Being Taken For Granted At Work (How To Feel Valued)
Hi! if you’re like me, you really crave that validation from other people. Like you want someone to say you did a great job.
You want someone to say thank you. You want someone to say “We couldn’t have done that without you, that was amazing.”
We don’t want to admit that we want this or that we need this but most of us do.
In this post, I’m going to teach you how you can have that feeling without what other people say. It doesn’t matter what they say or doesn’t say, I’m going to teach you how to feel validated just by using your brain.
So, stay tuned.
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This is the juice. So I’ve worked with a lot of clients and I know that it is completely normal to want external validation.
We want our boss to say “Thank you”, “Good job” OR “We couldn’t have done it without you”.
And this is from when we were kids, right? Like we want our parents to say that to us, our teachers.
That’s what we’re taught to grow up and believe is that we need that external validation from other people in order to feel good, in order to feel like we matter, like we mean something, like our work in the world, was a contribution.
So the problem with this is is that when we grow up, we realize that this doesn’t happen nearly as often as it probably should, right?
I’m with you, I agree that we don’t spend enough time celebrating our accomplishments.
We don’t spend enough time complimenting other people or pointing out the other things that people do that are truly valuable and truly made a difference, right?
We don’t do that enough.
Nowadays, we’re more like, “Yeah, that was good, but you know, you really missed a spot over there. You really should have done this better. Why did you do that?”
And they tend to ignore all the great contributions that you made or all the great things that you did. In the workplace, quite often, this happens and myself working in HR, I hear about this all the time, right?
As someone worked on a great, really big project, impacted the company a lot and they feel like, “You know what? It would’ve been nice if my manager would’ve acknowledged me. It would’ve been nice if my manager would have come and said ‘thanks for your help on that’.”
And that doesn’t happen nearly as often as people need it to. But I want to introduce to you that that’s actually not what makes us feel good. It’s actually not.
Your manager might come to you and say, “You know what? Good job on that.”
But if you just thought it was part of the job or if you didn’t think it was that big a deal if it was really easy for you — say you made a copy on the photocopier or something and they were like, “Oh my God, thank you so much, you did such a good job with that photocopy, thank you so much” — you might be like, “Yeah, whatever, I just did my job.”
You have to believe that the validation and the words of affirmation are sincere for them to actually mean anything.
And I know that for me, a lot of the time, someone has said to me, “You did a great job”, OR “That was amazing”, OR “Thank you so much”.
And I’ve dismissed it in my brain and I’ve thought, “Nah, they’re just being nice. They don’t really mean that it was a big deal.” OR, “It was no big deal, that was just me doing my job.”
This proves that it’s not what they say to you, it’s not what anybody else says to you, it’s actually what you think about your own accomplishment or your own contribution or what you did, right?
What actually matters is what you think.
You’re the one who can actually give yourself that validation.
And you have to give it to yourself first before what anyone says actually has an impact on you.
Say you tie your shoes and they’re like, “Oh my God, you did such a good job for tying your shoes, good job, thank you so much for tying your shoes.”
You’re going to be like, “Huh? Whatever, obviously.”
You might even feel insulted by it, right?
So it just goes to prove that it’s not what they say to you, it’s what you actually think about whatever it was.
And this is actually really good news because it means that we don’t have to wait around for other people to validate us or for other people to think that we did a good job and tell us.
And when we’re focused on waiting for other people to give us the validation, we are missing out on our capability and showing ourselves what we’re capable of.
And counterintuitively, when we do that, we rise to the occasion, we grow as people and we accomplish more when we are able to show ourselves what we’re capable of.
If you’re waiting around for other people to validate you, for your boss to tell you you did a good job, for your co-workers to recognize you, you could be waiting around a long time.
And if they haven’t been doing it, they’re probably not going to do it.
I mean, if we could change them, if you could get them to validate us more, I would be all for it.
But the truth is that they don’t want to do that. If that’s not in their nature, they’re probably not going to just start doing it because you asked them to.
They might try for a bit, but if that’s not who they are, they’re not going to do it, right?
And we don’t need that. We need to show ourselves what we’re capable of because that’s what’s ultimately going to make us more successful, which is what we want, right?
It’s good news that we don’t have to wait around for them.
What I want to teach you is how to be confident in your own abilities, how to build that confidence in your own abilities, in yourself, without anybody telling you that you did a great job or that you’re appreciated or valued.
Now I’m not saying you shouldn’t ask for more money, or you shouldn’t ask for more compensation if you have been doing the work of three people and you’re only being paid for one.
I’m not saying you shouldn’t ask for that. I’m saying you need to validate yourself first in order to get to the point where you know you deserve more and you can either ask for it or go elsewhere for it, right?
But the work is actually within yourself, that’s what I want to offer you, is you don’t need anyone else to validate.
You can actually take a good hard look at the work you’ve done and you can see the impact, the results that you created, the thought process that you had to get to what you did and you can actually say, “Yeah, you know what? I’m pretty good. I’m pretty good at what I do.”
And that is what’s going to drive you to get even better and to actually reach goals that you didn’t even think of yet.
So learning how to identify what you have done as a significant contribution and learning how to point out your accomplishments to yourself is what’s actually going to make you unstoppable in your career.
Think about the people who you admire, who you think is really amazing, who do really amazing work.
They know that they have a value and they know that they’re good at what they do. Because the alternative is waiting for someone else to tell you how good you are, waiting for someone else to thank you.
That leaves it in the hands of other people and you feel powerless, right?
You’re waiting for someone else to say something before you can feel good, and if that’s where you are right now, then you’re waiting around for something that may or may not happen and you’re missing out on your life and you’re missing out on what you’re capable of because you’re waiting for something that’s not within your control.
So it’s really good news because validating yourself means you can just move forward faster.
You can learn more faster and you can contribute more faster. You can do more and make more money because you know your worth. So that’s the big thing I work on with clients, right?
And once they start to realize their worth, they become unstoppable.
They’re like, “Yeah, I am freaking good” and it’s amazing what they can accomplish. I’m so proud and so excited for them.
That’s what I want to offer to you, are you don’t need somebody else to tell you you did a good job, right? I’m going to show you how you can validate yourself with a few simple questions.
How can you create that value within yourself?
How do you create and cultivate that belief that you have contributed something really impactful?
I’ve got some questions that you can ask yourself and if you want, you can journal them out or write them out or however you want to internalize this that will help you to kinda reflect on the work that you did so that you can start to see what you’re really capable of and it’s pretty exciting.
The first question is, how did you figure it out?
So say you were working on a project, you were given a task and maybe at the beginning, you were like, “I don’t really know how we’re going to get this done”.
But in the end, you did it or you gave it a valiant effort or a good try. You met the goal or you got close to the goal.
How did you figure it out?
Answer that question for yourself. See what you come up with.
Then I want you to ask yourself, what was the most difficult part about this?
What was the part where you were really having to think critically, really having to ask people, research, what did you have to do and how was it the most difficult part of getting to the result?
That’s where your brain is growing, that’s where you’re learning the most.
Third, what result did you actually get? So what are the facts here?
Did you meet the goal? Did you get the monetary value?
Were people happy?
Did you actually meet the goal or the quota or whatever it was?
Did you come close to it?
Whether you did or you didn’t mean anything personal about you, it’s just what you need to learn or the lessons that you need to grow.
But ask yourself, what were the results?
What were the facts?
And then, what are you most proud of?
So maybe somebody came to you and they were very dissatisfied, so maybe there was a customer and they were very dissatisfied.
And — just a random example — and they got really upset with you and maybe you didn’t take it personally or snap back at them, you just handled it very professionally.
You can’t control their behavior obviously, what’s going on with them is what’s going on with them, but maybe you just kept yourself very composed.
Maybe it was a stakeholder in a project, maybe it was a customer, maybe it was a co-worker or your boss and you just kept yourself very composed and you were very professional about how you handled it.
That could be an example of something to be proud of. And then, come to terms that you really have two choices.
You can either wait for other people to validate you and since we can’t control other people, they’re going to do what they’re going to do anyway.
You can either wait for that, it may or may not come, you’re not in control of what they do.
OR you can choose the path of yourself and what you control and you can choose to ask yourself the questions.
Really get curious about what you learned, about how you evolved, how you grew, how you became different as a person because of the result of this project that you took on, the experience that you brought and what you were able to accomplish.
What results did you get?
What was hard for you, what you were proud of in the end.
And when you reflect on that, you have all the answers there.
You don’t have all the answers when you’re relying on somebody else.
And when you’re relying on other people, people tend to get frustrated, discouraged, stuck in the fact that it’s unfair that they’re not getting recognized.
It’s unfair that they’re not getting the monetary reward that they would have liked or promotion that they would have liked, thinking that things are basically unfair, that’s the result there.
And that leaves you powerless because you can’t do anything about that.
When you’re on this side and you’re focusing on what you did, how you evolved, how it made you a different better person, what you’re most proud of, you can then take that.
If necessary, you can use that, focusing on that and journaling that and having that very clear in your mind, you can take that to somebody who is going to pay you what you deserve or is going to give you the monetary compensation that it’s worth, versus waiting for people to acknowledge you or give you the raise or promotion, right?
That’s not going to be within your control.
So I urge you, I encourage you, focus on what your opinion is of your project, of your accomplishments, of what you did.
And maybe you think you need to improve in some areas, that’s completely normal too. You probably do. You probably see areas where you can be better, but that’s good, right?
That’s you evolving your brain, going for what you want, living your life without waiting for validation from anybody else.
And the counterintuitive thing here is that when you focus on what you can control when you focus on what you can do and what you’re proud of and what you can improve on and what you think about what you did, you end up getting the validation from other people because if you’ve ever heard before, people are attracted to confidence.
They love people who really don’t care what anyone else thinks of them, they’re just going for it.
They’re just doing their thing and they’re just rocking their own house down.
And when you do that, automatically people start to get curious about you and what you’re doing and how you’re doing it and they start to want to be like you.
Focus on yourself, keep your eyes in your own lane and what other people do is up to them.
If you want some more help from me, I want to invite you to a free workshop, it’s called Four Days To A Six-figure Job You Love.
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Do you know one person who could benefit from the information in this post? If so, do your friend a favor and share this info with him/her.
And remember, the current system isn’t perfect, but you can outsmart it. I’m here to prove to you that you do have what it takes.
I’ll see you next time and I can’t wait!
In Work & Life
I’ve got your back
– XO Natalie