One thing we all want in life is to be appreciated. Feeling appreciated makes us feel good, and gives us the inspiration to continue on, knowing we’ve made a difference. When appreciation is lacking, we can get frustrated, discontent, and even become apathetic – wondering if who we are and what we do even matter.
I’m here to tell you that you do matter, and that the key to appreciation lies within you.
Do You Seek Appreciation from Others?
Most of us are walking around with invisible signs on our foreheads saying “Appreciate Me”. We want others to acknowledge what we’ve done, who we are, and more. We want to be noticed and paid attention to.
However, sometimes even when others are appreciating us, it doesn’t soak in because you don’t appreciate yourself. You’ll never be able to experience external love and appreciation to a higher degree than your internal love and appreciation.
If you’re constantly beating yourself up, focusing on what you have to, need to, or should be doing, rather than commending yourself for what you’ve done, then you’re bound to miss the heartfelt thanks and genuine appreciation from others, because you’re not giving it to yourself.
Do You Appreciate Yourself?
One of the most important things you can do every day is to appreciate yourself. Using a mirror, look yourself in the eyes and tell yourself all the things you want to hear. I know it may sound corny if you’ve never tried it, but trust me, it helps.
You can appreciate yourself for all the things you did, for the person you are, and for the things you have. And the more you do it, the more appreciated you will feel.
When you have internal appreciation, you’ll be able to recognize and receive the external appreciation coming your way as well.
Everyday Appreciation – Make it a Habit!
One of the best things you can do to feel more empowered, appreciated, and at peace is to practice everyday appreciation. It takes time to create new habits, and you generally have to let something else go to make room for it, so let’s look at how you can do it.
Doing something consistently every day is the best way to form a new habit. I suggest doing the “Mirror Exercise” every night before you go to bed. If you’re like many people, you end the day going over all that you forgot to do, beating yourself up for things you could have done better, focusing on the “should haves” and “got-to’s”, etc. Instead, take that time and spend it connecting with yourself, eye to eye, in the mirror, and list the things you did do, the accomplishments you achieved, the commitments you kept, and focusing on the positive. End your appreciation session by telling yourself that you love you. It may be tough, but it will get easier with time. And I’ve found that the tougher it is for you, the more important it is for you to do it.
When you do this every night, you’ll get more and more comfortable talking to yourself, and after a month or two, you’ll probably feel really good about yourself. If not, there are most likely some internal limiting beliefs that you can release.
Most people will notice a difference fairly quickly. And another cool thing about appreciating yourself is that it becomes an unconscious habit once you’ve consciously created it.
How Can You Tell When You’re Unconsciously Appreciating Yourself?
When you’re unconsciously appreciating yourself, you’ll be less likely to go to those old habits of beating yourself up and focusing on what was forgotten, and more likely to “switch gears” and appreciate yourself instead. Internal appreciation becomes more automatic the more you practice it – much like brushing your teeth or riding a bike.
It’s Your Choice…
You can keep doing what you’re doing now, and if that’s been working for you, GREAT! But if you’re dissatisfied, discontent, or disgruntled in any way, isn’t it worth trying something new to feel something different? Something better? It takes only a few minutes a day, and can make a remarkable difference over time.
You can control how you feel, and the mirror exercise is one tool to make you feel empowered. You’re worth every amount of effort it takes to live the life you want, and yet the effort is minimal with the mirror exercise. Empower yourself every day, and notice the difference it makes.