• Christine Ward

Declining to Lower My Expectations

Through the journey of reinventing myself, and doing things that make me happy, I’ve done a lot of reading. Self-help books sit piled high on my vanity; some are read all the way through. Some I refused to finish.

Not only have I endeavored to read personal development books but have read articles and publications on numerous websites. I have even talked about this one little thing with my counselor. Most self-help literature will tell you that to be happy; you have got to lower your expectations.

"I call bullshit."

I have even had that very same advice given to me by a previous counselor, who I might add, is no longer in my service. My current counselor is a godsend. I tried (I really did) to follow this advice.

At my previous job, I would go in with the mentality that, yes, I will expect to be talked to like a child. In relationships with family members, I tried to change my perspective to be more accommodating to them. I’ve done this for years with significant trauma to my wellbeing.

It doesn’t work. It doesn’t do me any good to accept things the way they are. All that accomplishes is to make me feel worse. It perpetuates the cycle of low self-worth.

In all the things that I do in life, I try to do them well. I work hard to be a good mother, a good wife, a good employee, housekeeper, sister, daughter, etc. I value the time that I put into things. It would make sense that others appreciate my time as well, right?

NOT! I have found that, unfortunately, the answer is always going to be a solid NO if you continue to lower your self-worth, and give in. At this point, while trying to build happiness, I’ve had to trim out the fat. The spoiled, rotten, stinking fat that tries to cling to my body and my spirit.

"I will not settle for less than what I think I deserve. Not anymore. Not ever again."

Yes, I am struggling right now to make ends meet because I won’t settle. I have lost relationships that are meaningful to me because my time and efforts aren’t respected. I keep telling myself that I decline to lower my expectations; I don’t care what the experts say. It’s still hard, no matter how resolute I am.

I wish I had one of those toy clappers that I could use every time that I’m thinking about giving in. My little device would do some slapping instead of clapping, though. Sometimes, I almost give in.

This brings me to the point that got me to writing this piece today. I am working on building a business, a solid clientele, and a name for myself. I am good at what I do, even though I’m a newbie. I know that I have worth.

I put in a proposal for what I thought was a great job and got a response! The further I read, though, the more I realized that this was just another person trying to take advantage of me. I am so freaking disappointed! This person explained to me that since I am newly in business, that I should do work for him, basically for free.

He did offer to pay me a couple of dollars. You read that right.

I declined.

I came back to this man and told him that I value my time, and I knew my worth, and that I won’t settle for what he is offering. He insulted me! I did, however, almost give in. Why do I do that?

Well, lo and behold, this person decided to get back to me. He was made aware that I have a backbone and ended up respecting what I wanted for my services. Yep! And to think that I almost gave in.

The moral of the story is self-explanatory. Don’t ever lower yourself for others; don’t ever give in. Once you realize your worth, others will too. That’s when you’ll finally get what you think you deserve.

Thanks for reading!


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