Stop Devaluing Yourself

Recently, a few people have asked me about this blog. What is it? What do you write about? Why do you do it?

It’s very easy to devalue the things that we do. I’m never quite sure how to respond to these questions – what is Simply Sweet? I suppose it’s a lifestyle blog with a Christian focus and an aim to encourage and entertain others while also making sense of my own thoughts and actions – however this kind of coherency rarely makes it out of my mouth in conversation. Instead, I find myself saying, ‘oh you know, it’s just a girly blog with bits and pieces of stuff I’m interested in. It’s probably pretty boring.’

In actual fact, I love writing on this blog. I love to think that in some way, I can be invested in the business of encouragement. As a personal project, it helps me to turn the crazy mess of thoughts in my mind into something that vaguely makes sense.

Do you ever receive compliments or questions about things and whisk them away with a contradiction? Sometimes, I think ‘encouragers’ find it the hardest to receive encouragement. We love making other people feel good about themselves, and seeing our friends succeed. We feel proud of the people we love, and most of the time we expect nothing in return – but when someone encourages us, it catches us off guard and we’re not quite sure how to respond.

What I’m having to learn how to do, is simply say ‘thank you’. If someone says, ‘you look so nice today!’ then don’t reply, ‘thanks but… (insert contradiction here)’. ‘Thank you’s shouldn’t be followed with ‘but’s! If it helps you, say thank you and compliment them in return.

Remember that it’s ok to be proud of yourself. Don’t let pride overtake your judgement, but let yourself be proud of your achievements, your projects, and the way that you look. I’m no expert in this – I’m writing this because I know that it’s difficult. I could write a whole post discussing the battle that we girls face with confidence, self-improvement and our ‘image’ – but the root of the problem lies in the value that we place on ourselves, and where this value comes from.

For you formed my inward parts; you knitted me together in my mother’s womb. I praise you, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made. Wonderful are your works; my soul knows it very well. My frame was not hidden from you, when I was being made in secret, intricately woven in the depths of the earth. Your eyes saw my unformed substance; in your book were written, every one of them, the days that were formed for me, when as yet there was none of them.

– Psalm 139:13-16

This verse – God really packed a punchline in it, didn’t he? ‘I praise you, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made.’ As insecure as we can be, and as much as we devalue ourselves and our achievements, it doesn’t change the fact that this is true. To acknowledge that God made us perfectly, and that in Him we are valued, beautiful and innately loved despite our flaws is a truth that we have to accept no matter what we think of ourselves and what we do.

I don’t know about you, but when I create something or write something, I find it hard to step back and actually like it. We’re always most critical of our own work – but when God created us he stepped back and said, ‘it is good’. The most creative and trustworthy guy in the universe made you and I and thought that we were great. Who are we to tell Him we’re not?

Next time someone compliments you, or questions you about something that you’re proud of, don’t shy away from it. Own it, and don’t be afraid to value what you do.

— Lauren x


22 Comments Add yours

  1. atimetoshare says:

    Great advice for all of us

  2. Karen Barrett says:

    Lauren, I think your blog is amazing and I am SO proud of you (and it’s not just because you are my daughter, although I do feel privileged to be your Mum). Great advice by the way. 🙂

  3. Britney says:

    I love all your advice especially the just say thank you part and no buts!

  4. christinajavete says:

    Great post and reminder to ourselves to never minimize our accomplishments and things that make us happy. =)

  5. This is something I struggle with a lot. As much as I enjoy encouraging and challenging others in Christ, it is difficult for me to have confidence. I’m working on it, but it’s also helpful to have reminders like this post. Thanks for sharing 🙂

  6. I learned to accept compliments after I turned 40. I wish I had known how when I was 20. At 50, I try to give sincere compliments often.
    Great writing.

  7. Reblogged this on with a hint of [non]sense and commented:
    This post reflects my exact thoughts right now. It’s true how tough we can be on ourselves when we shouldn’t shy away from being acknowledged for having done something good.

    It’s okay to be proud of yourself. Learn to accept compliments without buts.
    You are wonderfully made by God.

  8. Courtney says:

    I’m exactly the same! When people compliment me on my blog, I feel embarrassed which is really very silly of me. I would never expect anyone else to feel embarrassed about their writing!

    Keep up the great work, I really enjoy your posts!

  9. jmgriz says:

    What great word this morning. Thank you for your honesty. Too often, I find myself in this same boat. It’s so easy to give and believe this for others, but for ourselves, we somehow doubt the veracity. I wish I could have embraced this Truth when I was your age; yet, I am daily learning to live… God bless. 🙂

  10. jmgriz says:

    Reblogged this on the grizzle grist mill and commented:
    This is such a wonderful reminder that I had to repost…a young soul who has embraced the foundation of Truth by which to live…

  11. Good point that we encouragers have a hard time accepting compliments. And stepping out, sharing thoughts via writing, doing something new — it can be easy to devalue ourselves. Thank you for the reminder! Great post 🙂

  12. pixie says:

    Well said Lauren. Thanks for the tip on how to gracefully respond to a compliment.

  13. Terri says:

    Very well said. And, as far as I can tell, you are also catching glimpses if God in the ordinary and applying scripture to real life. Your posts are well organized, flow beautifully and bring Him in so naturally. That doesn’t sound boring to me. Rather, it makes what you are doing here very important. 🙂 Peace.

  14. janinegorman says:

    I love this! I remember reading this in a book called super confidence years ago about saying ‘Thank you’ instead of saying ‘Thanks but…’ I still have to challenge myself to do it as like you say we automatically say something negative. A timely reminder! Thank you x

  15. nickybanz says:

    Love this! Why is so easy to put ourselves down? I love that you said thank you and but don’t belong together. It’s so true. Those two words should not be in the sentence. If God made us, then we are truly wonderful. A great reminder for us all. 🙂

  16. You are a pearl of great value. Thank you.

  17. Barbara says:

    I love those Scripture verses in Psalms! Your post is timely for me as I try to figure out this blogging thing. As I get a compliment, I’ve been catching myself saying something like, “I don’t know what I’m doing.” I need to stop after Thank You. Blessings to you.

  18. Thank you this tidbit was encouraging. The verse as a reminder was helpful. I can’t accept a compliment without a but, I will do better now.

  19. Thank you for this blog! This was something I definitely needed to hear!

  20. realchange4u says:

    Well said Lauren. We are told it is better to give than to receive . That scripture stuck to hard for the religious Christian and lay person. The truth is its also really nice when God sends a encourager along, receive what God sent graciously and help the encourager by humbly taking their gift. Wala! Love and relationship. I wonder who thought that up. Hey this was a great post. I hope you didn’t mind me jumping on your wagon with you. I just love your blog. Be blessed sister.

    Much Love Tom

  21. brittanynicolexoxo says:

    Girl! This is amazing!! I’m always the same way. I’m currently writing a book, and when people tell me it’s good, I’m always like, “thanks BUT it needs a lot more work”… I need to just say thanks and be proud of what I’ve written…. I think we always criticize ourselves because we somewhere deep, deep inside don’t believe in ourselves. We need to be proud of the things we accomplish! 🙂

  22. Melissa says:

    I have to tell you I so needed to read this. Especially the verse. I literally just finished bawling my eyes out and I stopped and for some reason checked the notifications on my phone and saw that you followed my blog. And for some reason, I decided to explore your blog and found this post and it made me cry all over again, but this time for a good reason. I know God used this post to speak to me. I AM beautifully and wonderfully made. I AM worth it! Thank you so much for writing this. God bless.

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