Feeling Underappreciated at Work? Don't Look Out, Look In.

You’re working insane hours, going above and beyond, making the impossible, possible. Successfully delivering one project after another. Turning water into wine. Wait. No one noticed?

For many of us, feeling underappreciated at work is unfortunately all too familiar. We spend much of our waking hours at work “fighting the good fight” often without so much of a nod from our boss or colleagues. As a result completing a tough project can feel anti-climatic. You might be asking yourself, “Why bother?”

Let’s be real, this situation can really stink and feel unfair (yikes!). But before we go any further, let’s take a moment to go deeper.

Here’s the tough love. As my mom used to gently remind me, “the world is not fair.” In addition, no one really owes us anything, and that includes appreciation. Now for the positive side. The good news is that we can make ourselves feel appreciated. In fact, we owe it to ourselves to appreciate our hard work. Rather than relying on external appreciation from others, here are 3 ways you can start feeling appreciated right now from the inside out. With some practice, you may find a whole new way to master the most important kind of appreciation. Self-appreciation.

  1. Start a self-gratitude practice. Each day, jot down 3 things you appreciate about yourself. Note what you’ve done well and what you really love about yourself. This may feel awkward or vain at first, but remember this is for your eyes only. Feeling grateful about the incredible person you are will perk you up instantly. Plus, these notes will be etched in your memory anytime you need a future pick me up.

  2. Shift the focus away from you by expressing appreciation for someone else. Outwardly acknowledging someone else for their efforts by giving them your admiration and respect will promote a healthy team atmosphere and build trust and camaraderie. Lead by example and your actions will inspire others to do the same.

  3. Reward yourself for your awesomeness. Indulge in a token of appreciation for YOU. Maybe you decide to treat yourself to a delicious glass of wine, bake your favorite type of cake, or take a day trip to somewhere you’ve always wanted to go.

Go on, bask in your own appreciation of all your accomplishments. You’ve earned it!

Most importantly, try not to allow lack of appreciation from others bring you down. All you need to feel appreciated lives inside of you. Continue to focus on  your goals, deliver amazing work, and set your own standards for success. When someone graciously does appreciate all your awesome efforts, well, that’s icing on your already beautifully decorated cake.