Welcome to the InFluency Podcast. I’m Hadar. And this is episode number 226. And today we’re going to talk about being worthy.

Hey everyone. It’s Hadar. Thank you so much for tuning in for another episode of the InFluency podcast, because we’re always in fluency. Now, before I begin with today’s podcast, I just want to say thank you to all of you who have rated and reviewed the podcast. Every now and then I get a new review and that truly warms my heart.

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And now let’s talk about what we’re here to talk about today – worthiness, the idea of being worthy. A few days ago, I had a coaching session with my Beyond students, and I wanted to talk to them about this idea of being worthy. And I asked them, What does it mean to you when you hear the word ‘worthy’?

And I think the two words that kept coming up were ‘valuable’, right? You’re valuable. And the second word was ‘deserving’ – when you’re worthy or deserving, you deserve something. And I agree, I think that these two words definitely come to my mind when I think about being worthy.

But here’s the thing, and here’s the problem with this concept of being worthy. We were taught in… you know, society has taught us that to be deserving, to deserve something, you need to work hard. Right? And if you don’t work hard, you don’t deserve something. I mean, that’s how it is when we’re kids, right? If you do this, you will get that. If you eat your dinner, you will get a candy. If you clean up your room, we will go downstairs to play. Right?

So there’s like a bribe or something that you get if you do something. And that’s something that you get is something that you want, right? But you can’t get it until you do something, until you behave well, in a way. Cause usually the thing that you have to do is, is not a bad thing, according to society, it’s a good thing.

So when you work hard, clean up your room, or when you do the task, get a high grade in school, then you get a reward. And that reward is something that you want, so you associate getting what you want with working really, really hard. Which is partially true, we need to work hard for things. But then we always also associate that idea of deserving – we deserve this – with working hard and behaving well and doing what is expected of us.

And that’s where it gets a bit problematic, and here’s why. Because when you feel that– and again, like, think about school: you know you get a high grade, if you, you know, do everything right. And if you don’t, you get a failed grade, and then you have to work hard or you get punished for it. So our achievements are associated with that sense of worthiness, of being… feeling like you deserve something.

And then what happens is that when you don’t do the work or when you don’t do the work that you think you’re supposed to do and you don’t work hard, then you feel like you’re not deserving. And then that affects your feeling of worthiness, your self-worth.

And because society’s norms are so high up, right? Expectations are really high: our expectations of ourselves, our parents’ expectations of us, society’s expectations of us. Then we always feel like we’re not doing what we’re supposed to do. And therefore, we don’t deserve the things that we want. We are not worthy.

So, that sense of worthiness is associated with always doing something. And that thing that we need to do is always so hard that we always feel like we’re not enough because we can’t do that or we can’t get there; or we’re not doing enough, we’re not trying hard enough.

Now let’s connect that to English and your experience in English. Because for some people, the perception of what you need to do to achieve fluency is to work really hard hours and hours every day, and to practice diligently, and to only consume content in English; and only do this and only do that, and move to an English-speaking country, and take like a $5,000 course. Right?

So we think that we need to do that in order to achieve fluency. And if we don’t do that, then we’re not doing what is expected of us, so we don’t deserve fluency. And if we don’t deserve fluency, what does that say about our self-worth when we communicate in English? What does that say about how you feel about yourself when you speak in English?

Because if you’re constantly communicating, thinking to yourself that you’re not doing enough, then there’s no way you’ll feel proud or accomplished or feel like you deserve to celebrate your achievements. Because you won’t be seeing them as achievements. A conversation. “Okay. So I had a conversation and it was pretty easy for me, but that is not enough because I’m not up there.” And I recently talked about it in my previous episode about expectations. And I’m going to link to that here. Like our expectations are so high of ourselves, and that’s the outcome – we feel we are not worthy.

So here’s a newsflash – you are worthy. Period. Right? Worthy – not even ‘of’ – you are worthy simply by existing, simply by being born, simply by being a human in this world. You are worthy. You are a soul on this planet. You are worthy. You are worthy of communicating in English, even if you haven’t put in all the work that you think you should put in.

You are worthy of applying for a job that requires English, even if you don’t think that you deserve it because you haven’t worked hard enough to work on your English or you haven’t practiced it enough. You are worthy and deserving of communicating what it is that you have to say, of saying what you think, of sharing your opinion, of making an argument, of not agreeing with someone else. You deserve to do that.

You need to let your voice be heard. You deserve… your voice deserves to be heard with no conditions. You don’t need to do XYZ to be worthy of speaking up. You don’t need to do something to be allowed to share your opinion. Now, I know that if you’re thinking about it logically, you might say, “Yeah, of course, I know that.” But inside, and I want you to think about it like really deeply, and ask yourself, Maybe one of the reasons why you are not communicating is because in a way you’re angry at yourself? Or you’ve been conditioned to think that you need to do so much to get what it is that you want. And I’m here to tell you that you don’t need to do all of that because you deserve to get all of that.

Now, yes, sometimes if you want to work in English, you have to have a certain level of communication, but it’s not about the grammar challenges, and it’s not about your pronunciation. Unless you’re really unclear, and then yes, working on your pronunciation is important so you can get what you want. But it’s not about the small things. Because when you show up with confidence and when you arrive to a situation with this feeling of worthiness, like, “I deserve to be here. I belong here. I’m entitled to voice my opinion”, then it’s going to be so much easier for you to communicate in English.

Fluency is a byproduct of you knowing that you have to say what you have to say, that you have to speak up. When you arrive with that intention, fluency will come, the words will come. You will find a way to communicate. And with time you will improve, right? Learn from your challenges. Learn from the mistakes, so-called mistakes, right? Learn from that and improve, but it shouldn’t interfere with your need to speak, and with you speaking.

So, in this work that we’re doing around communicating in English, and all this mindset work – that is so incredibly important. And it’s a huge part of my training programs. And I think that it’s almost impossible to succeed without making some of those mindset shifts. We have to tackle it from different angles. Right? You can’t just say, “Oh, okay. I need to have a growth mindset”, and that’s it. Right? We have to understand all those little small, you know, minute details inside our brain that are preventing us from being our full self. And it’s manifested in different areas of our lives.

So it’s always important to keep that conversation going. This is why I keep talking about it, again, from different angles. But I also implore you, I really ask you to think about it every time you feel resistance or fear or dread. Or feeling like you don’t belong, like you want to hide, like you want to go back, like you would so much prefer to speak in your first language right now.

Every time that feeling comes up, ask yourself, Why? Why am I feeling this right now? Why now? What happened? What was I thinking just before this feeling started bubbling inside my body? What was the thought that led me to this feeling? What was that thing that someone said, maybe that look that that person had for a second when I spoke? Right?

And then, how did you interpret that? Be very analytical, in a way, about what happened prior to this feeling of resistance, of fear, of avoidance. Because when you get to the bottom of this. Then you will realize that it’s all in like those beliefs, like, “I am not worthy of this”, or “I don’t belong here”, or “I can’t do this because I didn’t work hard enough. I did not do this. I did not do that. I am not speaking fluently.”

And when it comes down to that idea of, you know, “I don’t deserve this”, then I want you to remind yourself that you’re worthy. And say to yourself, 10 times every morning, when you wake up, “I’m worthy, I’m enough. I’m worthy. I am worthy of…” and say all the things that you want. “I deserve”.

I mentioned that to my students. When I enter somewhere, a place where I don’t feel comfortable, and it happens a lot, right? Like I’m not, you know, walking around with full confidence all day long, but I manage it. Like if I realize that I’m feeling a little bit of anxiety, you know, I don’t want to talk to people. I don’t want to expose myself. I don’t want to… Then, you know, I just breathe in and I say to myself, “I deserve to be here. I belong here”. Right? And I say it a few times. And that – not always, but usually – changes that feeling of, mmm, you know, uncomfortable feeling. All the negative thoughts that I have about myself are starting to come up. And then, you know, “I deserve this. I deserve this. I belong here”.

So I’m inviting you to do that as well next time you feel like you are in a conversation and you don’t know what to say. Or maybe you have an opportunity to use English, and you’re like, “You know, I don’t deserve this just yet. I haven’t worked hard enough”. It could be also something that a teacher told you in third grade, and that messed up your brain forever. Really, it happens. Sometimes a situation where you might categorize as insignificant ends up being like a traumatic experience, right? Like a mini trauma in your life that has affected your ability to communicate in English.

So again, I’m inviting you to go back and think about all those things that people maybe have told you or have said around you that made you have these different beliefs about your abilities in general, but in English specifically. All right? Think about it.

All right. So let’s wrap it up with reminding you that you are worthy, today and everyday, and you deserve what you want in life. Thank you so much for tuning in. I hope you have a great day. And I’ll talk to you next time. Bye.