I talk to so many people who are looking for validation from someone who is not giving it to them. And this is such a hard one! Because even if you know you should be validating yourself — even if you want to, even if (like me) you’re a recovering people pleaser trying to disconnect from the drug of outside approval — that desire is still there, to be validated, to be affirmed, to be deemed worthy.
I had a thought the other day: what if you granted validation to yourself?
Not thought about it, wished for it, longed for it, waited for it, but GRANTED it.
How do you grant yourself validation?
How about we try this:
Write out the validation you want from someone. Imagine them saying exactly what you want to hear: singing your praises, telling you good job, nodding with approval at your actions.
Now this is the important part — read it out loud. If possible, to a trusted friend. Nod with approval. Stand up and clap your hands. Sing your own praises. And end with something like:
I hereby grant myself the validation I seek.
To commemorate, put on a validation song and dance to it, or write out a certificate, or make a tiny sigil to wear around your neck, or find a ring to wear, so any time you’re feeling small or insignificant or like an imposter, you can make a fist and say to yourself:
YES: I see you
I know you
You are powerful
You are learning
You are growing
I validate you
I strengthen you
I encourage you
I believe in you
I think something happens when we say this out loud to ourselves. When we adopt it as a daily practice, something you can do no matter how you feel, something you can feel your way into.
It’s not a given. It’s not either you have it or you don’t. It’s not something someone else can give you anyway.
Have you ever noticed that? How often, when the validation DOES come from outside, we swat it away, we deflect it, we dismiss it?
I wonder if, when we begin truly to affirm ourselves, when we build up those muscles and recognize ourselves, we also begin to receive more validation from the outside. Because we’re open to it — we’re ready for it — we’re not in a desperate game of hide and seek with it, we already have it.
Something to experiment with! And that’s what I love about this work. It’s something you can practice and learn. It’s a choice you can make and a stance you can take, a question you can ask.
What if I had the power to grant myself validation?