From the time we are born, we need validation. Loving parents offer consistent validation to their children, validating their feelings, their perceptions, their gifts and talents, their particular form of intelligence, their interests, their kindness, caring, and intuition. You are very fortunate if you received this kind of validation from your parents.
If your parents also validated their own feelings, perceptions, and so on, then you are extremely fortunate, as you likely learned to do this for yourself from their role modeling.
However, if your parents did not validate you or themselves, then the chances are that you not only don’t know how to do this for yourself, but you don’t even know that it is your responsibility to do this for yourself.
Since I received very little validation as I was growing, and I never saw my parents validate themselves, I had no idea how to do it or even that it was possible to do this for myself. Now I know that self-validation is not only possible, but absolutely necessary to feel happy, inwardly peaceful, secure, worthy, and have loving relationships with others.
How To Validate Yourself
In order to validate yourself, you need to start to notice two things:
- You need to start to notice how much you judge yourself rather than value yourself.
- You need to start to notice your feelings, your inner knowing, and your acts of kindness to others, and consciously value them.
Judging yourself is the opposite of validating yourself, and creates much inner pain and insecurity. Self-judgment is generally a form of control to get yourself to do things “right” so that others will validate you and approve of you. But as much as you may succeed in getting others to approve of you, as long as you are judging yourself you will continue to feel badly about yourself.
Those harsh thoughts such as “I’m not good enough”, I’m not worth it”, or “No one could love me” are a form of judgments that could stem from a set of negative core beliefs about yourself.
All feelings are informational, letting you know when you are abandoning yourself with your self-judgments and various addictions, and when others are being uncaring toward you and disconnected from you. As you learn to attend to your feelings and validate the information they are giving you, you will start to feel a deeper sense of self-worth and self-esteem. As you learn to trust your inner knowing rather than make others your authority for what is right or wrong for you, you will start to feel more inwardly powerful. When you choose to be kind to yourself and to others and value yourself for your kindness, you will find yourself feeling very happy with yourself.
Think of your feelings and inner knowing as an actual child – your inner child. If you have an actual child and you want to raise that child to feel very secure, loved, and valued, how would you treat that child? How do you wish you had been treated as a child? This is how you need to treat yourself – your own inner child, if you want to become a self-validating person.
Finally, you need to do a third thing to self-validate:
- You need to take loving action in your behalf based on what is loving to you – on what is in your highest good. In order to do this, you need to be devoted to learning to see yourself through the eyes of your Higher Self rather than through the eyes of your ego wounded self. You need to tune into the wisdom of your Higher Self to know what is loving action toward yourself and others. Your inner child will not know that he or she is important to you if you do not take loving action in your own behalf: eating well, getting enough sleep and exercise, speaking up for yourself with others without blame, creating a balance between work and play, moving yourself toward doing work you love, and so on.
You will discover yourself feeling better and better about yourself and needing less and less validation from others as you take these steps.
Margaret Paul, Ph.D. is a best-selling author of 8 books, relationship expert, and co-creator of the powerful Inner Bonding® process – featured on Oprah. Are you are ready to heal your pain and discover your joy? Click here for a FREE Inner Bonding Course, and visit our website at www.innerbonding.com for more articles and help. Phone Sessions Available. Join the thousands we have already helped and visit us now!
Osmo, F., Duran, V., Wenzel, A., De Oliveira, I., Nepomuceno, S., Madeira, M., & Menezes, I. (2018). The Negative Core Beliefs Inventory (NCBI): Development and Psychometric Properties. Journal of Cognitive Psychotherapy, 32(1), https://doi.org/10.1891/0889-8318.104.22.168