I had one of the most argument filled, emotion stirring days of my life in the office last week. The chain of events got me wondering to what level do I genuinely respect myself. How far on a scale of 1 to 10 does Jennifer Stoute and what she stands for get true love from my inner self. If I am perfectly honest I thought I was high up on the scales, but perhaps I revealed my blind spot during that heated day.
I have a pretty laid back personality and I am not over authoritative, meaning I don’t crack the whip every time when I perhaps should. Unfortunately this laid back personality can sometimes be mistaken as a green light for invasion, which got me wondering just how much do I really respect myself and my own needs.
Lets look at the meaning of respect :
Respect: Admiration for good qualities or achievement of a person. Politeness or Consideration for a person.
I could easily apply the above definition to an endless amount of friends without even a moment’s thought, but how many times do I apply the same to myself.
How often do we sit back and smile at our own achievements and say “Wow. I am a great mum, a friend, a colleague, a business woman”? Not often, I can imagine.
Why do we leave it until we are pushed back against the wall, to say “Hey I am here. Don’t walk all over me!”
I was dragged into a massive argument because I am the peacemaker, the one everyone can come to in the time of difficulty. This was a role I’ve adopted over the years without noticing and didn’t mind at the time. In fact, I was quite proud of it. I called myself ‘the clue of the company’ without ever realizing that my helpfulness was actually turning against me and sucking all my energy and time without giving me anything in return. I would hear “Don't worry, Jennifer will take care of it!” and “Where’s Jennifer?” all the time.
It was amazing what happened when I realized I had let everyone freely take my kindness and my time when it served me no purpose. I believe everybody should be treated equally and common respect should be shown to all, but somehow I never realized I didn’t expect everybody to fully apply it to me. And I shouldn’t have been the postman to deliver this message, but finally I had no choice.
I stepped down from the peacemaker role and the whole office fell apart.
I told everyone it was time they stand on their own feet and that was very tough for some to stomach. But it had to be done. I had to push through that difficulty, for my sake. And then again, I had created my own situation by conditioning them to my over-helpful behaviour.
I feel completely free now, liberated! I should have done this a long time ago. It’s amazing how the thing we think gives us power may be the very thing that makes us weak.
It’s never too late to change your direction, you just have to be brave enough to take the first step and trust yourself. I strongly believe that the environment you accept is the environment you have conditioned yourself into. How people react to you is a reaction on yourself.
Teach your environment the way you want to be treated and respect will follow.
I found a great article I would like to share with you that sums up everything to me. Here are some extracts:
Self Worth: Why You Need To Value Yourself More by ASHLEY FERN.
“Self-respect is the most crucial aspect of one’s life. If you do not understand how to appreciate yourself and your worth, how do you expect others to? Life is too short to maintain toxic relationships. In order for yours to flourish, you need to work on yourself first.
Don’t expect anyone to love or respect you if you don’t fully love yourself first.
Respect yourself enough to walk away from anyone or anything that no longer serves you, grows you, or makes you happy.”
Take pride in who you are and what you have to offer. Too many people place the needs of others before their own. In order to respect others, you need to meet your own needs first. How can you truly learn to appreciate others if you can’t even appreciate yourself? This is fundamental to personal growth.
And sometimes you have to go into a conflict to get some fresh air around you!
Please comment and share your thoughts.
Jennifer - Learning all the time