Kara - Peachtree City, Georgia
Entered on March 19, 2009
Age Group: 18 - 30
  • Listen to This I Believe on RadioPublic

  • Podcasts

    Sign up for our free, weekly podcast of featured essays. You can download recent episodes individually, or subscribe to automatically receive each podcast. Learn more.

  • FAQ

    Frequently asked questions about the This I Believe project, educational opportunities and more...

  • Top Essays USB Drive

    This USB drive contains 100 of the top This I Believe audio broadcasts of the last ten years, plus some favorites from Edward R. Murrow's radio series of the 1950s. It's perfect for personal or classroom use! Click here to learn more.

When individuals are asked what their most significant belief is, it may take many moments for them to choose a specific one that holds the utmost importance in their lives. This was a thought-provoking question, yet simple decision for me to make. Being that I am a young woman who has been taught to hold myself at a high value and to respect myself above all else, I believe in positive self-worth. I believe that a person’s self-worth is one of the few things today that they have complete control over. In a world that is often turned upside-down in chaos, it is important for individuals to fully understand that they may not be able to control other people or every event in life, but they undeniably have control of how they perceive themselves.

One’s self-worth may be affected by numerous elements, especially other people and the media. Many individuals try to fit a “cookie-cutter mold” of perfection that is often unattainable, which eventually causes them to believe they are worthless and of no value. People are inevitably influenced by others, but it is important for them to discover their own values and thoughts and live for what they believe, rather than the ideas of others. It is also essential that people must never compromise their own beliefs, morals and ideas. Individuals should live based upon strong morals and never put themselves in situations that may potentially put their self-worth at risk.

As I headed off to college, my father handed me a note that narrowed down some of his thoughts and advice before I left. In it he included three major categories: dedication, value and trust. Under the title “value” reads this:

You, like a steel sword have been forged. You started out pliable and unshaped. Mentors, friends, teachers and family have shaped your life. Like the steel sword, you are shiny and beautiful, but remember you are also very sharp and can be dangerous in the wrong hands. Choose your friends wisely and remember your value when giving your heart. Don’t let just anyone take you from your protective case and swing you around, for this will tarnish your beauty and diminish your value. (Nick)

My dad is a man of many great words who has given me incredible advice over the years, but these are words that I read as often as possible to remember my own self worth and how important it truly is. As I close, I leave you with these questions… whose values are you living by and how is this reflected in your self-worth? I believe in positive self-worth, so take today to live for yourself and your ideas, and you too can believe.