Self Worth

Every woman is valuable & worthy, but sometimes we struggle to overcome our insecurities. Here are great reads to help you discover your inherent self worth & how to live in it. #gritandgracelife

three happy women in bathing suits taking a selfie on the beach and not worried about body image issues

The Airbrushed Bombshell: Brushing Back Body Image Issues

As I look through my Instagram feed, I’m greeted with numerous pictures of beach attire including the dreaded bathing suits. Every year or so, we ladies go on the adventure of finding the perfect swimsuit to accentuate our bodies. Maybe before the big shopping adventure, you go on that New Year’s resolution diet of low carbs and water, or maybe you have been going to the gym six times a week in anticipation of this forthcoming season. Maybe you are like me and getting close to 40 and don’t feel comfortable in your skin, much less with your skin showing for the entire world to see. Body Image Issues: Focused on the Imperfections When I gaze into that mirror, the first thing […]

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Establishing Healthy Boundaries in the Grit and Grace Life

Healthy personal boundaries are the key to healthy relationships. Without them, healthy relationships are impossible. Yes, you heard that right. Impossible. That is because boundaries provide a necessary and very important distinction between yourself and other people. It is where you end and others begin, and vice versa. Every kind of relationship can benefit from healthy personal boundaries, whether it’s a spouse, boyfriend, co-worker, family member, friend, child, or parent. What Are Boundaries? Boundaries are described as guidelines, rules, or limits that determine the safe and permissible ways for other people to behave around you or treat you. They are based on your beliefs, values, preferences, likes, and dislikes, and help you develop a healthy and secure sense of “self.” They also

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3 things to do when you feel broken and unlovable

3 Things to Do When You Feel Broken and Unlovable

How many of us can honestly say we’ve made it through life with no regrets? It seems almost inevitable that we’ll make some poor decision, say something wrong, or choose the wrong door at some point. But what do you do when it feels like your choices make you unlovable? Years ago, I sat on a hilltop in North Dakota with my then-boyfriend. I knew within hours of my plane landing that this relationship wasn’t going to work out. We weren’t connecting, and I had followed him all over his rain-soaked farm more like a lost duckling than an endearing girlfriend. As the wind whipped against the side of the truck, he stared out the windshield, tears welling in his eyes. I

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What the Value of a Penny Taught Me about My Self Worth

Am I Worth More than a Penny?

More often than not, if my change is only a few cents, I don’t wait around long enough for the cashier to hand me my pennies. If change falls out of my pocket or purse, I occasionally don’t bother to bend over to pick it up. Especially if it is just the copper variety. Pennies Cost More Than They’re Worth I know they add up, but I still don’t think pennies are usually worth my time or effort to keep up with. I’ve heard rumors for a while now that the US Mint is going to stop making them. That we will have to start rounding up or down when paying in cash. This does not sound like any loss to me.

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Dear Stay At Home Mom: I Want You To Know These 8 Things

Dear Stay At Home Mom: I Want You to Know These 8 Things

Dear Stay-at-Home Mom, If you had told me 10 years ago that I would end up being a stay at home mom who home-schooled her children, I would have straight up punched you in the throat—then laughed. Then probably punched you again. I’m only telling you this to give you a better idea of your author. I didn’t plan on this role, but I didn’t plan on marriage or children either, and I had no idea how much they would turn my life and my heart upside down—for the better! Maybe this was always your dream, or maybe you fell into this role as I did. Regardless, if you’re a SAHM, you probably need some encouragement and, most likely, some sanity today.

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Bible Verses From the Grit and Grace Team on Self Worth

Bible Verses on Self-Worth From the Grit and Grace Team

From where do you derive your self-worth? Is it in the busyness of your job, where you clock up to 60 hours a week? Maybe it’s in your doting husband and your three smart, well-mannered children. Or, on the other side of the spectrum, maybe your self-worth is at rock bottom and you feel useless, as though your life holds no value. We’ll stop you right there to say that’s not true, friend. Here are some Bible Verses on Self-Worth that will help you: But you are a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people for his own possession, that you may proclaim the excellencies of him who called you out of darkness into his marvelous light. 1 Peter

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woman with leather pants and red heels sitting crossed-legged and confident on stairs because she learned how to say good riddance to shame

How to Say “Good Riddance” to that Pesky Shadow: Shame

I did not have an imaginary friend when I was a little girl, but I had something else that followed me around for as far back as I can remember: shame. Shame has been along for the ride for as long as I have had my shadow back there. Only in the last few years am I realizing it has never been a friend. I can remember as far as back as elementary school feeling ashamed of my alcoholic father. I loved my dad and was a total daddy’s girl, but I knew then my dad was different from other dads. Not knowing it was shame, of course, until now. Until looking back. Then the shame from being the girl with the

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middle-aged woman smirking at her desk next to her laptop after learning to embrace the beauty of rejection

The Beauty of Rejection—Creating a Stronger You

The publishing journey isn’t easy. I’ve had 20+ years of rejections and not-good-enoughs and you’ll-never-be-enoughs. Folders with “not quite” on business letterheads and saved voicemails of “not this time.” “Not you,” says the agent, the editor, the reporter. Not now. I’ve had publishers tell me that my writing is wonderful, but my social media followers aren’t high enough. My concept is original, but my platform needs development. My platform is great, but my concept is tired. That I can’t write about faith because I’m not Christian enough or that I’m too faith-based and should delete all mentions of (whisper) Jesus. I don’t dance on TikTok or get paid to put on face cream or crop-top sweaters. I’m not an influencer; I’m a

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woman sitting on couch looking hopefully out the window ready with steps to move on

Ready to Move On? 4 Steps to Leave Brokenness Behind

I have some sweet friends who have family living in their office closet. It started a few years ago and has grown from one to two, and finally three. They often tease that there is no more room for another urn or sealed box. And I’m earnestly praying they don’t have to expand their relative’s memorial to another space. Recently they shared that the closet was being emptied. Each loved one was going to their final resting place. And with each departure, I wondered if there wasn’t a sense of sadness mixed with perhaps a little relief. It can be hard to live waiting for the past to move on. Is Your Past or Pain Keeping You Hidden Away? I lived in

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The Holidays and My Martha Heart

It happened again. I sat down at the Thanksgiving table. A table ringed with these gifts: a husband, our children, their wives, and their children. They are my motives. They are why I schemed and shopped and cooked and baked (a chocolate-iced zebra birthday cake the shape of Africa … you know, the shape of above-and-beyond love). They are why I hauled it all from our house, along with flowers and wine and pretty little napkins. Today, at the table with this loud, fun family of ours, is the prequel to the next celebration, the one that means exponentially more cooking and baking and hauling and shopping and scheming. Today is the tugboat for that freighter called Christmas that sails into our

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True Beauty is Found in a Woman’s Strength

The unspoken definition of a woman’s true beauty often appears on the cover of magazines in the grocery store checkout aisle.  Gracing the pages is a photo-shopped image of an already nearly perfect-looking human being. The flawless skin, sparkling eyes, not a hair out of place, and unrealistic body type make me want just to turn every magazine backward, so we don’t have to endure. Social media is even worse. But having lived quite some time, walking alongside many women, I can honestly say that’s not the beauty I am drawn to. That is not to diminish the value of the physically beautiful women in our lives. Trust me, they really do have their own challenges, often insecure like every one of

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10 Classic Beauties Full of Grit, Grace and Inspiration

As a devoted fan of black-and-white cinema and 1950s fashion, I relished the moments I spent watching classic films like Sabrina (check out the swoon-worthy outfits Givenchy designed for Audrey Hepburn) or North by Northwest with my Gram, who never failed to captivate me with stories about the private lives of all the actors. Theses classic beauties inspired me. I’d sing my little heart out with Etta James as she dazzled me with “At Last”—a favorite that still causes goosebumps to rise along my arms—or I would study the prized, yellowed newspapers documenting JFK’s assassination my great-grandma had tucked away in the corner of her closet. I’d stare at the picture of Jackie Kennedy, clothed in black and grief, holding her children’s

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alarm clock on a nightstand next to a stack of reading material. Feature image for Stuck In Shame? Find Freedom from Your Past!

Stuck In Shame? Find Freedom from Your Past!

I’m always surprised at how much our past can follow us around. It shows up when we are weak or vulnerable and often pokes at us when our guard is down. For me, my past resulted in a heart filled with shame. It came to visit me for the first time when I was 5. It started as an innocent hug and progressed to repeated betrayal. He was old enough to be my grandpa, a neighbor that could not control his brokenness and obsessions. I was left with this overwhelming sense that I had done something wrong, and doing something wrong turned into being someone wrong, and that leaves a lasting impression on a young heart. Shame: A Repeat Visitor Shame visited

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god loves all of me even my messy armpit hair

Does God Love All of Me—Even My Messy Armpit Hair?

(Listen to the audio version of this article here.) It was after my three-year-old daughter’s unsolicited observation that I realized how much God loves all of me—even the messier bits. “What’s under your armpit, mom?” she asked me from the back seat of our minivan. I’d been smooshed between two toddlers for days on highways and back country roads. Memories of the car salesman saying that vans are “roomy” and “give ample leg room” flashed before my mind like some high school prank. I felt like a clam in a slow cooker. We were in and out of Airbnb‘s and survived long nights with extended family (one of our kids doesn’t sleep well traveling) and a handful of states. We hurdled through

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To the Christian Woman with a Crooked Past

To the Christian Woman With a Crooked Past

As I sat in that stuffy, little room listening to the woman on stage, I looked around at the other women—some nodding along, some with eyes glistening with unshed tears—all with rapt attention. I listened to her testimony, heard her words, walked through her journey with the Lord. And with a bitter inward sigh, I thought to myself, “That’s it? That’s the best you’ve got?” Her story, it was beautiful. Her faith, it was unwavering and strong through the peaks and valleys of her life. I should have felt inspired by her testimony. I knew it took courage and strength for her to sit up there, in front of her peers, and bare her soul in words as personal as any words

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Dear Mama, You Need to Break up With These 3 Things

Dear Mama, There’s no doubt about it: motherhood isn’t for sissies. As a mom, you are a leader. An advocate. A nurse. A teacher. A mediator. A friend. A vomit-cleaner, diaper-changer, and so much more. Your job requires a steady arsenal of qualities at your disposal: resiliency; stamina; wisdom; grace; compassion; laughter; and, again, so much more. What you don’t need, though, is that inner lethal voice that criticizes you or downright shames you. It’s the voice that tells you that you’re messing up the little lives in your care or that you’re simply not cut out for the job of motherhood. Sometimes, it whispers quietly, and you briefly forget it even exists. On other days, the bully voice screams louder than

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Get Ready to Break Free of Self-Doubt and Shame - 220

Get Ready to Break Free of Self-Doubt and Shame – 220

Subscribe: Apple Podcasts | Spotify | Amazon Music | Android | Email | TuneIn | RSS | MoreWould you say you’re confident? Or would it be more accurate to say that you experience flickers of self-doubt now and again? If you said the latter, you’re not alone. This week, Darlene Brock and Julie Bender discuss the plague of self-doubt and shame we face as women, and how we get caught in the trap of comparison. They break down the most common areas we struggle with, including feeling too old; feeling too young; wondering if we’re good enough; feeling burdened by our pasts; and more, and share ways to identify your strengths (rather than focus on your perceived weaknesses). If you’re looking to

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