I’m not really writing this blog post for me, this one is a bit different to normal and has actually been inspired by a friend. A friend that’s just having it a bit tough lately and could do with some love and support from her friends.

She’s just got me thinking. You see this girl has my back, always. She’s very wise, tells me like it is and reminds me of what’s important. But like most of us, doesn’t always heed her own advice. So it got me thinking about what I’d say to myself, what would I write and what thoughts would I mull over. So here goes.

Know your worth. I’ve found myself giving this advice out a lot over the last year or two. Know your worth. There was a time when I didn’t, I didn’t realise what I was worth, I didn’t realise what I actually deserved and I settled for less. In lots of situations, work, home, relationships, friendships and even my own health and well being. The truth is once you realise your own worth, people treat you and give you what you are worth because you demand it.

Now I’m not talking demand in the diva Kardashian sense or even in the spoilt child way. I mean the standards you uphold for yourself. The respect you want from others. It’s not about being rude or barking orders. It’s about remembering who you are, what qualities you bring to the table and what treatment you expect in return. Whether it be the manners and courtesy you expect from others or the expectations and limitations you stipulate on friendships and relationships in terms of what you will or won’t tolerate. Most importantly it’s about how you make this a two way street. That you give the same respect out, appreciating someone else’s standards whilst outlining your own.

This can be in a variety of ways and scenarios, like when on a job interview you also ask questions to ensure to organisation is one you also what to work for not just about whether they want you. That’s why we enquire about the ethos of a company, what employee benefits, training or progression they offer, because as much as we want to go and work for them and work hard for them we want to know that they also want to invest in us. It’s like when on a first date and you hint as to whether you kiss on a first date or want to take things more slow and gradual, it’s about showing what your personal level of standard is, showing you know your worth to the other person.

It’s like how as a parent you establish continually with your child as to what the boundaries are and what behaviours you will or won’t accept from them. Now I know we don’t openly always have these conversations, I mean it’s not exactly the best first impression to start reeling off a list of do’s or don’ts whenever you meet a new person, but how we remember our own value and worth naturally ensures people know what respect and standards we have for ourselves. It doesn’t really matter what your personal standards and boundaries are because they’re yours and they’re what you should be happy with and willing to accept. As long as they come from you, that’s all that matters.

It’s not easy though is it? It takes a lot of self confidence to be able to ensure you don’t take shit from people in away that’s not confrontational or aggressive. I hold my hands up, I’m either too soft sometimes or too closed off and guarded. But I’m a hell of a lot better than I used to be. I don’t give out as many chances I’m internally very clear on what I’m happy with in my life nowadays. I know my worth these days and I know that life is too short to not seize the day and enjoy the moment. Therefore I will naturally gravitate towards the people that make me feel good and invest in me.

That’s a good way of putting it. When you know your worth, you look at who invests in you. Who contributes to your life and is willing to make your relationship whether that be a working one, a friendship, a family member or a romantic partner, a positive one. Usually the people who invest in you are the ones that work with you to make your life and their life better. It could be the colleague that listens when you want to offload and have a natter over lunch, it could be the friend that just knows and remembers and brings out a mug of coffee as you sit with your sleeping baby in the car. Or the friend that knows it was a tough day at work and texts to say, “how did it go? Want to ring for a natter?” The people like that are the people that also know your worth.

Knowing your own worth and respecting your own standards and boundaries is a game changer. It takes a lot, it means you’ve to really truly believe in yourself. You’ve to be able to calmly articulate your feelings and be aware of how the behaviours of others impacts you. It means you’ve to respect yourself as much as you want others to do and not be frightened to walk away if you don’t like what’s being served.

Know your worth my dear friend, because I think you’re worth an awful lot.

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