Your Worth is NOT Dependent on Your Productivity

Your worth is not dependent on your productivity.

Let that sink in for a moment. 

The idea that our worth is dependent on our productivity comes from a rigid, structured school and work environment that benefits a capitalist system. We are measured by how much knowledge we attain in school through testing over critical thinking. We are measured at our job through statistics, graphs and data to determine if our job performance is poor, good, or mediocre over the innate qualities we contribute to a job. All these systems of “value” feed into our psyche, and we start to believe we are not good enough or worthy of love. When our worth and value as humans is dependent on a number system for economic gain at the expense of our well-being, it can lead to anxiety and depression.

Let me play out a scenario for you:

A few years ago, I was working at a startup in Boston; it was the second “professional” job I had out of college. It was not my dream job, but it paid the bills, and I knew it would be a good experience. If you know anything about start-ups, you know they can be brutal with long hours, low pay, and the culture tends to be let's say less than mature. During my three-month review, I was ripped to shreds - my performance was not where they wanted it to be, they critiqued the way I wrote and spoke to clients and gave me below than average scores on my overall performance. During the review, I felt my spirit dwindle, a thousand bricks on my chest all while trying to fight back the tears. I remember it was one of the worst days of my life. I felt discouraged and questioned my place in the company, and, honestly my career choice. I dreaded the remaining 9 months I stayed, going home and crying most nights because I didn’t feel good about my “productivity”.

I get wanting to do a good job, and accomplish goals, but I believe it is equally important to remember it's all a made-up system. Your value as a member of society doesn’t depend on how much money you make, the number of degrees you do or don't hold, how many hours you spend at the office, what type of car you drive and so on. Who you are as a person without all the external stuff is what makes you valuable. Your worth is inherently you, and it is already inside you.