Why Constantly Proving Your Worth Doesn’t Work?

Last night I had a conversation with some good friends of mine. We ended up in a deep chat about the current dating scene, and honestly, it sounds wild out there!

They were explaining how it feels like they are in a never-ending audition, constantly having to prove their worth again and again. This got me thinking – this ‘proving-your-worth’ business isn’t just in dating, right?

In our pursuit of success, we often find ourselves in a relentless cycle of constantly trying to prove our worth, both to ourselves and to others.

Whether it’s in our professional lives, social circles, or even within our families, this need to demonstrate our value can dictate our actions, choices, and sense of self.

However, this approach can be more counterproductive than it is beneficial.

Pressure of Perfection

The renowned author Brené Brown, in her book “The Gifts of Imperfection,” talks extensively about the toxic culture of perfectionism.

The relentless pursuit of proving one’s worth is often rooted in perfectionism, where individuals strive for an impossible standard. 

This endless striving is often a protective mechanism to avoid the pain of blame, judgment, or shame.

“Perfectionism is not the same thing as striving to be your best. Perfectionism is not about healthy achievement and growth.”

Brené Brown

It’s about the fear of not being good enough, which can lead to a constant need to prove oneself.

The Fallacy of External Validation

The belief that our worth is determined by others’ perceptions or validation can be deeply ingrained.

Yet, this belief is fundamentally flawed. 

“The primary cause of unhappiness is never the situation but your thoughts about it.”

Eckhart Tolle (A New Earth: Awakening to Your Life’s Purpose)

When we tie our self-worth to external factors, such as achievements, appearance, or other’s opinions, we are placing our happiness and self-esteem in variables we cannot control.

This can lead to constant anxiety and insecurity, as we are perpetually at the mercy of external circumstances and opinions.

The Illusion of Control

“Man is disturbed not by things, but by the views he takes of them.” 


In other words, it’s not what others think of us that truly matters, but how we see ourselves.

We often believe that we can control others’ perceptions or opinions of us.

However, in reality, how others perceive us is filtered through their own experiences, biases, and preconceptions. 

“You and everyone you know are going to be dead soon. And in the short amount of time between here and there, you have a limited amount of fucks to give. Very few, in fact. And if you go around giving a fuck about everything and everyone without conscious thought or choice—well, then you’re going to get fucked.”

Mark Manson (The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck)

Internal Worth and Self-Compassion

The healthiest and most sustainable source of self-worth comes from within.

Cultivating a sense of internal worth involves recognizing and acknowledging our intrinsic value, separate from any external achievements or validation. 

It requires self-compassion and acceptance of our flaws, weaknesses, and mistakes. 

“Instead of mercilessly judging and criticizing yourself for various inadequacies or shortcomings, self-compassion means you are kind and understanding when confronted with personal failings – after all, who ever said you were supposed to be perfect?”

Kristin Neff (Self-Compassion: The Proven Power of Being Kind to Yourself)


The constant pursuit to prove your worth is not just exhausting – it’s unproductive and potentially harmful.

It is rooted in perfectionism and hinges on external validation.

Breaking free from this cycle involves fostering a sense of internal worth, embracing self-compassion, and understanding that our value is not something that needs to be proven to others.

As Brené Brown astutely concludes, “You are imperfect, you are wired for struggle, but you are worthy of love and belonging.”

Spread the word. Share your love.
Garv Chawla
Garv Chawla
Articles: 412

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