THE ANONYMOUS HUSTLE: Chapter 7 - Self Worth

Self Love – Series Within a Series, Part 3 of 3

Let’s get this out of the way. As I’m writing this, there is no epiphany at the end of this chapter. There is no silver lining. I was hoping by the time I reached chapter seven I’d have some wisdom to share but I am metaphorically (and possibly literally) curled up in a fetal position at rock bottom. Unpacking the reasons to why my self-worth is zilch has been horrendous. I hate it. I hate it and I am wayyy past my comfort zone but *inhales* I have been instructed to (among other things) say, “Even though I have this issue of low self-worth, I deeply and completely love and accept myself.” Not even kidding. I swear it’s like I’m allergic to saying the words ‘love and accept myself’ all in one sentence.  

There’s a quote by Marianne Williamson that goes,

Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us. We ask ourselves, ‘Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, fabulous?’ Actually, who are you not to be? […] Your playing small does not serve the world. There is nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people won’t feel insecure around you. We are all meant to shine, as children do. […] It’s not just in some of us; it’s in everyone. And as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same. As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others.

I’ve omitted some bits as I am not inherently religious (you can read the full quote HERE though if you are) but I remember reading this when I was in high school. A decade later and it still hits me as hard as it did the first time around. Hopefully, you’ll understand its significance at the end of this chapter.

On a daily basis, there’s an ongoing question that goes through my head: why do I deserve this? I don’t know when this started but it has built up so much inside of myself that it causes me an awful amount of unhappiness. Sometimes it turns into depression (especially during the time of Aunt Flo), sometimes I find myself in a huddled mess in the bathroom or office, sometimes it’s but a nagging thought. I first started thinking, “Why do I deserve success? Why do I deserve followers? What makes me special enough to even stand apart from countless others who are just as or more talented than I am?” All those questions still plague me and have hindered my productivity in trying to achieve that success, those followers, etc. Then recently, it’s gotten so bad that I ask myself, “Why do I deserve finding the love of my life so early? Why do I deserve two of the best dogs ever? Why do I deserve such a loving and supportive family?” Yes. It’s batshit cray, amirite? You’d think I’d stop at just being grateful for all these things but once I feel grateful, the poor sense of self-worth seeps in. It’s unhealthy. It’s toxic. It’s giving me more anxiety than I’ve felt in ages but I can’t seem to understand why I would deserve these things.

The few people that I’ve confided this in face-to-face are usually dumbfounded and confused as to why I would even think those things and my answer usually is, “I have no fucking clue.” Perfectionism prevents me from putting out consistent content. So does the huge ego hit I took while I was in that Chinese singing competition (for new readers, long story short: I was told I couldn’t sing at all to try and provoke TV drama but I would like to think I’m far from a William Hung - no offense to my fellow Asian brotha because he gave us all an iconic piece of pop culture history, NO RAGRETS). Both of these things, with the help of my counsellor, I’ve been able to work through and learn how to cope with these unhealthy habits but my own self-worth has me baffled. I’ve gotten back-handed compliments, straight up insults, and people I considered closest to me implying or saying upfront that I didn’t deserve something that I achieved or received but it never seemed to take much weight in my life at the time so why would it take up all the weight now? Maybe it’s just all an excuse because it’s better to blame that than disappoint the people who do support me; even more so, disappoint myself.

I don’t know, folks. Maybe you, my beloved reader, understand exactly what I mean. Maybe you think I’m an ungrateful loon. Either way, I am unresolved, this is anti-climactic, and I will still go about my day with an outfit that I picked to make sure I don’t “outshine” the person I am with. Pitiful but hey. I trust that there will be a light at the end of this tunnel. It’s just a wee bit longer than the others.

Until next time,
Stay bold and beautifully weird.

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