You may be starting to see a bit of a theme on this blog. More than anything else, I want you to understand your value. I want you to know without a shadow of doubt that you matter, that you are beautiful (just as you are) and that you are powerful beyond measure.
It’s a conviction that I am fighting for personally. I have the battle scars to prove it. Some days I feel it and other days I don’t, but I am determined to push on. You’re worth it and so am I.
But, why does it matter you might ask? Who am I really hurting if I just think I’m average? Does it really make that big of a difference if I live my life thinking I’m just ok. Don’t I really only hurt myself when I hate myself?
The truth is, it matters, for a million reasons, it matters.
Not only are you meant to live a life full of joy and fulfillment (impossible if you don’t like the person you have to live with every day… YOU)* but more than that…
your value has never, ever been just about you.
When we undervalue ourselves we miss opportunities. When we play it small we limit our impact. When we don’t recognize the potential we have to improve the lives of others, we never change the world.
My favorite quote, penned by Marianne Williamson and made famous by Nelson Mandela is as follows:
“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? You are a child of God. 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. We were born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us. 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.”
We are each allotted our own measure of light. Our own spotlight. We diminish that light when we focus it solely on ourselves. It is only when we join together, each focusing our lights on the things that matter, that we can change the world.
It just starts with one.
It starts with you, understanding that you matter. It starts with you, understanding that you have purpose. It starts with you, recognizing what is in your hand. It starts with you, raising your voice.
Here’s an incredible example of a few young women who when faced with an appalling injustice, did just that.
You can find out more information about the Malala Fund here.