If you’re a creative like me, you’ve likely spent some quiet days working hard on your artistic brainchild. For me, my brainchild is writing. I can spend days upon days scribbling away, putting out words of inspiration in blog posts, books, and scripts, yet never hear a peep from anyone who reads them. 

Like all of us, I need validation.
This week I got it.
Not only did it remind me that I am good at what I do and that I am changing lives, it also made me realize that we all need validation.
And we need to give it, too.
Here’s why…

{why we need validation}

womanWe need validation because we need to know innately that someone acknowledges our accomplishments.
don’t trust ourselves to make our own judgements.
And even if we do, we will eventually doubt ourselves.
We will beat ourselves up and quit what we’re doing, just because we think we suck.

Recently I published a post about my quitting working for two weeks. I was in that dark place where I wondered if anyone even knew I even existed. Was my work even worth doing?

You know this place, right?
The place where you create and create and create, and everyone else around you seems to be getting noticed. But not you.
It’s not a fun place to be.

The thing we often forget is that many people out there do value our work. They just don’t let us know. And for no other reason than they don’t think about it, or they’re just not the kind of person that would comment or send you a message to let you know. 

So when it does happen, when someone does take the time to let you know, it refuels you. It gives you life again. It’s the kick in the pants you need, and it should be cherished for always.


{track your validation}

So there I was, in that dark place as a writer thinking no one knew I existed, when a guest post I wrote received more positive feedback than I could have imagined. One man wrote, “You kept me a writer today. I often suffer from doubts. Mainly it is an age thing I started about two years ago when I was 62…I am restored to sanity and focus after reading your story of experience, strength, and hope. Thank you.”

You have NO idea what the comment did to me.


He returned me to MY sanity. He restored me.

And so I did with that comment what I do with all the others: I put it in a folder on my laptop titled: Folder of Recognition.

When I have those crappy weeks or not-so-sunny days, I look at that folder. I read the comments and e-mails from people who have read my books, my blog, or have been past clients when I was a business coach. And I am reminded that I am NOT unrecognized. I am worthy, and I am loved.

Do the same.
Keep the comments. Keep the e-mails.
And when you have days of doubt, read them. You will be restored.


{why you should give validation}

132_note to selfYou should validate someone’s feelings, emotions, work, strengths, talents, and whatever else I’m forgetting to put here, because that someone could be in a place where they’re about to give up.

For all you know, they’ve already given up, and your kind words may be what saves them.

At at talk I did recently, a young lady came up to me afterwards and said, “I heard you speak before. You’re the reason I’m here today. I wanted to end my life, but you gave me a reason to keep going. I just wanted to thank you for that.”

I never hugged someone so hard in my life.


{in a word…}

We all want validation so we can be certain what we’re doing matters. Very often, people appreciate our work, they just don’t vocalize it. And that’s okay. Because when they do, it’s like Christmas.

Be someone’s validation today.
Be their hope.
Be the reason they don’t give up.
Be the voice that helps them take their own voice back.

Do you save any comments or validation from others?
Share them with us in the comments section. We’d love to hear about them.


Joleene Moody is a former television reporter and anchor turned freelance writer, blogger, and speaker, based in Central New York.
(No, not New York City. Not even close. 🙂
Learn more at www.takeyourvoiceback.com