Self – Worth and Recovery

I will remind myself that God makes no junk each time I doubt my worth and value.

For many of us, knowing we are special has to be learned. Our families and our society may not have conveyed this much-deserve message. Coming to believe that we are wonderful and worthy as we are requires that we dispel our more critical, though comfortable self-assessment.

Our worth cannot be expressed in numbers. We are worthy because we are alive, we have unlimited worth. Our true worth is not something that is measured by how much we weigh or how much we own or how we behave. We have worth because we exist. Every one of us is born with unlimited worth and we have to learn to believe it.

We are worthy twenty-four hours a day from the minute we are born until we die. It is our recovery, which makes us aware of this fact. Worth does not depend on our doing, our weight or our behaving, worth depend on our existence, and we have to learn to accept this as the truth.

What is your definition of human worth?

How do you measure the worth of people around you?

How do you measure your worth?



Marie often says that people with ED have minus self-esteem, and minus self worth. I would absolutely agree with this. It’s not something you realise when you’re in the thick of it. Therefore I think self worth is an interesting and important topic in recovery.

Having self worth, means to place value on your life, just because. It’s innate, it’s inherent, it’s something intangible and unrelated to any of the doings and achievings of daily life.

I believe I have a lot of self worth these days. But I had to work at it. I had to learn to place value on myself.

I suppose it began with conscious recognition of my needs. It began with me answering back the condition, like maybe I did deserve, maybe I did matter, maybe I was an ok person even if I wasn’t perfect or didn’t win the thing or get the A or receive the external reassurance.

It’s sad that self worth can be so tied up with appearance too. But that’s how it was for me. If the number on the scales was down, I felt like a “better person”. It meant I was more worthy of going to the nice place, and talking with the important people. If the number was up, well suddenly I was a useless failure who didn’t deserve anything, and had to be punished.

It was a horrible existence because I measured my worth on things that frankly didn’t matter an iota. I placed more worth on myself if I was busy all day. And if for some reason I had a quieter day, then the guilt would creep in and my self worth would plummet.

Learning that my life had value was a slow process. But it happened. The more I gave myself credit for the little things, and dropped the comparing- the better I felt about myself. I stopped using everyone else’s life as a yard stick for how worthy I was. I stopped translating other people’s successes into my failures. I also started to magnify all the things I liked about myself, and I stopped telling myself The Story about what an awful person I was.

Self worth started to blossom from the inside out. I always think of this quote: Self confidence isn’t about everyone liking you, it’s about being fine even if they don’t. I realise that has a lot to do with self worth. We are worthy no matter what! I repeat, no matter what. It doesn’t depend on anything but our own CHOICE to believe we are worthy.

It’s important to treat yourself with kindness and compassion. This can be tricky to navigate in early recovery, but if you wouldn’t do it to a small baby or someone you love, then why on earth would it be ok to do to yourself? When you treat yourself with respect, you start to realise that’s what you deserved anyway.

What I’ve realised is that once the self worth gets to a certain level, it’s impossible to fathom doing behaviours or treating yourself badly. It just doesn’t make sense anymore. I wouldn’t dream of depriving myself, neglecting myself or hurting my body & health in any way. I value myself too much to do that now!

Nurturing my self worth has made all the difference in my life, and it’s something I wish I could bottle and share around.

I promise you are already worthy. You really are.