Planting seeds of high self-esteem

 “A sense of worthiness is a child’s most important need.” ~ Polly Berrien Berends

Growing up as a young girl, I wanted 10 kids (and thank God that dream did not come true).

Still, decades later, I love to be around babies and children, with all their joy, innocence and wonder for life.

I knew when I got my calling to rebrand my coaching business around worthiness after getting diagnosed with breast cancer 10 years ago, that I would one day EXPAND my platform to children.

First, I had to claim my worthiness to LIVE, which I was told by three different healers and naturopath doctors could extend my longevity.

Now, I understand at an even deeper level through my healing journey and training in neuroscience, that our feelings of worthiness are formed during the first six or seven years of life.

And, many of us did not receive an adequate sense of nurturing to fully embody a strong sense of worthiness, which comes from BEING SEEN, HEARD, VALIDATED AND ACKNOWLEDGED.

As Gregg Braden, author of The Spontaneous Healing of Belief, says:

  • “Almost universally, the experiences that cause people to feel stuck have roots in what are considered negative beliefs created early in life. And it’s precisely because they are subconscious that it’s often difficult for us to see them in ourselves.”
  • “Ninety percent or more of our daily actions are responses that come from the reservoir of information we accumulated during the first seven years of life. If caretakers responded to the world in a healthy, life-affirming way then we benefit from our memory of their reactions. Rarely, however, have I come across anyone who can honestly say that they were raised in such surroundings. The reality is that most of us learned our subconscious habits in an environment that was a mixed bag.”



For the past 20 years, I have lovingly witnessed the pain of the courageous adults I have coached who did not receive the adequate nurturing that creates and sustains a strong sense of worthiness and well-being. BEING WITNESSED IS KEY TO INGRAINING A GREATER SENSE OF WORTHINESS. And, the healing is not about blaming our parents, for they often modeled to us what they learned or had other challenges.

To teach others how to re-parent themselves with a greater sense of worthiness, I spent decades rewriting my own story, gaining intuitive insights beyond my trainings.

Many clients start coming to me in their 30s and beyond, which is not surprising as young adults begin to see patterns repeating that are not satisfying—many of which were formed based on beliefs created during those critical early years of life.

Increasingly, I have been coaching high school and college students, referred to me by parents who I once guided.

According to Dr. Joe Dispenza, a neuroscientist with whom I trained:

  • You need to become conscious of behaviors and emotions that keep you connected to past and decide if they belong in your future…YOU LITERALLY HAVE TO BECOME SOMEBODY ELSE!!!! By age 35, we have become our set of memorized behaviors…as adults, 95 percent of who we are is a memorized state of being established by age 35.”

Struggling with not feeling “enough” is a common way lack of worthiness shows up, as I share in my recent article in Brainz Magazine. I encourage you to also read this piece, as it shares ways to shift to a more empowering mindset—and help your kids or grandchildren do the same.

Now, with the pandemic creating new challenges for all of us, it is even more essential to create a solid foundation of worthiness, to respond to life from a strong, inner sense of self not dependent on external circumstances.

Sadly, many young people these days are struggling with worthiness and not knowing they matter, or comparing themselves with perfect-looking images on social media.

Even sadder are new observations about how the pandemic is impacting our little ones.

Here are just a few insights, Kellie Syfan, M.Ed., BCBA., a behavioral analyst who works with children and is founder of ABH (Applied Behavioral Happiness) in Wake Forest, N.C, shared with me about the pandemic’s impact:

  • Increase in suicidal thoughts with 8- to 10-year-olds.
  • Increase in compulsive behaviors and other anxiety disorders.
  • A two-year delay in emotional social development, with for example, some 4-year-olds reacting as 2 –year-olds, and even teens reverting back two years, with 18-year-olds responding as a 16-year-old would.



For these and other reasons (including my passion for extending my worthiness platform to young people), I recently became a “Certified Coach in Self-Esteem Elevation for Children.”

I look forward to teaching practical skills that enhance one’s sense of worth and success to help this next generation excel in meeting the challenges early on of this new world unfolding.

However, know this: the real training begins even earlier by educating parents and caregivers to instill a sense of worthiness into their children during those first six, critical formative years.

There is an added benefit: Those who participate in my new high, self-esteem programs PARENTS, GRANDPARENTS, EDUCATORS AND COACHES WHO MENTOR CHILDREN will likely elevate their own self-esteem and sense of worthiness in the process.

It is estimated that at least 85 percent of us have, or have had, self-esteem issues in at least one key area of life.

To learn more about my private, one-on-one coaching packagesor my teaching at your school, organization or via Zoom, schedule a 30-minute consult at

Together, we can create high, self-esteem kids who will have skills to contribute significantly in their unique ways to our new world emerging.

COMING NEXT MONTH: My podcast guest on “Claim Your Worthiness—Intimate Conversations with Gail Jones” will be Dr. Joe Rubino, an internationally acclaimed expert on the topic of self-esteem. Get ready to learn skills many of us were not taught in earlier years.

With love and gratitude,


Texas photographer Sharon Spector, who is always looking for inspiration, captured this image of the tree with the YOU MATTER words, not knowing I was I writing a blog about the topic. Email to see more of her work.



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