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Better that you come from nothing than nothing comes from you

Value Key

Image: Stuart Miles /

Validity is a curious thing.

As human beings we crave validity – whether we want to call it worth, value, acceptance or recognition. We desperately want to ┬ábelong, to be wanted, to be valued for who we are and what we have to offer.

Most of us have probably experienced what it is not to feel accepted – to be rejected, even. It can be a crushing experience. Acceptance is what we really need in order to become who we truly are. However, have you ever thought that accepting ourselves as we are and accepting others as they are is likely to help us feel accepted? ┬áNote I did not say ‘acceptable’. Show me someone who truly feels acceptable – that person is unlikely to exist.

But what are we accepted for? For what we can do? For what we look like? For what we have? For where we came from?

Hardly, because that would institute different levels of acceptance across the spectrum of human privilege. We all start with nothing and that is where acceptance begins – with our fundamental selves – the part of us that possesses nothing but is everything.

Acceptance and validity is at the very core of who we are. As babies and young children, we need acceptance in order to thrive and build relationships. As growing children and young adults, we need acceptance in order to help us establish our identity within our peer group. As adults, we need acceptance in order to maintain dignity and poise. As human beings, who we are is what we want others to accept us for.

And who we are is what we should give to others in the way we relate to them, interact with them, communicate with them and give them recognition. Who we are is what others need to perceive and receive. Who we are is what we need to reveal. It is the real us, the genuine article, that needs to come from us and that people will accept.

Better that you come from nothing than nothing comes from you.

So goes the song released by The Feeling in 2008. Not that this post is defined by the song lyric – it’s just a string of words within the lyric that have a particular resonance and deliver a punch.

We’ve all come from nothing – granted. Some of us think we are something. Some of us may even think we give something. But what people really want is for us to give ourselves. If we can’t do that, we’re giving nothing. Our validity is in who we are and in what we give out of who we are.

Nothing comes from the person who is not able to give himself.



This blog post is written as part of a ‘blog buddies’ group, the idea being that we each write a weekly blog on a chosen theme.

So far, there are three of us, the other two being Nicola Marshall and Wendy Sims. To read the other posts on this theme, please visit:

If you would like to join our blog buddies group and share in this writing adventure (no obligation to write, just join in when you are able), please e-mail me at

Our next theme is based on a quote from Douglas Adams:

I seldom end up where I wanted to go, but almost always end up where I need to be.

Feel free to write a post and let me know when it’s written and I’ll plug it in my own blog. Meanwhile, I need to get writing on the theme myself…