Be Proud of Yourself in Life : How and Why It Matters

(Article Updated April 1st, 2024)

Everyone has unique accomplishments, qualities, and experiences that contribute to their sense of self-worth and happiness.

Recognizing and celebrating these aspects of ourselves can boost our self-esteem and motivate us to pursue our goals with even greater determination. In this article, we are listing 12 simple reasons to be proud of yourself in life, each a reminder of the personal achievements and qualities that make you who you are.

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be proud of yourself in life

What it Means To Be Proud of Yourself

When you’re proud of yourself, it means that you take into consideration everything you’ve accomplished until this point, both the small and big accomplishments. The small ones are just as important, because even small things you should be proud of in life.

This also pertains not just to your career goals, but to your personal development as well.

Being proud of yourself is more than just your career; it’s also the way you overcome certain setbacks and change your perspective on things. It can also represent being proud of certain relationships and friendships you’ve made and learning to stand up for yourself when it counts. It means being proud of who you are and what you stand for. Your values, ideas, experiences, etc.

A lot of people think that you can only be proud of yourself when you’ve accomplished success, but everyone has different definitions of success. Being proud of yourself is not contingent upon achieving some external standard of success. Rather, it is an internal state that arises when you feel good about who you are and what you have done.

For some people, this might mean becoming wealthy or famous. But for others, it might simply mean leading a happy and fulfilling life.

The important thing is that you define success for yourself and then strive to achieve it. Only you can decide what makes you feel proud, so don’t let anyone else tell you what you should or should not be proud of.

Each individual has different accomplishments worth celebrating, in different aspects of their lives.

How To Be Proud of Yourself

It’s not always easy to be proud of yourself. You can be proud of your accomplishments, sure, but what about the times when you mess up? What about when you’re just not feeling very proud of yourself? What if there are just not things you find to be proud of? The good news is, that there are things you can do to help turn that around.

For starters, try to focus on your positive qualities.

What do you like about yourself?

What are you good at?

Once you’ve identified a few things, make a concerted effort to cultivate them. If you’re not good at something, that’s okay – everyone has room for improvement. The important thing is that you’re trying.

Another way to be proud of yourself is to engage in activities that make you happy. Do things that make you feel good, both physically and mentally. When you’re taking care of yourself and doing things you enjoy, it’s hard not to feel a sense of pride.

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Lastly, don’t compare yourself to others. Everyone is on their own journey, and comparing your own progress (or lack thereof) to someone else’s is only going to make you feel worse. So focus on your own journey, and be proud of the person you are – flaws and all.

Why is it Important to be Proud of Yourself?

Being proud of yourself is crucial because it boosts your self-esteem and confidence, creating a strong foundation for mental and emotional well-being. 

When you acknowledge your achievements and progress, you reinforce a positive self-image, which in turn fosters a healthier relationship with yourself and others. 

Embracing self-pride helps you overcome self-doubt and negative self-talk, allowing you to approach challenges with a more optimistic mindset.

Furthermore, taking pride in your accomplishments enhances your motivation to set and pursue new goals. It fuels a cycle of continuous self-improvement and growth, as you’re more inclined to invest effort in areas that align with your values and aspirations. 

This self-assuredness also makes it easier to handle criticism and setbacks, as you’re less likely to be defined by external opinions.

Ultimately, being proud of yourself nurtures a positive outlook on life, making you more resilient in the face of difficulties and more open to seizing opportunities. 

Common Reasons Why People Don’t Feel Proud of Themselves

ReasonChallengeStrategy to Overcome It
Depending on validation from othersSeeking validation solely from others can lead to feelings of inadequacy when external approval is lacking.Focus on self-validation. Acknowledge your accomplishments, celebrate your progress, and recognize your unique qualities. Practice self-compassion and remind yourself that your worth isn’t determined by others’ opinions.
Comparing yourself to othersConstantly comparing yourself to others can diminish your sense of achievement and breed feelings of inferiority.Embrace your individual journey. Understand that everyone has their own path and timeline. Set personal goals based on your aspirations and values, focusing on self-improvement rather than comparison.
Being afraid of failureThe fear of failure can lead to avoidance of challenges, limiting personal growth and causing self-doubt.Embrace a growth mindset. View failure as a stepping stone to success. Recognize that setbacks provide valuable learning experiences. Set achievable goals, break them down into smaller steps, and celebrate progress, even if it includes setbacks.
Being a perfectionistStriving for perfection can result in feelings of disappointment and self-criticism when expectations aren’t met.Embrace imperfections. Understand that no one is flawless. Set realistic expectations and acknowledge that mistakes are part of the learning process. Focus on the effort you put in and the progress you make, rather than seeking flawless outcomes.
Engaging in negative self-talkEngaging in negative self-talk undermines self-esteem and fosters self-doubt.Cultivate self-compassion. Challenge negative thoughts with positive affirmations. Treat yourself as you would a friend, offering encouragement and support. Practice mindfulness to become more aware of your thoughts and replace self-criticism with self-acceptance.

Feeling a lack of pride in yourself can come from both inside and outside sources.

Maybe someone you really trusted, like a parent or someone who looked after you, didn’t give you the praise you deserved. 

See also  15 Powerful Ways to Be Your Most Authentic Self

They might have downplayed your accomplishments or even said they weren’t good enough, even when you knew you tried your hardest. Hearing them say, “I’m not proud of you,” probably hurt a lot.

And then there’s this thing called negative self-talk. It’s when you put yourself down, kind of like sabotaging your own feelings. 

Sometimes, it happens because of stuff that got stuck in your head when you were a kid, like not learning to trust or believe in yourself. It’s like you were taught not to feel proud.

When you keep telling yourself negative things, it’s like chipping away at how much you think you’re worth. And when you don’t feel like you’re worth much, you probably think that anything you do well isn’t that important.

But the good news is that you can change this. You can learn how to be proud of yourself. It’s about accepting all of you, even the parts that aren’t perfect. 

It’s finding a way to be okay with where you are right now, while still aiming to get better. 

Believing in yourself, celebrating your progress, and feeling proud of who you are—it’s all part of building your own self-worth. And when you’ve got that, other people’s opinions won’t knock you down as easily.

how to be proud of yourself

12 Simple Reasons to Be Proud of Yourself in Life

1. You’ve survived a lot of things in life

Whether you believe it or not, you’ve survived so much in life that’s worth acknowledging. Not everyone comes out of their challenges and setbacks stronger and the fact that you didn’t let those setbacks defeat you is more than enough to be proud of.

2. You learned a lot and grew from your mistakes

I know you might be thinking about why you should be proud of your mistakes if you failed, but your mistakes show a lot about your growth and the lessons you’ve learned along the way.

The fact that you learned a lot and try your best to avoid repeating the same mistakes says a lot about you and your personal growth.

(I’m always on the path of continuous learning, that’s why I use the reading app BLINKIST, you can try a free trial HERE.)

3. You helped others each time you can

Every time someone needs help and encouragement, you’re there by their side, giving them exactly what they need – and this alone is something worth being proud of.

We live in a selfish world and when you show acts of kindness and compassion, you show others that there are hope and love amidst the darkness.

4. You made people smile

Being the type of person who can make others smile and laugh when they’re down and caught in a difficult situation reflects how big your heart is. You should be proud of yourself for going out of your way to make someone smile.

See also  10 Simple Ways to Be a More Caring Person in Life

5. You became the light to others

When it’s easy to be misguided and focus on darkness, being the light to other people’s lives is more than enough to be proud of. This means that you remind people what it’s like to have hope, faith, and most of all, love.

being proud of yourself

6. You have unique talents and skills

Each person is unique and different and the talent and skills someone has are different than what you have. Be proud of the talents and skills you have and stay grounded on your uniqueness.

7. You strive towards your definition of success

Success is defined differently by each person and no matter what your definition is, be proud of that definition and how you’re constantly striving to get yourself closer to success.

There’s something to be said about how persistent and resilient you are when it comes to your goals.

8. You have strong friendships and relationships you’ve built

There is happiness to be found in the certain friendships and connections you’ve made in life and you should be proud of keeping these relationships closer.

This is your inner circle and it’s a reflection of how loved you are by the number of loved ones you have around you.

9. You are resilient in every situation

No matter what life throws at you and no matter how difficult things are, you always choose to be resilient and to fight back. You always find a way to never be defeated.


10. You never stopped dreaming, no matter the situation

You always dream about reaching your goals and finding ways to get yourself closer to them. In a world where negativity is around us, being a dreamer says a lot about your soul’s purity and innocence.

11. You care and provide for those around you 

Your caring nature extends to those you hold dear, providing a support system that enriches their lives and emphasizes the importance of connection and compassion.

12. You’ve never stopped dreaming, no matter the situation 

Regardless of circumstances, your unyielding dreams and aspirations reveal your continuous motivation to strive for better, a trait that encourages others to never give up on their own aspirations.

Final Thoughts

I hope this article sheds insight on everything you needed to know about being proud of yourself.

Both your big and small accomplishments are worth acknowledging as they are the reason you’ve gotten this far in life.

Without your small accomplishments, you wouldn’t be able to accomplish even your big accomplishments.

When you’re proud of yourself, this pushes you to do even better in life as it acts as the encouragement you need that you can achieve a lot of remarkable things in this world.


1. How to be proud of yourself?

To be proud of yourself, start by acknowledging your accomplishments, big or small. Celebrate your successes and progress, and recognize your strengths and unique qualities. Embrace self-compassion and self-love, understanding that it’s okay to appreciate your achievements and the person you’ve become. Surround yourself with positive influences and practice gratitude, focusing on the positive aspects of your life and journey.

2. Is it a sin to be proud of yourself?

Being proud of yourself is not inherently a sin. While excessive pride or arrogance can lead to negative behaviors, healthy self-esteem and pride in your accomplishments are not sinful. It’s important to strike a balance between acknowledging your achievements and remaining humble. The intention behind your pride matters – if it stems from gratitude and a desire to inspire others, it can be a positive emotion. 

3. What does the Bible say about being proud of yourself?

The Bible cautions against excessive pride and arrogance, often referred to as “hubris.” Proverbs 16:18 states, “Pride goes before destruction, a haughty spirit before a fall.” However, having a healthy self-esteem and acknowledging your gifts and accomplishments is not condemned. Philippians 2:3 advises humility, saying, “Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit. Rather, in humility value others above yourselves.” 

4. Is it okay to be proud of yourself?

Yes, it is okay to be proud of yourself in a balanced and healthy way. Celebrating your achievements, personal growth, and unique qualities can boost your self-esteem and motivate you to continue striving for success. Just ensure that your pride is grounded in gratitude, humility, and an awareness of the contributions of others. Being proud of yourself can be a positive source of motivation and self-appreciation.