Refilling Your Self-Worth

March 12, 2024
Jenna Barr

Longmeadow, Massachusetts, United States

Class of 2026

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Recently, I came across a quote through social media. Unfortunately, it’s an anonymous quote, but it really sparked something in my mind.

“A bottle of water at Costco is $0.25.

The same bottle in the supermarket is worth about $0.50.

The same bottle in a bar costs $2.

In a good restaurant or hotel it can be worth up to $3.

At an airport or on the plane, you may be charged $5.

The bottle and the brand are the same, the only thing that changes is the place. Each place gives a different value to the same product.

When you feel like you are worth nothing and everyone around you belittles you, change places, do not stay there.

Have the courage to change places and go to a place where you are given the value you deserve. Surround yourself with people who really appreciate your worth.

Don't settle for less.”

  • Author Unknown

So, what is self-worth? Self-worth is the internal sense of being good enough and worthy of love and belonging from others. High school students especially struggle with self-worth. Too often, people are worried about how people will perceive them on the outside. Am I too fat for them to like me? Are my looks a turnoff for someone to be attracted to me? Are my clothes preventing me from fitting in?

In the 21st century, the pressure to align with beauty standards can be frustrating and overwhelming for high school students. Social media has lots of edited photos and celebrities, creating insecurities for the average high school student. Academic achievements constantly become a measure of self-worth, leading to excessive stress. The desire to find relationships, whether it be romantic or platonic, can lead teenagers to compromise their beliefs and values. It truly is the inside vs. the outside. That sounds stupid, but it makes sense somehow. 

When drinking a plastic water bottle, it is the inside that matters, the water. It keeps your body healthy and hydrated, necessary to have a fulfilled life. A person’s true self-worth resides in their qualities, experiences, talents, beliefs, and values, also known as the inside of the water bottle. The plastic or the outside is an example of external factors like appearance and societal expectations. This emphasizes the fragility of seeking validation from outside sources. 

Like refilling a water bottle, people can engage in continuous self-improvement and self-care.  Everyone is unique in their own way, and there is no need to fit into the same mold. The idea of seeking help relating to self-worth is normal and is a strength, not a weakness. This analogy provides people with a shift in mindset, prompting individuals to seek supportive environments and relationships that align with their authentic selves. Ultimately, the inside-versus-outside comparison inspires an adventure for self-discovery and empowerment. 

Jenna Barr is a BBG from Longmeadow, Massachusetts, and she is on a competition dance team!

All views expressed on content written for The Shofar represent the opinions and thoughts of the individual authors. The author biography represents the author at the time in which they were in BBYO.

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