“Revere Thyself First”
I recently had a discussion with a close friend about how we all so frequently overlook our own achievements- small and big. This affront against ourselves comes in many forms.
Then I came upon this article from Dennis Merritt Jones. Using the example of weeds versus flowers, he explores how we imbue value at will….when in fact everything has divinity.
Think about how often we do that to ourselves. It’s often subconscious, of course, but when we stop and examine our thought processes, little habits like forgetting to revere ourselves and our achievements begin to come into focus. We say, for example, that we’re not as good as somebody else because they have more money. Or a more attractive partner. Or a better house. Or a better body (which, again, is often defined arbitrarily by society). Or maybe we think we’re not as smart as someone else. So, then, everything we’ve done and been somehow becomes diminished. It gets chucked away and devalued. We see ourselves and all we’ve done as the “weed” rather than a rose.
We might undercut our achievements because they don’t meet someone else’s standards. So, “Yes, I graduated from college…but it wasn’t Harvard”. I won’t argue that there are varying degrees of achievement in this world- of course their are. But, when we slight over individual achievements, we can’t achieve better as people or as a society. You can’t build a house on no foundation. But, in the larger scheme of this world, who are we to say that someone who graduates from a non-Harvard school really has less to contribute to society than someone who has?
Come now, we all know this is really not the case. Just as you cannot build a house on no foundation, it’s very easy to build a shoddy house on a solid foundation. It all depends on the person, their personal divinity within, and what their role is in the world (meaning, beyond what we understand).
But, everyone has a divinity within. We forget that. What you do has your own personal magic (for lack of a better word) infused into it.
So, I invite anyone who reads this to do this little activity: sit with a pen and paper and write out your achievements. Don’t apply judgements about whether something really is an “achievement”- because then society’s standards come knocking. Think about all you’ve DONE in your life, all you’ve BEEN, and add that to the list.
You learned to cook? Brilliant, add it to the list.
You’ve read 10 books in 5 years? Excellent, that’s number 5.
You travelled to China? …alone?! My goodness…well certainly add that to the list.
You got a college degree? Yes, that deserves note.
See what I’m getting at?
As I did this exercise, I realized how little credit I often give myself. It’s so easy to look back on your years and see only what has yet to be achieved…what has remained stuffed into a hat box in the closet of your soul because, well, you just haven’t gotten to it yet. And, it’s so easy to skip over all you’ve done because it wasn’t what others thought was worthwhile. Or, maybe it wasn’t what YOU thought was worthwhile. But, you still did stuff, in the end. You didn’t lock yourself in a room and squander your life.
But, how can you move forward and be You with an open and affirming perspective if you poo poo all that you have done? In the spirit of “The Secret”: you attract only what you focus on. So, thinking you’ve done “nothing” will bring you only nothing. Believe, instead, in what you can achieve because you’ve seen proof of it before in your life. That will only bring you more abundance.
So, consider this a reminder to revere yourself and your achievements. Do it daily. Do it weekly. Just do it.