Know Your Worth

In your life’s blueprint should be a deep belief in your own dignity, your own worth, and your own somebodiness. Don’t allow anybody to make you feel that you are nobody. Always feels that you count, always feel that you have worth and always feel that your life has ultimate significance. (King, 1967)

Knowing your worth as you continue your journey is the most valuable form of self-empowerment you can own. You become aware of all that you are and realize you are more than enough. In addition, knowing your worth boosts your psychological, emotional, physical, and overall well- being to such a degree that you become the best version of yourself possible.

When you know your worth, you are not just capable of bringing something to the table, you also possess the ability to serve what you bring to the table with great confidence and finesse. It is knowing how to demonstrate your unique talents, qualities, knowledge, skills, and abilities confidently and competently.

Personally, knowing your worth will enable you to be more aware of the authentic you and as you marvel in your awesomeness your levels of self-esteem, self-love, self-pride, self-respect, and self-identity will be obvious to all. When you step out and fearlessly let the world see the authentic you and all your glory you should do so equipped with knowledge of your worth. You set high standards and expect nothing but the best from yourself.

At the end of each year, I conduct a personal S.W.O.T. analysis and critically and methodically examine and analyze the results. I focus on my strengths and allow room for continued personal and professional growth as I continue to acquire new knowledge, focus on turning weaknesses into strengths, maximize opportunities and use them to continue moving forward, and then turn threats into opportunities. What will your strategy be? How will you maximize opportunities and turn weaknesses into strengths to achieve goals? Are you versatile and focused on achieving goals? Or are you too consumed with the unimportant and trivial issues, those self-defeating, negative voices that have a tendency of invading your peace, or the opinions of others who plant seeds of negativity in your mind and water them daily by pointing out what they believe are your flaws?  When you listen to and entertain the negativity, you are giving those seeds permission to sprout and grow until they consume every thought thereby limiting your ability to realize your worth. Realize your purpose, discover your passion, and appreciate all that you are, all that you strive to become and are willing to work hard to achieve.

Professionally, knowing your worth can be your greatest asset. Learn your profession well and develop skill sets that set you above the rest, continue professional development and as your KSA’s increase, so will your opportunities. Focus on expanding your network, collaborate, and allow your creativity to blossom. If your talents, knowledge, skills, and abilities are not appreciated at your current place of employment perhaps it’s time to move on and find better opportunities. Never forget that sometimes you may have to set your own table. Knowing your worth empowers you to step out and up in life so focus on becoming the best version of yourself, define yourself for yourself and as you keep rising to the top, continue to reach for the stars and dream in color.

Do not be consumed with whether people like you as that is not your problem. Know that you will encounter people who won’t like you for many reasons. Life and time are precious and quite frankly, you don’t have the time or energy to waste on other people’s problems because you are too focused on living your best life. Never lose sight of your goals nor let anyone disrupt your mission and throw dirty water your way. You only go around once! Remember the old saying, “keep your friends close and enemies closer,” well use your keen insight to turn enemies into your footstools.  Do not downplay your authenticity, talents or skills to “fit in” or appease others. Ask yourself if you are comfortable being the authentic you? If so, keep it moving and if you are not comfortable with yourself because you are suppressing the authentic you, then do something about it now! Your life will not change until you make a concerted effort to make the change(s) needed to increase the pep in your step, outlook in life, and focus on being the best version of yourself for yourself, not for others.  

Knowing your worth will empower you to understand why you should never, under any circumstances dumb yourself down, let others stifle your creativity, dim your light, silence your voice, or deem you invisible and/or inferior. Years ago, a good friend Eugene Nelson (E. Nelson, personal communication, September 23, 1995)  stated, “never allow anyone to make you think you are inferior and treat you as if they are superior to you” and he was right because people will try you.  Live in the moment even when your own presence causes you to pause and examine yourself and the journey that you are on. Pausing is a normal part of life so understand when the need to do so arises and take action to protect and nurture your mind, body, and soul. Know that the murky, deep, and shallow waters are going to be there and learning how to pass through them confidently, with grit, and perseverance will determine the remainder of your journey. Understand that the curveballs life may throw your way are simply moments in time that will pass. As you grow personally and professionally, you will learn how to dodge curveballs, get back on track and keep moving forward. So, prepare yourself with several back-up plans just in case you have a “just in case moment.” Remember to set boundaries, refuse to be silenced, deemed invisible, and insignificant because you are so much more.  Knowing your worth sets you apart from the rest.

Knowing your worth will enable you to ask for a seat at the table with confidence. In 1972, the late Shirley Chisholm stated, “If they don’t’ give you a seat at the table, bring a folding chair.”  Well, if you bring a folding chair and they refuse to scoot over and make room for you, then move forward and set your own table and when you do, only invite those who respect you and value what you bring to the table. Refuse to play games with which you have no interest. Don’t beg, grovel, or whine, show them what you are made of and in doing so, be sharp, know what you are talking about, be resourceful, and prepared.

Regardless of where you come from know that you can BECOME all that you desire. Serena Williams, the greatest tennis player of all time, left a legacy with a message that you can have it all. Believe that you can, work hard, persevere, let nothing or no one hold you back, and tune out the noise. If you fall get back up and keep moving forward, be on purpose and most importantly, be passionate about what you do. Serena was passionate about playing tennis and she knew her worth which empowered her to earn the GOAT (greatest of all time) designation. Following a U.S. Open match in 2022, Serena stated, “I don’t have anything to prove, I don’t have anything to win and have absolutely nothing to lose.” Serena knew her worth! Do you know your worth?

In conclusion, when you know your worth, you are comfortable setting boundaries with others, live authentically, make sure your voice is heard, stand firm in your convictions, and are not afraid to shine. Refuse to let any negativity crush your enthusiasm, never allow anyone to place limitations on you relative to your creativity, ideas, dreams, and goals. Work hard to propel yourself to the top doing what you do so well that “the living, the dead and the unborn couldn’t do it any better” (King, 1967) and people won’t be able “to take their eyes off of you” (Angelou, 2009).

Remember in all that you do, knowing your worth empowers you to define yourself for yourself as you continue rising to the top!

Until next time.

Continued Success!

Dr. Culbreth









Angelou, M. (2009, May 1). Facebook.

Chisholm, S. (1972). A seat at the table.

King, M. L., Jr. (1967, October 26). What is your life’s blueprint? Harlem World.

Williams, S. (2022). U.S. Open.

About Dr. Donnamaria Culbreth

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This entry was posted in high expectations, high standrds, Know Your Worth, moving forward, Paving your path to greatness, positive thoughts, psychological well being, refuse to settle, self-love and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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