“I am just not appreciated round here” is a common complaint when people aren’t happy at work. The other common one is “They just don’t recognise what I do for them”.
But hey ….
Should we expect appreciation when we are being paid anyway? Isn’t being paid and being kept on in our jobs all the appreciation and recognition we should expect?
OK, don’t all shout back at me at once! …..Just listen to my reasoning ….which is key to YOU being happy at work. (Remember I rarely write about something I haven’t experienced myself, so I’ve been there …feeling unappreciated and it hurts!)
I don’t mean accepting bosses and management being rude or impolite, that’s not on. It costs nothing to be asked to do something in the proper manner.
I mean, should we really expect our managers or bosses to say “You did a good job there” or “Well done!” or “Thanks for that” etc?
Taking control of your Appreciation
We all want and need appreciation, but the only way to get appreciation whenever you want it ….is to get out of the habit of NEEDING positive comments from others, in order to feel it.
Because one thing is for sure:-
- we can’t control how often someone shows their appreciation and,
- we can’t make them recognise what we’re doing for them.
What we can do, to make us feel a whole lot better, is to control our own reactions and feelings when we don’t get feedback. Then when we do get it, it will be icing on the cake and that much sweeter.
How to get the “feeling appreciated” habit
1. Start appreciating ourselves
Quite often, when we want lots of appreciation and recognition from others it is because we are not recognising our own worth often enough. We are not saying to ourselves “I did a good job there” or “Wow, that was great customer service”.
Put it simply we are not patting ourselves on the back, so we want reinforcement from others in order to feel good. So start today to appreciate yourself – write down what you did well today. This isn’t something peculiar to just males or females, I find the need to appreciate ourselves more, is universal.
2. Don’t expect appreciation
Those of us working in customer facing roles, know that many customers will not compliment you, but it doesn’t mean they weren’t happy with the service. They will pay on time and they will often recommend you to others, but to your face they may say nothing.
It is easy when you start out in a role, to be “super sensitive” to a lack of positive feedback. As your confidence builds and you KNOW you are good at what you do, you realise that people show their appreciation in different ways, often by just “not moaning or complaining!!”. Managers and bosses can be the same – you know everything was OK because they didn’t complain.
If you approach your relationship with all customers, (the external ones and bosses/collegues) as one where you don’t EXPECT appreciation. Then you will not be disappointed, only pleasantly surprised when it comes along.
3. Remember, it’s not all about you
One thing that can cause annoyance is when you have been used to praise in one job and you move to one where you don’t get it or where a manager who used to praise you just stops. The thing to realise is “it is not all about you”. People can have a lot on their plate, lots of pressures, and can just be relieved that things are getting done – their mind is not on giving praise.
Sometimes a boss doesn’t think you need it. I have often told a boss how a member of their staff is feeling “unappreciated” and they reply “But they know they’re good!” or they might say “I’m just too busy these days to keep telling them things are OK, I’d soon tell them if they weren’t”
So where does this leave you?
We all need appreciation but we can’t rely on getting it from outside of ourselves SO, start today appreciating yourself. Write down what you achieve each day….say it out-loud if necessary “I did a great job there”.
You will then control your own “appreciation tap” and you can turn it on when you need it!
Then any appreciation from others will be an unexpected bonus.