Do You Own The Value You Bring?
There is a lie we tell ourselves and this lie robs us of money, time, and peace of mind.
Many of us accept this lie as truth, while many more of us will conceptually accept it as a lie but will still behave as if it were truth…because in our heart of hearts we believe the lie is truth.
The lie is that we are not good enough so we have to produce A LOT, do A LOT, and provide A LOT in order to be considered valuable.
This belief can have you: agreeing to be paid far less than your worth, bending over backwards to be of service, and working long hours to make sure you are producing more than is expected of you. You don’t want to leave any doubt in anyone’s mind that they made the right choice in choosing you. You have to convince “them” you are worthy of the position you hold.
If this goes on long enough you will one day pause and look around at how much everyone else is doing. You will realize you are one of the few people, if not the only person, working this hard and you will begin to resent it. “How can other people be experiencing success or earning rewards when they don’t do nearly half as much? They don’t deserve it; they haven’t earned it!”
This attitude can trickle to your associates, counterparts and, without question, to any direct reports you have. Your extreme high expectations for yourself will become the new baseline for anyone on your support team.
You may not verbalize the exact standard your team is being held to (because when you say it out loud it sounds a little crazy, right?), but when you review their performance this standard will shade your perspective and leave you feeling disappointed in them. It’s hard to build strong teams when disappointment and frustration are the underlying emotions you feel.
Now, this isn’t about giving up on caring or being okay with sub-par standards. It’s about owning how much value you already provide naturally, without all the rigmarole.
Before the lie you tell yourself harms you, and everyone around you, I want you take the following steps:
Start each day appreciating a quality that you naturally possess.
Do you have a way of talking with clients, customers and team members that puts them at ease and makes them feel appreciated? Are you a detail-oriented person and can easily find the mistakes or gaps that could cause big problems down the line? Are you able to connect with the big picture to make sure everything being worked on is supporting the vision of where your company is going?
Begin each day by reflecting on and owning your unique abilities. Don’t worry about the unique abilities others bring to the table while you are doing this. Comparing ourselves to others is a trap and reinforces a lie. Focus on how YOU bring value.
Before you re-do, add to, or throw away a project check in with another person.
For the time being assume you cannot be the one who can determine if something is “good enough.” When we don’t see how incredibly valuable we are everything has to be stellar and have a “wow” factor. This is nice on special occasions but everything you work on does not require such attention.
Find someone you trust, share with them your goal to “own your value”, and ask them if they will be the sounding board on your projects and initiatives. They can provide the dose of reality you may have been lacking up until this point. Remember, lies thrive in secret. To conquer them, you have to bring them into the light and examine them. Having a trusted person to act as a sounding board will help you examine your own feelings.
End each day listing out your minor wins and major accomplishments.
Don’t leave anything out! If you remained calm under pressure, if you helped someone by answering their questions, or if you focused and finished a task you didn’t particularly like, write it down and appreciate yourself for it!
We tend to take for granted the things that we do as something that anyone can do and pass it off as nothing. Don’t do that! You have a gift, you have developed yourself; not everyone can do all that you do and you are a package. Acknowledge it and celebrate it.
This lie of not having a high value has likely been going on for many years so know it’s going to take consistent effort to expose it for a lie and accept the truth: that you are worthy of success and recognition just by doing what naturally comes to you.
Does this sound like you? Comment below and share some of the lengths you go to prove your value.