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Exclusive: Jamie Kern Lima's New Book 'Worthy' Is About 'Building Self-Worth': 'It Can Change Everything'

Feb. 20 2024, Published 9:05 a.m. ET

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One of the reasons Jamie Kern Lima decided to write WORTHY, releasing on February 20, is because of Oprah Winfrey. (We'll get back to that in a second.)

Though Lima eventually became the co-founder of IT Cosmetics — she eventually sold it to L'Oreal for $1.2 billion in cash in 2016 — and ran a successful company, she still didn't feel like she was meant to be in the position she was in. "80 percent of girls and women don't believe they're enough. 75 percent of female executives have dealt with imposter syndrome, and 91 percent of girls and women don't love their bodies, and I just feel like the time for change has come!" the author exclusively tells Morning Honey. "For most of my life, I believed a lie that if I achieved enough, then I would be finally be good enough or feel enough. After spending a lot of years achieving a lot, I realized, 'Oh, wait. Why do I still need to get this next goal or this relationship or fitness goal or career goal?' I still arrived at the feeling that something was missing, and I'm still not enough."

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Over time, Lima finally learned about self-worth, which is different from self-confidence. "I spent most of my life building self-confidence, which is really important, but those are all mostly external based even though they make us feel good on the inside. I wrote this book for every girl, every woman, every person who has had some self-doubt," she explains. "I learned this lesson the hard way after years of achieving all these things and still not feeling enough and still sabotaging stuff and not knowing why. Deep down, I didn't think I was worthy of it. At the end of the day, we don't become what we want. We become what we believe we're worthy of. Our self-worth is our ceiling in our relationships, our career, our goals and dreams. This book is about building self-worth, which can change everything."

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The author released her new book, 'Worthy,' on February 20.

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Growing up, Lima would watch Winfrey's show in her living room "every single day," as it inspired her. "She helped me feel less alone and more enough. She was my mentor from afar. I had this feeling I would meet her one day, which made no sense," she recalls. "I would pray for it to happen. Fast forward to now: I sold my business, and I ended up meeting her at an event very briefly. She invited me to her house for lunch, too, and we had this one-on-one three-hour lunch at her house. At the end of the meal, she gave mer her number, but I did not call her for four years."

Lima thought maybe she had to come up with the "perfect" thing to say, but after a lot of self-reflecting, she realized there was more to it. "I didn't believe I was worthy of it. I didn't believe I was worthy in being her friend," she admits. "I became obsessed with studying self-worth and trying to understand, 'How can I achieve all these things?' The biggest epiphany I had is that self-confidence and self-worth are very different things."

In Lima's first book, Believe It: How to Go from Underestimated to Unstoppable, the businesswoman focused on the story of how she learned to believe in herself. "I talked about how I didn't quit and turned every no into a yes and ran a top-selling brand," she says.

But this second book focuses on how self-confidence is like the house you're building with rooms and decor but self-worth is the foundation. "If you have low self-worth, one of the ways it shows up is when you're stuck. If you have low to medium self-worth, then you'll go for something but sabotage it along the way. Or you have half your manuscript done, but you scroll through Instagram for eight hours a day. Or, in my case, not call Oprah for four years!" she says.

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Lima's "ah-ha" moment occurred after not picking up the phone to chat with Winfrey. "I said, 'I don't think I'm worthy of being her friend,'" she recalls. "But then I thought, 'Whether it's Oprah or not, they'd be lucky to be my friend.' That was the first step, and then I became obsessed with, 'Why do I not believe I'm enough?' I knew I had a lot of skills and could crush a business."

With this book, the author hopes to help others who are dealing with similar issues. "Self-worth is really the one thing that changes everything. When I think about the person who is going to learn from this and start to build self-worth, unhealthy relationships will end, businesses with be launched and ideas with be birthed," she says.

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Jamie Kern Lima reveals she didn't call Oprah Winfrey for four years.

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"The most beautiful thing about self-worth is that every single person is fully worthy. You just have to unlearn the lies that lead you to feeling like you're not enough," she adds. "I am excited for every person to go on this journey and spread the word. I feel a sense of fulfillment that I've never felt before. I feel more ambitious than ever. I feel like building the billion dollar business was the warmup act. I'm on a daily journey of building self-worth."

As for if Lima ever connected with Winfrey in the future, there is a happy ending. "I did call her and she didn't answer. I was like, 'Oh, four years, and no answer.' And then she did! And we just taught one of her courses together," she says. "I'm launching my own show next month and I had her on as my first guest."

"This book isn't about me at all. It's about every person reading it and making sure they're here to create or express their ideas," Lima, who will be hosting a live virtual event on February 24, continues. "And how they don't doubt themselves again."

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Jamie Kern Lima wants everyone to be confident and know your worth.

To purchase WORTHY, click here.

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