An Equation for Self-Worth

self-worthI don’t want to write today. This fine morning, I have a choice. I’ve written this blog for you for over 3 years – I think – but I’m not good at math, really. Well, except in the idiot savant sense, when I baffle and amaze…but I’m veering off track. I always post on Friday. 3 years ago, I made a commitment to myself to write every week. I didn’t care if you read it or not; I wanted to write it. Well, now, I’m giddy and grateful you read it – or at least sometimes you read it. I really feel blessed when you leave comments or share it. You’ve encouraged me and I’m considering a book…but that’s another story. The point is, I don’t want to write today, and I wouldn’t, if it weren’t for that darned equation of self-worth. But, like a quick talking, fast moving, snake oil salesman, I’ll explain the math later.

Know how that is when you don’t want to do something -especially when it’s good for you? Have you ever had a hard time finding the motivation to keep your commitments? Does it ever happen to you?

There’s an abrasive grit between commitment and will. (click to Tweet) When we’re faced with it, often we don’t realize it is an equation…

keeping commitments

Now, I’m a math teacher! Feeling mathematically impaired? Allow  me to elaborate….

The difference between what we do, whether we honor our commitment or not, creates our self-image, which in turn effects our perception of our self-worth. We don’t even have to tell anyone! At any given moment, everyday, we make choices about all sorts of commitments we make to ourselves:

  • I said I wouldn’t eat desert.
  • I promised myself I’d finish this class.
  • I have an appointment at the gym.
  • I’ll only drink one glass.
  • I’ll write every Wednesday and publish Friday.
  • I’ll send Birthday cards to the kids.
  • I won’t over-spend.
  • I scheduled time to be in the studio.
  • I’ll Fill in the ________here.

This choice we make inevitably affects our opinion of ourselves, whether we realize it or not. Self-discipline is tough when we’re faced with the discomfort of keeping the commitment or indulging our hedonistic, tantrum-throwing inner-child. Sometimes we forget about the sting of the consequence. Sometimes we forget about the sweetness of doing the “right thing.” 

So, I am writing at you so I can feel good about keeping my commitment and not feel guilty for indulging myself in some other hedonistic pleasure later today. I will deem it a “REWARD.”

Of course, there are other qualifications attached to my weekly posts. I  suffer from the affliction that makes me strive for excellence, so you can rest assure I won’t be publishing poop…at least not intentionally.  I hope to offer food for thought and something of value. I like to explore the places where we share the same human experiences; and it’s even better if it’s something we don’t like to talk about  cuz, I’m just sort of purvy that way. I hope to inspire us all to accept one another not only in spite of, but sometimes because of our foibles.

That’s really it. All I have to say today. Maybe you can relate…then, maybe you’re perfect and NEVER let yourself down…in which case, I’d have to call your bluff.

Do Your Homework and Make Good Choices,


11782161_10207494863919739_64633069007983764_oMichelle Andres is a writer and artist who cultivates her own Well Lived Life by drinking in the beauty around her following her passion, respecting others and owning her own dookie.

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31 Replies to “An Equation for Self-Worth”

  1. Always happy to receive your posts in my inbox. I totally get the honor your own commitments issue. I usually feel better once I just do it. Most of the time…

  2. Bravo! I too am one of your followers who support your writings but I quietly cheer you on from the other side of my computer. Your writings are getting so much depth and polish, you absolutely should write a book of encouragement. Thank you and please keep writing and sharing 🙂

    1. Thank you, Connie! I feel better since I forced myself to keep the commitment. Thanks for cheering me on from the other side of the computer…but thank you this time especially, for letting me know!

  3. I understand about writing a blog and I could not ever keep at it for too long or on any type of schedule or consistent basis but I can and do create my images continuously and I do believe I am and will get to that same level with writing but in different venues – sometimes on a blog – sometimes articles and sometime on posts of other people’s blogs and other places – but as long as it is pretty much random or as the spirit moves – in the same manner that I create my art images then I know that I can definitely work myself up to really doing it on a continuous basis – in the same manner as I have described my system or program or method of marketing that I describe here:

    Marketing Art is the only way to go with real marketing that works – why because it is a process whereby you do what marketing you want out of all the choices facing you when you want and you never have to worry about trying to keep up with everyone else or whether you have done all that you could have done or should you do more –
    this is a more relaxed and enjoyable way of doing your marketing and will always prove so much more productive simply because you are not following anyone else’s rules or regulations – but because you are doing your marketing in an artful way which means both that you are doing it when you feel like doing it and you are doing what you feel like doing and when doing things in this artful way you are guaranteed to be able to do your marketing in this manner for the rest of your life since no matter what you are doing in an artful way since you are doing what you love and you are passionate about what you are doing you can do things in this manner without ever getting tired – or worn out and it even gives you more energy to do things in this manner which will allow you to continue working on and on and on further than anyone else in the world –

    It does not ever matter which of the social media platforms you are using or whether you are doing text or live streaming or any other type of social media that will eventually be invented – or even (in my case) handing out your business cards in the streets of Manhattan – as long as you are doing what you like to do when you like and want to do it you will do well – you will be successful beyond your wildest dreams and you will most definitely enjoy yourself on and on and on and on –

    so before you even think of questioning what it is that I have said here to you in this article – stop everything else and give it a try – and I am sure that if you are being honest with yourself and are working in this most smart amd intelligent manner with your marketing – in other words – if you are using Marketing Art to promote your business – whether products or services – you will both most definitely succeed and you will be having the time of your life –

    Happy Holidays!

    1. Walter, I’m a bit baffled by your post. You wouldn’t be hawking marketing services on my blog, now, would you? Surely you would know better. If it’s simple encouragement, we are fine, thank you. Have a great Christmas. ~Michelle

  4. Love your Math example. I recently heard a saying something like “motivation comes after the doing, not before.” I think there is some truth to that and very similar to your thoughts. Thanks for the posts. I enjoy reading them.
    As an artist, getting off the couch and painting can be difficult, but it never fails that I paint longer than expected. “Will to do” has a very satisfying payoff. 🙂

    1. Thanks for sharing your thoughts, Pat. I do find that, in the middle of the doing, I become motivated and work harder than I thought I would, both in the studio and when I write. Thank you for being a reader and for commenting! 🙂

  5. Thank you Michelle for writing for us even though you didn’t want to. That’s my daily battle. Nobody is going to make me do my chosen work, except for me. I do thrive on encouragement so I should know to answer you more often. I appreciate your blog (hate that word,) and your kind and inspiring topics. Thank you.

  6. For someone who didn’t want to write,you wrote a pretty powerful post. A few days ago I re-read post I wrote a while ago about breaking commitments to myself. And I still do it all the time. And it doesn’t make me feel good about myself. Lately I’ve been experimenting with picking more realistic commitments so that my will + commitment stand a chance… still have a long way to go!

    1. Tat, thank you for considering it a powerful post. Once I get started, I’m usually fine…it’s the starting part! I think your idea of committing to the “possible” is a great start. SMART goals are specific, measurable, achievable, REALISTIC and timely. Good for you. Keep going, I know you can make headway!

  7. Awesome stuff…..and I really never realized how closely keeping commitments is tied to one’s self worth. I guess I really never thought about it, but what an eye opener! I shall ponder on this one!

    1. It’s an easy way for you to become the bomb-diggity, Debbie! Commitments to ourselves are the easiest ones to break because no one knows. If we keep them, we rock it!

  8. I’m glad for you it helps ! For me it’s another matter .After each solo exhibition I do I have 0 inclination to begin to paint ! The problem is I don’t feel a commitment or a less self esteem !
    But when a new exhibition is in sight , I can paint without thinking about anything else . So where does that leave me with the Math example ????
    Love to read your Blog or coming Book !

    1. Michal – congratulations, you are math resistant! 🙂 Also, congratulations for getting those solo exhibitions! I guess you just need to keep those in the hopper and you’ll keep finding inspiration. Keep reading, I’m sure eventually something will strike a chord. And keep painting, too! ~m

  9. I am always happy to read your posts. I find them thought provoking and inspiring which is why I regularly share them on Twitter. You have a tendency to not hold back and tell it like it is.

    Now how could someone go wrong with ‘thought provoking’ and ‘inspiring’? 🙂 Thanks for giving me something to look forward to with your posts.

    1. Thank you for the great feedback, Elda. I always appreciate the “shares,” too. I guess I don’t hold back because I know, in our hearts, we’re all so much alike. Thanks for being a supporter! Hugs! ~m

  10. What a great post, Michelle. I’m glad you went on tho define your math equation, because frankly, I didn’t get it at first glance. It’s so true – and a great reminder for me as a head into the new year with big plans that need to be supported by action.

    1. Yes, Nanette…the equation can be a bit baffling, as I only teach math on Friday and today is Tuesday. 🙂 I’m glad you have big plans in 2016. I look forward to hearing all about them! Happy New Year!

  11. Good post – i also look forward to receiving your post in my in-box. I’m inspired to “get back in saddle” after leaving a corporate job of 27+ years on 12/22. Now, i know this will sound selfish, but I’m beginning a phase in my life where is all about ME! I love the math reference!

    1. Thank you, Vickie. Congratulations on your retirement. What an exciting time in your life, when you are able to reclaim yourself and re-invent! I don’t think it sounds selfish AT ALL! I think that would be a lie society told us so we’d keep doing things to help others achieve their dreams. Now, it’s time for YOU! Enjoy every moment and keep me posted! ~m

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