. I needed to detach my sense of self-worth from others’ opinions and start loving myself for who I am.

As simple as it may sound, this wasn’t an overnight process. It required patience, understanding, and most importantly, a lot of self-love.

In the next section, we’ll delve into a common belief that many people hold about self-worth and why my journey has led me to see things in a different light.

The widespread misconception about self-worth

There is a widespread misconception that your worthiness is directly proportional to how others perceive you. This belief stems from the idea that if others think highly of you, it must mean you’re valuable, successful, or important.

But here’s the thing – this perspective is fundamentally flawed. It places your self-worth in the hands of others, making it contingent on their opinions and judgments. This belief system can lead to a cycle of self-doubt, insecurity, and unhappiness, as it did for me.

My journey has taught me that self-worth isn’t about external validation. It’s about recognizing your inherent value, irrespective of what others think or say about you.

Challenging this widely held belief wasn’t easy. There were times when I found myself slipping back into old patterns, seeking validation from others. But each time, I reminded myself that my worth isn’t defined by external opinions but by how I perceive myself.

In the next section, I’ll share with you the key actions I took to shift my perspective on self-worth and cultivate self-love.

Embracing self-love and letting go of external validation

The most transformative step in my journey was embracing self-love. This meant recognizing my inherent worth, regardless of what others thought or said about me.

I started by setting aside some time each day for self-reflection. This was a space for me to acknowledge my feelings, validate my experiences, and remind myself that I am enough just as I am.

I also began to challenge negative self-talk. Whenever I caught myself being overly critical or judgmental, I would try to replace these thoughts with positive affirmations.

Perhaps the most significant change was learning to celebrate my accomplishments – big and small – without needing validation from others. Whether it was completing a project at work or simply getting through a tough day, I allowed myself to feel proud and accomplished.

Remember, self-love isn’t about being perfect or meeting others’ expectations. It’s about accepting yourself as you are, with all your strengths and weaknesses. It’s about acknowledging that your value doesn’t depend on anyone else’s opinion but your own.

If you’re struggling with external validation like I once was, know that it’s never too late to start this journey of self-love. It may not be easy, but it’s definitely worth it. In the next section, I’ll share some practical tips on how you can start practicing self-love today.

Taking responsibility and embracing the journey of self-love

Taking responsibility for my need for external validation was a significant turning point in my journey. It wasn’t about blaming myself; instead, it was about acknowledging the role I was playing in my own unhappiness. This acceptance was a powerful catalyst for change, as it allowed me to regain control of my life.

As I began to separate my self-worth from others’ opinions, I realized how much societal conditioning had influenced my thinking. I had been trying to fit into molds that didn’t align with who I truly was.

These realizations led me to question societal myths and expectations. I began to challenge the notion that self-worth is tied to external validation. This shift in perspective was crucial in paving the way for self-love and acceptance.

Here are the key takeaways from my journey:

  • Recognize your need for external validation.
  • Set aside time for self-reflection and acknowledge your feelings.
  • Challenge negative self-talk and replace it with positive affirmations.
  • Celebrate your accomplishments without seeking validation from others.
  • Question societal expectations and detach your self-worth from others’ opinions.

One resource that has been incredibly helpful in this journey is It offers practical advice on cultivating self-love and breaking free from societal expectations.

Remember, embracing self-love is not about blind positivity or ignoring your struggles. It’s about acknowledging your dissatisfaction, facing the reality of your situation, and taking responsibility for your happiness. It’s about aligning your life with your true nature, breaking free from societal conditioning, and living life on your own terms.

This journey may not be easy, but every step you take towards self-love and acceptance is a step towards a happier, more fulfilling life.

Break Free From Limiting Labels and Unleash Your True Potential

Do you ever feel like you don’t fit into a specific personality type or label? Or perhaps you struggle to reconcile different aspects of yourself that don’t seem to align?

We all have a deep longing to understand ourselves and make sense of our complex inner worlds. But putting ourselves into boxes can backfire by making us feel even more confused or restricted.

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You’ll learn:

  • How to develop your own unique life philosophy without confining yourself to labels or concepts
  • Tools to break through the conditioning that disconnects you from your true self
  • Ways to overcome common pitfalls that make us vulnerable to manipulation
  • A liberating exercise that opens you to the infinity within yourself

This could be the breakthrough you’ve been searching for. The chance to move past self-limiting ideas and step into the freedom of your own undefined potential.

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