What is the status of your self-worth at present? How do you determine your self-worth? Many people base their value on things such as how many friends they have, their income, what car they drive, what neighbourhood they live in, the number of social media followers they have, and even their relationship status. All these are external factors and in this episode, we talk about how our worth is at the core of our very selves—our thoughts, our feelings, and our behaviours. These are all intimately tied to how we perceive our value as human beings, our internal sense of simply being good enough and worthy of love and belonging from others. If you are struggling with your self worth this episode is for you. Today’s episode offers you three simple steps to help you increase your self worth.

In this episode

01:10 — What is Self Worth?

06:18 — You Determine Your Self Worth 

07:57 — Challenge Your Inner Voice

08:30 — Self Worth Rooting from Childhood Experiences

10:42 — Practicing Self-Compassion 

11:37 — Joy and Sorrow

12:46 — Learning Self-Compassion

14:35 — Don’t Tear Others Down to Build Your Self Worth Up

15:05 — Stop Gossiping Other People! 

17:30 — When You Value Yourself, You Value Others

18:17 — Conclusion


Dr Marisa Lee Naismith is excited to announce the release of her new book “Singing Contemporary Commercial Music Styles: A Pedagogical Framework” published by Compton Publications UK. Marisa offers this book as a starting point and as CCM markets continue to evolve, she encourages that we, as a voice community, continue to evolve, debate and communally add to this framework.



Visit the A Voice and Beyond Youtube channel to watch back the video replay of this guest interview or to see my welcome video.

Episode Transcription

Dr Marisa Lee Naismith  00:02

It’s Marissa Lee here. And I’m so excited to be sharing today solo round episode with you. Whether you’re a member of the voice community, or beyond your voice is your unique gift. And my mission, which has been inspired by my own personal and professional journey is to empower you to share your gift with others. Now is the time for you to discover your voice in life, develop a positive mindset, and become the best and most authentic version of yourself to create greater impact. Ultimately, you can take charge, and you can become the director of your own life. It’s time for you to live your best live. It’s time now, for A Voice and Beyond. So, without further ado, let’s go to today’s episode. 

Dr Marisa Lee Naismith  01:10

Okay, so what do you believe to be your self worth? What is the current status of your self worth and looking like? What value do you place on yourself in all aspects of your life? And how do you determine your self worth? Over the past number of months, many of my podcast episodes have been focused around the word self, their self esteem, self compassion, self acceptance, self respect, self confidence, self love, self care, and so on and so on. There’s a minefield of words to describe how we feel about ourselves, how we think about ourselves, and how we act towards ourselves. It’s understandable if they all start to blend together for you. However, they are indeed different concepts with unique meanings and purposes, they each play an important role in how we perceive ourselves and our lives. 

Dr Marisa Lee Naismith  02:18

Coincidentally, or not, this year has been a real emotional coaster for me, with the passing of my mum, and I’ve been questioning all things around self, I’ve had to do the work each and every day on my own self, because I’m very aware that the relationship with self and how we perceive ourselves has a direct impact on our relationships with others. I have been asking myself, How can I show up for others, when I’m not showing up for myself? How can I be kind to others? If I’m not being kind to myself? First and foremost, how can I build strong relationships with others? If my relationship with myself sucks? If I’m not investing in myself first? How can I value others? In my job as a singing teacher, I expect my students to be authentic in performance. And it’s my intention that in every student’s lesson, I hold space for them to explore their voices to be playful and to allow themselves to be vulnerable. sounds great in theory, but how can I hold space for my students? If I’m not being honest, open and authentic also? So many questions!

Dr Marisa Lee Naismith  03:47

What I’ve realized is that much of this comes back to self worth. Because our worth is at the very core of ourselves, our thoughts, our feelings, and our behaviors. These are all intimately tied into how we view our value as human beings, our eternal sense of simply being good enough and worthy of love and belonging from others. 

Dr Marisa Lee Naismith  04:14

But how do you determine your self worth? You see, so many people have a messed up perspective of self worth, and base their value on things such as how many friends they have, their income, what car they drive, what neighborhood they live in, the number of social media followers they have, and even their relationship status. All of these are external factors. And the problem is people often confuse self worth with self esteem, which relies on external factors such as successes, achievements, and that is how they defined worth. But the reality is that someone can achieve greatness, be wealthy and highly successful, but still struggle with self worth. This is a struggle that I’ve dealt with in my own life. Even after having a successful career in the music industry, completing a PhD and even after publishing a book, none of these things made me feel any more worthy. I was basing my self worth on my achievements. When someone has self worth, they feel good enough and worthy enough, even in those moments when they make mistakes, or things don’t work out in their lives as they had planned.

Dr Marisa Lee Naismith  05:41

Irrespective of why you’re struggling with self worth, there are many things you can do to improve your self worth. And it all starts with mindset. It starts with working on your beliefs about yourself and your self worth. 

Dr Marisa Lee Naismith  05:58

So in this episode, I’m going to talk about three ways you can increase your self worth. So it’s time now to bunker down and let’s get started.

Dr Marisa Lee Naismith  06:18

Number one, here, we get to the heart of the matter, do you have to have your internal guide turned on when it comes to your self worth, you determine your self worth, you are the only one who determines your self worth. If you believe you are worthy and valuable, you will be worthy and valuable to yourself. If you rely on external factors, you will come a crashing down and your self worth will come crumbling down around you. 

Dr Marisa Lee Naismith  06:52

Low self worth can manifest in different ways for different people. Some have a generally negative overall opinion about themselves, while others judge or evaluate themselves really critically, some simply don’t hold any value on themselves. So how can you tell if someone has low self worth? Well, usually people with low self worth will often criticize themselves and their abilities. They brush off compliments, they don’t acknowledge their positive qualities. They focus on their mistakes, their weaknesses, or things they didn’t get done, and they place their attention on what other people seem to achieve or have. Yes, they are constantly comparing themselves and their lives to others. Sound familiar? 

Dr Marisa Lee Naismith  07:51

In order to build self worth, you must stop comparing yourself to others. And you need to start challenging that inner voice that keeps giving you a hard time telling you you are not worthy or good enough. This annoying voice in our heads constantly bombards us with destructive thoughts towards ourselves and it is not on your team. These critical thoughts or inner voices undermine your sense of self worth, and they can lead to self destructive behaviors, which make you feel even worse about yourself.

Dr Marisa Lee Naismith  08:30

Some may not even know this is happening because low self worth can be the result of difficult childhood experiences where a child is led to believe they are not good enough. Sadly, this narrative can stick into adulthood. We all have a critical inner voice which has been shaped from painful childhood experiences and critical attitudes we were exposed to early in life as well as feelings our parents had about themselves. While these attitudes can be hurtful over time, they have become ingrained in us. As adults, we may fail to see them as an enemy. Instead, we accept their destructive points of view as our own. 

Dr Marisa Lee Naismith  09:21

We take these thoughts on. We all have an inner critic that loves to nitpick and point out our flaws, but it’s time to start working on challenging that inner voice. When we do this, we begin to see ourselves for who we truly are. Rather than taking on these lies and this negative point of view about ourselves. We can move away from how we were seen by our family and we can begin to understand and appreciate our own feelings, our own thoughts, desires and values. We can learn to become our own are in person and learn to appreciate and respect ourselves. 

Dr Marisa Lee Naismith  10:05

So next time your inner critic pipes up, recognize this voice for what it is and stop for a moment. Rather than taking the information on board. Ask yourself whether there is any truth in what that inner voice is saying. And if none of this information is true, it is time to remind yourself that no matter what you are worthy, and you are valuable, and you are good enough.

Dr Marisa Lee Naismith  10:42

Number two, a true sense of self worth can also be fostered by practicing self compassion. This is the practice of treating yourself with the same kindness and the same compassion you would your best friend. This involves taking on an attitude of being able to be accepting and loving towards yourself and your experiences rather than being self critical. 

Dr Marisa Lee Naismith  11:11

Self Compassion is about understanding your emotions. So many people go through life being reactive, and on the defensive, but hey, not every day is going to be the perfect day. We all have bad days as well as good days. It’s okay for this to happen. So don’t beat yourself up over it. You are still valued and worthy. Irrespective of those moments. 

Dr Marisa Lee Naismith  11:39

What I’ve learned along the journey of my life is just like the ocean, we too have ebb and flow in our lives, we can only have joy when we experience sorrow, it’s okay to acknowledge those moments of sadness, allow them to pass, be thankful for them and move on. It’s when we are in denial of those moments, and we suppress our feelings, they don’t go away. They simmer until they boil over our bodies and our minds are headed towards a collision course. And there is disharmony between both. This is when we can begin to spiral downward Lee with our health, but also our self worth, we must embrace these moments in our lives and look at them as opportunities to learn and grow. Remember that this is all part of the human experience and something that we all share. It doesn’t define our self worth. So don’t let these moments devalue who you are. 

Dr Marisa Lee Naismith  12:46

I had to learn what self compassion meant to me. I had to learn to give myself permission to breathe, be still present, satisfied, feel accomplished, grateful and enjoy the process. In my every day. I found that journaling was an effective form of emotional self regulation because it helped me to process and understand my emotions, especially in those moments when I just wanted to give up and throw the towel in. With journaling. It doesn’t have to be time consuming. Even taking five minutes a day to reflect can be so rewarding and life changing, I promise you. 

Dr Marisa Lee Naismith  13:29

The other thing that has helped me tremendously to manage or regulate my emotions is meditation, and the benefits of meditation have long been established. Research shows that taking time to relax and recenter or simply press pause can lead to better physical health as well as fewer feelings of anxiety and depression. Ultimately, this will lead you to improve self worth.

Dr Marisa Lee Naismith  13:58

People, we all need connection to others. And this simply means spending time with those people. You love those people who make you laugh out loud, and those who are your biggest cheerleaders. It’s important to find time to regularly meet up with people in your life who bring you joy, but whatever you do, find practices that bring you joy, practice self compassion

Dr Marisa Lee Naismith  14:35

Number three, don’t tear down others to build your self worth. How many times do you hear someone tearing somebody else down just to build themselves up? I hate to say this, but this is usually a surefire way of identifying when someone doesn’t value themselves. If this is you Whew, it’s time to check in on that behavior and call yourself out on it. 

Dr Marisa Lee Naismith  15:05

You can’t spend your life in judgment of others. As social creatures. We’re hardwired for connection. And sometimes this connection may come in the form of gossip. But it’s small minded people with little self worth, who bury themselves in other people’s business, especially in their misfortunes. small minded people talk about other people’s business, and they bring other people down in their conversations. Gossip gives them a false sense of increased value about themselves, irrespective of whether the conversation is positive or negative. 

Dr Marisa Lee Naismith  15:46

And people gossip for a number of reasons usually wanting to feel better about themselves. Oh, my God, many gossipers feel so insecure about themselves, and they find temporary relief in their own miserable lives by judging others. They’re masters at tearing others down to build their own self worth knowing something about someone else that others don’t know seems to make them feel empowered. And sometimes that’s all a gossiper needs. But honestly, this is not going to add value to anybody’s life. 

Dr Marisa Lee Naismith  16:24

I hate to say but gossiping about others might inflate your ego and in the short term may help you feel better about yourself and temporarily add to your own self worth or value. But in the long term, most people don’t want to be around that kind of energy. I for one can’t trust gossipers I hate gossip. I think that if they’re saying all those cruel things about others, what are they saying about me when I’m not around? I don’t like it at all. 

Dr Marisa Lee Naismith  16:58

Don’t become that kind of person. Instead of gossiping. Learn to elevate the people around you with conversations that a kind and focus on the good qualities in people champion them. Become cheerleaders and not haters, support others, uplift them. Stop being mean and miserable. Ask people genuine questions about their lives. Show them that you care through your curiosity about what they’re doing, build people up. 

Dr Marisa Lee Naismith  17:30

The way you can do this is by having a healthy sense of self worth, it will actually make your relationships with others so much stronger. When you learn to love yourself, you become better at being able to love someone else. When you value yourself, you will value others. People with high self respect tend to have more satisfying loving and stable relationships and those who don’t. If you’re a gossip, it is time for you to work on your self worth your self esteem and your happiness so you can share your bright life with others.

Dr Marisa Lee Naismith  18:17

It’s time now to check in on your self worth. And to remind you that your bank account your job title, your physical appearance and your social media following have nothing to do with how valuable or worthy you are as a person. It’s easy to get caught up in chasing money, status and popularity, especially when these things are so highly valued by those around us and by society in general. But make an effort to take a step back and think about what truly matters when determining your self worth. It’s your kindness, your compassion, your empathy, Respect for others, and how well you treat yourself as well as those around you that truly matters. Once you understand, accept and love yourself, you will reach a point where you no longer depend on other people, your accomplishments or other external factors to elevate your self worth. 

Dr Marisa Lee Naismith  19:22

If you’re struggling with the idea of self worth, you can start by adopting the idea that you determine your self worth. Start challenging your critical inner voice. Stop comparing yourself to others and pursue activities that are meaningful to you and are in alignment with your own personal beliefs and not those of others. You need to set yourself up for success. take back control, eradicate limiting beliefs and minimize external factors that are diminishing your true worth. 

Dr Marisa Lee Naismith  20:00

Secondly, remember self compassion. Be kind to yourself, appreciate yourself and acknowledging when you’re struggling and allow yourself to sit with whatever emotions may arise in those situations. 

Dr Marisa Lee Naismith  20:17

Number three is don’t tear others down to build yourself up, get off that pedestal it is make believe, and it will only set you up for failure. This is a time when fake it till you make it does not work. Not only are others going to dislike you, but you are going to dislike yourself for it in the long run. 

Dr Marisa Lee Naismith  20:44

And my final message is that awareness is key by gaining insight into what impacts your self worth. And then following through with action, acceptance and healing, you can increase your self worth, it is time for you to value yourself and all that you are and be willing and prepared to do whatever it takes to make this happen. You are worth the effort. Always have been and always will be. 

Dr Marisa Lee Naismith  21:21

Thank you so much for listening to this episode of A Voice and Beyond. I hope you enjoyed it as now is an important time for you to invest in your own self care, personal growth and education. Use every day as an opportunity to learn and to grow, so you can show up feeling empowered and ready to live your best life. If you know someone who will also be inspired by this episode, please be sure to copy and paste the link and share it with them. Or share it on social media and use the hashtag #AVoiceAndBeyond. I promise you I am committed to bringing you more inspiration and conversations just like this one every week. And if you’d like to help me, please rate and review this podcast and cheer me on by clicking the subscribe button on Apple Podcast right now. I would also love to know what it is that you most enjoyed about this episode and what was your biggest takeaway. Please take care and I look forward to your company next time on the next episode of A Voice and Beyond.

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