When we feel invisible, in our work contributions, in our personal relationships, in our families, in our communities, as women, as mothers, as partners, as friends – it sucks (just to be really eloquent). There’s a rage, and then sadness, that comes from habitual invisibleness or insignificantness. Any time we don’t feel valued for what we bring, that yucky feeling translates across many platforms and manifests in funky ways. It might be a general cloud of negativity that dampens your magic. It could be overreacting to one thing when you’re really upset about another. It could be a vague malaise or fatigue or depression. It can also look like constant complaints – suddenly, no one can make you happy because you’re unpleasable. The one thing you need fulfilled isn’t getting the light of day.
There’s frustration (and even indignation, or humiliation) when you give and give, and you give your BEST, and the people around you treat it like another Tuesday.
“We couldn’t do this without you.”
“Your work makes our work so much better.”
“You add so much to this team.”
“How do you do it?!?”
“Yes I’ll drop everything and come help you – that’s how much you mean to me.”
That’s what most of us simply need to hear. The overwhelming majority of us don’t need parades in our honor or cakes to celebrate how smart or brave or nifty we are. We just want the people we respect and love most to do one thing– see our worth, understand our circumstances, and act like it.
But you can’t make anyone do any of that. When it happens, it’s amazing, but in the meantime, try to take the time to count the ways that you impressed your own bad self. Stop relying on the world, a boss, a partner, a colleague – to tell you. And take it ALL IN when someone you respect, notices. It’s not a cynical view, but when you stop looking for it, and start getting high on your own supply (if you will), it usually finds you.