It doesn't matter how many people tell you you are beautiful or smart or funny or creative.
Unless you believe it yourself, it isn't the truth.
It doesn't matter if the world perceives you as successful or influential or inspirational.
You can be a living icon and feel dead on the inside.
Folks might shower you with gifts and praise and affection.
If you don't feel deserving, you will dismiss it all with a wave of your hand.
You yourself, as much as anybody in the entire universe, deserve your love and affection.
Yes, that's right. YOU.
In her farewell episode today, Oprah affirmed her belief that each of us has a unique calling, and that it is our job on earth to identify that calling and carry it out.
Only YOU are beautiful, smart or funny enough to fulfill that calling.
Sure, life is hard sometimes, and it is tempting to find ways to numb yourself so it won't be so painful.
The problem is, when you dull the pain, you diminish the pleasure too.
And you squelch the energy you need to be successful, inspirational and influential.
So feel your feelings, positive and negative, then tap into that extra energy and use it to do your life's work.
Accept with gratitude the gifts and praise and affection that will follow.
You deserve them simply because you exist.
Alternately, never let anyone talk you into being less than you are.
Just because someone tells you that you're fat or stupid or boring or worthless doesn't make it so.
You can be poor and successful, obscure and influential, simple and inspirational.
You touch lives every day in ways you might never, ever become aware of.
You are loved in ways that others might never be able to express.
Let your light shine. Like Oprah, be the best you that you are capable of and you will inspire others to do the same.