It’s hard to voice true feelings and advocate for yourself when you don’t believe you’re of much value. People who feel like second-class citizens tend to accept whatever they get and avoid reaching out for more. Maybe you’re convinced that you deserve to have people mistreat you or that your destiny is to spend your life taking care of others and not yourself. Perhaps you have some misguided belief that folks will magically do right by you even if you don’t tell them what right is and they’ve been doing you wrong all along. That belief is wishful, childlike thinking, not adult assessment and communication. Or you might think that if you keep quiet, people won’t be offended and will like you more.
Being invisible and devaluing yourself is a strategy you learned in childhood to get you through the tough times, but no one is going to think much of you now unless you start to value yourself. And what better way to let people know how thrilled you are to be little ole you than to be verbal about your needs and desires. If you don’t like to rock the boat, what kind of vessel are you floating around in? Certainly not one that’s strong and well crafted and can survive rough seas. Building yourself up by speaking up and saying what you mean not only reinforces your value in your own eyes but also encourages people to treat you respectfully.