When approaching 51, you end up doing this sort of involuntary assessment of your existence up to this point…it’s not like a planned thing, it just happens…you find yourself thinking through the decades that have passed and you start looking at what you learned.
If you are me you also think you need to share the things you could have done better because perhaps you will keep someone else from making those particular errors.
Here’s one of my biggest “I could have done betters” career wise — not realizing my worth in the workplace and conducting myself accordingly. Up until about 3 or 4 years ago I undervalued myself and allowed other people to undervalue me as well— I also did a fair amount of enabling people disguised as being a power performer. I was talking this morning on the FB Live about how we end up just putting our heads down and moving toward the goal without really giving much thought to how we ARE in the process. What happens in the workplace is the same…we behave in the same way, we take our –badass single parent, we can get anything done– attitude and we apply it everywhere—without much thought to how we are being treated in return. We may tend to undervalue ourselves in a work environment by doing this…
For me that showed up for years as me doing everything I was asked, pushing through to get the result no matter what, always saying yes, not asking to be compensated for doing many different jobs, trying to please everyone and make everything easier for them…I trusted that people would treat me the way I treated them…often that was not the case.
Looking back on it all now I see that I did a lot of enabling others because I just always made everything OK and handled it…I was so worried about keeping the bills paid and a roof over our heads that I never once stopped to think about if I was being compensated for what I was WORTH. In hindsight I could have done so so SO much better—if I had understood how much value I contributed I would have understood how to ask for things in relation to that—instead I just took what was offered and kept doing more…
I am so very grateful for all that I learned in these last two decades and for all of the opportunities that were extended to me, I simply wish that I had taken better care of myself in the process and that I had valued myself as much as I should have. I would like to see you ladies avoid this – value yourselves, ask for what you deserve and don’t be afraid to walk away if something isn’t working—take care of you—you are worth far more than you think.