The Secret to Being Appreciated: A Follow-Up

Last week I shared my discovery about feeling appreciated. It was such a profound learning for me that I want to follow up on what happened in the week since. It was just seven days ago when I discovered that I don’t have to wait for others to bestow appreciation onto me in order to feel good, rather, I can give myself the feeling of being appreciated any time I want.

I practiced this all week long. Every time I had a quiet moment, I let a wave of satisfaction lap over me, as if someone just patted me on the back. It was soothing and calming, and made work more enjoyable because I felt assured that I was being appreciated. While my co-workers struggled with management’s lack of empathy, I sailed through the week with detachment. Having this feeling at the ready gave me the confidence to not need it from anyone else. Interestingly, the very day I began feeling this way, my manager sent me an email congratulating me on my performance. Something he’s never done before.

It’s like the missing key syndrome – you dash around the house searching for your missing keys, cursing them for making you late for your appointment, and just when you give up, you realize they’re in your hand. When you give up searching for something, it shows up. It’s when you let go and detach that the path clears. This is what I learned this week: the way to have others appreciate you is to first feel appreciated. And this is possibly the way to have anything and everything.

The more I practice feeling appreciated, the more confident I feel in this area. I no longer wonder if I’m being noticed, and the anxiety it use to bring up is gone. I’m more relaxed in all of my relationships, not just at work. Now that I’m becoming assured in this respect, I want to move onto other areas that are challenges for me. I noticed this week that I’ve labelled myself as an outsider, often feeling left out of conversations and not being heard when I do speak up.

Just like feeling unappreciated, this is just a belief and it can be changed. In this coming week, I’m going to give myself the feeling of belonging. I’m going to let go of the notion that I’m different and forever on the outside looking in, or that I’m too shy and quiet. These are simply recurring thoughts that looped through my mind so often that I believe them. Not only do these statements sound like rubbish now that I’ve written them down, they’ve also only ever served up hurt for me. So I’m replacing them with a new belief and, more importantly, a new feeling: that of belonging.

This is my plan: challenge and change all of my negative thoughts and feelings, one by one. I’m up for this and I’m ready.