We all know being taken for granted sucks. Being forgotten, left behind, ignored, or not being recognized for all the little things. It’s one of the leading causes of breakups of all kinds of relationships, people just forget to really acknowledge their partner/parent/friend and so on. Worse yet, when people talk down to the people in their lives because they are just too “familiar”. Before long, resentment builds, feelings are perpetually hurt, and the relationship falters…then fails.

But, I think it’s even more detrimental when we take OURSELVES for granted. Constantly focusing on the negative, staying in a comfort zone, never forcing ourselves to “think outside the box,” or challenge ourselves, either physically, emotionally, or academically. Any challenge is MENTAL, anytime we step outside our comfort zone and try something new, we are calling upon mental resources to make it through that challenge. We need personal challenge to grow as people.

But not only that, what about the names we call OURSELVES? When we screw up that dinner, mess up that paper, can’t finish that workout, we berate and belittle ourselves, we call ourselves stupid, lazy, worthless. It’s okay to do this occasionally, in order to push ourselves even more, but some of us cannot let it go. It begins to taint every fiber of our being. We take our decisions and failures to heart.

I think this all comes full circle though. We beat ourselves up, consider ourselves worthless (whether we admit aloud to our friends or even ourselves), and then allow people to take us for granted, for the small feeling of self-gratification we receive by shining those shoes, or cooking that special dinner, or anything else we might do for the people in our lives. We want to feel good, so we have to try to make them feel good, and they seize on that, and a vicious cycle is born.

I think in order to love your family, friends, significant others, you have to love yourself first. You have to get out of this mindset that you are worthless on your own, and need someone else to validate your worth. You have to shake things up, get out of your comfort zone, set goals YOU want to do – YOU own your “bucket list” and what’s on yours is not necessarily on anyone else’s. Challenge yourself with things YOU enjoy, or you are setting yourself up for failure.

Love yourself. Yank your own chain, if no one else is going to. Pat yourself on the back. Be happy. Quit letting people walk all over you because you might get five minutes’ worth of satisfaction out of it.

***This message was brought to you by the softer side of Sears. Oh, wait. No, this message was brought to you by someone who is constantly evolving, changing, growing, challenging, and still missing the mark on my feelings of self-worth and happiness. ~ Suz***

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