How To Define Self WorthWhen you really think about it, what would you say makes your life significant?

What makes you special? What makes you worth knowing? Worth remembering?

Not to the people who follow you on Twitter or Instagram. But to the people closest to you. The people who know you, who love you. Who actually matter to you.

Why do those people like you?

Why do you like you?

Is it because you have loads of cool stuff? Is it because you wear designer clothes? Is it because you always have the new iPhone on the day it comes out?

Or is there something deeper to your uniqueness? Is what makes you special, perhaps, you?

In what way can a thing define you if someone else can simply take it off you? Once it’s gone, you’re left with nothing.

Except that your life doesn’t suddenly become empty. Your friends don’t immediately abandon you. Not if they really care about you, anyway. You still have interests and skills and feelings. You still go on living.

So how could that thing – that material, ultimately meaningless thing –really give your life so much weight?

Your interest in it remains. The fact that you value it doesn’t change. But it does force you to confront your detachment from it.

It is, after all, just a thing.

And you’re a whole human.

A complicated, emotional, intelligent, innovative, introspective, intrinsically valuable person. And you’re prepared to reduce yourself to a thing that you own?

How you choose to define yourself is so much more complex than a lot of people realise. Expressing yourself through the clothes you wear and the brands you advocate is very different to identifying the aspects of your character that you can be most proud of attributing to you.

Pick the things that are really valuable about you. Your compassion, your creativity, your kindness. The things that will live on long after your body has returned to dust and your possessions are rotting in a landfill or a charity shop somewhere.

You are so much more than your stuff. Or even your interest in stuff, no matter how unmaterialistic.

You have a heart and a mind and a soul. Let that be where you find value in yourself. Let it be where you put your time and effort into cultivating.

Let it be what the world sees of you. Let it be what fulfils you and sustains you.

Let it be what you love about you.

Kirstie Summers,

Daily Zen.

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