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#83 Where is Your Worth?

Your self-worth isn't tied to anything but being exactly you. It shouldn't depend on your achievements, career, family, relationship status, or bank account, but sometimes it’s difficult to see past that. Do external things like these have an impact on your self-worth?

In my coaching practice, I have helped women untether themselves from these old, well-worn pathways that they don’t have to walk anymore. In this episode of the podcast, I’ll help you understand how you can do that too.

Whatever you tie your self-worth to, know that the knot can be undone. And once it is, you are one step closer to becoming Your Favorite You.

Since you’re ready to become your favorite version of you, book a consult to learn more about working with me as your coach.

"I teach in my coaching programs that our worth is inherent - that it cannot be given or taken away. Many of my beautiful clients come to me with their worth tied to something that they externally do out in the world."

What you'll learn in this episode:

  • What an intuitive guide helped me learn about myself

  • Why it's harmful to tie your self-worth to something external

  • How to identify what you're tying your self-worth to so you can stop treating yourself poorly

  • You are worthy just the way you are no matter what

"I want my hubby to be happy, so when he asks me what is wrong, when he can clearly tell I am something other than happy, peaceful, calm, I say nothing is wrong, and I pretend that I am happy, so that he will be happy. Spoiler alert - it never works."

Mentioned in this episode:

Be sure to sign up for a consult to see if coaching with me is the right fit for you. Join me on a powerful journey to become your favorite you.

Listen to the full episode:

Read the full episode transcript

Hey, this is Melissa Parsons, and you are listening to the Your Favorite You Podcast. I'm a certified life coach with an advanced certification in deep dive coaching. The purpose of this podcast is to help brilliant women like you with beautiful brains create the life you've been dreaming of with intentions. My goal is to help you find your favorite version of you by teaching you how to treat yourself as your own best friend.

If this sounds incredible to you and you want practical tips on changing up how you treat yourself, then you're in the right place. Just so you know, I'm a huge fan of using all of the words available to me in the English language, so please proceed with caution if young ears are around.

Hello everyone - welcome back to Your Favorite You

I am writing this podcast from one of my favorite places on the earth - this is Miraval Arizona in Tucson - my pediatric girlfriends and I started this tradition 3 years ago when my friend Mary-Lynn was turning 50 years young - Mary-Lynn invited all of us to join her - she gave us the dates well in advance, and requested we come too and bring a friend… many of us did and a tradition was born! That first year, you may recall, I ran into Glennon Doyle and her sister Amanda when I was lost on the first day looking for one of my classes. Last year, I was turning 50 around our trip, so we celebrated my birthday here, and my bestie from growing up, Alycia, was able to make it with us, so that is what made that trip so special. We are continuing the tradition again this year, and of course we’ll do it again next year, and I’m just so happy to be here.

On the flight here, I was gathering information for the webinar I am going to be delivering on May 8th at 7pm, so I was going back through all of my old client notes and some themes became apparent. I teach in my coaching programs that our worth is inherent - that it cannot be given or taken away. Many of my beautiful clients come to me with their worth tied to something that they externally do out in the world - so their worth might be tied to their accomplishments, it might be tied to their career, it might be tied to their family, it might be tied to their relationship status, it might be tied to the number in their bank account, or the number on a scale. My word, I came up with a huge list of things that OTHER PEOPLE tie their worth to.

So, today, I got to Miraval, I had a bite to eat with my friends Bonnie and Mary-Lynn… our friends Irene and Praveena showed up and chatted with us for a bit, then I went to a gentle stretch class, and THEN I had a private session with an intuitive guide whose name is Tejpal. 

If you ever have the chance to go to Miraval, book yourself a one-on-one session with Tejpal if you’re into this stuff.

So, I sat down with Tejpal, we exchanged pleasantries about the weather and that type of thing, and she then asked what questions I had that I wanted help with. I asked her some questions about how to reach a larger audience in my business and then she just started in… she told me that she was going to close her eyes because that helps her to do her work and she invited me to close my eyes or to keep them open. So I love to close my eyes and go in, so I closed my eyes, she had me take some deep breaths and then she said… boy, you’re funny, to which I started laughing and said, well, yes, I try to be… Then she said, “Why do you have to be?” And at that point, tears just started running down my face - both of our eyes are still closed and she says, well that makes sense, because you're tying your worth to making sure that other people are happy! She said no one ever told you that this was what you needed to do, and that’s true, but you were born a very gentle and … I forget the work she used, but she said you were born a very gentle soul and you just knew that the way to get love from everyone was to do whatever it took to make them happy.

Now, of course, this makes complete sense to me.

As I have discussed on the podcast before, I come from a long maternal line of non-feelers. My maternal grandmother and grandfather had 7 children, they had a family business to run, my grandfather was also involved in local politics, and there was not time for feeling feelings. So my mom and her siblings were never allowed and certainly never encouraged to feel her feelings. She might have some feelings about me sharing this on the podcast… and it’s ok mom. I love you.

So I intuitively knew as a little kid that happiness was a safe and acceptable emotion - to be clear - again, no one ever said to me - you are not allowed to feel anything other than happy, and I was never punished for feeling feelings other than happy. And, in fact, I remember my parents comforting me and taking care of me when I was sad or when I was mad and that type of thing. But my little brain came up with the idea that the way to keep everyone happy was to perform and to be funny. I also intuited after getting perfect grades in 3rd grade (Hi Mrs. McKnight! I know you’re listening) that straight A’s also made everyone happy. Although I am sure my mom can give you plenty of examples to the contrary, my people-pleasing started early! As Tejpal was encouraging me to feel my feelings during our session and the tears were literally rolling down my face for approximately 40 of the 45 minutes we had together, she helped me make sense of so many things.

It turns out, rather, that another way to make my grandma Peg happy was to eat all the food she prepared and tell her how delicious it was and have her put more on my dish and take seconds and that type of thing… and this is one of the reasons why I think I still overeat to this day. Not to blame my grandma, but I think it makes sense, right?

I want my hubby to be happy, so when he asks me what is wrong, when he can clearly tell I am something other than happy, peaceful, calm, I say nothing is wrong, and I pretend that I am happy, so that he will be happy. Spoiler alert - it never works. That man knows me better than I know myself. And we have this interesting dynamic that we are working through because his old wounds have him always believing that he is the cause of my unhappiness, when typically that is not the case. After the session, as I was telling him about it, we made an agreement that I was never going to try to ‘fix’ him and that he could work on getting more comfortable whenever I am unhappy. I also said that I would try not to pretend to be happy anymore when I wasn’t - that I would try to answer him honestly when he asked me what was wrong - knowing that sometimes I won’t know - I often figure it out a couple hours later - and assuring him that if he IS the actual problem, I will let him know that too.

So this partially explains why I feel the need to control the other people in my life… I think I know better than they do what will ultimately make THEM happy, so I try to steer their lives in the direction I think it should go… this explains why when my 19 and 22 year old sons order food at a restaurant, and they order something I think they might not like, I ask them, “Are you sure?” when the waiter is still there! I am learning that this behavior by me definitely does NOT make them happy. It also explains why I am forever trying to ‘fix’ things for the people I love, when it is not actually my job to fix anything for them in their life.

Another way I see this showing up is me constantly asking my quieter son ‘what’s wrong’ when he is just being his quiet self. I had this revelation a while ago - He is quote unquote allowed to be quiet. He is allowed to be introverted. It turns out, he does not need fixing. I have asked him for a do-over here because I don’t want him carrying around the idea that something is wrong with him for being different from me.

This explains why I got married in the Catholic Church and had the boys baptized when they were babies, even though I had not been practicing Catholicism since high school - I did this to make my grandparents happy and to make my great-uncle Urban, the priest, happy. I loved all of them and wanted to make them happy, so I pretended, and also made Jon pretend that we were going to raise the kids Catholic! We did not and they are not.

This also explains why I think I have to comment on every comment of every post I put on my personal Facebook page - gotta keep my friends happy!

This might even explain why I knew I wanted to be a doctor since the age of 9… it seemed to make the adults in my life happy when I declared that I was going to be a doctor… This was after one of the nuns (I can’t remember her name) had us do a project about what we wanted to do when we grew up - I couldn’t decide between doctor and astronaut. She said, Melissa, you are spacy enough, stay on earth and help people. And then, she gave me a noogie. This was the 80’s people. I wish that was not the story of how I decided to become a doctor, but it is. I also have my love for my pediatrician growing up, and I'm curious now as I’m thinking this, maybe I also did it to make him happy. Food for thought. My love of medicine and of being a physician was solidified many times over later in life because I really did want to help heal people.

It might explain why when I wasn’t happy as an overworked young mom and pediatrician, I turned to alcohol and food to help make me happy. I sure was happy after a few glasses of wine or a few gin and tonics or a few vodka and grapefruit juice specials… but it never lasted long and was kinda an endless cycle of unhappiness and false happiness… but at least I was trying to be happy.

Tejpal asked and proclaimed so many times in our session who are you if you are not able to feel all of your feelings… so I will ask you, who are you if you are not able to feel all of your feelings?

Where are you pretending in order not to feel anything other than happy?

In order to stop pretending to be happy, and in order to stop treating yourself poorly, one of the steps is to figure out what you are tying your self-worth to… is it your role as a mom? As a daughter? As a friend? For me, as a physician? Are you tying your self worth to your list of achievements? Are you waiting on the next achievement to help you decide if you are worthy? Are you tying your self-worth to a standard of perfectionism? How about to fitting into a group of people? Are you tying your self-worth to self-sacrifice?

The list of the people I have helped figure out why they are tying their self-worth to anything other than just being exactly them… the women I have helped UNTIE and untether themselves from these old, well-worn pathways that they don’t have to walk anymore… the women I have been able to show they are worthy just as they are, no matter what… I have helped these women and I know I can help you, too! Please come to the webinar! Bring your friends! I would love to see you all there! It is going to be on May 8th in the evening at 7pm Eastern Time.

Oh, and by the way… Tejpal also says that she sees me leading a retreat on a beach somewhere, so where should we go??? She also says that after I learn to feel all of my feelings and use all of my senses, she sees me guiding women back to their senses and their sensuality! So that sounds fun! Who is with me???

She also said that I am going to definitely be a public speaker, and that I have a book to write. Do I consider this podcast public speaking, or should I consider an even larger stage? What can I title my book??? Ok - love you all for listening - see you next week! 

I would love one more minute of your precious time so that I can invite you all to a webinar I am presenting on Wednesday, May 8th at 7pm Eastern. This webinar is titled, How To Figure Out What The Fuck You Want: The 5-Steps High-Achievers Need To Go From EFFFF to AAAHH… On the webinar, I will be going over where you are now, where you want to be, what you have tried so far in your life to get it, why it hasn’t worked, and the process that I have developed to help all of my people figure out what the fuck they want! After I teach you all about the process, you can stay on and I will tell you all about my group coaching program, also called Your Favorite You. I will share what you can expect when you join the group, and all the amazing results that you and I and all of the other incredible women in the group can co-create together! To sign up for the webinar, go to - put your information in the empty fields and you will be all signed up! Sign up, mark your calendar, bring your friends, and for the love of everything, please interact with me on the webinar. It makes it so much more fun and interesting for everyone! So, go right now -! See you there!



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